Cover Story

The Best for Less
edited by Jennifer Tanaka

In a recession, the old adage "Time is money" gets flipped on its head in favor of the other, more useful mantra: "Why pay more?" Why, indeed? Read our comprehensive guide for getting top-notch stuff at dramatic savings.


Real Estate: Where to Buy Now
by Dennis Rodkin
These 14 up-and-coming neighborhoods and suburbs offer solid housing bargains with the potential for future growth. With: Our annual house-price survey paints a worrisome picture of a region caught in a downward spiral.   

Portrait of a Lady
by Geoffrey Johnson
A brief allusion to an illicit love affair resurrects the beautiful socialite Bobsy Goodspeed, whose three-decade reign as the queen of Chicago’s cultural scene included a memorable visit by the fiery modernist writer Gertrude Stein.  

At Home: On the Waterfront
by Robert Sharoff
After decades as a leading architect of low-rise buildings, Laurence Booth is doing what he said he wouldn’t—designing skyscrapers. 

The Audacity of Hope
by Marcia Froelke Coburn
On the centennial of the Cubs’ World Series win, the creators of Bleacher Bums, the hit play inspired by fans, look back. 


PAGE TWO Irish eyes are smiling on the Governor’s Mansion; Ditka vs. Trump—battle of the brands ARTS & CULTURE Our biggest fall theatre preview ever, starring nine actors to watch and an "anticipation index" of the season’s most promising plays. Plus, we reveal the one show you must see. Also: The Blip dives into Artists’ Month; a candid chat with the new director at the MCA; and books galore SERVICE DESK Want to be a reality-television star? Read these tips first. Illinois riverboats’ revenues are sinking—fast STYLE When the Art Institute acquired a 1936 Claude Cahun sculpture last year, it was on to something: Surrealism is about to dominate design. Plus: Inside Maria Pinto’s new boutique

Bowles vs. Avenues; budget bonanza; farm dinners; the hottest spots right now

by Sarah Preston
Industry vets go west; potable picks for Halloween

by Robert Reed
A look at how Chicago might benefit if Barack Obama became president 

by John Huebl
A writer uncovers the story behind the man whose marvelous library provided an antidote for depression. 

Deal Estate
by Dennis Rodkin
Chicago’s annual roundup of the area’s priciest home sales

The Closer
by Jeff Ruby
Regular Joes rocking out with longtime idols. Don’t stop believin’.

Chicago Guide®
On the Road—again; and much more

Gabriel’s gets its third star back; Follia loses momentum.