Last week we were invited to the City of Brotherly Love to experience The Philadelphia Collection, a 10-day celebration of style. We arrived on Wednesday afternoon, and stayed through Friday morning, to take in a series of fashion shows and trunk shows and to try out some of the city's best restaurants, spas, salons, and boutiques. And while we had previously only thought of traveling to Philly to visit friends at the University of Pennsylvania or to enhance our historical knowledge at the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, this trip made it clear that the city makes for a great girls getaway.
Where We Stayed: Hotel Palomar- Philadelphia (117 South 17th Street, 215-563-5006)
This trendy boutique hotel was conveniently situated on 17th Street, which made it walking distance to many of the city's best stores and restaurants. When we checked in there was an Arnold Palmer station in the lobby so mixed up our gratis iced tea and lemonade before heading up to our plush room. At 5pm a wine happy hour started with red, white, sangria, and truffle popcorn. Plus the room boasted animal print robes--now that's what we call fierce and fashionable!
Where We Wined and Dined:
1. Alma de Cuba (1623 Walnut Street, 215-988-1799)
Few restaurateurs know how to design a restaurant quite like Stephen Starr. This Cuban inspired space is as inviting as the fresh ceviche options offered on the menu. Opt for a ceviche tasting to ensure you can experience a variety of flavors. Pair your meal with one of the many sweet specialty cocktails; we loved the suave mojito and blood-orange sangria.
2. Fork(306 Market Street, 215-625-9425)
This Old City bistro is the perfect place for a power lunch. Whether a business meeting or vintage shopping trip is on your agenda, we suggest you make a reservation. And make sure to save room for dessert; the warm pineapple-almond financier is out of this world.
3. Rouge-(205 S. 18th Street, 215-732-6622)
This Rittenhouse Square favorite serves up French fair in a sexy setting. Though we were'nt all that hungry when we arrived, the tuna tartare, brococoli rabe, and cheese plate gave us a taste of just how delicious Rogue is.
* Photos by Beth Brodsky
Where We Shopped:
1. Macy's on Market Street: The iconic department store was our first stop. On Wednesday evening we attended the Macy's Fall Fashion Show, which was moderated by famed photographer and America's Next Top Model judge Nigel Barker.
2. SA VA (1700 Sansom Street): We love local talent and 90% of the dresses and tops at this store are made in the brand's 4th fourth design studio. This globally inspired brand fits and flatters.
3. Plage Tahiti (128 South 17th Street, 215-569-9139): This store appealed to us from the start. Stocked with J Brand Houlihans in every shade, dazzling Haute Hippie skirts, and Dutch designer Tony Cohen's easy pieces, this boutique is the epitome of effortless chic.
4. Smak Parlour (219 Market Street)- With its bring pink interior and boudoir details, this Olde City boutique is both funky and feminine. Unique housewares and affordable baubles make this a one stop shop for haute hostesses and party girls alike.
Where We Beautified: Giovanni and Pileggi(256 South 16th Street, 215-568-3040)
Situated in a stunning historic townhouse, this salon is one of the city's homiest and most elegant places to beautify. In spite of the humidity, Giovanni gave us one of the best blowouts we've ever received and in record time to boot. Artist Robby Nelson then applied our makeup; he gave us a soft smokey eye and a glowing complexion before we headed out for a night on the town.
Where we Partied While We Shopped: Boyd's Philadelphia (1818 Chestnut Street, 212-564-9000)
We capped off our Philadelphia experience with a party at Boyds sponsored by the Italian Trade Commission. Local vendors catered the fete with lemon drop shots, Italian meats and cheeses, risotto balls, and gnocchi skewers abounding. The professional opera singers were among the night's many highlights. However, we were most taken with the women's shoe department-Lanvin, Miu Miu, Prada, Missoni, Tory Burch, need we say more?