As a Travel MANager, I love hopping on a plane and, an hour later, finding myself somewhere completely different to where I live. It’s exhilarating, and if you’ve been following my adventures, you will know I was looking forward to staying with Homewood Suites by Hilton as I share my top tips on how to plan and execute the perfect weekend away.
This weekend, I decided to give Denver a whirl. Admittedly, I didn’t know much about Denver, but for me, part of the thrill of a weekend away is trying something new. Besides, I’m not risking two weeks somewhere I might not like, and if I love the weekend, I can always return. To make the most of this trip, I made sure to pack light. I really wanted to disconnect and unwind.
The Weekend Adventure Begins
When I arrived in Denver, less than two hours later, I couldn’t get over how much nature and greenery there was to offer. Traveling from one of the most famous urban cityscapes, it was refreshing to see so many parks, and people actually using them and hanging out. Almost right away, I noticed that no one in Denver was glued to their phone. It was an exciting change of pace.
A travel tip that worked for us was to Uber to and from restaurants and clubs, but we also rented a car for those quick trips to the pharmacy or longer excursions, like to the Denver mountains. We did walk a lot on our trip, but the convenience of being able to hop in a car, especially on a weekend escape, was one of the luxuries we didn’t want to forfeit. Even if it is just 30 mins waiting for Uber, we’d rather go.
We had an amazing lunch at Racca’s Pizzeria located in the Lodo District, by Union Station. It was one of the top rated restaurants on TripAdvisor, and as one of the top-rated restaurants in the city, I knew we had to grab a slice of authentic Italian pizza, made with fresh ingredients. I ordered the meat pizza, and my wife picked a Margherita. While sipping on cocktails, we decided to ask the server for recommendations.
She mentioned a few places near Union Station, which was within walking distance of us, so after we ate, we headed in that general direction. Union Station happens to be a really lively and enjoyable area with lots to see and do. It’s like an entertainment plaza and has restaurants, clubs, and bars. We loved walking around, exploring, not really sure of what we would find next.
The Best Way to Take in the City Sights
A great way to see a new city quickly is to check out local tours. Denver has an awesome scooter tour you can take, where you rent a scooter and are given directions to all the places you would want to see such as the Basilica, which had incredible architecture. I love doing city tours because they are created by locals who know the area and cut down on my research time.
Since we rented a car, we were able to take in the drive. During which, we noticed the beautiful green scenery at Cheeseman Park that has a river running through the middle. We wouldn’t have found this hidden gem, as it was tucked away. The scooter tour was awesome fun too. Alma rode on the back of my scooter, and we traveled to several hot spots like the Capitol building and Governors Park.
One thing I love about Denver is how relaxed the city and people are; park time is quality time, and we had fun mingling with the locals. Dinner that night was at Rioja for some upscale Mediterranean food, and we saw the Chalk Art Festival. The place was buzzing, and there were Christmas lights lining the streets. It felt so special and was a highlight of our trip.
All in all, I have to say, I would love to visit Denver again, even if it is just to stay at the Homewood Suites by Hilton. It’s location, amenities, and of course, those breathtaking panoramic views are unlike anything I’ve experienced. The view of the Rockies is something everyone should experience at least once in their lives. Plus, it was the perfect romantic backdrop for our Weekend Escape.
Many thanks to Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites by Hilton for sponsoring this post; get the best deals by following @HomewoodSuites and @Home2Suites, or join the conversation and get pro travel tips from other Travel MANagers using the hashtag #weekendescapeartist; all opinions are 100% my own. If you want to be your own Weekend Escape Artist, check out extended stay, all suite options such as Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites by Hilton in your city of choice! Make sure to visit the Travel MANager microsite: MenCanPlanTravel.com, for the latest and greatest travel advice to become your own “Weekend Escape Artist.”