For most moms, making lasting memories with their kids is a high priority. As summer vacation looms, daydreams of vacations to far off places are common, if not entirely practical (hello, time and money constraints). But new experiences for you and your kids don’t have to be major affairs, with weeks to months of planning and prepping. Staycations offer all of the excitement of out-of-town getaways, without much of the hassle.
Three words: Mother’s Day weekend
Just imagine it: a large, comfy bed that you don’t have to make yourself, dinner made from the freshest farm-to-table ingredients, tempting sweet treats (calories don’t count on your special day) and shopping, oh the shopping. Yes, ma’am. This staycation is screaming your name. And while it’s a great option for families, it’s just as nice as a mommy-only getaway.
Less than an hour outside of downtown Chicago, Rosemont has quickly become an entertainment, shopping and dining mecca that is perfect for a quick trip with your minis.
Check in to Loews Chicago O’Hare Hotel. Rooms are spacious and comfortable, and the beds are kid-tested as “extremely jumpable”. The fitness center is open 24 hours a day, the lobby coffee shop serves Starbucks if you need a little pick-me-up and there’s a legitimate on-site art gallery featuring the work of local artists.
Dinner is easy at The Ashburn, Loews Chicago’s on-site gastropub. Executive chef “Tiny” uses only the freshest local ingredients and aims to make sure most options are low in sugar (agave is often used as a substitute). Begin with the quinoa and arugula salad. The blend of textures and flavors — a bit peppery, a bit sweet — is so refreshing. Got a meat lover with you? The wood fired ashburn classic pizza is delicious. There’s a touch of spice, but nothing too overwhelming. And for dessert, definitely go for the s’mores panna cotta.
For brunch, head off site to Sugar Factory American Brasserie in nearby MB Financial Park. You’ve probably seen the signature goblets all over your Instagram feed, but the milkshakes are equally as impressive and delicious. Pro-tip: One can probably be shared between you and your mini(s). Post-meal, pop into the candy shop and stock up on sweet treats. Mini gummy bears are a family favorite!
You can’t visit Rosemont and not experience the Fashion Outlets of Chicago. This isn’t your typical outlet mall. Far from it, in fact. Look up and you’ll notice stunning pieces of public art suspended from the ceiling and painted on the walls. Text the concierge and you’re guaranteed a response within two minutes. Stop into Godiva to indulge in chocolate covered strawberries and you may get a glimpse of them being dipped. But what is probably most impressive is the sheer amount of retailers available to you, from J. Crew, Tory Burch and Nike, to Nordstrom Rack, Gap and lululemon.
Looking for designer brands? Stick to the upper level. Shopping for your kids? (And let’s be honest, you probably are.) All of your favorite brands — including Carter’s, Gymboree and the Disney Store — are conveniently located together in the children’s wing.
Kings Bowl (in MB Financial Park) is a fun time no matter your age. The retro vibe, shimmering disco balls and bumping music get you in mood to play (and win!). Bumpers and extra small (in weight) bowling balls are available for the youngest members of your crew.
And coming to Rosemont in May of 2018 is a full fledged professional baseball field, which will be home to a new minor league baseball team. In the offseason, the stadium will be used as an additional entertainment venue.