Like many parts of the Chicago area, the Northwest suburbs experienced a population boom following World War II, thanks to the construction of the interstate expressway system. Once consisting of isolated farming communities, it soon became a sprawl of tract homes as people left the overcrowded city of Chicago. When thinking of the Northwest suburbs, what immediately comes to your mind? Maybe Woodfield Mall and IKEA in Schaumburg. Or the Medinah Country Club, a historic venue that is set to host the 2026 Presidents Cup. And let’s not forget football, with Chicago Bears fans contemplating the commute to Arlington Heights. While you might expect the Northwest suburbs to be full of monotonous subdivisions (and that is partially true), there are some interesting properties that are on the market right now.

9666 Reding Cir, Des Plaines, $1,399,000

Located north of Golf Road and east of I-294 in Des Plaines is an artificial lake that is surrounded by high-priced homes. That includes this 5,200-square-foot six-bedroom house currently for sale at just under $1.4 million. The story goes that sand-and-gravel man John Reding carved out a leftover sand pit in the 1950s to create what is now Lake Mary Anne, naming it after his wife. As shared by Crain’s last month, this eccentric residence was the work of firm Architechnics Pro in 2001. What stands out most about the contemporary design — aside from the angles and windows — is the rock-like slab that hovers over the kitchen.

444 Signal Hill Rd, North Barrington, $1,795,000

There always seems to be an architecturally interesting home for sale in Barrington. This nearly 7,000-square-foot, four-bedroom single-family residence situated on 9 acres of land is no exception. First built 50 years ago, the modern Prairie design got a makeover in 2004. With its custom-built bridge and driveway, this is a lot of house, making it perfect for parties and family gatherings. It comes with 250 feet of lake frontage on Honey Lake, plus a boat slip and beach, a lap pool, hot tub, and outdoor kitchen. Like I said, it’s a party house!

509 N Elmhurst Rd, Prospect Heights, $774,900

According to the Mid Century Modern Real Estate, Chicago Facebook group, this four-bedroom, three-bathroom home was designed by architect Larry Mika and built in stages from the late ’60s through the early ’80s. What really stands out is the three-story glass atrium that is located right in the middle of the house, bringing light into all the rooms. But there are also privacy block-out shades on the interior windows in the primary en-suite bedroom. On and off the market since October, the property recently got a $25,000 price cut.

385 Knollwood Ct, Palatine, $569,000

The Plum Grove Estates is an enclave of mid century modern designs right on the Palatine and Rolling Meadows border. Not far from Interstate 290, Salt Creek runs through the planned community envisioned by known city planner Carl L. Gardner and landscape architect Harold O. Klopp. This 1960s ranch-style home has spacious floor-to-ceiling windows and a tucked-away patio that take in the views of tree canopies on the half-acre lot. There is a $10,000 buyer credit, so I expect this awesome home to sell fast.

21611 N Old Barrington Rd, Barrington, $1,689,000

Back in Barrington to share this classically elegant estate set on five acres. The well preserved historic home, originally built in 1929, comes with four bedrooms and four-and-a-half bathrooms. In addition to the three-story white columns and formal dining room, I love the property’s English-inspired gardens. There is plenty of room to store antique cars or horses with a number of garages, barns, and paddocks. But what really caught my eye was the description, which noted the home once belonged to “the bookkeeper of a well-known mob boss.”