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palmer house 4th annual chicago real estate summit thor equities renovation
Frank Sinatra may sing about the Wrigley Building, but when he sang in the Windy City, you were likely to find him at the Palmer House, where we held our 4th annual Chicago Real Estate Summit last week. Its famed Empire Room was virtually the center of Chicago entertainment from the '30s through the '60s, and today with a new owner (Thor Equities of NY) and a  $170M renovation, the hotel again evokes the glamor of yesteryear. Above, we snapped the lobby at 6am; the rest of the day it's known to be packed with the power business crowd.
palmer house grand ballroom 4th annual chicago real estate summit rahm emanuel deputy maor grant park barack obama
Here's the Grand Ballroom with the  nearly 500 who turned out for our event. The deputy mayor spoke; he's a former investment banker who's working for a dollar-a-year as Mayor Rahm Emanuel's No 2, and is determined to  whip Chicago's finances into shape  and recruit out-of-town business. Palmer House, with more than 1,600 rooms is the second biggest hotel in the city, attracting many for its history and old world charm; but it doesn't hurt that across the street is a symbol of its present as well: Grant Park, where  hometown boy Barack Obama  gave his 2008 election night victory speech.