Villa Toscana . Chicago

Despite being a gay owned Bed and Breakfast catering to gay travelers and being located in the center of the gayest neighborhood of Chicago, the Villa Toscana Guest House is an excellent place to stay for travelers of any preference. Located at 3447 North Halsted, the Villa Toscana is buffered from the bar and restaurant lined street with a lush front yard and large leafy trees. By the time you step through the front door you don’t even hear any traffic. There are three guest rooms on the second floor and a first floor guest suite. The entire house is a peaceful and quiet urban retreat, and you feel as if you’re a regular Chicagoan coming home, perhaps commiserating the Cubs Thursday loss. (Go Rockies.)

When traveling to Chicago I always recommend staying just north of downtown in the more residential areas, as opposed to the large hotels in or near the loop. This gives you a less touristy experience, and you’ll find more to do at night as these neighborhood restaurants and pubs are open serving the locals. The sights of downtown are easily accessible via the CTA’s Red Line El train, and you’ll find it more “homey” returning to a house or small hotel near parks and the lakeshore.

Our room on a Thursday night was $120, with breakfast included of course. Most hotels in the area run upwards of $175, making a “home away from home” location such as this more preferable┬áthan a hotel, and more affordable.

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