Happy (almost!) New Year! My family and I are just back from a few days in Richmond, Virginia and we had so much fun I wanted to share some of our trip highlights and favorite places to shop, eat and dine with you. This town did not disappoint! Loved its artsy, industrial vibe and sense of South meets San Fran + Baltimore. Definitely worth a visit -- and if you go before Feb 23rd, 2020, you'll catch the Edward Hopper's The American Hotel exhibit at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts --- worth the trip alone.
One of my favorite Edward Hopper paintings, now on display at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.
Favorite hotels -- The Quirk and the Courtyard Marriott / Residence Inn in downtown Richmond near Shockoe Slip. The Quirk is always a favorite place to stay. But this time, we used Marriott points and stayed downtown at the Courtyard ... an easy "home base" for exploring much of the area.
Favorite downtown walk -- along Monument Ave and then over to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts ... so many grand homes, statues and architectural gems!
A house on Monument Ave in Richmond, decorated for the holidays.
View from the grounds at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
Favorite coffee house -- Ironclad Roasters ... located just a short morning walk from the Marriott, I loved its cozy vibe, plenty of comfy couch and armchair seating and (of course!) wonderful latte.
Favorite neighborhoods to explore -- Shockoe Bottom, Church Hill, Carytown and The Arts District.
Favorite Local Boutiques -- we lucked out meeting local shop owner of Accoutre Rob Bland our first morning in Richmond, and immediately fell in love with his beautifully curated kitchen and homewares store + atelier. Think Design Within Reach meets Crate and Barrel. So good!!
Above: Perfectly designed glassware at Accoutre
Rob shared with us his wonderful Shopkeepers' guide on 6 Richmond neighborhoods to explore - worth bookmarking for your trip. Other local boutiques that we also enjoyed:
Dear Neighbor, a sweet boutique with a fun mix of fashion, jewelry and home decor.
Clementine, a great place for fab consignment finds (think Anthropologie and Free People - at half the price!).
Ruth & Ollie, full of well designed interior vignettes and home furnishings. (Note: the owners are retiring and closing this store in March 2020 ... so check it out while you can!),
and Need Supply, where clothing, shoes, books and art are displayed in art gallery style. This store reminded me of L.A.
Favorite Bakery - Sub Rosa Bakery. Three words: get the croissant ... mouth watering!
Favorite Lunch place: Fire & Hops - Their fire roasted pizzas and fresh salads were SO yummy! And the outdoor patio seating was a fun place to take in more of the neighborhood.
Favorite Art Gallery: A trip to Richmond would not be complete without a stop at the pink gallery at The Quirk Hotel ... it always delights!
Current exhibit at the pink gallery by Amanda Gough: Cigarettes and Champagne Cocktails
Best place to watch the sunset: atop the James River at Libby Hill Park:
Favorite Restaurant for Dinner: The Roosevelt. Pro tip: make a reservation! We were not the only ones who find it a favorite and got the last open table in the nick of time.
Best. Brunch. Ever: Laura Lee's. Truth be told, we had high hopes to go back to Lucy's for Sunday brunch -- we'd been once before and had been dreaming of returning ever since, so we were soooo bummed when we pulled up to Lucy's Sunday morning, only to find it was closed for the holidays! But, things happen for a reason and we ended up discovering Laura Lee's instead. *Amazing!!* I'd honestly go back go Richmond just to dine here again. Bonus: more colorful, local artwork is featured on the restaurant's walls.
A pic taken just outside the entrance to Laura Lee's ... love the simple message in the corner.
Another tip: allow time to stroll through Nest Antiques next door ... especially if you're looking for vintage art! There are so many sweet antique finds in this shop, you'll have to browse through it twice to take it all in.
My favorite part of the trip? The time with family and to explore this town. Art is everywhere; murals, small boutique businesses, good craftsmanship and design. May your new year be filled with much color and love - and a trip to Richmond!
Happy 2020, xo, Kate