IF YOU GO

From LAX, nonstop service to Chicago is offered on United, American and Virgin America; direct service (stop, no change of plane) on US Airways and connecting service (change of plane) on United, American, Delta and US Airways. Restricted round-trip fares begin at $446.

WHERE TO STAY

Public Hotel, 1301 N. State Parkway, Chicago; (312) 787-3700 http://www.publichotels.com. Ian Schrager's newly designed minimalist Gold Coast digs has a Mac-equipped communal business center and breakfast room service that arrives guaranteed within 10 minutes. Doubles from $105.

Hotel 71, 71 E. Wacker Drive, Chicago; (312) 346-7100, http://www.hotel71.com. Conveniently located in the Loop. Doubles from $135.

Hotel Palomar, 505 N. State St., Chicago; (312) 755-9703 http://www.hotelpalomar-chicago.com. This spring the hotel will launch a bedside cocktail program, where Sable's bartenders will wheel up bar carts for in-room service. Doubles $179.

WHERE TO EAT

The Bedford, 1612 W. Division St., Chicago; (773) 235-8800, http://www.bedfordchicago.com. Vegetarian and vegan comfort food in a supper-club setting that's housed within a former 1920s bank vault. Dinner entrees, $10-$28.

The Publican, 837 W. Fulton Market, Chicago; (312) 733-9555, http://www.thepublicanrestaurant.com. Cured meats and craft beer are the name of the game at this restaurant, which is operated by the folks who own the Violet Hour. Dinner entrees, $14-$40.

Mrs. Murphy & Sons, 3905 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago; (773) 248-3905, http://www.irishbistro.com. This Irish bar was formerly a funeral home where gangsters hid bodies during Prohibition. It has a massive whiskey selection as well as amazing house-smoked barbecued ribs. Dinner entrees $12.50-$28.50.

WHERE TO DRINK

The Sable, see listing above under Hotel Palomar.

The Bedford, see listing above.

The Aviary, 953-955 W. Fulton St., Chicago; (312) 226-0868, http://www.theaviary.com

Twin Anchors, 1655 N. Sedgwick St., Chicago; (312) 266-1616, http://www.twinanchorsribs.com

Pump Room 1301 N. State Parkway, Chicago; (312) 787-3700, http://www.pumproom.com

Violet Hour, 1520 N. Damen Ave.,, Chicago; (773) 252-1500, http://www.theviolethour.com

The Whistler 2421 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago; (773) 227-3530; http://www.whistlerchicago.com

TO LEARN MORE

Explore Chicago, http://www.explorechicago.org