Jewelers' Row

5 S Wabash Ave Chicago

Leentje De Leeuw
Written By Leentje De Leeuw

After reporter Leentje De Leeuw interviewed a man in Chicago who was originally from her Belgian hometown of Sint-Amands, the brief encounter lingered in both their minds. They decided to stay in touch and soon fell in love. Not only had Leentje fallen in love with the man, she was also smitten with the city. In September 2014, after many transatlantic flights, Leentje moved to the Windy City. In 2015 she decided to combine her passion for the city with her experience in travel and media, and thus launched her off the beaten path walks and biking tours. As soon as Leentje became a member of the Chicago Tour Guide Professionals Association, Chica-GO was born!

Chicago's Jewelers' Row, consisting of two shiny blocks on Wabash Avenue between Washington and Monroe Streets in the heart of the Loop, has gained its fame since right after the Great Chicago Fire in 1872. The epicenter of Jewelers' Row is the 5 S. Wabash Mallers Building. Since 1912 this building houses jewelry manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers from all over the world. Since the eighties jewelers from Mexico, South America, and Southeast Asia brought new ethnic trends to Jewelers' Row. Jewelers' Row was designated a Chicago Landmark in 2003 since it is not only a historic shopping district but also comprised of a distinguished group of buildings important in the development of Chicago commercial architecture.

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The district includes important building types such as post-Chicago Fire loft manufacturing buildings, Chicago School loft manufacturing, mercantile, and office buildings, early twentieth-century skyscrapers, and Art Deco-style mercantile buildings. These buildings were designed in a variety of architectural styles, including Italianate, Chicago School, and Art Deco, by significant Chicago architects, including John Mills Van Osdel, Hill & Woltersdorf, Adler & Sullivan, D. H. Burnham & Co., Holabird & Roche, Alfred Alschuler, Christian Eckstorm, and Graham, Anderson, Probst & White. Besides all of those great things Millennium Park, the Art Institute and the world class shops of the Magnificent Mile are also closeby !

Want to go on a walking tour with Leentje ?
I DO !
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