Whether you’re looking for a Chicago apartment for the first time or you’ve lived in the city for ages, you’re probably going to consider Lakeview. That’s because Lakeview has a little bit of everything for just about anyone. And, we have plenty of available apartments in Lakeview. So, read a little more about Lakeview and if we’ve piqued your interest, give us a call and we’ll be happy to show you around.
Where Is It?
Ask a Northsider what the boundaries of Lakeview are and you’re libel to get a different answer from each person you ask. That’s partially because, until 1889, Lakeview (then spelled Lake View) was its own separate town, so its boundaries are technically where the old town of Lake View was. That Lake View was considerably larger than most Chicago neighborhoods and, as such, a number of different neighborhoods have grown up within Lakeview.
The original boundaries of Lake View were Lake Michigan on the east, Fullerton to the south, Devon to the north, and Western. Within those boundaries today are Edgewater, Andersonville, Ravenswood, Uptown, Wrigleyville, Boystown, and parts of Lincoln Park, Lincoln Square, North Center, and Roscoe Village, Even today, some people will tell you that Wrigleyville and Boystown are “parts” of Lakeview, while others will break Lakeview up into Lakeview East and Lakeview West. One Lakeview resident we asked described Lakeview as “anything North of Lincoln Park [Diversey], east of the river, and south of Irving Park that isn’t Wrigleyville, Boystown, Roscoe Village, or North Center.” Google maps even shows two different Lake View neighborhoods! (see images)
So that’s pretty confusing. But we can tell you this: most of our Lakeview listings are east of Halsted and between Diversey and Irving Park. This includes Boystown, which we’ve already done a neighborhood spotlight on, so today we’re focusing mostly on what a lot of people consider Lakeview East: the area east of Boystown.
What Are Apartments Like?
If you’re in the market for a studio, you’ll have a ton of options in Lakeview. This doesn’t mean that there aren’t 1 bedroom, 2 bedroom, and even 3 bedroom places, but Lakeview definitely has an abundance of studios. Monthly rent for a studio in this area is usually in the $800-$900 range, but you can occasionally find steals for as little as $600. One bedrooms have a bigger range, often from $900 up to $2000.
The huge price range for apartments bigger than studios is because there are so many different styles of buildings in Lakeview. There are many large apartment buildings that were constructed in the 1920s, 1950s, and 1960s. Small one bedrooms that haven’t been recently updated and usually come with carpeting in these buildings are generally the least expensive ones. On the other hand, there are 2- and 3-flats that have spacious one bedroom apartments with all the updates – hardwood floors, new stainless steel appliances, free private parking, private outdoor space – and they will be closer to the top of the price range. Prices for 2- and 3-bedroom apartments have similarly large ranges.
What Are The People Like?
While you can of course find people of all types in any urban neighborhood, the folks in “Lakeview East” tend to be in their 20s and 30s and single. The farther west you go – say, to the Southport Corridor, the more the average age seems to increase and you’ll find more young families as you head that direction.
The young people that live in Lakeview East are not generally the hipsters of Wicker Park the up-and-coming artists that live in Pilsen. This is a fairly middle-of-the-road crowd as far as style goes. But, if nothing else, Boystown is right there and adds to the eclectic mix of people and styles in this area.
Where Can I Eat and Drink in Lakeview?
If you live in Lakeview East, you’ll be hitting up Broadway for most of your local eats and entertainment venues – and you have some great choices. West of Broadway, your choices will be opened up even further. Coffee lovers will head for Intelligentsia, a block or so south of Belmont on Broadway. Prefer tea? No problem. Head south another block and Argo Tea will give you all the options you want and is generally less crowded than Intelligentsia. Argo is probably one of the best places to “work from home not at home” in Lakeview East; they have ample tables and outlets and its a bright, sunny space.
Looking for something a bit stronger than caffeine? Then you’ll want to try out DryHop Brewers, on Broadway just south of Belmont. They serve up their fantastic brews, as well as some great grub for brunch, lunch, dinner, and late night. Or, opt for grabbing a few cans or a growler for your fridge at home.
If you prefer a more down-and-dirty kind of bar, Friar Tuck’s (on Broadway at Wellington) has been a local staple for ages. They have daily drink specials, karaoke a few nights a week, free popcorn and an interesting birthday tradition that involves a blow-up sheep. It’s worth a visit, to be sure. More to the north of Lakeview East is Rocks, a restaurant / bar with something for everyone.
If you’re in the mood for diner food, you’ve got a number of options in Lakeview. There’s the old stand-by, IHOP, at the corner of Broadway and Grace, which can satisfy all your pancake needs 24 hours a day. A local version (and better, if you ask this writer) is Melrose Diner (corner of Melrose and Broadway), which also will serve up whatever you need at any hour of the day or night. But the best diner in the neighborhood by far is Stella’s (Broadway at Barry). Two words: handmade milkshakes. Unfortunately, Stella’s closes at 10pm, so it’s better for morning-after-drinking than it is for bar-just-closed eats.
Across Broadway and just a few door south from Stella’s is a noshing post most people would walk right by if they didn’t know about it: Chilam Balam. This cozy walk-down eatery serves up far more spectacular Mexican food than their outer décor would suggest. Plus, they focus on local, sustainable growers for their supplies. FYI, they are BYO.
There’s practically no end to good eats in this neighborhood, actually. From Milt’s Barbeque for the Perplexed (Kosher barbeque – but don’t worry if you’re not Kosher – you won’t notice a difference, except there’s no pork), to Crisp (fresh fast food fried chicken meets Korean specialties), to Buena Vista (real Mexican food at excellent prices – BYO), Chipotle (fake Mexican food at ok prices), to PingPong (pan-Asian cuisine in a trendy setting), this neighborhood honestly has it all.
Shopping & Entertainment in Lakeview
While drinking is probably the most favorite pastime in Lakeview East, you can also hit up a comedy show at the Laugh Factory (Broadway and Belmont), a drag show at Kit Kat Lounge and Supper Club (Halsted and Waveland), or catch the Blue Man Group at Briar Street Theater (Halsted and Briar). West along Belmont, there are also plenty of other comedy and theater shows to see, any day (or night) of the week.
But you can’t party every night (debatable, I know) so on the nights when you’re staying in, you can grab your dining supplies at Jewel on Broadway, just south of Addison, Treasure Island (pricier, but bigger and better selection than Jewel, especially in the foreign cuisine aisles – on Broadway at Stratford), or the much-maligned Walmart at the intersection of Diversey, Clark, and Broadway. Trader Joe’s is just west of Clark on Diversey.
With all this eating and drinking, you’re going to need a gym. Luckily, no matter what your “gym style” is, there’s one in Lakeview East for you. On Broadway, just north of Belmont, you’ll find Lakeview Athletic Club, part of the Chicago Athletic Club chain, for those of you who like to work out in a posh atmosphere. On the other end of the spectrum is the UFC gym directly across the street from Lakeview Athletic. It’s a boxing gym that has no-frills bootcamp-style classes and boxing classes for both men and women. One Hundred Fitness, just north of Addison on Broadway, is one of those fab pilates and dance class places. Closer to Diversey you’ll find Xsport (open 24 hours, just north of Friar Tuck bar), Fitness 19, and LA Fitness (on Clark in the same building as the movie theater).
As for the shopping…well, you’d better work hard during the week because you’ll easily spend all your extra money shopping in this neighborhood. Near the intersection of Diversey, Clark, and Belmont, you can dress yourself at Express, Urban Outfitters, Akira, Akira Footwear, Ann Taylor Loft, and Victoria Secret – all within a few steps of each other. And there’s always Walmart, which probably has anything you need, for cheap, at the same corner. TJ Maxx and Bed, Bath, and Beyond are just north of Walmart on Broadway. For more down-to-earth places, hit up Plato’s Closet on Broadway and Surf or Ragstock on Belmont, just before Clark.
Looking for unique Chicago-themed gifts or hand-crafted cards? Hit up Spare Parts, just south of Wellington (and just south of the best ice cream parlor – Bobtail) on Broadway. While you’re on that block, stop by Pastoral for picnic supplies, a nice bottle of wine, a chunk of luxurious cheese – and a freshly baked French baguette. Oh dear…we’ve drifted back into the food category again. It tends to happen in this neighborhood!
Lakeview East is a great place to live without a car. That’s the nice way to put it. The fact is, unless you have a dedicated parking space, parking can be a real hassle in this neighborhood, owing to the high density. However, if you live in the area between Broadway and the Lake and you work in the Loop (or certain parts of River North), you’re in luck. There are multiple buses that run along Sheridan and Lake Shore Drive that can get you downtown in a jiff, including more than one express bus.
The biggest el stop in this area is Belmont (at Sheffield), where brown, red, and purple trains all stop. To the north of Belmont, there are also the Addison and Sheridan stops (at Sheffield), both serving the red line. South of Belmont are the Wellington and Diversey stations, where the brown and purple lines stop. Depending on where you live in the neighborhood, it can be a little farther than you might like on a bitterly cold winter day to get to one of the el stops, but if you can take the bus where you’re going, it couldn’t be easier from just about anywhere in this area.
So now that you know more about Lakeview East, the only question is: when do you want to move? There’s no doubt – this is a fabulous neighborhood packed with things to do, places to eat & drink, and lots of young and fun people. What are you waiting for? Check out our Lakeview listings today. We keep our list updated, but new places are popping up all the time so don’t hesitate to call us at (773) 549-8300. We’ll be happy to discuss what you want in an apartment and what we can offer you.