Our other houses, Part 1 (The Churchill)

Although we’re living with Lisa’s parents, we used to be independent home owners when we lived in Chicago. Lisa’s first place (bought in early 1995) was a junior one bedroom in the Churchill, built in the 1920s.

I [Lisa] did nothing to it except ask the PO to install a desk instead of a breakfast bar in the kitchen he was remodelling. (I did get a quote to replace the windows, but I was in law school at the time so home improvement went by the wayside.)

Nonetheless, it was a nice introduction to Chicago’s old house stock. A vintage elevator building, with a fulltime doorman, it was across the street from the Ambassador East, home of the Pump Room and kitty-corner to the Ambassador West, built in 1920.   And, I could walk to school and work.

Incidentally, when I interviewed with my then-soon-to-be future employer of 13 years in the early spring, I stayed at the Ambassador East … and also when I came back in the late summer to find a place to live.  First experience with real bellhops — very much like the movies, he showed me the thermostat and the bathroom.  I don’t recall if I realized he wanted a tip or not.  I also had some very odd cab rides — including a marriage proposal.  Or maybe it was an illicit suggestion.  In any event, the cab driver already had several wives, so I wouldn’t have accepted.

The Ambassadors were built as mirror images, at nearly the same time by relatives, with a tunnel connecting them. The Ambassador East was featured in North by Northwest and Led Zeppelin destroyed a room there in the ’70s. The Ambassador West is now being converted into very expensive condos ($1.15M and up. I paid something around $65K when I bought mine in the Churchill.)  There were famous people who resided at the Churchill, too, but I can’t find reference to them in the Internet.  Also, Mrs. Churchill was related to (I think) Elizabeth Cady Stanton.  There’s a plaque on the wall, but Google doesn’t seem to know anything about it.

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