Aug 31, 2022 - Things to Do

Stage 773 in Lakeview transforms into WHIM Chicago

Decorated room with theater in back.
Peeking out from the grassy clock cave at WHIM Chicago. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

👋 Hey, it's Monica. I recently got news that local artists have transformed Stage 773 in Lakeview into WHIM Chicago, an "Immersive. Cocktail. Experience."

  • Finding the description confusing, I naturally accepted a press invitation to check it out.

What's happening: My partner Colin and I stepped in wearing masks and feeling a bit like the couple in "Eyes Wide Shut."

  • A nice hostess welcomed us to a bar and lounge right out of "Alice in Wonderland."

The drinks: Colin waited in line for 20 minutes to score a Chain Smoker cocktail (mezcal, tequila reposado, bitters, agave syrup) and a beer.

Meanwhile, I strolled around, Instagramming the stunning decor, including:

  • A constellation of action figures.
  • A door arch made of a dozen-plus stacked chairs.
  • A bathroom hallway painted in an Edvard Munch and Vincent Van Gogh style.
  • A flock of paper airplanes.
  • And a grass-lined clock cave.
Cocktail and constellation of action figures.
Chain smoker cocktail and toy mobile at WHIM Chicago. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

The entertainment: WHIM also features an adjacent theater, which hosted a colorful drag revue the night of our visit.

  • The rotating lineup features Thursday Karaoke Nights.

What's next: WHIM representatives say they plan to add more than 30 "spaces that awaken your imagination" in coming months.

The bottom line: For now, WHIM offers delicious cocktails, intensely Instagrammable set pieces and vibrant entertainment, to boot.

Decorated lounge
The trippy lounge in WHIM Chicago. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios
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