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Chicago is known around the world for its architecture. Whether you tour downtown or a neighborhood, our expert docent guides will tell you the stories behind the buildings. Visit iconic skyscrapers, elegant hotels or the legendary houses of Frank Lloyd Wright. With more than 85 tours to choose from, we won't blame you if you can't pick just one.

Recommended Tours

Chicago Athletic Association Hotel

Experience the allure of a historic, exclusive men's club transformed into a 21st century luxury hotel. You will see old world craftsmanship restored to its original elegance, plus renovated and newly added spaces, all part of a rebirth befitting this…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Inside front entrance of Chicago Athletic Association Hotel, 12 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Inside front entrance of Chicago Athletic Association Hotel, 12 S. Michigan Ave.

Chicago Board of Trade Building

The Chicago Board of Trade is an icon of the Loop that anchors the LaSalle Street financial corridor. Visit the three buildings that comprise the Board of Trade and showcase its three distinct architectural styles. We’ll also see newly designed and…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Inside building lobby at 141 W. Jackson Blvd. Please arrive 5-10 minutes early.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Inside building lobby at 141 W. Jackson Blvd. Please arrive 5-10 minutes early.

Cliff Dwellers at Borg Warner

The Cliff Dwellers provides a great view of the lake and Grant Park, but you will be surprised by its history and its art and architectural connections to Louis Sullivan, Howard Van Doren Shaw and writer Hamlin Garland, who founded it in 1907. The Cliff…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Fine Arts Building

Discover a treasure trove on Michigan Ave. and learn its development from a carriage showroom to the high-profile "artists colony" that made its reputation with tenants including Frank Lloyd Wright, Lorado Taft and Harriet Monroe.

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
In front of the building's north entrance, 410 S. Michigan Ave.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
In front of the building's north entrance, 410 S. Michigan Ave.

Food, History, Architecture and the Berghoff

Learn about the impact several successful immigrants had on the architecture and culture of Chicago and admire a few lesser known buildings before touring the home of one of America's oldest family owned and operated restaurants. Revel in a fascinating…

Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Note: No upcoming departures are currently scheduled for this tour, but CAF offers similar tours that we think you’ll want to learn more about.

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Duration
1.5 Hours
Meet
CAF Shop and Tour Center, 224 S. Michigan Ave.

Inland Steel Building

As the first skyscraper built within the Loop after World War II, the Inland Steel Building became an instant symbol of Chicago’s prominence as a modern American city in the 20th century. Explore the exterior and interior of this iconic modern masterpiece…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
Inside the lobby of the Inland Steel Building, 30 W. Monroe St.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
Inside the lobby of the Inland Steel Building, 30 W. Monroe St.

John Hancock Building

Completed in 1970, the Hancock Center dominates the skyline at the north end of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. Its series of stacked Xs are immediately recognizable, making the Hancock one of the most well-known profiles in the city. While on this 45 minute…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
875 N. Michigan Ave., just inside the lower level lobby that is accessed via the sunken plaza.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
875 N. Michigan Ave., just inside the lower level lobby that is accessed via the sunken plaza.

Macy's on State: The Legacy of Marshall Field's

This tour explores the construction, development and renovation of this State St. landmark by Daniel Burnham. Trace its history as a renowned retail establishment and discover the century-old great clocks, the lavish Tiffany vaulted ceiling, the Walnut…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Macy's, inside the store entrance at 28 E. Washington St. (near Wabash). The correct door is marked #6 on the wall just above the revolving doors.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Macy's, inside the store entrance at 28 E. Washington St. (near Wabash). The correct door is marked #6 on the wall just above the revolving doors.

Marquette Building

The Marquette Building, completed in 1895, is a landmark of timeless architecture, bringing to life Chicago’s early history in an artistic and elegant setting. Learn how the building represents major advancement in skyscraper design and explore interior…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
Inside the building lobby at 140 S. Dearborn St. (northwest corner of Adams and Dearborn)

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
Inside the building lobby at 140 S. Dearborn St. (northwest corner of Adams and Dearborn)

Media Production Center of Columbia College Chicago

Discover one of Chicago's boldest and most colorful buildings, the Media Production Center at Columbia College, designed by world-renowned Chicago architect Jeanne Gang, winner of a 2011 MacArthur Foundation Fellows Award.

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Media Production Center at 1600 S. State St.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Media Production Center at 1600 S. State St.

Merchandise Mart

Once the largest building in the world, the Merchandise Mart remains a center for fashion and design. This massive structure has kept up with the times and is now recognized as a key Chicago hub for technological innovation. Environmentally sensitive…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
Foot of the grand stairs in the main lobby. The lobby is in the center of the building; enter through the south entrance facing the Chicago River.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
Foot of the grand stairs in the main lobby. The lobby is in the center of the building; enter through the south entrance facing the Chicago River.

Modernist Masterpieces: Marina City and the IBM Building

Where else but Chicago can you find two iconic mid-century buildings living side by side? Get the inside scoop on the buildings and their architects, Bertrand Goldberg and Mies van der Rohe. We will compare and contrast the sites, uses, structures, styles…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1.25 Hours
Meet
35 W. Wacker Dr. (under the overhang between the entrances to Catch 35 and the office lobby)

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1.25 Hours
Meet
35 W. Wacker Dr. (under the overhang between the entrances to Catch 35 and the office lobby)

Monadnock Building

Tour the world’s tallest commercial building with load-bearing masonry walls, completed in 1893 by Daniel Burnham and John Wellborn Root, and learn about the transition from masonry to steel frame skyscrapers. The Monadnock brings together Egyptian…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
Inside the Monadnock Building, 53 W. Jackson Blvd., at the north staircase.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
0.75 Hour
Meet
Inside the Monadnock Building, 53 W. Jackson Blvd., at the north staircase.

Monroe Building and Pritzker Military Museum & Library

Come discover the Monroe Building—Chicago's architectural gem hidden in plain sight! See its gorgeous façade and amazing Rookwood tiled lobby—both lovingly restored to their 1912 splendor, along with the Pritzker Military Museum & Library. Please…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Lobby of 104 S. Michigan Ave., opposite the elevators

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
Lobby of 104 S. Michigan Ave., opposite the elevators

Palmer House Hotel

Experience the glamour, intrigue and excitement of the bygone era of the "Grand Hotel" at the Palmer House. Explore the recently restored public spaces and beautifully renovated guest rooms while learning about the intriguing history of the country's…

Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
In the Wabash Ave. lobby (between Monroe & Adams) by the red staircase leading to Potter's Lounge. The Palmer House address is 17 E. Monroe St.

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Price
$15 public, FREE for CAF members
Duration
1 Hour
Meet
In the Wabash Ave. lobby (between Monroe & Adams) by the red staircase leading to Potter's Lounge. The Palmer House address is 17 E. Monroe St.