Chicago Rental: Hyde Park Studio With a Modern Twist, $799

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Hyde Park Goes Modern for $799Some say the glory days of Chicago's Hyde Park peaked in the 1930s. Before the turn of the century, John D. Rockefeller founded The University of Chicago, and over the years, the South Side neighborhood developed and blossomed as a popular tourist destination, where a hundred-some hotels once stood overlooking Lake Michigan.

In Hyde Park, there's an excess of magnificent old structures that have decayed into tired, drab buildings, but once in a while, you can find a diamond in the rough, like the The Algonquin. Designed by renowned architect, Mies Van der Rohe, this newly-renovated building injects a hip and contemporary feel into the community. Not to mention, this studio with granite counters and ceramic tile bathrooms will only run you $799 per month.
On the inside, the open floor plan emulates that of a loft (but without the super-high ceilings). There are mod little accents like designer carpet in neutral hues, built-in closets with transparent glass doors, and a recessed kitchenette with stainless-steel appliances. (See the pictures to see how you can use a shelving unit to double as a room divider and extra storage space.)

Wandering outside your apartment, you'll find the building's other perks: a fitness center, a laundry facility, storage lockers, indoor bike storage, and reserved parking upon request. Through the building's doors, located on the eastern edge of Hyde Park, it's just a few minutes walk to practically every local destination, among them the Lake, Jackson Park, Hyde Park's town center and the university. Or if walking is not your mode of transport, a University of Chicago shuttle also makes a stop out front.

In terms of getting to the city's downtown district, it's a little bit more complicated and time intensive. By car, the seven mile trek takes about 20 to 30 minutes depending on traffic, and one-way on public transit, the El, is about 30 minutes. According to one site, the Jackson Park Express is the route of least hassle.

But if your day-to-day life is in or near Hyde Park, whether its school, family or a job, then you'll probably want to be either here or a little further north towards the city in Bronzeville. Oh, by the way, you'll also want to tell all your friends that you'll be President Barack Obama's neighbor, too. (He lives in a subsection of Hyde Park called Kenwood).

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