Country Club Plaza
Kansas City, MO is widely recognized for its Country Club Plaza. The Plaza boasts more than 150 premier shops and several restaurants. Its design is heavily influenced by Spanish architecture, particularly Kansas City’s sister city of Seville. When I first drove into the city and headed to my hotel, the Plaza was a welcoming site and left a beautiful first impression on me. Our first stop at the Plaza was for brunch at Gram & Dun, a modern American eatery at the edge of the Plaza. We stopped by to fuel up before a day of serious shopping.
Gram & Dun has both indoor and outdoor seating and an extensive brunch menu. They are known for their food and libation pairings. I was impressed by the tea service which had cute little dishes for milk, honey and the kettle. If you’re ordering starters, I highly recommend the Pastry Board and its monkey bread plus the French Onion Dumplings. It was a delicious cup of soup in one bite! The Short-Rib Grilled Cheese was decadent and divine, but large enough to split with a friend. Other notable menu items were the Burnt End Mac & Cheese, the Corned Beef Benedict and the Fried Chicken.
After brunch, we had a mini shopping marathon at the Plaza. Some of the local shops to enjoy include HMK (a Hallmark Gold Crown store) where you can find greeting cards, home decor and gifts, Standard Style, a modern boutique for the minimalist fashionista and Charlie Hustle, a vintage sportswear brand featuring iconic Kansas City leisure apparel. You can also shop your favorite brands like Kate Spade, Anthropologie, Kendra Scott and more. It’s possible to spend the whole day at the Plaza and still not scratch the surface.
Breweries + Coffee
After an afternoon of shopping, we headed to the Crossroads Arts District. We kicked off the next part of our day with an educational tour of the Kansas City brewery scene by visiting Torn Label and Double Shift breweries. Not too long ago there were only 3 main breweries supplying most of the beer in the city. But as of 2012, the city enjoyed 21 breweries and ranked 27th in the nation for most craft breweries per capita. This is just one example of the flourishing environment for small businesses in Kansas City.
We took a break at a cozy coffee shop called Thou Mayest. I adored this spot. The vibe is a mix of hipster, homey and urban. Between the seven of us, I think we ordered everything in the pastry window. Tip: Get every pie choice available. It’s so worth it. Also the Chai latte. If I lived in Kansas City, I would certainly hang out here, use it as a regular workspace and of course gain a few pounds in the process from my newfound pastry addiction.
The next morning our crew headed to Westport, a popular shopping and and entertainment district that is over 150 years old. Our first stop was at Beer Kitchen for breakfast. The menu was everything I craved in the morning — sweet and savory. I don’t eat pork so it’s nice when you find a Veggie Eggs Benedict that you don’t have to have to modify in any way. It was heavenly. And I highly recommend the zucchini-potato latkes. The sauce with it is to die for. There were lots of other adorable shops and restaurants in the area. So make some extra time to explore.
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
Our final destination during our trip to Kansas City was the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. The museum was surprisingly big from the outside with beautiful grounds that featured its famous shuttlecock sculptures.
Inside the museum, there are several collections. We visited the African, American, Contemporary, European and Modern art exhibits, but there are many more collections. You would probably need at least a week to really check out everything. But we had a wonderful guide who highlighted some of the most interesting pieces. If you follow me on Snapchat (bnbsocial), you’ll have seen some of the amazing work from the museum’s collection.
You can also find the Glass Labyrinth by Robert Morris on the grounds behind the museum. The maze has a single path through that seems simple enough, but is actually more difficult than you’d think. There were quite a few times when I thought there was a glass wall there, but in fact it was the path out. Be prepared to walk into a few walls!
That concluded our visit to Kansas City. Coming up in my last installment about Kansas City are some of the fun facts I never knew about the city.
Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Visit Kansas City. I was paid to attend a weekend tour of Kansas City, MO in exchange for a review of the trip. All opinions expressed are my own.