CINCINNATI URGES VISITORS TO EXPLORE THE UNEXPECTED
BY BONNIE SIEGLER
Bengals, Reds, Cyclones, Bearcats, Black-n-Bluegrass—and those are just Cincinnati’s popular and winning sports teams—football, baseball, hockey, basketball and roller derby, respectively.
With the exciting rebirth of the downtown area and revitalization of Over-the-Rhine, this city on the Ohio River has seen a resurgence in growth and prosperity in the last several years. During the 18th century, many German immigrants settled in Cincinnati, founding many of the city’s cultural institutions with a large majority in the Over-the-Rhine area.
Crafting beer since the 1800s, Cincinnati’s craft beer boom is a recurrence with more than 20 breweries in the region. Additionally, a Brew Bus tour visits four breweries where guests can taste over 14 different beers. Cincy—as it’s known to natives—has also joined the ranks of culinary excellence with farm-to-table eateries, wowing visitors and locals alike.
Plus, this river city would not be complete without ample bridging to facilitate all the to-and-fro action between itself and Northern Kentucky, separated by the mighty Ohio River. From the John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge, opened in 1867, to the Taylor-Southgate Bridge, opened in 1995, there are a total of six spectacular spans to view.
So, whether you’re joining the crowds at the Great American Ballpark or browsing the shops of the historic MainStrasse Village or Over-the-Rhine area, explore and experience Cincy on your next getaway.
WHERE TO STAY
Nothing compares to a stay at the Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza Hotel, located in downtown Cincinnati. Opened in 1931 with a formal 10-course dinner costing $15, famous visitors over the years have included Elvis Presley, Eleanor Roosevelt, Bing Crosby and John and Jackie Kennedy. Renovated since its grand opening, the property still reveals one of the world’s finest examples of French Art Deco architecture, showcasing 561 updated guest rooms. It also features the Hall of Mirrors, one of the Midwest’s most breathtaking ballrooms.
WHERE TO EAT
While local eateries and restaurants are in plenty flavourful supply throughout the city, the award-winning Orchids at Palm Court is not only a culinary delight, but also a visual one. Located in the lobby level of Netherland Hotel, the two-story ceiling features large Romanesque murals with a predominantly French Art Deco influence throughout. The dining experience, with its attentive and knowledgeable staff, only complements the ambiance. Make sure you try the Maine lobster salad and the Cabrales beignets, both signature dishes of Chef Kelly. Trattoria Roma in the Over-the-Rhine district offers its modern twist on everyday pizzas, while Taste of Belgium in the Findlay Market district serves up savoury and sweet crepes along with delicious waffles.
THINGS TO DO
The Taft Museum of Art—dedicated to President William H. Taft and his family—is a historic house that showcases large murals painted in the 1800s and an extensive art collection from European and American master painters. Findlay Market in Over-the-Rhine is Ohio’s oldest continuously operated public market, and the only remaining out of the original eight, dating back to the 1800s. Stop into Churchill’s Fine Teas shop, where you can taste various blends from around the world. Shopping also abounds, from Saks Fifth Avenue and Macy’s in the downtown area to Rockwood Pottery Company or Sloane Boutique.
Whether you walk it, take the new streetcars or ride Shuttle Trolleys around the city, there are so many ways to see the sights. VM