Top 10 Cities for Single Women: #8, Chicago, IL

By Austin Brown

Best Cities for Singles: Chicago, IL

Life: America has three world-class cities: New York, San Francisco, and Chicago.

In fact, with its grand boulevard (Michigan Avenue) brilliant architecture and outstanding museums, Chicago is arguably the most European of American cities. At the same time, it is uniquely American.

For a very big city, Chicago never forgot how to smile, and it’s a city where people openly lend their neighbors a helping hand. There are breathtaking vistas from every angle, be it the observation deck of America’s tallest building to the city’s dazzling skyline, verdant Lakeshore Drive, or its elegantly restored  Navy Pier.

Because the terrain is flat, with many parks and beautiful old neighborhoods — each with its own unique style — the city itself is a walker’s paradise. And when you tire of walking, CTA (Chicago Transit Authority) will take you from anywhere to anywhere, in a matter of minutes. Even both of Chicago’s airports, Midway and massive O’Hare, are connected to CTA by trains that run every few minutes into the city center, better known to locals as the Loop.

The city’s one unavoidable drawback is the cold winters. What Phoenix is to hot summers, Chicago is to cold winters. Lovely fall and spring weather, and warm summer nights is not enough for many who know that generally, from November through March, this city of “big shoulders” can put your plans on ice. To counter that, Chicago boasts great theaters, magnificent shopping, and nonstop activities throughout the year. If you don’t mind scarves, gloves, and hats Chicago could very well be at the top of your list.

Love: With youth on its side, Chicago ranks #6 on SMW’s “Single and Available” list.  Another advantage is its reputation as a very big city with mostly small town manners. As opposed to a New York or LA, “who are you” stares are replaced with warm, welcoming smiles in this city, which has not forgotten how to laugh at itself or with others.

As for nightlife, remember that this is one of America’s top city’s for jazz, comedy, improv, and nightclub entertainment. Arguably the best bars and array of restaurants anywhere in America can be found scattered throughout Chicago’s many trendy, youthful neighborhoods. From Bridgeport to Lakeshore East, the city offers an incredible array of lifestyle choices, all closely connected by Chicago Transit.

Career: Chicago, like much of the upper Midwest, has had a tough go since the economic meltdown of 2008. But as you can imagine, a great city is hard to keep down.

Chicago, the adopted hometown of President Barack Obama, is making a strong comeback.  Bright spots have been showing up in manufacturing, business services, residential and commercial real estate, information technology, and medical services. Approximately 25% of all Chicagoland employers plan on adding staff in 2012, and the rest plan on maintaining current levels of staffing which is good news in a metro area that peaked out 12% unemployment rates. It’s still a hit or miss proposition, but for people ready to give Chicago a try there is a better chance that you’ll find the right job now than at any time in the past five years.

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