About Luca Parisi

Born and raised in the Northwest side of Chicago to Italian immigrant parents, my life was a not a scene from “Goodfellas” but more so like “Everybody Loves Raymond”. Cracking jokes here and there and having a very over protected mother. I take my heritage to heart as being and Italian American. I hold family and friends close and traditions closer. So when Italy is in the world cup (that’s soccer just in case you were wondering”) things get serious. Though I love my Chicago Teams (Cubs, Bears, Bulls and Hawks)! Some of my hobbies include is that I know how to cook, not a lot of men know how to cook so I pride myself in knowing how to cook. I cook from traditional Italian with a modern kick to everything under the sun. You’ll never go hungry in my house. I also make homemade wine, a tradition passed down from my father to me. I also am a film buff especially James Bond or anything filmed in Chicago and yes I read the occasional comic book. With a passion with marketing and advertising that lead me to graduate from Columbia College Chicago (’03) with a concentration in Marketing Communication. One of my professors told me once that I have a way of speaking and telling a story that engages the audience so that’s what led me to break out of my shell and strive in sales/marketing. Though working in hospitality kind of fell in my lap, no seriously my cell phone rang which was thrown on my lap when the sales manager from a hotel called me asking if I would be interested in presuming a career change. Being a family man I do put my family first especially my son. He was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 3 years old (August 2012) and he is the beacon of courage with everything he has to go through. With this my wife and I participate with various diabetes foundations such as “Step Out” for diabetes. I handle all Corporate Groups at the hotel. Coming into Hampton Team was a pleasant change from the energy they portray. Don’t hesitate to reach out if there’s something I can help you with.

Christmas Time in Chicago

Each year, people from all over the world visit the Christkindlmarket Chicago. The outdoor market in the Chicago Loop has become so popular and loved by everyone that any Chicagoan will tell you that they could not imagine the city without it. Christkindlmarket Chicago is no longer just a German tradition; it has become a Chicago institution.

Christkindlmarket 2014

Christkindlmarket 2014

Every year, the traditional-style German Christmas market brings in vendors from the old country to serve sauerkraut, sauerbraten, potato pancakes and sweet candied almonds. The wooden huts also brim with candy, blown glass, European Christmas decorations and other delights. The market runs through Christmas Eve, so get your sauerkraut early and often.

The unique shopping experience, typical German food and drinks, as well as diverse holiday entertainment make the Christkindlmarket Chicago a preferred and popular destination and admission is FREE!

Christkindlemarket

Christkindlemarket

A little history of the Christkindlmarket, it is inspired by the Christkindlesmarkt in Nuremberg, Germany, which began in 1545. The Christkindlmarket Chicago brings a cherished German and European tradition with international flair and local charm to Chicago.

Chicago’s largest open-air Christmas festival was first held on Pioneer Court in 1996. By special invitation of Mayor Richard M. Daley, Christkindlmarket Chicago moved to Daley Plaza in 1997 and has become a staple event on the plaza ever since. Christkindlmarket Chicago has grown to become one of the most popular winter attractions in the heart of the city.

Stop on by to the Christkindlmarket Chicago have some spiced wine and enjoy some wiener schnitzel, you know you love that schnitzel.

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Chicago Events July 12-14, 2013

Whoever says there is nothing to do in Chicago on the weekends is a flat out liar. The summer is definitely heating up in Chicago, and summer festivals are in full swing.

If you want to avoid the TASTE OF CHICAGO crowds this weekend these top pick might be perfect for you.

VOLLEYWOOD BEACH BASH: For several years, the only event you could legally drink on the beach was Volleywood, Chicago Sport and Social Club’s annual ode to beach volleyball and fist-pumping good times. While others have since entered the arena, Volleywood remains one of the best beach party scenes the city has to offer. If you’re not playing, hang out, sip a cocktail, ogle the scantily-clad bodies and check out a special performance by Nelly. July 13, North Avenue Beach, $30 GA, $50 VIP

Volleywood Beach Bash

Volleywood Beach Bash

ROSCOE VILLAGE BURGER FEST: Some of Chicago’s best burger spots will be firing up their grills at this annual festival. Two stages of music, a kids zone area, plenty of arts and craft vendors and a contest for the best burger. July 13-14, $7 donation

WINDY CITY SMOKEOUT: Popular River North country & western BBQ spot Bub City hosts this first annual event featuring — what else — live country music and BBQ! Other Chicago restaurants like Smoque and Lillie’s Q will also be on hand. Oh, and there’ll be plenty of beer to wash it all down. July 12-14, $30 for one-day pass, $60 for three-day pass.

WEST FEST: One of the best street fests of the year. More than 60,000 people came out for this Chicago Avenue soiree last year, and this year should be no different. Enjoy a live music and a DJ stage, as well as a stage just for kids, along with a special area for dogs. July 13-14, $5 donation

SQUARE ROOTS FESTIVAL: Head up to Lincoln Square for this annual festival that includes more than 60 acts on four stages, along with art vendors, food and more than 30 craft beers available.

Square Roots

Square Roots

ASHORE THING: A new kind of parade sets sail in Chicago Saturday. Ashore Thing, presented by Michigan Avenue Magazine and the Chicago Yacht Club, will celebrate the start of the famous Race to Mackinac Island boat race with a parade of sailboat sensations. A wave of prestigious sailboats preparing to embark on the 105th Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac will sail through the shores of Chicago offering seaside admirers a close-up view of their “floats.”

A good tip would be if you’re heading to the beach or to the parade; to make sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen because we might be in the windy city but that sun can be brutal and if you heading to a food fest make sure to bring the pepto!!!

There’s something for any mood you may have.

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Just for Laughs Chicago

The Just For Laughs comedy festival (brought to you by TBS) in Chicago is a huge, huge deal in the comedy world. The event takes place from June 11th to the 16th. TBS’s annual Just For Laughs Chicago, which claims to be the largest comedy festival in America, will take over the city. This year’s impressive lineup contains more than its fair share of comedy A-Listers, in addition to a number of local favorites. The comics will scattered across the city from the Chicago Theater all the way to the Park West.

JFL

JFL

Some big names would be Russell Brand from Forgetting Sarah Marshall & Get him to the Greek, David Cross from Arrested Development and Saturday Night Live’s head writer Seth Myers. Bob Newhart is performing also; I didn’t know Bob Newhart was still doing live shows none the less was alive (insert bad joke here). These are just a few; over 100 comedians will be performing live through the city, for a full schedule of all the performers and shows click here.

Russell Brand

Russell Brand

One of the acts I am looking forward to are the Stars of TruTV’s Impractical Jokers. Is If there’s one thing best friends know how to do, it’s pranking and embarrassing the hell out of each other for the amusement of others. But while most people get that sort of thing out of their systems by the end of high school, these childhood pals have turned it into a life’s calling. Their hidden-camera show Impractical Jokers on truTV was a smash hit and they will bring their hysterical hijacks to the Just for Laughs festival for a night of never-before-seen hidden camera challenges, stories from set that you won’t believe, a live Q&A, and real, outrageous messages from fans!

Impractical Jokers

Impractical Jokers

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Filming in Chicago

Nothing is more exciting than seeing your hometown of Chicago in a film, from Lower Wacker Drive in “The Blues Brothers” and “The Dark Knight” to seeing the entire River North district in “Transformers – Dark of the Moon”. With summer movie season upon us we will be seeing our beautiful city of Chicago in more movies.

lower-wacker-drive-in-tdk1

Lower Wacker Drive

Man of Steel” (Opens June 14, 2013) which stars Henry Cavill as Clark Kent aka Superman, along with Amy Adams, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane and others, is expected to feature the Loop’s Chicago Board of Trade and Willis Tower buildings prominently. The Board of Trade will be used as the exterior of Kent’s workplace, the Daily Planet, while the Willis Tower will provide the interior shots of the newsroom setting. Chicago has been prime filming locations for both Metropolis (Superman) and Gotham City (The Dark Knight). The architecture of downtown Chicago has been key for filming such nostalgic pop culture icons. If you think about it, Chicago is a Metropolis and is a perfect for such film such as Man of Steel. With a Justice League movie on the horizon we might see Chicago the prime filming locations such as New York was for The Avengers.

This summer is going be a hot spot for movies being filmed in Chicago. There has been plenty of rumors and speculation about where the next Transformers movie will be shot this summer and at least part of the movie will be filmed in the Windy City. Picking up where the last movie left off. Mark Wahlberg is set to star in and produce the Michael Bay film.

Andy and Lana Wachowski (who were behind the Matrix trilogy) are also preparing for another futuristic science fiction film, Jupiter Ascending, which will star Mila Kunis, Channing Tatum, and Sean Bean also star in the film which will begin a 4-5 week shoot in Chicago on June 24. Andy and Lana Wachowski are no strangers for using Chicago for their movies. Being Chicago natives they used and filmed certain scenes for The Matrix trilogy in Chicago. If you watch closely you see Chicago city streets and locations seen throughout the movie. In the Matrix Reloaded they recreated a portion of the I-90/I-94 going into the city for a climatic chase scene.

Matirx

They just finished filming the highly anticipated Ferris Wheel scene on Chicago’s Navy Pier for Divergent and will be filming all over the city. The film stars Shailene Woodley, Ray Stevenson and Kate Winslet. The acclaimed young adult novel in which the film is based on is set within a dystopian version of Chicago. The novel has been compared to similar young adult books such as The Hunger Games because of its theme and target audience.

Move over New York and Los Angeles, looks like our town is prime for filming such blockbusters and as a Chicagoan I say thanks.

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