I had a fun little surprise waiting for me this morning when I got to work and checked out all of my favorite blogs like I do every morning. Boulder was featured on Design Sponge! A little background, I attended the University of Colorado and loved every minute of living in Boulder, Colorado. I spent five fabulous years there from dorm life to spending my summers nannying, Boulder had it all. Design Sponge really brought me back and touched on all of my favorite spots.
Eating in Boulder:
Design Sponge really hit it out of the park in this category because I totally agree with each and every place they picked out. A few of them I don't know, so a trip back to Boulder has just become a travel must in 2013.
With a huge crowd waiting each and every Saturday and Sunday morning you know this place must be the best. Grits and Beignets are a must!
"Show up at Lucille’s for breakfast and expect not to be hungry for the rest of the day. The Creole restaurant is tucked into an old yellow Victorian on 14th street, and tables are packed into the rooms. Fill up on beignets, chicory coffee and shrimp and grits." -Design Sponge
Another favorite breakfast spot of mine was The Buff, $1 mimosas and Bloody Marys just can't be beat!
Design Sponge brought up the Boulder Tea House and I couldn't agree more, I didn't go there enough when I lived in Boulder but if you are there for a weekend this spot is a must. Its location is perfection sandwiched between the Boulder Contemporary Art Museum and Boulder Creek makes for the picturesque. And the farmers market resides in the Tea House's front "yard"each weekend. Not to mention that the Tea House itself is breathtaking. Design Sponge says it best...
"The most beautiful building in town, the Boulder Dushanbe Tea House was built by hand in Boulder’s sister city, Dushanbe, Tajikistan, as a gift and reconstructed in downtown Boulder. Each panel of the wall and ceiling is unique and elaborately carved. Go for brunch to get a mix of Indian and American food, along with the best chai you’ll ever have. It’s also a great pre- or post-farmer’s market option, because it’s right next door."
Panoramic of Tea House
Exterior Tile Panels sent over from Tajikistan
My two favorite dinner spots were raved about by Design Sponge, The Kitchen and The Med. Even though I frequented The Med more because of my college bank account and the outrageous Happy Hour deals they had, The Kitchen was a great spot for a special occasion. A favorite college memory of mine was celebrating a good friends Birthday at The Kitchen [Upstairs]. Great Eats and even better times:) My mouth is watering just dreaming about the French Fries.
"Boulder has long been a hotbed of locally sourced, sustainable food, and the Kitchen is the pinnacle of that. The restaurant focuses on community, both by sourcing its ingredients locally and by hosting family-style dinners. They recently opened The Kitchen [Next Door], a more budget-friendly casual restaurant with a smaller menu, in the next store front over. Both places have excellent wine lists, and the beet burger at [Next Door] is a must."
The Med oh my sweet Med. I miss you dearly. Okay enough of that but, I can't express enough how great this place is. Small plates are the way to go, however the entrees are all wonderful as well. Happy Hour is great because the small plates are all cheap very cheap. I am talking college budget cheap. The sangria is out of this world. Like Design Sponge says, this place is great for a big group. Can I spend my next birthday here please????
So after you eat yourself silly, its time to get moving around. Boulder has some of the best trail heads of all time. Hiking Chautauqua was a big part of my college experience. I was a photography major and so heading up towards the Flatirons was some of my favorite subject matter to shoot.
meeting friends along the way
a view out west
one of the many afternoon hikes
The beautiful Flatirons
"Chautauqua Park, which rises up into the Flatirons on the western side of town, serves two functions: It’s Boulder’s most accessible hiking and climbing (hit Royal Arch if you only have time for one hike), but it’s also home to the Colorado Chautauqua Association, which brings speakers, musicians and other cultural events to the area. Check the schedule to see who they’re bringing in; the summer is busiest. You can also stay in the cottages and eat in the dining hall." A great description by Design Sponge.
Shopping in Boulder:
I can't say this enough but Design Sponge really hit it out of the park with the city guide, and they didn't miss the mark on the shopping. My two all time favorite stores that I miss at the beginning of each and every season are Weekends and Savvy.
Pearl Street in general is where to go when you need some retail therapy while in Boulder. So between meals and hikes find yourself on the mall. It looks pretty during each season, but I will say that the tulips in the spring are a must-see! On the weekends there are many street performers so hanging on the mall is anything but boring. You really get the slice of life that is Boulder, Colorado.
Savvy is described as a store geared toward the college crowd on Design Sponge but don't let that scare you off, yes cute college-aged girls work there but they have some fun and unique to their boutique's pieces. And every time I have gone there has been an awesome Sale!
My other favorite store is Weekends. I mean first off I love the name. This store has a range of clothes for people all ages. Last time I was there my father bought more than I did. That's saying something. And yes you guess it Design Sponge agrees with me.
"Right on the corner of Pearl and Broadway, Weekends has everything from Fryes to party dresses. They have a really good selection of jeans, and it’s probably the best place in town to get clothes for guys."
This is only a portion of the tons of entertaining and fun things to do in Boulder, be sure to check out the CITY GUIDE on Design Sponge. And head West or East or South or North to Boulder, Colorado.
"Boulder might be the closest a college town is to heaven- and not just because it is located at 5430 feet of Rocky Mountain High altitude. It is 27 square miles of relief from reality" - ESPN