Jewelers Row is a gem of a district in the Chicago Loop. The enclave of jewelry stores runs along Wabash Avenue between East Washington and East Monroe Streets. There, you’ll find historic buildings built between 1872 and the early 1940s. Find upscale jewelry stores, loose-diamond dealers, and custom-made rings on this glitzy block.
Jewelers Row Neighborhood
Jewelers Row is tucked just two blocks from Millennium Park in the heart of the Chicago Loop. The area features a concentration of jewelry stores along Wabash Avenue, mostly between Washington and Monroe Streets. Wabash runs parallel to Michigan Avenue, just two blocks over. There, you can find Millennium Park and such landmarks as the Chase Promenade, Crown Fountain, and Millennium Monument. To the North, you’ll find the Chicago Cultural Center, and the Art Institute of Chicago is to the south.
This prime district is chock-full of places to stay. Nearby hotels include Palmer House, Hampton Inn Majestic Theatre, Silversmith Hotel, and the Chicago Athletic Association. The area is also a hotbed of great eateries, including Remington’s Restaurant classic steakhouse, upscale pub The Gage, and Exchequer Restaurant & Pub—a decades-old pub serving up American classics like pizza, ribs, and burgers.
Jewelers Row Shops
If you’re interested in shopping for diamonds, start at the Wabash Jewelers mall near the intersection of E Washington Street. There, you’ll find an array of vendors selling a large span of diamonds, necklaces, and bracelets. Need to sell some jewelry? You can do that here, too. And if you’ve shopped up an appetite, the “mall” has a small takeout counter, Oasis Café.
Nearby, you’ll find Donna Jewelry Co., a family-run retailer specializing in diamonds and custom jewelry—especially engagement rings, if you’re looking to pop the question. Or, have your engagement ring crafted next door at Luo M. Jewelers, an enduring merchant known for its one-of-a-kind engagement rings, appraisals, and repairs.
If you’re looking for a large selection of new and used pieces, go no further than New York Jewelers. The 16,000-square-foot family-owned store is stocked to the gills with diamonds, watches, and jewelry in two showrooms.
Next-door, you’ll find a posh shop full of high-end engagement rings and diamonds at Gale Diamonds Chicago. The gems continue at The Classic Gem Fine Jewelry, where you can browse loose diamonds and gems as well as ready-made and custom pieces. Across the way, there are more loose-diamond and custom options at Wedding Bands & Co.
For custom-crafted bracelets and pendants, stop into Windy City Diamonds, specializing in diamonds and colored stones. If you’re looking for loose diamonds or want to know what your jewelry is worth, stop into Diamonds Chicago across the way and enjoy its appraisal services.
Of course, Mallers Building cannot be forgotten. The historic Art Deco building, built in 1921, features 21 stories of jewelry showrooms. The marble entryway leads to 180 jewelers above. There, you’ll find vendors like Ethan Lord Jewers, specializing in diamond jewelry, engagement rings, and repairs.
At the south end of the strip, Diamonds on Wabash is a staple for diamonds and precious-stone pieces, also offering repairs and appraisals. When you are done with your Chicago Shopping, take a four-minute walk to Cloud Gate to check out your new bling reflected in the famous “Chicago Bean.”
I am searching for the originals, the old multi-generational family-owned established businesses in Chicago.
Edward Kim says
Hi Genna. Why don’t you try contacting the Chicago History Museum to see if they have an idea on how to start your research.