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Real Estate Blog

Chicago’s TOP 3 Most Expensive Properties!

March 2016

Spring is here and the housing market is entering into a new season of exciting real estate opportunities for both buyers and sellers in the Chicago area. Luxury properties are of special interest and a delight to consider, offering outstanding amenities, quality and impeccable details that are timeless, innovative and luxurious. The following are this month’s top three most expensive residential properties in the Chicago market, including the newer listing of a gorgeous cooperative apartment on the Near North Side in the prestigious Gold Coast neighborhood.

#1 – 1516 N. Lake Shore Drive (MLS#09046272 – Presented by Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices) listed at $17,000,000

First on

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Staycationing in Chicago

A new popular trend is staycationing, the adventure of taking a vacation close to home, and what better place than to stay home and vacation in your hometown Chicago. Whether you live in the River North neighborhood, Lincoln Park, Gold Coast, the Loop or in the North Shore and surrounding suburbs, here’s a sampling of amazing places to consider when planning a Chicago Staycation.


Field Museum of Natural History (1400 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago)

Chicago is rich in culture and history, filled with treasures from all over the world. A must-see destination point for staycationers is the Field Museum of Natural History featuring over 21 million historical artifact pieces and

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London House

Chicago’s First Tri-Level Rooftop Bar Opening Spring 2016

One of the highlights of Chicago is the abundant fine dining experiences the city offers in places rich in artisan details and intriguing histories. The soon-to-open LH Rooftop Bar and Restaurant is one such place located at the top of the newly renovated LondonHouse Hotel at the corner of Michigan Avenue and Wacker Drive, one of the four historic and architecturally stunning anchor buildings built in the 1920s by the Michigan Avenue Bridge. The other three buildings include the Wrigley Building, Chicago Tribune Tower and 333 North Michigan Avenue. Neighborhoods in the Loop and Near North Side can enjoy walkability to this new Chicago eating establishment and gathering place which

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1823 Howe Street

Chicago’s TOP 3 Most Expensive Properties!

February 2016

This month’s top three most expensive residential properties for sale in the Chicago-area has an exciting new addition, continuing the strong trend of homes/condos coming on the market that exhibit unsurpassed quality and outstanding amenities found exclusively in the real estate of Chicago and its neighboring districts.

#1 – 1516 N. Lake Shore Drive (MLS#09046272 – Presented by Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices) listed at $17,000,000

Remaining at the top of the list is 1516 N. Lake Shore Drive, a classic French Chateau style, 10-bedroom mansion located in the prestigious Lake Shore Drive District with unparalleled views of Lake Michigan and in walking distance to both Lincoln Park and

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Chicago’s most visited landmark, Navy Pier, is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2016 with the completion of exciting renovations and a fresh “Centennial Vision” launching this Chicago icon into a new era. Visitors of all ages, locally and from around the world, can look forward to an even more memorable experience at the Pier. 


Located in the Streeterville neighborhood on the Near North Side along the shoreline of Lake Michigan, Navy Pier has a rich and diverse history.  It opened in 1916 as a shipping dock and a public recreational space for leisure, enjoyment of nature and to host events like expositions and pageants. Originally called Municipal Pier No. 2, this 3,000-foot-long-pier (over six city blocks long)

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Chicago offers an exciting real estate market for buyers including two homeownership options that have become very popular and in demand:  the condo and the co-op. Both types of properties are found throughout the Chicago-area with many co-op properties located in the Lincoln Park, Lakeview, Gold Coast and Streeterville neighborhoods.   

So what are the key differences?

Both of these forms of homeownership, the condo and the co-op, have many similarities in regards to the lifestyle they provide. They usually consist of multi-unit residential buildings with amenities such as garage parking, exercise and pool facilities, and outdoor living spaces for enjoyment and entertaining. They also both provide a

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Smash Properties is excited to announce its new monthly feature: “Chicago’s Top Three” featuring the three most expensive homes/condos on the market in the Chicago-area. This month’s “Top 3” are exciting properties full of history, exquisite details and amenities that make these residences unmatched in their quality and lifestyle experience.  

#3 – Tied for third are two spectacular condominiums listed at $13.9 million

11 E Walton Street, #5200 (MLS#08958204 - Presented by Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty)

This stunning 9-room, full-floor condo is located on the 52nd floor of the Waldorf Astoria (formerly the Elysian Hotel), a luxury condominium building located in the Gold Coast

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According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there is similar growth in the population of Urban America and Suburban America, indicating that the move to urban cities continues to be a viable and desirable option for many homeowners. Since post-World War II, the growth of suburbia dominated the residential market for decades. However, urban migration in the past few years has been a growing trend, especially for the millennials and empty nesters, creating a solid housing market for cities like Chicago.

Gail Lissner, Vice President of Appraisal Research Counselors, a real estate consulting firm, states that “downsizing from a house in the burbs to a city condo used to be Winnetka-to-Gold-Coast kind of thing. (Now) the migration is much broader in both source

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Pictured above: conceptual image of proposed Belmont flyover track

On an average weekday, the CTA, or Chicago Transit Authority, estimates that over 240,000 people enter the L system through the Red and Purple Lines. That’s over 40% of all CTA riders, and ridership is only on the rise. One look at Red Line stations in the Loop during rush hour confirms this. The train cars are beyond capacity, full to bursting, as riders jostle and stand shoulder to shoulder. Furthermore, current Red Line riders experience a seconds to minutes long delay whenever they pass through the Belmont station in Lake View, where they wait for the Brown Line train to cut across the Red and Purple Line tracks. Although these issues seem to be easily resolved with more trains

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Pictured above: Federal Reserve headquarters in Washington, D.C. 

The federal interest rate is projected to increase soon, perhaps as soon as this December, for the first time in nearly seven years. Since December 16, 2008, the Federal Reserve has kept the federal interest rate, or the federal funds rate, between zero and 0.25 percent. By keeping rates this low during a historic recession, the Federal Reserve was hoping to aid economic growth. Consumers would be able to borrow money without having to pay much interest, and thus be able to tide over during hard financial times as they earned and saved. The stock market would boom, and consumer confidence would rise.

However, the Federal Reserve has been exercising caution over recent years to

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