Richmond is one of America’s oldest cities and full of charm, beauty and history. It’s crazy to think it’s only an hour and a half away from Norfolk yet I never spent a weekend in Richmond until now. Our trip was a quick one but full of beautiful memories. It’s a city now known for its’ arts revolution, lots of delicious food and beautiful landscapes. The capital of Virginia, Richmond is sometimes referred to as the Capital of the South and I can see why. There are beautiful mountains nearby, innovative universities and lots of museums, street art and, of course, good ol’ Southern Charm.
Where to Stay
Before you choose a spot to stay, remember Richmond is full of charming hotels. Graduate Richmond kindly hosted us for our weekend trip and we enjoyed our stay there. It’s in a great location because a lot of interesting spots are within walking distance. The Virginia State Capitol isn’t far and is a gorgeous building to behold. Plus, the hotel has adorable yellow bikes you can use and explore the area with. I love when hotels have unique details. What I appreciate about Graduate Richmond is how they continuously revisit that student feel.
It all starts with your room key, which resembles a student ID. Upon entering the room, the rich blues off the walls give a collegiate feel. The notepad is actually a cute little student notebook, which I’m sure will be handy, especially if you’re visiting Virginia Commonwealth University across the street. The olive sofa was actually one of my favorite parts of the room. Johnny and I instantly settled there upon entering the room and it was a nice place to relax and rest up without the possibility of falling asleep and wasting away the day.
What to Eat/Drink
Brookfield & Byrd House at Graduate Richmond
Graduate Richmond is also known Byrd House, their rooftop pool and snack bar. It’s a very popular spot Saturday nights and there’s quite a line to get up there. While that’s not particularly Johnny and my’s scene anymore, we did enjoy seeing the folks go up the elevator and it looks like they are having a great time. For dinner and breakfast, we ate at Brookfield, the lobby cafe. You can sit at the bar or one of the nearby tables and enjoy your food or bring it up to the room, which is what we did. I got the shrimp tacos and Johnny got the Cobb Salad for dinner. They were perfect to eat while we caught up on The Americans! The next morning I got the mini farm egg frittata while Johnny went for the bagel and lox, which was the perfect way to start our day!
Located in downtown, Perly’s is a popular Jewish restaurant and delicatessen. It’s within walking distance of our hotel and the perfect spot for lunch. There can be quite a wait on weekends with the peak wait being up to an hour. We only had about a 15-minute wait for a late lunch Saturday. I ordered their spin on eggs benedict and Johnny got the Jewish Sailor sandwich, which is one of their most popular items!
A fun, vibrant spot for coffee, tea and baked goods. Whisk is known for their French-inspired pastries and upon walking in, they have them all displayed in a case. Johnny and I got an eclair and it was beyond divine. Drink wise, I needed a little upper, so I got their matcha latte, while Johnny went for his usual cold brew. I hear their almond croissant is to die for. This bakehouse is located in the Shockoe Bottom neighborhood of Richmond.
What to Do
A sprawling 100-acre Victorian-Era estate in Richmond with beautiful gardens, Maymont Estate is a must-visit. James Dooley, a financier born in Richmond during the same age as Rockefeller, Carnegie and Vanderbilt built Maymont as his home. There are wild animals on the estate, which is so fun. We visited a few of the gardens but our favorite was the Japanese Garden, which made us so excited for a trip to Japan next year! If you visit Maymont, I cannot recommend comfortable walking shoes enough. Also, try to go early in the morning or in the late afternoon like we did. You are outside and it can get very hot, very quick! But I promise you the views are absolutely beautiful. There is of course much more to explore, we are excited to go back! If you spend a weekend in Richmond, you have to visit Maymont.
A quirky hotel set in a former 1916 department store that’s bright and airy. If anything, this is a beautiful spot to just stop by and look at. Not to mention, the pink sofas scattered through the lobby are every Instagrammer’s dream! The coffee shop in the lobby has the cutest cups saying ‘Fuel the Love’ and the gallery is a must visit. Also, their shop has lots of cute trinkets you can bring home from your weekend trip.
I hope this quick weekend guide to Richmond is helpful! It sure is a charming little town full of quirks, unique details and lots of southern class.