You’ve heard it here: Lexington is one of our new favorite cities. Amid the lush, rolling hills this area is famous for, there’s a renewed spirit in the Horse Capital of the World.
New breweries and boutiques are opening their doors, chefs are putting their spin on traditional Southern dishes, and the city is just getting, well, cooler. Here are some of our favorite bargains and splurges. Put on your riding boots and explore!
The Campbell House
Close to Keeneland, the Thoroughbred racetrack and auction house, this hotel is a good jumping-off point to see nearby bourbon distilleries. With rooms starting at $109, you can’t beat the price.
Gratz Park Inn
You don’t have to be a newlywed to go for the honeymoon suite ($499). It includes a sitting area, bottle of Champagne, and two desserts from Jonathan at Gratz Park (the on-site restaurant).
Locally sourced meats (including hog and goat) are the stars here. Try the Poutine, house-made cheese curds served over french fries with a choice of meat ($12). Top it with the vinegar sauce made with West Sixth Brewing IPA.
Table Three Ten
Head downtown and grab a chair at the 20-seat oak bar (or one of the communal tables) and put in an order for a fromage or charcuterie plate ($18.95 for three choices). Save room for the 14-ounce rib-eye steak ($34) served with sautéed spinach.
Blue Stallion Brewing
Try the Smoked Lager, a good introduction to smoky beers, or the German Pilsner, which uses two German hops for the crisp taste ($5 for 16 ounces).
Located in the penthouse of the Court Square Building, Skybar’s view is one of the best in town. Get a private room, and order a bottle of bourbon.
Part home decor and gift store, part interior design service, this Chevy Chase boutique is the perfect place to soak up Lexington style, with finds that include bracelets by Bourbon and Boweties and earrings by Hyla DeWitt.
This Clay Avenue Boutique carries beloved and popular brands such as Frye, Hunter, and Trina Turk, and they also feature Kentucky-made baubles from W&M Custom Jewelry.
Town Branch Distillery
The hour-long tour ($7) walks visitors through the bourbon- and beer-making processes, both of which take place on the property. It finishes with a tasting of the latest offerings.
Horses sold at auction here can fetch $1 million or more. Not in the market? You can still watch them run. Training hours each morning are free and open to the public.