The North Coast is a new destination for many travel geeks. With annual conferences like Content Marketing World every September, Cleveland is quickly becoming a surprisingly hip weekend experience. Just remember to keep your Chef Curry shirts at home.
Much like San Francisco, the best bars, restaurants and shops are tucked away in neighborhoods. So I asked Cleveland Hipster in Residence (my brother) for his go-to’s.
Where to Wifi
When you’re in a city like Cleveland, it’s easy to get sucked into a Starbucks. Avoid the downtown area and find a local roaster instead.
The Loop – local art, vinyls and a quiet upstairs (Tremont)
Phoenix Coffee Bar – rooftop, record player and a nitro toddy (Ohio City)
Passenger’s Cafe – local beans, bagels and breads.
Check out the chalk bored and disloyalty card. Trey (the coffee guy) was previously at Micro Roaster of the Year Award winning Gimme! Coffee in New York City. Mark (the hostel guy) has traveled to over 70 countries and stayed in ~100 hostels.
Together, they’re cool AF.
Where to stay
The Kimpton Schofield Hotel – newest hotel in Cleveland (opened 2016)
Located in a circa 1902 landmark building, the Kimpton is a 7-minute walk from Playhouse Square and less than a mile from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
The hotel has a retro-chic feel with midcentury design and comic books scattered throughout the hotel.
Cleveland is behind on boutique hotels compared to cities like Pittsburgh with Ace Hotel and Hotel Monaco. For a local experience, Airbnb is best.
Ohio City and Tremont are both walkable neighborhoods with plenty of local cafes, art galleries and farmer’s markets.
Iron Chef Michael Symon rents out his personal home in Tremont from $90 per night.
A few locals to follow
The best way to avoid tourist traps in Cleveland is to connect with a few locals.
@WhyCle – neighborhood events from #LocalCLE (food, wine and non-profit fundraisers)
@BikeCLE – neighborhood tours of CLE + local tips (fun fact: I met Anne in 2011 and took an early tour when she was just getting started.)
@CLEFoodTrucks – find them, try them all.
Know someone else I should add to the list? @briannekimmel with an intro!
Questions, comments, complaints? Blame @PJKimmel.