There are a number of things to do this winter in Chicago’s western suburbs. Whether you want to see a show at Drury Lane or you want to visit Chicago’s famous Brookfield Zoo, there is a way to turn your entire weekend into a getaway. Yes, despite the weather, you can get away from all of it in Chicago’s western suburbs and winter months are the best times to get a good deal for the entire family.
If you live in the Chicago area, especially the western suburbs, do you have to head downtown or out of town to enjoy time away and get a bit of relaxation? Aren’t there nearby options?
Well, you may have already guessed the answer to that question is a resounding yes. This is because Hilton hotels & resorts offer so many things for that perfect weekend getaway, they are the perfect place to spend a weekend anytime of the year. Even if there’s snow on the ground outside and icy blowing winds in the Chicago area, there’s a way to get away from all of it at a Hilton. Matching special weekend packages with trips to live entertainment or plans for other activities in the western suburbs can give you a mini-vacation that will feel a million miles away, while still being right in your own backyard.
The key to enjoying a winter staycation is to make sure you plan ahead and get your weekend agenda in order. Fortunately, we’re here to help and we present to you the perfect winter staycation agenda for when the holidays are over and you just need to get away for a couple of days.
Here are some things to add to your winter getaway in Chicago’s western suburbs.
You may not think about going to a zoo during the winter, but Brookfield Zoo, located in Brookfield, IL, is one of the most famous and most-visited attractions in all of Chicago. There are dramatic outdoor enclosures and hundreds of animals from all over the world here. While the outdoors are a key part of the visit during warmer months, there are attractions for nearly every species of animal indoors, too. Plus, special winter activities planned to keep visitors entertained, including special Christmas lights during the holiday season.
If you don’t want to visit the animals, winter time is also when you can enjoy the Brookfield skating rink. Want to ice skate in the middle of summer? Brookfield Zoo has you covered there, too, with a synthetic rink which never melts so you can get your skates on in July, too.
Brookfield Zoo can be a key activity during a weekend getaway in winter, summer, spring or fall, right in Chicago’s western suburbs.
For those residing in Chicago, the Morton Arboretum is famous during the summer months and a huge attraction during Christmas. The trees and lights during the holiday season bring people from all over the Midwest to see them, but that doesn’t mean you should miss out on what’s there once the holidays are over.
The Arboretum calls itself the Champion of the Trees and has trees which thrive in the colder months, too. There are various indoor activities during the cold months, as well as places to eat right there at the Arboretum. Plus, kids can join in on the outdoor winter activities such as building snow forts, painting snow and more (weather permitting). A trip to the Arboretum can be the perfect place to visit for a romantic weekend getaway or a short weekend vacation with the entire family.
One of the most popular things people do when looking for a weekend getaway is add some live entertainment. Downtown Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, etc., all have thriving live theater scenes. However, if you want to stick closer to home, there are options just as popular and creating productions just as professional in the suburbs. One of the most popular is Drury Lane.
Drury Lane dinner and theater located at Oakbrook Terrace has been around since 1984 and puts on top-notch productions of plays and musicals you know. Westside Story, The King and I, Mary Poppins, Evita and more. Drury Lane is located by several Hilton hotels, it is also famous for its weekend brunch options as well as fine food before the show. There’s even a subscription you can join to get tickets for an entire season. Enjoy great live shows and turn any of those into an overnight stay with your theater partner at nearby Hilton.
The city of Naperville is one of the largest cities in Illinois outside of Chicago. The great thing about it is you can get that downtown city feel without having to deal with the traffic of downtown Chicago. Staying at one of the local Hiltons and then heading into downtown Naperville for fine dining or some of the great boutique shopping can make for the perfect getaway for two, or for the entire family. There’s even a Riverwalk if the weather isn’t too cold which can be the perfect romantic end to a busy day.
Just visiting the local business can take up an entire weekend, but if you are looking for more, check out activities at the huge Naperville Public Library or the live music and events at the Naper Settlement.
Indoor Family Fun
If you’re looking for some fun ways for the kids to burn off some energy indoors, you can consider taking them to the DuPage Children’s Museum right in downtown Naperville, just a short distance from the train station. Filled with activities that are both entertaining and educational, there’s fun for the entire family here and plenty for the kids to do even when it’s cold outside. Check out the Enchanted Castle in Lombard, which has everything from laser tag to indoor go-karts to mini golf. Or spend the day enjoying the indoor pool at the hotel.
Oak Brook Center and Yorktown
If a weekend getaway for shopping is your goal, there are plenty of ways to do that in the western suburbs, too. Yes, there are boutique shops in downtown Naperville, Warrenville, Westmont and other suburbs, but some of the biggest malls with middle and high-end stores available. Oakbrook Center is one of the biggest and most popular malls in the entire Chicago metropolitan area. Featuring dozens of fine dining and even more shopping options, you can spend an entire day here. Yorktown Mall offers more indoor mall opportunities and stores like Land’s End, H & M, Eddie Bauer, American Eagle Outfitters and more.
Choosing the right Hilton Hotel
The great thing about Hilton Hotels is that there is a variety of hotels in a variety of price ranges. All of them offer special weekend getaway packages and rates. Depending on what you want to do for your weekend vacation, there’s a property for you. Choosing the right destination might be the first big challenge. For example, if you want something more full-service, but still near all the above attractions, the Hilton Chicago/Oak Brook Hills Resort & Conference Center is the resort in the heart of the western suburbs you might not have known existed. Dining on property along with an indoor pool and winter resort activities mean there’s plenty to do right in the building before you head out for a night on the town.
If proximity to your intended activities is the key, there’s the Hilton Oak Brook Suites right by Drury Lane or other Hilton properties near Oakbrook Center. Check out Embassy Suites by Hilton Chicago Lombard Oak Brook or DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Chicago – Oak Brook. There are Hilton Hilton family hotels all over the western suburbs offering different views, capable of assisting you in planning the perfect weekend getaway right in your own backyard.
Get out of town without leaving town
Dealing with the aftermath of the holidays can seem stressful. It’s hard to switch gears from planning dinners, shopping and dealing with family to just heading back to work once January and February hit. In the Midwest this can be compounded by the short days or gray skies. It’s the time when many people plan a getaway, but if your budget or plans cannot afford a weeklong vacation to the Bahamas, it’s OK. Sometimes you just need a long weekend away from home. A weekend getaway to a Hilton hotel or resort right in Chicago’s western suburbs can be just the thing. Get away from it and feel like you’re a million miles from home, while still being within your own backyard.