Illinois Meetings + Events

Signature Drink: O'Leary's Cow


Instead of serving Manhattan after Manhattan, Staytion Market & Bar decided to go a little more local with a menu of Chicago-centric cocktails after recently opening in the Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel. O’Leary’s Cow, of course, recalls the poor scapegoat of the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 and is one of the new signature drinks that go well with a selection of small plates.

New In-Room Services that will make you want to pack it in early


Room service takes on a whole new meaning at three area hotels with unique new options that were clearly made for the “do not disturb” sign. Hard Rock Hotel Chicago gives you the rock star treatment with the “Sound of Your Stay” program that allows you to choose from 20 different guitars, including iconic Stratocasters and Telecasters, which will be delivered to your room with headphones and a floor amp.

Delightful Pastries Offers a Delectable Spread


With the upcoming St. Joseph’s and Easter holidays, sweet tables are in season (as if you really needed an excuse). Someone that really knows how to set the table is Chicago’s own Delightful Pastries, a European-style bakery run by pastry chef Dobra Bielinski, who was trained in her native Poland. Along with her mother and brother, Bielinski whips up old-world favorites with the freshest ingredients, including real sugar and butter and no preservatives.

10 Things you Didn't Know about Corcoran Expositions


Twenty-five years ago, Tom Corcoran started what is now one of the largest independent trade show organizations in the U.S., simply called Corcoran Expositions. In the last quarter century the business has blossomed to assist hundreds of trade associations and organizations plan their expositions. But, there are a few things you might not realize about the company and the founder, who we got to know a little better on the eve of the special anniversary.

Meet Cory Jobe, Illinois Office of Tourism


“I consider myself the state cheerleader,” laughs Cory Jobe, a Springfield alderman who, in February, became the state director for the Illinois Office of Tourism. The combination uniquely fits the natural born tour guide, who was raised in the small town of Robinson, “home of the Heath candy bar,” and has big plans for boosting the profile of Main Street Illinois while keeping four consecutive years of visitor growth on track for the near future.

Event Snapshots: The Zoo Ball


The 38th Annual Zoo Ball was a wild success on July 10, raising more than $1.1 million to benefit the conservation and education efforts of Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo. Specifically, this year’s contributions will support the development of an innovative new education center designed to enhance learning outside of the traditional classroom and cultivate the next generation of conservation scientists.

Team-building Venues Offer Activities for Every Kid at Heart


It was a sight even Blue Harbor Resort’s Susan Engler couldn’t believe. The sun had set, and a group of corporate lawyers that the director of sales had seen earlier in the day in their suits and ties were now frolicking on the glow-in-the-dark mini golf course.

The benefits of promoting general managers from abroad


“All my life, my dream was to come to the States,” recalls Pierre-Louis Giacotto. “It was a country that we dreamed of every day.” Though the 51-year-old grew up in Lyon, France, like many of his peers, he had visions of heading west, which was further stirred by an early interest in hospitality and hearing about an explosion of possibilities in America.


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