Chicago apartments that offer proximity to good restaurants or fine shops are always in demand. But for the ultimate convenience factor, nothing really comes close to hopping in the elevator and riding it down to find a grocery store, coffee shop or great restaurant right in the apartment building lobby. In the age of on-demand grocery delivery and Amazon, it seems like apartment renters could feasibly get everything brought to their door. But let’s face it: Sometimes there’s a last-minute grocery run that can’t be ordered up via the smartphone; or maybe renters just get tired of being cooped up in their apartments. Having a reliable dining or entertainment outlet right in the building makes the long Chicago winter much more livable.
Here are six Chicago apartment buildings that give renters an extra dose of the convenience factor by incorporating sensible ground floor retail into the building.
The Hudson Apartments
This River North apartment building lets renters experience their own slice of luxury with private balconies in each unit, a sprawling pool deck and large fitness center that has plenty of equipment. There’s no need for renters to worry about waiting around for the right machine to open up for a workout in this luxury apartment building. Going one step further, the building has a few convenient businesses built right into the ground floor. If the wide array of equipment provided in The Hudson’s fitness center isn’t what renters are looking for, or if they're in need of a little group reinforcement, they can always sign up for one of the classes at SolidCore on the ground floor. There’s a convenient spot to refuel after the workout right next door in Jimmy John’s sandwich shop, or renters can grab a bit of caffeine to help power through the rest of the day at Starbucks Coffee two doors down from the building’s main entrance.
Chicago is known as The City That Works, and locals will tell you that a lot of the work happens because the population here knows where to get a good cup of joe. Big Shoulders Coffee is one of the homegrown coffee roasters and they have a number of shops around town slinging beans, including one at the ground level of Chestnut Place in the Gold Coast. Get ready to supercharge your day the moment you step off the elevator in this Gold Coast apartment building. Then go ahead and make big plans.
Eleven40 South Loop
These sharp new apartments in the South Loop are brimming with high end appliances and luxe finishes. But sometimes it’s good to cut loose and relax in a spontaneous bout of karaoke. Despite the popular assumption that karaoke only happens at bars with a bunch of rowdy strangers whooping and cheering in the background (although that’s a fine way to do it), karaoke can be both an intimate and upscale experience if you know where to look. And apartment renters at Eleven40 South Loop don’t have to trek far to find one of the neighborhood’s great hidden gems: a karaoke lounge that does things in the Korean style, which means private rooms for group parties that offer food and drink service to the rooms. Walking out of the Eleven40 lobby and heading one door to the north on Wabash Street will land renters at an out-of-this-world party experience that will impress virtuoso singers and karaoke newbies alike.
State & Grand Apartments
This River North apartment building is nestled in a relatively quiet corner of an action-packed neighborhood. But the vibe is far from sleepy. This might be due in part to the Starbucks Coffee at the ground level of the building, located at the corner of Grand Ave and Wabash Ave. This spot is also prime real estate for renters who want to sprint through their holiday shopping lists -- the shopping center at North Bridge is located right across the street and the Magnificent Mile is less than five minutes walking distance from these River North apartments.
1225 Old Town Apartments
The name of this Old Town apartment building comes from its street address along N Wells St. This is the main retail and nightlife corridor for the neighborhood. Renters at 1225 Old Town apartments will have plenty of choices for eating in the neighborhood with a stacked roster of interesting and diverse dining spots. But if they feel like preparing dinner at home, the Plum Market is a nifty spot for renters to pick up various fresh ingredients and everyday staples. Better yet, this neighborhood market shares the ground floor with 1225 Old Town. Renters can also get their caffeine fix at Intelligentsia Coffee or sweat out some mid-winter blues at SoulCycle -- all without having to venture outside their building near the corner of Wells and Division.
Lincoln Common Apartments
This Lincoln Park apartment development spreads across two towers with an open air plaza in between them. The plaza of Lincoln Common frequently plays host to local businesses that come in to showcase products, give away samples, throw miniature concerts or conduct outdoor exercise and yoga classes. So the roster of small businesses and local brands that will be right out the front door for renters at these sleek apartments in Lincoln Park could be endless -- in theory. In practical terms, renters at Lincoln Common apartments needn’t go very far to get a jolt of energy and warm treats from Philz Coffee, which takes up permanent residence in the ground floor of the south tower, as well as the new location for Velvet Taco. There's also an Equinox gym for fitness fanatics and a Dearborn Denim outpost across the street for renters who want to sport a pair of jeans made right here in Chicago.
The Residences at Addison & Clark
This apartment building is setting a new standard while setting up shop across from one of the nation’s oldest ballparks. Views of Wrigley Field are probably top of mind for renters who choose an apartment in the heart of Wrigleyville, but the building offers plenty of other worthwhile diversions. The ground floor is a gallery of useful shops, housing everything from a convenience store to a full-blown bowling alley and more than one restaurant.