After the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 and following Potter Palmer’s 1885 castle-esque mansion, the wealthy of Chicago began moving north of the Loop to develop Lake Shore Drive into what would became one of the city's wealthiest neighborhoods. Referred to as the Gold Coast, this fabled neighborhood lines Lake Michigan and contains vintage architecture, modern high rises, and rare insight into the early residents who made Chicago an incredible city.
Join Free Tours by Foot as we explore the residential side of the city on this name-your-own-price tour of Chicago’s Gold Coast. Take in sights such as the historic Drake Hotel, the original Playboy Mansion, an early example of Frank Lloyd Wright's Prairie School architecture, as well as the oldest private residences on Lake Shore Drive.
As we take in these one-of-a-kind homes and mansions, you'll learn about the men and women who called the Gold Coast home while shaping the Chicago we know and love today.
Some sights and topics we'll cover on the Gold Coast tour:
- The Drake Hotel
- The Fortnightly of Chicago
- Original Playboy Mansion
- Charnley-Persky House
- Madlener House
- Patterson-McCormick Mansion
- Palmer Mansion
Continue your day with our Lincoln Park Blues tour in the afternoon following this tour.
Reservations: REQUIRED. Click here to reserve.
Where: Meet your guide outside the Drake Hotel at 140 E. Walton Place (map). Look for your guide with the Free Tours by Foot logo!
Duration: Tour lasts approx. 2 hours. Total walking is just over one mile (1.6km).
Save more money and combine our tours with a tourist pass and/or a hop-on, hop-off bus ticket.