Be Your Own Star in The “Friends Experience” – North Bridge Mall October 1 to January 3, 2021

Bring family and friends to the intersection of Ohio Street and North Michigan Avenue in Chicago to experience the recreated set of the Friends Experience. After wildly successful runs in New York and Boston, this expanded, interactive adventure has come to 540 North Michigan Avenue. Fun, informative, behind the scenes views of the iconic television sitcom that lasted 10 seasons will allow you to participate in your own recreations or adaption of the scenes from the television series Friends. In syndication, this show has found a whole new fan base, some not even born yet when the show first premiered in 1994.

Monica and Rachel’s Kitchen

To coincide with the 25th anniversary of the Friends show Superfly X, Warner Brothers Consumer Products and Warner Brothers Television Group has cooperated to create an exceptional two-story twelve room, cool studio set for friends and family to take photos and depict scenes from their favorite television romance comedy. The setting is a gorgeous space with sparkling chandeliers and terrazzo floors. It is two stories of props, costumes, and memorabilia.

On the first floor, there is a colorful jukebox on which you can play brief famous audio clips from the show. There is also an amazing art installation Central Perk Coffee House including coffee pots cups and all the paraphernalia made of toy building blocks on the first floor. On the second floor, they have a replica version of Central Perk with upholstered furniture. Fans can sit on the sofa have pictures taken and pretend they are Monica (Courtney Cox), Ross (David Schwimmer), Chandler (Matthew Perry), Joey (Matt LeBlanc), Rachel (Jennifer Anniston), and Phoebe ( Lisa Kudrow). I am sure we all have a friend or family member who can identify with these six young 20 something characters and their quirky traits. Joey and Chandlers famous recliners and fuss ball table are available for pictures and play.

Joey and Chandler’s apartment

Many famous, high-profile celebrities who made guest appearances on Friends over the years such as Brad Pitt, Tom Selleck, Julia Roberts, and a host of others, we may have forgotten, are pictured on a wall of fame. The fountain that the show opened with is recreated with the umbrellas. One of the most fun activities you can participate in is the couch pivot stair scene. This makes a great photo opportunity. You can also stand on the balcony and see “ugly naked guy” or view the turkey head with glasses Monica wore on her head when Chandler declared his love for Monica. There is a timeline of romances for each character on the show that resembles a Chicago Transit Line route map.

The Opening Scene Fountain

The exhibition also features props, costumes, original scripts, and Monica’s (Courtney Cox) kitchen. Cleverly, they have hand sanitation stations that are labeled “Monica Clean.” I believe that is even a higher standard of clean than a Mom would expect. Posted on the wall are Monica’s tongue-in-cheek obsessive-compulsive cleaning tips. On another wall, they have a collection of wigs representing the evolution of Rachel’s hairstyles. Many celebrities in the ’90s brought the picture of Rachel’s first Bob created by Chris McMillan to their hairstylist to emulate the Rachel cut. The exhibit also pays homage to Debra McGuire, an accomplished fine artist, fashion designer, and lead costume designer for the ten seasons of Friends. She currently designs Jennifer Anniston’s wardrobe for The Morning Show.

Monica Clean Hand Sanitizer and Wipes

“Friends was created by David Crane and Marta Kauffman, who executive produced the series with Kevin Bright through Bright/Kauffman/Crane Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television.” Hours are posted on the website. Guests can reserve a timed entry visit with a ticket priced at $35.00 plus taxes and fees. Make sure you stop at the Gift Shop on the first floor available to non-ticketed guests, also. It is chock full of memorabilia from your favorite show you will want to take home with you.

The Gift Shop

Photo Credits: A SuperFly X Production

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