April highlights

Except the Game of Thrones premiere and the fact that spring arrived in Columbus and we got to enjoy a month of full bloom, here are some of my highlights from this month….

CCAD Art Fair – This art fair displays students art work from the Columbus College of Art and Design. You could buy anything from paintings, jewelry, prints, clothes, dolls – they had it all.

Lindey’s – One of our favorite restaurants in German Village. This was our season premiere, rosé lunch at their patio!

Ohio Theater – Columbus Ballet Met performed the story of Cinderella. My second time at the Ohio Theater. It’s such a beautiful building. And the show was amazing. They had really nailed the setting and the dancers were so talented. You weren’t allowed to take any pictures during the show, but here’s a little sample.

Costa Rica – My “spring break” trip to Santa Teresa will be a memory for life. I mean…. what’s not to love – palm trees, no makeup, walking barefoot for a week, the most amazing sunsets, and of course, the fact that I got to learn how to surf!!!

Del Mar SoCal Kitchen – Another Cameron Mitchell Restaurant opened last week. Inspired by the Southern Californian kitchen. Cameron Mitchell is a big name in the restaurant business here in Columbus. Only in the Short North area he own’s four of the restaurants. I really liked the vibe on this one. It was a little more high end, and the food was delicious.

Pura Vida in Costa Rica

What a week!! I am slowly processing all the amazing things I got to experience during my trip to Santa Teresa, Costa Rica, last week. I will let the pictures speak for themselves, but here’s a short recap…

I’d booked one week of surf camp with Lapoint. A week at the camp included surf lessons, yoga, volleyball tournament, beach clean up, great local food, a lot of chill time by the pool and getting to know amazing people from all around the world.

If you’ve ever thought about going on a surf trip, I can truly recommend going to this spot. The instructors were great and the conditions (from what people told me) were one of the best to start your surf career on. 😉 And how about that sunset!?!? People were not at home binge watching Netflix, they were at the beach watching that amazing light!

We did it again…

we spent a weekend in Chicago!

I’m a bit hooked on this town. It’s a great escape if you want some city pulse and change of scenery.

Since it was our fourth visit to Chicago we decided to branch out from downtown and explore other neighborhoods. This decision took us to Wicker park and Bucktown. The neighborhoods are known for its local hipster culture, art community and food scene. We had a great day strolling around and eating an amazing brunch at The Bongo Room.

For dinner we had booked the highly reviewed, Michelin restaurant, Elske. Elske means love in Danish. And the danish/Scandinavian influence on the menu and setting was really present. We tried their tasting menu and it was amazing! For drinks we were recommended to try their Orange wine. I never heard about orange wine before, it almost tasted like rosé. Simply described its like white wine but produced like red. I really liked it, so a good option if you’re a fan of rosé. 🙂

We ended our night with a drink at Soho House.

Saturday was a grey and rainy day, so we walked around downtown. I did some shopping and Andreas patiently waited around. Then we drove to an old friend of Andreas, who lives in Chicago with his American wife. They hadn’t seen each other for 20 years so it was a nice reunion. And they were so nice to us. Making us a delicious dinner and we got to stay over in their lovely house, close to the Wicker park area.

Another great weekend in this very Windy City.

24 hours in NYC

Workout with a view!
Breakfast at Chobani.
Window shopping in SoHo
Coffee at Dean & Deluca
Delicious drinks at Pegu Club.

The goal is the journey, not the destination… right?! 😉✈️ Haha doesn’t really apply on a vacation trip but let’s stay positive!

We are now on the airport again waiting to board our plane to Stockholm. To reduce the stress of traveling we spent one night in NYC before our flight back home.

It was a short but sweet visit in the the city that never sleeps…

See you soon Miami

I’m sitting in a cab on our way in to a rainy New York City. We left Miami early this morning and I ‘m already dreaming of going back to this magical place.

Besides the freckles I’ve got, I’m leaving Miami with great memories and tons of pictures on my phone 📸

My top picks from our visit:

🏖 Hanging out at South beach.

🏃🏼‍♀️ Morning run at the boardwalk

👀 Strolling and people watching at Lincoln Road.

🍸 Drinks at Broken Shaker.

🌮 Taco dinners at Bodega Taqueria y Tequila

We’re in Miami!

We are enjoying some days in Miami before our trip home to Stockholm. It’s only a 2,5 hour flight from Columbus and with Spirit (americas Ryanair) we found super cheap tickets.

It’s my first time here but I really like this place already. The architecture, the food, the endless boardwalk, the beach and the fact that every other person speaks different languages 😍😍😍

Nashville weekend – part II

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On our second day in Nashville we decided to explore more of the city’s different neighborhoods.  Our first stop went to East Nashville. This neighborhood was described as thriving, eclectic, historic and hip. “The citys’ most desired area to live and play.”

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It wasn’t really what I expected. Maybe we went to the wrong streets? Maybe I just put to much hope in to the description? Anyway, it was a nice neighborhood, but everything was very far apart. There was a block with a couple of shops and cafes, then you walked 20 minutes to the next block, where you’d find another small strip of cafes and shops. Even if it wasn’t what I’d expected, it was a perfect day to stroll around. And we ended up having a great brunch at Café Roze AND I found a super cute skirt and a bourbon smelling candle. 🙂

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We started talking to one of the locals who recommended the 12 South neighborhood. So after deciding we were done with East Nashville we took a Lyft to check it out.

12 South was definitely a more vibrant area. A long street filled with restaurants, cafes and shops and people everywhere! We spent the afternoon doing some window shopping and drinking margaritas.

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A thing I’ve experienced before but not in this volume, were the amount of people lining up to different murals to take photos. And I have to admit there were some famous murals I recognized from Instagram. If you google “murals in Nashville” you get over 2 million results – here is one of them. Could this be our generations substitute for going to old churches and taking pictures? Or is that just a European thing? ;P

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For our last dinner in Nashville I had made reservations at 5th & Taylor. This was truly one of the best meals we have eaten in the states so far. If you like meat – this is the place to visit. Look how happy this guy was after dinner 😀

It was kinda funny because when we walked in to the restaurant we saw a group of asian hipsters, who we’d also seen at Café Roze and at the 12 South neighborhood earlier that day. HAHA I guess we had read the same blog…

I must say that I really enjoyed this weekend in Nashville! But good to know before going here – the tax on liquor-by–the-drink are super high. Tennessee is one of the few states in America with no income-tax. With high tourist traffic to citys like Nashville, they take an advantage of that and have higher sales-taxes instead. The law of liquor-by-the-drink, is quit complicated but depending on how much alcohol there is in your beverage, you can pay more than 24 % in taxes! And don’t forget about the tip ;P

Anyway – I’m glad we got the opportunity to go to this crazy town and explore the place where hipsters and hillbillies collide.

Thanksgiving weekend in Nashville

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We just got back after spending the weekend in the city of whiskey and country music – Nashville! This city is just a 5,5 hour drive away from Columbus and it’s the perfect place for a weekend trip.

We arrived Thursday afternoon, on Thanksgiving day. After we checked in at our hotel downtown, we went to the first bar we could find and ordered a drink, with whiskey of course!

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For thanksgiving dinner we’d made reservations at the Thompson. It was a set menu with a four meal course and everything tasted amazing. My favourite was the turkey, which was served with a family style side dish (=4 side dishes!!). With full bellies we got back to the hotel and fell asleep right away.

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We hadn’t booked any activities for this weekend, our plan was just to stroll around and make a lot of pitstops for drinks and food. The city was quit familiar to how Columbus is structured, with a lot of different neighborhoods. So our first stop on Friday was The Gulch neighborhood, I had read that it’s “a hotspot for young urbanites”.  A cute area were we had breakfast at the very popular Biscuit Love. And we weren’t the only one who had read about this place…

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After breakfast we headed to the famous Broadway street, also called “Little Vegas”. I think it was about 11 am when we got there, and you could hear live music playing from every bar. These bars are called Honkey Tonk bars, I had to Google and see if I could find a definition of what it meant and this is what I found on Urban Dictionary:

Honkey Tonk – A loud, rowdy bar that plays “honkey tonk” country music. Typically full of drunken hillbillies having a good ole’ time. To go out “honky tonkin” is to go out on the town to honky tonk bars and get drunk. 

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Broadway was filled with tourists, so between the honkey tonk bars there was a lot of souvenir boutiques, selling cowboy shoes/hats and Jack Daniels merchandise. Not our preference of shopping so after agreeing on that it wasn’t to early for a beer we walked in to the Legend Corner Bar and listened to live country music for a couple of hours.

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We decided that we wanted to see this Honkey Tonk spectacle at night as well, so we made dinner reservations at Merchants restaurant.  A restaurant placed in the heart of Broadway in an old building from 1892. This historical building was in the early 20th century a popular hotel for traveling salesmen. And in its origins it also operated a pharmacy, were it’s said that infamous outlaws of the Wild West, like Wild Bill Hickok and Jessie James visited frequently. You could really feel the historical vibe while having dinner. A funny thing they did was to offer shoe shine while having dinner. So Andreas had his dinner in these lovely socks…

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With shiny shoes and another great meal in our bellies, we walked out to the craziness of Broadway and ended our day listening to more live country music.

Took to many photos!! 😛 I’ll continue in the next post…

Another 20 000 steps-day in Chicago

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I love the statistics that the health app (if you have Iphone) gives you. During our weekend in Chicago we walked more then 20 000 steps per day thats about 10 (american) miles per day! I think that’s the best way to explore a city, and because it was my parents first visit it was a great way to see as much as possible of the downtown area.

After a very cold Saturday (with some hail!) we woke up to a sunny and slightly warmer Sunday. We spent the morning walking all the way up to North Avenue Beach and then back to Navy Pier, closer to downtown and Chicago River.

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I had gotten some recommendations about doing an architecture tour, so being at the Navy Pier where some of the River tours started we booked one. And it was well worth the money. I honestly didn’t know that the city burned down in 1871 and after that became a Mecca for the worlds leading architectures. Seeing the different skyscrapers and listening to the history definitely was a cool thing to do from the river, where you get a great view. And I’m even more in aww about the citys’ architecture now then before (if that’s possible?! :P) These are some of my favorites….

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These two buildings (above) have a nickname – the peeled corn buildings! They have professional valets for the car parking.

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I don’t remember the name of this skyscraper above, but to be able to have this kind of narrow design at the bottom floors,  the architecture installed huge water tanks to help it stabilize when it gets to windy. SCARY!

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The beauty in simple things… This box design on skyscrapers got very popular because the architecture behind it started teaching so he had a good forum to share his ideas on design and function and a lot of students who listened and took after him.

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Our weekend in this beautiful city ended with a stop at a cosy Italian restaurant called Monteverde. I have only found one Italian restaurant that I really feel is genuinely Italian in Columbus, and I love Italian food, so I was looking forward to this meal! And it was no disappointment. Another great restaurant with good atmosphere.

Thank you Chicago for another great visit!

A return to Windy City

First of all… Do I need to change the name of the blog?! This will once again be a post about Chicago 🙂 ….but I guess one of the things about being curious in Columbus includes exploring places you can travel to close from here, or at least if I set the rules… So here we go!

Last week my parents came to visit me again. I’ve never been away from my parents for that long before (6 months!) so it was so nice to see them again 🙂 And because I’m such a huge fan of Chicago I suggested that we should start with a weekend in Chicago. So last Friday we met up to start off an eventful weekend in the Windy City.

We stayed at Freehand hotel located downtown. A very hipster approved hotel. Small rooms with bunkbeds, a cool bar with incense and a lot of people dressed in small hats and cool glasses.

Our Friday night wasn’t that eventful we had a late night dinner at Shake Shack (they make the best burgers, and they will open in Columbus in 2019 – I’m so happy!!) then a drink at our hotel bar and after that we fell asleep. Our Saturday on the other hand was the opposite. After an Italian breakfast at Eataly, we walked to Millennium Park to watch the famous sculpture Cloud Gate or as it’s also called “The Bean”. The rest of the morning we spent in the Art Museum watching endless of great artwork.

In the afternoon we’d booked a guided tour about crime and gangsters. I’d found this tour on Facebook. Such a good and simple idea, the founders of Free Chicago Walking Tours thought that guided tours should be available to everyone despite how much money you had. So the guides only gets paid by the tip you give them (if you have money) or if you rather give them a nice review on social media.

The tour was great despite the cold and windy weather. But our guide was great and the stories told was so intriguing. So much history and it’s not even that long ago these things happened!

After walking over 20 000 steps we ended the day with a nice dinner by the Chicago river at River Roast. Great atmosphere and food only weird thing about the service in this country is how fast they are with things sometimes. We barely had the chance to try our pre drinks before our entrées showed up. So a small minus to the restaurant but otherwise great food.

I think I will continue our weekend in another post so it won’t be to long 🙂