The birthplace of independence, home of Rocky, and land of the cheesesteak, Philadelphia truly is one of a kind. Every year, tourists flock to this historic city to immerse themselves in the story of the American Revolution and walk in the footsteps of our forefathers. Living right outside the city of Brotherly Love, one of my favorite things to do is hop on the train and right into the heart of the city. I love exploring the boutiques of Old City, soaking up the sight and sounds of Independence Mall, catching a show on the Avenue of the Arts, and grabbing a bite to eat at the Reading Terminal. While I’m constantly stumbling upon something new every time I’m in town, there are a few places that hold a special place in my heart.
Here’s my top favorite places to shop and eat when I head down to the City of Brotherly Love to add to your must-visit list next you come to Philadelphia.
Smak Parlour, located at 219 Market Street
Girly to the max with a sophisticated rock and roll edge, Smak Parlour is a must-see for any fashionista. Started by best friends Abby and Katie, this bright pink dollhouse-inspired boutique houses an eclectic collection of vintage-inspired tops, pinup-style dresses and deconstructed band tees, as well as a variety of luxe accessories that will a little retro glam into any look. (Their black cherry-printed pinup dress is one of my go-to pieces.) Not only does Smak Parlour have a brick-and-morter location, but they are also taking their style city-wide with their mobile fashion truck. Abby and Katie, along with their fashion-forward and friendly staff, definitely bring some serious style to the city one neighborhood at a time.
Never Too Spoiled, located at 57 N 3rd Street
With earthy, laid-back vibe, Never Too Spoiled is a little piece of heaven for the bohemian in all of us and one of my favorite places to shop of all time. In addition to being an official carrier of Lokai bracelets, Giving Keys and Loova soaps, they house a collection breezy pieces from lines like A’reve, Blu Pepper and Entro. Their staff is super sweet and always ready to help, whether their starting a fitting room for you or providing recommendations for items to try on or pair with what you’ve already picked out. However, this boutique isn’t just all about shopping. They host workshops and offer an event space that can be rented out for parties and showers. This boho paradise is a testament to the fact that no girl can ever be too spoiled.
Philadelphia Independents, located at 35 N. 3rd Street
Looking for a unique souvenir to commemorate your trip? Want a cool way to show off some Philly pride? Check out Philadelphia Independents where founders Jennifer Provost, Tiffica Benza and Ashley Peel Pinkham have brought together some of the most talented local artists the city and surrounding areas have to offer. From graphic throw pillows to wire necklaces to wood cutting boards, your guaranteed to find that perfect little something for everyone, while supporting some awesome local artists.
Meltkraft, located inside the Reading Terminal Market at 12 & Arch street
While Philadelphia may be synonymous with the cheesesteak, Meltkraft is all about another cheesy delicacy: the grilled cheese sandwich. However, this isn’t your average sandwich. Handcrafted with artisan cheeses from their creamery Valley Shepard Farm, they are elevating this comfort food staple with bold flavors. There’s the Valley Thunder that incorporates brisket and mac and cheese, and the Brielle, a mix of brie, cranberry chutney, caramelized onions and nuts. I’m more of a classic girl, so for me it’s all about the Avenue D, a plain and simple sandwich bumped up in flavor with the amazing Valley Shepard cheeses. (For something a little more luxe, you can have cooked with truffle oil.) With a side of regular or dill-flavored kettle chips, this is the perfect place for a quick and filling lunch.
The Franklin Fountain, located at 116 Market Street
Who among us doesn’t love ice-cream? To get you ice-cream fix, head over to the Franklin Fountain. This vintage-style soda fountain is serving up sundaes, splits, shakes, and old-fashioned ice-cream sodas. Flavors range from the classic, like vanilla and chocolate, to the more exotic, like teaberry and green tea. Whether you get it a cone or one of their Chinese takeout container inspired cups, there is something to satisfy every sweet tooth. Need a recommendation? My personal favorite is the green tea ice-cream with chocolate sprinkles. (It’s amazing. Trust me.)
Got a favorite place in Philadelphia you love to go? Share it below or on the Will Write For Boots Facebook or Twitter pages!