b*travels :: downtown, for art, food and music

Mid-week last week, my mom and I went from the up north to downtown. From hiking in the woods to morning walks on Nicollet Mall. From a wood-fired sauna to a walk-in rain shower. From rubber boots to high heels. The contrast was a shock to the system, if not totally delightful.

We stayed at the Le Meridien Chambers hotel, which I would highly recommend to anyone visiting Minneapolis. Well-appointed and comfortable, this place is also an “art hotel”, featuring commissioned works and an in-house gallery. We had the pleasure of attending an opening reception at the gallery on Friday night, and I was blown away by the collection from Pace Prints of NYC. Top notch…truly!

As is our way, we also made sure to eat well. My mom arranged for us to go on a food tour of the Skyway through Taste Twin Cities. Our guides Kevin and Rebecca were awesome, and the food was, well, nothing short of delectable. The highlight for me was the grape and apple flatbread with bleu cheese crumbles, rosemary, and honey from Crave. Hands down, the most surprising and yummy pizza I’ve had in awhile. I also was swept off my feet by the salted caramel French macarons and gingerbread with chevre goat cheese frosting cupcake from Cocoa & Fig. Hungry yet?

One of my highlights of our getaway was a visit to the Walker Art Center where I got to experience the Graphic Design: Now in Production exhibit. This once-in-a-decade curated graphic design show blew me away. BLEW.ME.AWAY. I could have easily spent half a day immersing myself in all the goodness that was crammed into that gallery. If you are a designer in or near Minneapolis, GO. Do not hesitate! Do whatever it takes to get yourself there. It’s well worth the time. And if you go on Thursday nights, it’s free! I fully intend to make another visit.

On our last night, my mom and I went to Orchestra Hall and attended a performance of Shastakovich: Symphony No. 5. This particular concert was part of the Inside the Classics series. As stated on The Minnesota Orchestra’s blog, “Inside the Classics concerts are anything but ordinary. The evening begins with conductor Sarah Hicks and violist Sam Bergman presenting a lively exploration of the concert program, providing you with insights to enrich your listening experience. The Orchestra also performs musical examples, so you know what to listen for and why. After intermission, sit back, relax and enjoy a full performance of the featured music.”

If you have never been to the orchestra, or are not familiar with classical music, I would highly, highly recommend this experience. I loved learning more about the composer, his musical influences and the historical climate in which he wrote the symphony. The whole night was magical, and my mom and I loved every second of it!

In addition to the eating and art and music, we also shopped and napped and talked and walked and really, truly enjoyed each others company. Like my dad, my mom holds a very special place in my heart. She is a GEM, and has taught me so much. Always giving, loving, and praying for me. She knows her daughter well–including all my quirks and shortcomings–and still loves me deeply and profoundly. Being known in this way by a parent is humbling. She has taught me many life lessons, watched me grow up, cheered me on, then let me go…yet stayed close enough to offer advice and encouragement whenever I need it (and even sometimes when I don’t think I do). Love you, mom, to the moon and back!

So that was my week. Contrasting, crazy, full, fun. A good reminder to treasure the time with loved ones. All for now. Back tomorrow!

  1. Wahkuna says:

    Love these pictures too (makes me miss Minneapolis)! Looks like you and your mom had a great time! And your hotel was so sleek, very nice!

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