Renaissance Chicago – Bar Novo
1 W. Wacker Drive Chicago, IL 60601 (312) 372-7200
This really and truly is the quintessential hotel bar. Its the kind of place that if I were shooting a movie, and there was a hotel bar scene, this is how I would want it. The bar is fairly large and sorta split into two different rooms, though not closed off from each other. The bar area is more casual, the lounge area is, well… more loungy.
On a Thursday after work the energy is fabulous. There’s all kinds of happy hour lovers in here… the suits, the creatives, the look-at-mes, the tourists. You name it, its here. One thing you can’t deny, most everyone (all but the staff) in here as smiles on their faces. The kind of smiles you find at a Friday afternoon club around 5:30. There is plenty of places to call your own. The bar is large and has room for about twenty. The rest of the space has tons of long marble high top communal tables, as well as chairs, couches and tables. Whether you’re singular or plural, there’s a spot to suit you. And, if its privacy you’re looking for, the lounge may be a better fit.
Once you settle in and order a drink you’ll notice there’s a lot going on, without being obnoxious. The people, the decor, the ambiance – it all contributes to a great bar environment that I would often return to. There is a menu with approx 15 items, mostly small plates so eating won’t be a problem. Also, the location is LEGIT! If you want to start here and move on, you are so centrally located to so many places and hoods within downtown, you really can’t go wrong. All in all, I’m going to give Bar Novo two thumbs up…. with an asterisk.
Full disclosure – When taking pictures to accompany this review, we were asked to stop. Therefore, we apologize for lack of visuals. Perhaps if we had had a business card on us, we would have been more well received. Good lesson to learn.
Bar Novo – get some!