Though tourist attractions and historical monuments are an important part of Philadelphia, the city boasts much more than those two options. I found recently with a little help from a local Fashionista that the city holds many hidden gems in its colonial buildings and cobblestone streets.
Many of these gems are found on South Street in Philadelphia. South Street is a hybrid of Brooklyn and SoHo, perfectly blended with mosaic walls, quaint cafes, and vintage boutiques. It is a Pinterest board come to life, full of vivid colors and creativity all around. The first stop or gem in the city that my guide showed me was a quirky coffee cafe called Milk and Honey. The exterior of the location had neon patio furniture while the inside was blooming with various plants, paintings, and pastries. The only thing better than the atmosphere was the breakfast/lunch menu, that contained delicious sandwiches, pastries, and specialty coffee drinks. After our brunch in the café, my Fashionista tour guide showed me the art pieces that this section of the city is known for.
Our next stop was the former house of mosaic artist, Isaiah Zagar, now converted into an antique/clothing shop, called the Eyes Gallery. The gallery`s walls were adorned with mosaics, tiles, bright paintings, flowers, and tiny trinkets. The store had three floors. Each had rooms with different sculptural, ceramic, and paper-mache art pieces on display. Even the light fixtures were of candy color hues to match the cheery atmosphere of the shop. Though the shop is known for its art, the vintage clothing pieces, jewelry, and handwoven bags are not to be forgotten. The Eyes Gallery may be the primary spot of mosaic art, though the streets of South Street are filled as well with mosaic tiling and wall graphics.
Similar to the colors and easy vibe of South Street, my tour guide and local Fashionista friend was adorned in her best boho clothing. She wore a pair of light blue boyfriend jeans that complimented the ease of her dark blue cotton tank top. On top of her tank top, the Fashionista wore a maroon zip-up hoodie. Her shoes were black and white Toms. The Fashionista`s accessories were the main pieces that brought together her look. For jewelry, she wore a delicate gold necklace and her patterned bag embroidered with celestial patterns, which contained all the colors in her look.
The final spot that my guide brought me to was a shop that sells a treat prominent in Philadelphia. This spot was Rita`s Italian Ice stand. Here we savored on baby blue, cotton candy water ice, to cool off on a blistering day.
My local Fashionista friend showed me, and now you, that there is more than meets the eye when traveling to Philadelphia.
I hope you visit and enjoy these gems, just like I did! If you do visit, let me know in the comments!