Up-and-Coming Neighborhood: Smith Park

It’s not easy to predict the next “it” neighborhood, however our family has been in tune to Chicago trends, particularly after studying real estate cycles and driving every inch of this city.  A common element in these up-and-coming neighborhoods is foodie establishments.  Often we see popular restaurateurs opening new dining experiences in neighborhoods on the brink of discovery.  The Gillman Group discovered food and so much more in Smith Park.

Smith Park is west of Western Avenue – near our favorite corner at Augusta and California.  There, restaurateur Brendan Sodikoff has opened C.C. Ferns, catering to locals looking for great coffee and a quiet place to work.  They boast an impressive cigar collection which somehow seems apropos in the eclectic, rustic, atmosphere.  Around the corner he also acquired the beloved lounge, California Clipper, and has revived it to it’s former glory.   Brendan Sodikoff is currently one of the most interesting and adventurous restaurateurs looking to be a pioneer, not just in restaurant concepts, but also in up-and-coming neighborhoods.

Another lesser-known pioneer is my father.  He purchased land in a transitioning neighborhood 33 years ago:  the heart of Lincoln Park.  At the time everyone doubted his land acquisition but he had a vision and purchased our home for $92,000.  You can only imagine the profit when my parents chose to sell it 8 years ago.  He too has begun to develop land in Smith Park, turning bungalows into the most architecturally stunning single-family homes.

Smith Park is an emerging market with fast appreciating property values. We are beginning to see single-family homes selling upwards of $1.3M, so now is the time to also be a pioneer.  The opportunity that comes with being an insider is exciting.  This secret is worth pursuing and the Gillman Group is excited to assist you in finding your next big investment!

Here are some of our favorites in Smith Park we suggest you try:

1. Spinning J’s is a throwback ice cream parlor experience with seriously addictive milkshakes.

2. Marie Jeanne offers delicious meals and the best biscuits you have ever eaten.

3. C.C. Ferns sells Donut Vault donuts (another Sodikoff gem) while serving a killer cappuccino….enough said.

4. Humboldt House Interiors brings you divine Moroccan rugs and local artisans work without the hefty price tags.


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