Chicago at a Glance
Living in ChicagoiStockphoto
Chicago offers its residents an array of leisure activities, which give the city its special flair.
With more than 2.7 million people living in Chicago, it is the most populated city of Illinois and all other Midwestern United States. The current U.S. president Barack Obama spent most of his life in Chicago, as did several other well-known personalities, such as the famous 1920s gangster Al Capone, and the 1990s basketball legend Michael Jordan – to name a few celebrities!
The city’s notoriety is not only expressed by the people who have made Chicago their home past and present, but also in films, art, literature and music, which makes it that much more interesting for those keen on living in the Windy City.
Expats considering choosing Chicago as an expat destination will be pleased to hear that Chicago is a relatively young city, with the median age being around 33. Many people living in Chicago are foreign-born, making the city a great mix of cultures and languages to be heard and seen on the streets.
Those living in Chicago will quickly tell anyone that it is a very lively and vibrant city. Entertainment is one of the city’s main highlights: From cultural offerings to swanky nightlife, Chicago has it all!
The famous Shedd Aquarium and Field Museum, as well as the Art Institute of Chicago, all located on the waterfront, make life in Chicago not only entertaining but educational as well. For those art lovers out there, life in Chicago gives you plenty of opportunities to attend gallery openings, quality exhibitions, and countless vernissages.
Furthermore, expats in Chicago are able to enjoy the various forms of performing arts the city has to offer: From ballet to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, to Broadway-like shows and the famous jazz and blues scene, everyone living in Chicago can find their niche! Do not hesitate to check out the Chicago Cultural Center, which offers information on upcoming events or attractions and allows you to search for the type of activity you would like to participate in.
Food and Shopping
Once you have lived in Chicago for a bit longer, the tourist attractions will probably lose their initial appeal, yet Chicago has much more to offer than just architectural highlights and events. The famous Michigan Avenue is loved among people living in Chicago. Expensive designer brands in high-class boutiques to secondhand shops along Wabash Avenue can make everyone’s shopping dreams come true!
The various Chicago neighborhoods, which you can read about in the InterNations Guide on Moving to Chicago, offer various flairs to satisfy the different tastes of people living in Chicago. For example, the Loop Area/State Street offers a variety of department and fashion chain stores, including Macy’s which is with its 12 stories one of the world’s largest department stores and even listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Gold Coast and the Magnificent Mile, on the other hand, offer haute couture boutiques as well as celebrated local designer stores.
Due to its multicultural population, the city can boast a variety of international cuisines as well. As with many large metropolises, the immigrant population of Chicago moved into neighborhoods where the residents were mainly of their origin. Today still, these neighborhoods maintain much of their original flair. You will find the food in these areas absolutely amazing, and there are places for every budget and palate: Greektown on South Halsted Street in downtown Chicago, right next door to Little Italy, Chinatown on the Southside, the Ukrainian Village between Pulaski and Kedzie et cetera. Rest assured, food-loving expats living in Chicago will not be disappointed!