Eddie and I took an adults-only trip to Minneapolis this past weekend, and we had a great time. When I started posting on social media, I had a few people ask me, "What made you choose Minneapolis?" Truthfully, Minneapolis is not a place that would ever really have been on my radar, but my friend Suzy and her husband were planning a trip to visit her sister and her fiancé, who live in Minneapolis. We figured it would be fun since we would be with friends, and we would explore a city we'd never been to before. Eddie and I were pleasantly surprised with how much we liked the city. It's cute, has a great restaurant scene, and is very clean. Some of the neighborhoods are very suburban, but so walkable and with little cafes and restaurants sprinkled in.
Anyway, here's a recap of what we did.
We stayed at the Moxy Minneapolis Uptown. Moxy is a Marriott-owned brand, but it is NOTHING like other Marriott hotels - and I don't mean that in a bad way! I would describe it as urban chic - the check-in desk is part of the hotel bar, there are neon signs all over the place, and there are games you can play in the lobby including foosball, ping pong, and jenga. I gave a little room tour in my stories (you can watch it here). The rooms were definitely on the small side - it's a boutique-style hotel - but we had a king bed and basically anything we could need. The shower was a great size (this is something that Eddie and I talk about with every hotel stay), and most importantly, everything was super clean. The rooms do not have a coffee maker, but there is free coffee in the lobby, so that's perfect. It's not in downtown, but the location is good for walking around - there are a couple cute street for walking and it's in walking distance of a couple lakes that we had a chance to walk around. There is also a gym located in the hotel.
Eat & Do
We arrived Thursday evening, checked in, and headed to The Butcher's Tale. Obviously this place has a big focus on meat. I started off with the Butter Pecan Old Fashioned and it was very good. We had the Sausage Sampler Platter, Smoked Jalapeños to start off. For the main course we went with the Beef Long Rib and we all shared sides: Wild Mushrooms, Buffalo Steak Fries, Jalapeño Cheddar Cornbread, and Sour Cream & Chive Mash. They were all excellent, can't go wrong with any of it, honestly. We had dessert, too. Eddie and I had Pistachio Cream Puffs and they were just the right amount of sweet and light after a very heavy meal.
For breakfast we ate at The Black Walnut Bakery twice. It was about a 10 minute walk from our hotel, but trust me when I say, WORTH IT. The quiche and the Chocolate Pistachio Croissant were too good for words. Browse their breads and pastries because man oh man they are good.
After breakfast one morning, we took a walk to Bde Maka Ska Lake/Park & Lake of the Isles. It was a great way to let breakfast settle and get some steps in. Then we headed to Stillwater.
Stillwater is a city on the west bank of the St. Croix River, across from Houlton, Wisconsin. Stillwater is often called "the birthplace of Minnesota" due to its role in the establishment of the state. It was established as a logging town, so a lot of the town's history is based around that. It is very cute and very picturesque. We walked downtown and popped into a few shops. We walked the Stillwater Bridge and crossed into Wisconsin for a few minutes on foot. We had lunch at Feller - the salads were delicious. Then we did a 45-minute trolley tour and got to see some of the historical aspects of Stillwater, which was fun. We ended our outing with ice cream and malt shakes at Leo's Malt Shop.
For dinner, we headed to another city called Wayzata, located in Hennepin County. It is about 9 miles west of Minneapolis in the Minneapolis–Saint Paul metropolitan area. Situated on the shores of Lake Minnetonka, the city is popular among boaters, shoppers, and restaurant goers. There are a lot of waterfront spots here, so if that's your jam, make sure you head to Wayzata. We had dinner at COV, which was beautiful, and the food was so good. Try the chicken wings, cauliflower fries for starters. I went with sushi for my entree, and it was fantastic.
The North Loop is in downtown Minneapolis and is a nice area to walk around. We popped into a few shops, including Allbirds, which had just opened a few weeks prior.
We walked over the Hennepin Bridge, which crosses the Mississippi River (built in 1855!) and ended up in St. Anthony Falls. We strolled around there for a little and grabbed some drinks and a quick bite at Aster Cafe.
For dinner, we headed to the iconic Manny’s Steakhouse - a classic steakhouse in downtown Minneapolis. It's actually one of the Top 10 Steakhouses in the US, according to the Zagat Guide. Everything was so good, including the service!
We finished off the night with drinks at The Hewing.
We gave ourselves a slow start on Sunday and then headed to Mall of America. It's a mall, and you might be thinking, "Why would you go to the mall?" Well, this happens to be the largest mall in the US and boasts a theme park right in the middle.
We had brunch at Cedar + Stone Urban Table. It was delicious - don't miss their breakfast potatoes!
The mall is also very close to the airport, so we were able to kill some time while we waited to head to the airport. And a note about their airport - it was one of the most organized and efficient security areas I have ever been through!
We're grateful we were finally able to get away for a little bit, and we're even more grateful for our friends who made this trip wonderful (and also for the grandparents who watched the kids so we could get out of town alone!).
We had an awesome time, and if you're looking for a place to visit that's not super crowded and run by tourists, you can definitely add Minneapolis to your list!
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