If you happen to walk through Macy’s (Marshall Field’s) on State Street in downtown Chicago, look up and see a beautiful Tiffany mosaic hiding in plain sight on the ceiling. Very few people ever notice it. This is reported to be the world’s largest Tiffany mosaic. This store is a sentimental favorite for Chicagoans. It’s also included on my smaller walking tours.
The last stop on Chicago Red Cap Walking Tour’s Historic Building’s tour is under this beautiful Tiffany dome inside a Beaux Arts building finished in 1897 that was Chicago’s former main library and now is a cultural center. The former library is at Michigan and Washington and is generally open 7 days a week. Free art exhibits, concerts, plays and lectures add to Chicago’s cultural life.
The Marquette building ( finished 1895) by Holabird and Roche is a great example of the Chicago School of architecture. Here, architects were creating a unique style of American architecture, revealing in the buildings exterior, the new engineering technique of supporting a buildings total weight by an interior steel skeleton. Lobby photo by Chicago Red Cap Tour guest E. Renner.
The beautiful lobby inside the 190 s. lasalle buiding designed by Philip Johnson. Comfortable chairs
allow you to savor the gold leaf on the cathedral like ceiling, the Moorish accents, and deep red alicante marble pillars inspired by the Rookery building across the street. Photo by tour guest, E. Renner.
As you head north on Michigan Ave. gaze up at this building. You will see some unexpected exotic decoration. This is 505 N. Michigan, the InterContinental Chicago hotel, formerly the Medinah Athletic Club. Johnny Weismuller used to practice in the pool on the 14th floor. The reliefs carved into the limestone facade add to the mid-eastern style of the building.