To quote the title character in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop to look around once in a while, you might miss it.” Our advice? Take a few days off and head to the Windy City.
The classic '80s movie turns 30 this summer, and to celebrate, The Palmer House in Chicago is giving you the opportunity to play hooky with its “Bueller’s Chicago” package. Guests who book the package receive a slew of Bueller-inspired perks, including two complimentary passes to the Art Institute of Chicago -- where Ferris and his friends, Cameron and Sloan, strike a contemplative pose -- along with a guide to recreating Ferris’ day in the city.
A bucket list of sorts, the guide directs you to stops at Wrigley Field, Willis Tower (Sears Tower back then), the site of the parade scene, and the infamous parking garage where Ferris leaves the Ferrari. To set the mood, you’ll receive a Spotify playlist with popular songs from the film, including The Beatles’ “Twist and Shout” and Wayne Newton’s “Danke Schoen.”
Following a whirlwind day in the city, you can book a dinner reservation at The Palmer House’s flagship Lockwood Restaurant under the name Abe Froman (a.k.a. The Sausage King of Chicago) to receive special white glove service. The evening ends with an in-room complimentary dessert inspired by Ferris’ visit to the art institute.
The Bueller’s Chicago package starts at $258 per night and is available from April 30 to December 31, 2016. In addition to Ferris-inspired amenities, the package includes a complimentary buffet breakfast for two, unlimited coffee or hot cocoa refills during your stay, and half-price parking for one vehicle ($21; regularly $42).
Looking for another way to get in on the Ferris fun? The Palmer House encourages you to snap a selfie that recreates Ferris and his friends’ pose at the Art Institute of Chicago (see the accompanying photograph for an example). Post it to your social media pages and tag @PalmerHouse and/or on the Palmer House Facebook page with the hashtag #SaveFerrisatPHH for a chance to win a grand prize.
More ways to play hooky
The Hotel Lincoln has its own “Save Ferris” package that comes with two tickets to the Art Institute of Chicago, two tickets to the Skydeck at Willis Tower, a pair of tickets to a Cubs game, and a Blu-Ray copy of the movie. Priced from $299 to $499 per night with a two-night minimum, the package is available through September 20 (blackout dates apply).
But wait…there’s more! Diehard fans won’t want to miss Ferris Fest, May 20-22. The event includes special screenings of the movie at The John and Nancy Hughes Theater in Lake Forest (Chicago native John Hughes directed the classic film) as well as a filming locations bus tour that will take fans past Cameron’s house, Glenbrook North High School, and the Art Institute of Chicago. On Sunday, fest organizers plan to restage the “Twist and Shout” parade scene a few streets from where it was filmed.
Want to get a glimpse of where it all began? During the fest, you can step inside an exact recreation of Ferris’ bedroom at the Virgin Hotels Chicago. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online at the Ferris Fest website.