A staple of Chicago’s skyline, the Wrigley Building is a testament to early 20th-century architectural ingenuity. Commissioned by the founder of the Wrigley Chewing Gum Company, William Wrigley Jr., the building first opened its doors in 1924. The Wrigley Building is strategically situated at 400-410 North Michigan Avenue, presiding over the Magnificent Mile close to the Chicago River.
This architectural gem was crafted by the renowned firm Graham, Anderson, Probst & White and has consistently stood as a grand representation of the Spanish Colonial Revival style. The building is made up of two distinct towers: the South Tower, which scales 30 stories, and the North Tower, a slightly shorter structure at 21 stories. These are connected by an elegant open walkway at street level and two enclosed walkways higher up on the third and fourteenth floors.
The Wrigley Building's facade is adorned with a white-glazed terra-cotta exterior, exhibiting ornate detailing that captures and reflects sunlight in a dazzling display. The clock tower, inspired by the Giralda bell tower of Seville's Cathedral, adds a timeless appeal to the structure. Despite various modern renovations, the building maintains its historical charm, housing a range of offices, retail outlets, and dining venues. It has received considerable recognition for its design and historical significance, being declared a Chicago Landmark in 2012.
Why visit the Wrigley Building?
Architectural excellence. The Wrigley Building is a standing tribute to the elegance and grace of Spanish Colonial Revival architecture. Its majestic design, replete with intricate detailing and a luminous facade, is a delight for architecture lovers and a dream for photographers.
Historical resonance. The Wrigley Building's historical significance is multifaceted. Being the first major office building north of the Chicago River, it has been an important fixture in Chicago's urban growth. Moreover, its association with the world-renowned Wrigley Chewing Gum Company adds to its historical allure.
Illuminated night view. The building's evening display is simply breathtaking. With the facade illuminated, the play of light and shadow across the architectural details transforms the Wrigley Building into a captivating nighttime spectacle.
Prime location. Its location on the Magnificent Mile, one of Chicago's most vibrant commercial districts, positions the Wrigley Building amidst a wide array of attractions. A stone's throw away from the building is the Chicago Riverwalk. Several river cruise operators offer guided tours of Chicago's architectural marvels. From luxury shopping and world-class hotels to gourmet restaurants and art galleries, there's something for everyone.
Best places to visit near Wrigley Building
Magnificent Mile. The Wrigley Building itself is part of the Magnificent Mile, a famous shopping district lined with upscale stores, boutiques, restaurants, and hotels. Take a leisurely stroll down this bustling stretch of Michigan Avenue, explore the shops, and indulge in some retail therapy.
Chicago Riverwalk. Explore the scenic Chicago Riverwalk, located just steps from the Wrigley Building. This pedestrian-friendly path stretches along the Chicago River and offers beautiful views of the city's architecture, boat tours, outdoor dining options, and public art installations.
Chicago Architecture Foundation Center River Cruise. Embark on an architectural river cruise from the Chicago Riverwalk. These guided boat tours take you through the city's waterways, providing fascinating insights into Chicago's iconic buildings and skyline. It's a fantastic way to appreciate the architectural wonders of the city.
Navy Pier. Located on Lake Michigan, about a mile from the Wrigley Building, Navy Pier is a vibrant entertainment complex featuring restaurants, shops, rides, and attractions. You can take a leisurely stroll along the pier, enjoy panoramic views of the city skyline, or hop on a Ferris wheel for a memorable experience.
Grant Park. Known as "Chicago's Front Yard", Grant Park is a sprawling green space that offers a refreshing break from the city's hustle and bustle. It's home to many landmarks, including Buckingham Fountain, the Art Institute of Chicago, and Millennium Park. Enjoy a picnic, go for a jog, or simply relax amidst the greenery.
Millennium Park. Just a short walk from the Wrigley Building, Millennium Park is a popular destination with iconic landmarks like "The Bean" (Cloud Gate) and the Jay Pritzker Pavilion. It's a great place to relax, take photos, and enjoy free outdoor concerts during the summer.
Art Institute of Chicago. Situated in Grant Park, the Art Institute is one of the oldest and largest art museums in the United States. It houses an impressive collection of artworks from around the world, including renowned masterpieces like Grant Wood's "American Gothic" and Georges Seurat's "A Sunday on La Grande Jatte"
What are the most interesting and unique facts about Wrigley Building?
When constructed in 1921, the 425-foot south tower of the Wrigley Building was the tallest building in the city and visible from as far south as 12th Street (now Roosevelt Avenue).
The Wrigley Building was one of the first office buildings in Chicago to use air conditioning.
In 2011, the Wrigley Building was sold and underwent a significant restoration and modernization project. The renovation made it a mixed-use building featuring retail and office spaces.
What is the clock's diameter on the Wrigley Building?
The South Tower has a clock with faces pointing in all directions. Each face of the clock is 19.5 feet (almost 6 meters) in diameter.