St. Louis First Week of April

Old Feb 16th, 2004, 12:03 PM
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St. Louis First Week of April

My husband and I (early 30s-no kids) are looking for a place to spend a few days. We are thinking of heading to St. Louis. We have never been there before. What are the must see attractions? Will we be able to fill 3 days? Also looking for a very nice hotel to spend our time at with lots of ammenities and most of all close to a variety of restaurants/bars for a nice evening. We'd like to be within walking distance if possible. Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated.
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Old Feb 16th, 2004, 12:21 PM
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I travel quite a bit to STL for business and took my husband with me for a long weekend last May. We had a great time and didn't see nearly all there was to see. If you're looking for a great walk-around place with restaurants and shops, I'd either suggest the Clayton area or the Central West End area. In Clayton, you have a long list of hotels from the Ritz-Carlton to Sheraton. I enjoyed staying at the Seven Gables - very small and quaint European style hotel. Lots of very good restaurants and nice shops within a few blocks. I have also stayed at the Chase hotel in Central West End. Very nice old renovated hotel, again close to restaurants and shops. That's also close to Forest Park which has a great zoo and has outdoor concerts.

We stayed in a B&B near Lafayette Square called Napolean's Retreat and loved it. That weekend, we went to the Arch, spent an afternoon at the Botanical Garden, went on a Tour of Homes in Cental West End, toured the new Catholic Cathedral, all while eating our way through town. Didn't make it to the Anheiser tour, the zoo, St. Charles, any plays or concerts - ran out of time. I would highly recommend St. Louis.
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Old Feb 16th, 2004, 02:06 PM
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I agree with Parker, there's more than enough to do in STL for a few days. Definitely the Arch (downtown) and the Anheuser Busch brewery tour (the Soulard area near Lafayette Square_ -- that's like a little new orleans. I lived there for a while. They have a huge Mardi Gras every year, though you'll be going after that. South Grand, just south of Soulard, is an ethnic area if you like ethnic foods, but there not much more than eating to do there. St. Charles is west of the airport, across the river, is a quaint little historic town, good for walking but I don't think any bars. For that you should stick to downtown, Soulard or Central West End, near Washington University, a beautiful campus in itself). CWE tends to be more university or grad student-oriented; Clayton is more upscale/ working adults. If you're into the arts, get tickets to a show at the Muny, a nice outdoor theater in Forest Park.
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Old Feb 16th, 2004, 02:51 PM
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One don't miss: Ted Drewes frozen custard...have a concrete.
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Old Feb 16th, 2004, 04:19 PM
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The Chase Park Plaza in the Central West End is supposed to be a very nice hotel. It's remodeled from an old building. I've not stayed there. It has a movie theater in it with a few small screen theaters. The Eau restaurant is there too. I had a nice meal there about a year ago.

My favorite restaurant in St Louis is Chez Leon in the Central West End. You can easily walk from the Chase to Chez Leon. There are other little restaurants and bars in the area. Chez Leon was just covered on FoodTV's "The Best of" the other night.,00.html

I've stopped in the Westin downtown. It looks beautiful. I liked their menu but haven't eaten there yet. It's located at a light rail stop but not much dining around it. You can take the MetroLink to the Central West End and the Union station area.

I've really enjoyed the restaurant in the Ritz-Carlton in Clayton, but there's nothing around it to walk to for nightlife or dinner.

FYI, I believe that if the terror security alert is raised to orange or higher the Arch does not operate.

You can check to see if the Cardinals baseball team have a home game.
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Old Feb 17th, 2004, 02:32 PM
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Thanks for all the advice. The main place we are looking for is an area with nightlife (not clubbing - more like pub or brewery) that we can walk back to the hotel (not drink and drive). Would you say Embassy Suites at Lacledes landing or Clayton area? I'm just worried that the Landing could be too "clubby" at night but it seems like a great location.
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Old Feb 17th, 2004, 02:56 PM
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I live in the St. Louis metro area. Since you are coming in April, the muny opera won't be starting its season yet, but on Grand Ave. which is west of downtown, there is the Fox theatre which has broadway shows and concerts as well as Powell Symphony Hall where the St. Louis Symphony performs. You might check to see what is playing at the Fox when you are going to be there. You can easily do a search to find their website.
One of our favorite restaurants is The Soulard Restaurant which is in the Soulard district. I think it is on Broadway and is quite close to downtown. It has a pub-like atmosphere with a bar up front and dining area in the back. I think they have great food and the atmosphere is pretty laid back although the tables are set with very nice linens and the service is very good. No one has mentioned the Adams Mark which is right across the street from the Arch and the Old Cathedral and within walking distance to Lacledes Landing where there are a lot of restaurants and clubs. I don't frequent the landing area that often but when I have, it has had a nice variety of bars and music. The Adams Mark is a very pretty hotel with several great restaurants, an in house club I believe and a smaller pub like bar as well. So the location is great and you have several choices on the premises as well. They used to have a jazz Sunday brunch and probably still do, I just don't know for sure since I haven't been there recently.
The central west end is also a good choice as several have mentioned and the Chase Park Plaza has a lot to offer and is right on the border of Forest Park with the zoo. The Botanical Gardens are wonderful in St. Louis. I like to try to go there once a year! The brewery tour is lots of fun and neat to see also. Have fun and feel free to ask more questions.
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Old Feb 17th, 2004, 03:13 PM
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Our friends (also early 30's-no kids) live at the Chase Park Plaza (part of it is very nice apartments) and, having lived in St. Louis myself, I like that area better than Lacledes Landing area. The restaurant/bar downstairs in the Chase is very nice, and the times we have visited our friends there, was full of 20 and 30 somethings having cocktails. I really enjoy the A-B brewery tour. I think I go every time I visit (I am not sure what that says about me). We used to go to a bar in Soulard called McGurk's - Irish pub, and lots of fun, at least when I used to live there.
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Old Feb 17th, 2004, 07:14 PM
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Stay in Clayton or at the Chase in mid-town...much nicer than Laclede's Landing. You will need a rental car anyway to get around the metropolitan area. And don't miss the History Museum (Lewis & Clark exhibit) and the Art Museum in the newly-renovated Forest Park which is a city treasure in itself. Have fun in St. Louie.
Old Feb 18th, 2004, 02:23 PM
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Grew up in St. Louis and am in my mid-thirties. For "pub" areas and fun places to hang out- Try Soulard which is downtown. It is a great area and has many bars, restaurants and night spots within walking distance. It is also close to the brewery, the arch and downtown. Mike and Min's is great, try McGurk's which is an Irish pub and restaurant. There is also Nortons and Molly's. A car would be necessary since areas are spread out. Downtown, try the Hyatt at Union Station, the Chase Park Plaza in the Central West end. The CWE is also a good place to hang. Lot's of hang out spots and restaurants. You could definitely fill three days, but not everything would be in walking distance. Have fun!
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Old Feb 18th, 2004, 03:39 PM
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I think the Chase Park Plaza is your best bet. Central West End is the best neighborhood. There are a lot of bars and restaurants (including 2 Welsch Pubs that you can walk to!)
You can also walk to Forest Park during the web. The CWE has a metro link stop that can take you downtown. Clayton does not have a stop yet. The Landing is really clubby and young.
Have fun!
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Old Mar 1st, 2004, 12:53 PM
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I must definitely second the Soulard recommendation. I lived in Soulard for four years and the nightlife is spectacular. There are fantastic blues places (BBs Jazz Blues and Soups; the Great Grizzly; Broadway Oyster Bar and Mike and Minns are all tremendous places to hear live music) and the food if fantastic. It's all very laid back. If you stay in Lafayette Square at a B&B (as someone recommeded, Soulard is very close. I certainly used to walk between those two points quite a bit when I lived there, but keep in mind that it is a downtown area and sometimes driving the less than a mile is a good option. You'll have a great time!
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