With the upcoming St. Joseph’s and Easter holidays, sweet tables are in season (as if you really needed an excuse). Someone that really knows how to set the table is Chicago’s own Delightful Pastries, a European-style bakery run by pastry chef Dobra Bielinski, who was trained in her native Poland. Along with her mother and brother, Bielinski whips up old-world favorites with the freshest ingredients, including real sugar and butter and no preservatives. Cannolis, fruit tarts, mousse cups, macarons and cream puffs are Delightful staples, but also try the boozy donuts (infused with vodka, rum and moonshine) and specialties like chocolate babka. Three locations are available: Old Town, Jefferson Park and the Chicago French Market.

Dawn Young first joined Choose Chicago in June 2005 as director of association sales, and in May this year, was promoted to vice president of hotel sales. It’s a perfect example of rising up the ranks for someone who’s so passionate about moving tourism forward. Though her experience in the industry runs deep, she’s got her work cut out for her to keep the numbers growing: Chicago set a tourism record in 2017 with more than 55 million visitors. A major reason for that? “Chicago just rocks accessibility,” says Young.

 

Each morning at 6:15 a.m., Spiaggia Director of Sales Erica Yack wakes up, drinks her coffee, walks a mile to her office at 980 N. Michigan, and works on returning hundreds of emails and voicemails (including at least 12-15 RFPs a day). But if that was the most rigorous part of her routine, it would be a quiet day for Yack, who is constantly caught in a balancing act that includes managing client demands, following up on leads, executing events and leading a small sales team at the fine-dining restaurant.