Tag Archives: affordable

Grab A Cool Brew Or Two At ChurchKey

Beer lovers all over the District are relishing over ChurchKey, the newest addition to the trendy 14th Street lounge scene.  As the more casual, chic counterpart to its equally anticipated other half, Birch & Barley, ChurchKey boasts an out-of-this-world beer list, packed with a variety of unique brews.  The always packed, “it” beer bar boasts over 50 drafts, 500 bottles and 5 English-style cask ales – Washington’s largest selection by far.  For those looking to take advantage of the bold assortment, grab a seat at one of the comfy, oversized banquettes and try ordering a variety of 4-ounce servings.

Don’t sample on an empty stomach though – ChurchKey’s witty menu is almost as impressive at the booze list.  Executive Chef Kyle Bailey has concocted some quirky small plates that pair perfectly with Beer Director Greg Engert’s brews.  Bring your foodie friends with a sense of humor, and share an order of the Disco Fries with Cheddar and Sausage Gravy or the whimsical Green Eggs & Ham – deviled duck eggs served with duck pancetta and sage.

Visit churchkeydc.com for more information.

Insider Tip: ChurchKey will offer unique beer flights soon!  For those who can’t handle the hops but still want to savor the new menu, all ChurchKey flatbreads can be prepared gluten-free.

Sage Boutique’s Big Finds for a Small Budget

Sitting AreaWith four locations across Atlanta, Sage Boutique is a ‘must shop’ for the fashionista, whether just budding or firmly ensconced!  In a city with many high end shopping choices, Sage fills the bill with both quality and quantity ~ and get this, at prices that are shocking because they’re so affordable.

Most items are under $100 and new arrivals are stocked every Friday.  Look for labels like Alternative, Free People, Miss Oops, IT Jeans, and See Thru Soul, along with unique handbags and accessories. Sage supports the local arts community by selling jewelry made by neighborhood designers.

The friendly employees always suggest cool styles, colors or help you build on a favorite piece you already own.  At Sage, chances are you’ll leave looking like a million bucks, without spending nearly that much. The store is located at The Collection at Forsyth. Visit sageclothing.com for more information.

Travel to The City of Lights at Cafe Bonaparte

For those unable to make it abroad, but looking for a delectable European dining experience, travel no further than Georgetown’s quaint, Café Bonaparte.  Take a trip to The City of Lights at this small French bistro packed with big flavor and an authentic Parisian atmosphere.bonaparte

Breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner, Café Bonaparte is equally delicious with a wide variety of traditional French favorites mixed with a few creative twists on classics.  Try a sinful savory or sweet crepe, or opt for a creative omelet to satisfy your morning cravings.

For an evening out, start off with the crispy Crepe Chips topped with apples and brie before losing yourself in rich, French specialties: Beef Bourguignon, Steak Frites and Duck Confit with Orange Demi Glace. With limited seating in a cozy, upscale bistro atmosphere, Bonaparte is the perfect spot for an intimate, yet relaxed meal – and a tiny piece of Paris hidden in our very own Capital.

Insider Tip: In true Parisian style, Café Bonaparte offers equally alluring cocktails.  Take advantage of the Café’s half price cocktails every Monday.  The Café Couture (Grey Goose pear, cardamom, fresh lemon juice and honey) is an exotic concoction that will have you speaking the romance language by the end of the evening.

Get Mellow at Willow Spa

As you are driving on Santa Monica Boulevard looking for this spa, don’t expect to find it on the first level of a high rise or accompanying a gym. Willow Spa looks more like someone’s holistic house than a “top ten” rated spa in Los Angeles, but if you can gather your bearings, one visit to Willow Spa may change the way you live and the way you relax.

Known for its Asian-willow picinspired massages, facials and scrubs, Willow Spa is similar to others offering over-the-top treatments in luxurious surroundings. Though most spas open the door for you and close it when you leave just as fast, Willow Spa explains the importance of living well, while also indulging in such treatments. One of the greatest things about this spa- other than its tropical feel and décor- are the packages they put together, such as the Thai “Balance” package that is like a small vacay to paradise, featuring a Tamarind body scrub and Flower and Milk foot soak; or the specialized Bride & Groom package that offers a week by week “to-do” spa and relaxation experience before the big “I do’s.”

If you are ready to roll your eyes about how expensive this “luxurious” treatment is going to cost you, you might want to clasp those rolling eyes and take a look at the price menu. An hour massage is less than a hundred dollars which is considered a bargain, especially in this city. So the next time you are driving down Santa Monica in bumper to bumper traffic, look for the Asian-influenced cottage offering a home away from home… or at least a well-deserved pit stop.

World Class PCMS for $23 or Less

The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society takes pride in bringing local, national and international stars of the music world to stages throughout Philadelphia for affordable prices, and we’re talking world-class acts for $23 or less. Picture 30

PCMS presents more than 60 chamber music concerts, instrumental and vocal recitals, jazz and special programs per season with some of the most prestigious musicians in the world, like the Tokyo Quartet and violinist Midori. As a resident company of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, PCMS performs mainly in the Perelman Theater on Broad Street, but also presents in other venues across the city. PCMS also collaborates regularly with prominent cultural institutions, like Juilliard, and presents education programs to help bring classical music into the lives of the younger generation.

Whether you’re in the mood for piano, a string quartet or a stellar tenor, there will be something on the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society season that will delight you…and it will cost less than that sirloin you ordered the night before.

Old World Charm at The Latham Hotel

For a comfortable stay in the District, settle into a roomPicture 5 in the The Latham Hotel, nestled conveniently on M Street right in the heart of Georgetown.  With European-like accommodations and a hidden, yet elegant exterior, this boutique hotel is the perfect pick for those looking for a charming stay in the midst of a bustling metropolis.

The Latham’s quaint interior reflects simple refinement, typical of historic Georgetown.  Take advantage of the hotel’s fitness center or window shop along famous M Street before basking alongside the hotel’s exclusive rooftop pool.  Need a little more VIP service?  Order room service from famed chef Michel Richard’s award-winning Citronelle, located adjacent to the hotel (or make a reservation for an unforgettable dinner for two!).  The Latham also boasts green initiatives and pet-friendly accommodations (for a small fee and deposit).

Bill’s Bar Hits a Home Run for Rowdy Red Sox Fans

Lansdowne Street is filled with bars and clubs, which become Bill's Barcrazy busy after a Red Sox game. If you are looking for a place to listen to some good old rock ‘n roll then head on over to the popular Bill’s Bar. This intimate bar is long and narrow, so be sure to get here way before a Red Sox home game lets out or you won’t be able to get in.

The walls here are lined with pictures of Jimi Hendrix, John Lennon and Janis Joplin. Drinks are some of the cheapest in the city and depending on which night you come, you can catch a live band or listen to a DJ spin some tunes. It does get exceedingly loud in here at times, so be prepared for a lively atmosphere. Don’t miss the uniquely designed bathrooms – the men’s room is done in honor of Elvis and the ladies room has dozens of pictures of Marilyn Monroe.

Top Chef’s Ryan Scott Dines at Tommy’s Joynt

San Francisco’s “Top Private Chef” Ryan Scott, whom may look familiar from the Top Chef: Chicago season, has strong opinions on what’s at the top of the Bay Area’s must-sees. “The Golden Gate Bridge, Lombard Street and Tommy’s Joynt should be on everyone’s list when visiting San Francisco,” Chef Ryan Scott told citybuzz.

Tommy’s Joynt may seem likePicture 12 the odd man out, but it’s got a legend to go along with its legendary following: Tommy’s Joynt is the place where Metallica met and first came together. Even as one of San Francisco’s older restaurants, lines are generally out the door for the simple, mouth-watering American favorites that even the most sophisticated chefs can’t resist. “They let you build your own plate with ingredients from roast beef, turkey, corned beef, braised lamb shank and spaghetti, with sides that remind you of Thanksgiving all year long,” Chef Ryan Scott says. And if that weren’t enough, there’s a bonus to this humble diner joynt: “Did I mention they have over 125  beers to choose from?” So whether it’s a liquid diet or a hearty holiday meal you’re looking for, Tommy’s Joynt has it covered.

*** Chef Ryan Scott is a San Francisco-based private chef who has honed his skills at some of San Francisco’s best restaurants: Gary Danko, Myth Cafe and Mission Beach Cafe. Chef Ryan Scott was featured on Bravo’s Top Chef: Chicago and makes frequent television appearances on The Today Show and Fox & Friends.

Decadestwo’s Christos Garkinos Eats at Tere’s Mexican Grill

Decadestwo co-owner Christos Garkinos, who is the self-proclaimed “Robin Hood of Fashion,” has access to some of Hollywood’s best closets, like Charlize Theron, Rachel Zoe and Selma Blair. When he’s not shmoozing with the rich and fabulous and filling his store with high-end consignment items at killer prices, Christos is at Tere’s Mexican Grill.

“It’s the best Mexican food in the city,” ChristosPicture 15 told citybuzz. At Melrose and Cahuenga, this popular and humble Mexican joint is just steps from his home, which as he explains is “a huge LA bonus.” The easy-to-miss restaurant may have tennis ball-footed chairs and orders are only taken at the bar, but who needs pizazz when the food does all the talking? Delicious handmade tortillas wrap the overflowing burritos and tasty enchiladas. A favorite meal is the Carne Asada Nachos that’s washed down with a fresh, traditional Horchata drink. The sunny, earthy interior as well as sidewalk seating make this a perfect spot to enjoy the LA sunshine, while chowing down on some of the best Mexican food North of the Border.

*** Christos Garkinos is the co-owner of the popular LA consignment boutique, Decadestwo, that has been featured on Bravo’s The Rachel Zoe Project. Decadestwo has high-end designer clothing, shoes and accessories from some of Hollywood’s most fashionable closets. Christos is also owner of LA’s Alpha, an all-encompassing men’s store, which GQ named as one of the top 100 men’s stores in the country.

The Buzz Around Cafe Bizou

With three locations and endless rave reviews, it’s no wonder that Café Bizou is popular all over Los Angeles, from Pasadena to Sherman Oaks to Santa Monica.

This French bistro is the perfect birthday, anniversPicture 15ary or first date location. Though elegant and intimate, it’s doubtful you can show up on a Friday night without spotting a sweet sixteen to your right and a newly engaged couple to your left. If mood lighting and a quiet atmosphere is your thing, then this place probably isn’t. The Santa Monica location may be beautiful, but with that beauty comes a whole lot of people.

Thanks to its two dollar corkage fee and prix fixe menus, the long wait you will experience without a reservation is most definitely worth it. Diners who swear by this café leave raving about the flourless chocolate cake and the Steak au Poivre as a few of their favorites.

Café Bizou truly takes French food to a whole other level, leaving the ritzy feeling behind and bringing family and friends together. With great food and great prices, don’t be surprised to find another location coming to a city near you.

Pan Asian Perfection at Zentan

Housed in the chic Donovan House hotel, one would expect nothing less than equivocally sophisticated cuisine from its in-house restaurant, Zentan. With global Asian cuisine designed by famed chef, Susar Lee, Zentan brings a polished touch to delectable Asian staples: light crudos, inventive sushi rolls, authentic noodles and even hearty entrees.

With an elegant, yet modern minimalism, Zentan exudes Eastern sophistication, washed in deep chocolate hues and set aglow by contemporary platform chandeliers covered in twinkling, Picture 30oversized pillar candles. Loosen up with a punchy Spicy Thai Martini, spiked with thai chili-infused vodka, nigori unfiltered sake and St. Germain, and finished with a splash of cran for an Asian-fusion-inspired libation.

Tease your palate with a starter of Zentan’s signature Singapore Slaw – a crunchy concoction of over 19 (yes, way too many to list!) ingredients, including a to-die-for salted plum dressing. Don’t pass up the Crudo Platter – a sampling of fresh yellowtail, salmon, charred scallop, and big eye tuna, each presented with unique flavor profiles. The chef recommends savoring from left to right for a gradual, yet increased savory experience – and one that you will definitely not regret. Sushi lovers will forever crave the Fire Dragon roll after one bite – a colorful spool of spicy tuna, barbeque eel, avocado and tobiko.

Insider Tip: For the best of both worlds in the warmer months, enjoy a selection of Zentan’s small plates at the Donovan House’s rooftop lounge, ADC (“Above DC”). Breathtaking views of DC, exceptional Asian cuisine, and a swanky venue – what’s not to love?!

Traveling Broadway Shines at Winspear Opera House

An affordable evening of culture and class? You bet. The Winspear Opera House is the crown jewel of One Arts Plaza, boasting seating for 2,200 with retractable screens, variable acoustics and a spectacular view of the skyscrapers of downtown Dallas.

Picture 19Enjoy your own Phantom of the Opera moment as the enormous chandelier appears to float above the room until the lights dim for the show, and then slowly ascends into the ceiling and disappears. Speaking of grand performances, take in family friendly Broadway shows like Beauty and the Beast, the legendary Pointer Sisters, or more mature favorites like Avenue Q.

The acoustics rival Broadway theaters and bring the orchestra to life in an intimate way, no matter where your seats are located. During intermission, browse the lobby area and coffee bar for the delicious treats and fine drinks. Tickets begin at $25, providing affordable date nights, family outings and group excursions. And remember, the good times aren’t over until the fat lady sings.

Endless Summers at Jasper White’s Summer Shack

If you are looking for some of the best seafood in town, you have certainly come to the right place at Jasper White’s Summer Shack. Award-winning chef and cookbook author JPicture 43asper White opened his first restaurant in Cambridge in 2000 and has been growing his enterprise ever since.

Whether you come for White’s famous clambake complete with corn on the cob or to indulge in his signature pan roasted lobster, the varied menu from sandwiches to lobster specialties appeals to every budget. You won’t find white tablecloths at this casual clam shack, but you will find a chalkboard filled with daily specials. The restaurant stays true to its namesake offering a casual and fun atmosphere for the entire family.

The seafood here is so amazingly fresh you would think it was plucked from the ocean just minutes before it hit your plate. The Tower of Power is a must-have indulgence, filled to the brim with oysters, littlenecks, crab claws, shrimp and lobster halves.  Summer Shack also has locations in Cambridge and Dedham as well as Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. Visit summershackrestaurant.com for more information.

Insider Tip: If you are too full for dessert, order the walk away sundae, which is available in a to-go container to take with you.

Frederick Takes Hollywood to the Bedroom

Move over Fredericks PicVictoria; Frederick isn’t afraid to spill the secret about where to find the best lingerie at affordable prices. Unlike other lingerie shops, Fredericks of Hollywood is bringing flare back into the bedroom without breaking the bank. With cute corsets and matching lingerie pieces, it’s no wonder everyone is calling out for Frederick.

Found all over Los Angeles, whether in malls or on busy streets, people go crazy for what the store will offer next, from matching Valentine’s Day sets to their unbelievable sale items. And in true Hollywood form, they wouldn’t dare forget to sell matching shoes and accessories to go along with your lingerie set. The next time you are in the mood for a little glam in the bedroom, the only way to go is to go Hollywood.

Amazing Deals-And Location-at The Georgetown Inn

For a true taste of Georgetown, book a room at the characteristically quaint Georgetowgeorgetowninnn Inn.  Minutes from the waterfront, great shopping, and award-winning restaurants, the boutique hotel offers accommodations with proper Georgetown sophistication and an element of elegance reminiscent of charming European inns.

The six-story hotel houses a variety of accommodation levels, all with Capital-worthy namesakes.  Try the Senate Room for a simple stay with one queen or king size bed and gorgeous city views.  For a more luxurious night away, stay in one of the ten Georgetown Suites, complete with an additional living room and entertainment center.  Depending on the time of year, the Inn usually offers rooms for well under $250 – a great deal for DC.

Head next door for a drink and a bite to eat at The Daily Grill, the Inn’s cozy restaurant and  local favorite amongst the Georgetown after-work crowd.

Prêt-à-Porter at Movida Boutique

Movida Boutique is where Dallas ladies go for boutique items at affordable prices. Located just underneath the Angelika Film Center, this trendy yet eclectic boutique has great deals and pairings to those in need of some eye-candy or some serious shopping.

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Whether you’re a true shopper and like to dig or prefer the full-service route, the girls here are laid back and ready to help when and where you need. You can find everything  from jewelry to purses to shoes for nights out or a sassy work number that has yet to go mainstream.

Let the fashionable staff help put together your next ensemble. Movida is spacious and tends to be less crowded than other boutiques at Mockingbird Station.

Award Winning Service at The Spa at MINT

This year, pencil in a little “me” time and treat yourself to some pre-holiday pampering at The Spa at MINT, a high end fitness center and spa, nestled in eclectic Adam’s Morgan.  This urban retreat, known for its quality services and zen-like atmosphere, features a variety of spa offerings to keep you looking and feeling your best amidst all the holiday rush.  MINT offers everything from acupuncture (for the brave!) to traditional bodywork, facials, and other aesthetic services – all under a calming pastel roof, situated just beyond bustling, iconic U Street.

Picture 25For a truly customized experience, be sure to take advantage of MINT’s seasonal, organic facials.  The current autumn concoction – a revitalizing blend of fresh cranberry, nutmeg, honey, rose and cornmeal – will leave you buffed and glowing, without breaking the bank ($60 for a 35-minute treatment).  For out-of-towners looking for total body & soul rejuvenation, check out MINT’s exclusive spa packages: The Weekender features a 50-minute facial or Swedish massage, paired with complimentary lunch and an all-access weekend pass to the coveted fitness club.

Insider Tip: Try MINT’s Tranquil Tuesdays facials and massages.  Each 30-minute service is only $49 (Voted Best On-the-Go Spa Service by the Washingtonian)!

Find The Ultimate Cheesesteak at Tony Luke’s

The cheese fries are great, the rib eye is superb, and the cheesesteak is out of this world. Home to the The Ultimate Cheesesteak, there’s always a line at Tony Luke’s, where sandwiches are the specialty. If you manage to eat the intimidating five pounder cheesesteak, your legendary status will be cemented with a picture on the Tony Luke Wall of Fame. The food is prepared with the freshest of ingredients and will have you dining in cheesy delight!

Ramada Inn

Ramada Chicago Hotel offers the excitement of Chicago at a great location! Located only ten minutes from downtown Chicago, overlooking Lake Michigan and near McCormick Place ConvPicture 48ention Center the Ramada Chicago Hotel offers you a great value. Whether you are coming to visit Navy Pier, any of the Chicago Museums including Chicago Museum of Science and Industry or attending a White Sox or Chicago Cubs baseball game, this Chicago Hotel offers you an affordable hotel with breathtaking views that any other Chicago Hotel would charge you three times as much! This family oriented Chicago hotel is just across the street from a beach, just two blocks from the Metra Train so you don’t have to pay exorbitant parking fees in downtown Chicago and is close and convenient to all of what Chicago has to offer!

Fairfield Inn New York

Fairfield Inn by Marriott New York Manhattan/Times Square hotel features 244 rooms and suites in the heart of New York City Times Square. This Midtown Manhattan hotel, located at the crossroads of the world, features affordable prices and is perfect for family vacations, business travelers, and small group meetings. Work in our brand new spacious guest rooms with free internet. Work out in our state-of-the-art fitness room and enjoy free breakfast before exploring some of the nearby Midtown attractions such as the Broadway theaters, Rockefeller Center, 5th Avenue and Central Park. Our newly built New York City hotel is proud to be the first Fairfield Inn by Marriott in Manhattan and invites you to experience first-class NYC accommodations, amenities and Marriott service. And getting to the Fairfield Inn New York Times Square is easy. We are centrally located in Times Square, across from Port Authority Bus Terminal, minutes from Penn Station and within walking distance of the Jacob Javits Convention Center.