Havana in Chicago

Just returned from a biz trip in Chicago and found a new restaurant (Havana) that I think is perfect for the business traveler dining solo or a spot to take colleagues or customers that want something a little different than the many tourist spots in the magnificent mile area. Havana is a small restaurant on Clark (easy to walk to from many of the hotels in the area)that specializes in, what they call, Cuban and Pan-Latin inspired food and drinks, and I could tell that the place catered more to the local neighborhood and regular patrons than the tourists that were just steps away at the always crowded, 1-2 hour wait, Frontera Grill. The food was very good and the attentive and friendly waitress told me that they’re known for their great Mojitos (which I didn’t try but assume they’re probably good)But it was the atmosphere of the place that won me over. They offer some outdoor seating right on busy Clark Street, but I suggest sitting inside. The dark wooden bar, tables and booths are warm and inviting and the ceiling fans give the place a decidedly tropical feel. All the while, soft Cuban music plays in the background, never overpowering the conversation I was having dinner with my colleague (Admittedly, we were there quite early on a Saturday evening, so I assume it does get much louder once the live music that they promote on their website starts – which could also be fun) All in all, Havana is a restaurant that I’ll keep on my list for when I’m in the Windy City. I love finding these little “hidden” gems.

Menu: Reasonably priced Cuban and Pan-Latin inspired food and drinks Havana 412 N. Clark Street Chicago IL 60654 Phone 312-644-1900

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Susan Brauer

Welcome fellow Road Warriors! Like many of you, I travel for work -- A lot! But believe it or not, I actually pretty much love it. I've become a bona fide business travel tourist by finding quick things to do when I find myself with the bits of free time that we business travelers sometimes get (i.e. after meetings and before dinner.) especially if I'm in a great city like Chicago, NY or San Francisco. Because we never have much time, this blog is all about quick, easy, inexpensive/free things to do in some of the cities I travel to along with recommendations for restaurants that are great for meals with colleagues, but also perfectly comfortable for solo dining. So maybe next time you find that you have a few minutes to yourself on a business trip, before you just automatically head for your hotel room, barricade yourself in with your computer and cell phone and order room service, you'll be inspired to become a business travel tourist and start loving your business travel too. Feel free to comment on any of my posts and let me and other readers know if you have tips, or recommendations. Happy Travels!

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