Grand Rapids: Urban Elegance: Cafe Culture and Architecture

Stacey at Grand Rapids Mural- featured image

Grand Rapids wasn’t on my radar, but this picturesque urban landscape is full of Victorian, Gothic Revival, Beaux-Arts, and Art Deco styles. Beyond its architectural allure, Grand Rapids boasts cozy cafes like Madcap Cafe on Brianna Taylor Way, where we indulged in a leisurely breakfast, basking in natural light. Additionally, Grand Rapids pays tribute to its influential women through “Women’s Way,” a collection of murals scattered across the city that artfully highlights the stories of prominent local women. Grand Rapids is a city that seamlessly combines urban development with the beauty of the natural world.

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Where We Stayed in Grand Rapids

We indulged in a leisurely breakfast at the Residence Inn in downtown Grand Rapids. We also savored some coffee at Madcap Cafe, a charming establishment on Brianna Taylor Way. The cafe boasts a welcoming ambiance with ample natural light streaming through numerous windows. To our surprise, it was a brisk morning, and we had not anticipated the sight of snow flurries before embarking on our journey.

The Residence Inn Grand Rapids Downtown is a fabulous all-suite hotel surrounded by shops, cafes, and breweries. It’s not your run-of-the-mill building; it has a unique triangular design that kinda reminds me of the famous Flatiron Building in New York City. The lobby, gym, and breakfast area are on the 2nd floor. The gym is on the level above. I loved that there was also a ramp from the lobby to the parking garage. Parking is expensive at $30 per night (per car), but it is well-lit, and the staff only charged us for one car.

Read about Peoria’s beauty, where the sky and the river converge to create an unforgettable journey.

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I loved exploring the downtown area; it was beautiful. Many of the buildings boasted colorful facades and intricate detailing. I also enjoyed exploring the interiors, which offered even more of a glimpse into history. Grand Rapids boasts a diverse architectural landscape, but one prevalent genre is 19th and 20th-century architecture, notably featuring styles such as Victorian, Gothic Revival, Beaux-Arts, and Art Deco. The city’s downtown area showcases a mix of historic buildings with intricate detailing, reflecting the prosperity of different eras– a. showcase of the different times of prosperity.

During my stay, I stayed in a corner room that had a fantastic view, a full kitchen, and a cozy seating area. The room was huge and spacious, thus it super comfy. In addition, it’s right across the street from the police department, and there are some incredible murals nearby that you can check out on foot.

Website | Map

Pind Indian Cuisine

I ordered Indian food from Pind Indian Cuisine and had it delivered using Uber Eats. It was the best Indian food we had in a long time. We ordered the tandoori sampler and lamb biryani, which was a little spicy. It came with a container of yogurt dip (raita) that helped turn the heat down.

By the way, remember that you can accumulate 6 points per dollar when using Uber Eats for food or grocery delivery while staying at a Marriott hotel. To continue our budget-friendly travel approach and maximize our purchasing influence, we consistently keep track of memberships and points systems – and you should too.

Website | Map

St. Joseph, Michigan

We stopped one final time before reaching Moline. St. Joseph is one of the cutest waterside towns on the map. I picked it because it had a really sweet market with several coffee, dessert, and sandwich shops. I ordered a delicious turkey and cheese sandwich with smoked aioli with a bubble tea.

Despite the chilly weather, I enjoyed my stroll along the cobblestone streets of downtown St. Joseph. Additionally, it’s a charming holiday beach town located in southwest Michigan along the breathtaking shores of Lake Michigan. Notably, this city’s highlight is the pretty waterfront, highlighted by Silver Beach, two lighthouses, and the St. Joseph’s River that winds its way through the town. Moreover, this sandy shoreline is adorned with picturesque rolling dunes. Furthermore, it features a beautifully restored antique carousel and the historic 2 North Pier lighthouses, both of which boast a storied past dating back to the early 1900s. Impressively, St. Joseph was a highlight of the drive across Canada. Ultimately, I’d love to explore the area more in the future. In conclusion, you should, too.

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In conclusion, Grand Rapids was a captivating destination, seamlessly combining urban sophistication and natural allure. The distinctive architecture of Residence Inn, the culinary delights at Pind Indian Cuisine, vibrant murals, charming city streets and murals, and the seaside charm of St. Joseph all contributed to an enriching and delightful stay. As a result, the city’s diverse offerings create lasting memories, making it a destination worth revisiting. Grand Rapids seamlessly combines its urban development with the innate beauty of the natural world, inviting exploration and discovery and a place on your bucket list, too.

So have you been to Grand Rapids or any of the pretty towns around one of the Great Lakes? I would love to hear about it down in the comments.

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