eliza berkon is a journalist and musician based in washington d.c. 

Wander to Baltimore

Whether you’re headed to Baltimore for the city’s first Taco Festival (Oct. 7 at Power Plant Live), Baltimore Beer Week (Oct. 13-22) or the new show by Nigerian-born artist Njideka Akunyili Crosby (opens Oct. 25 at the Baltimore Museum of Art), you won’t be disappointed. Charm City may be a mere hour or two away, but it’s undoubtedly a vacation destination with luxurious hotels, adventurous dining and unique shops.

The Allure

The recently opened five-star Sagamore Pendry Hotel sits on Recreation Pier in Fells Point, which in its legendary past served as both immigration port and set piece for Homicide: Life on the Street. The decor is dark and shiplike, a nod to the nautical nature of the area. Suites are appointed with hardwood floors, proprietary body care products and nightly macarons on your pillow. But don’t hang out there too long, as there’s a whiskey bar off the lobby, and one of the top hotel pools in the country, according to Vogue, is just outside.

For an hour or two of relaxation, walk yourself over to Olivia, a nail salon that prides itself on being “eco-conscious and organic.” As you await your pedicure, resin bowls are brought out, placed on wicker disks beneath your feet and filled with water and a bit of lavender soap. Treatments are reasonably priced, calming and ultraclean.

The capacious dining room and oversized, rustic chandeliers of Bar Vasquez have you feeling a little like Argentinian royalty as you dig in to your croquetas de pescado and locally sourced chuleton de cerdo Berkshire pork chop. And on a weekend night, you’ll also be treated to live flamenco or tango music.

Fells Point sports quite a few boutiques. Poppy and Stella carries designer shoes, handbags and accessories, with retail associates who are more than happy to assist. And just next door, Brightside Boutique peddles quippy T-shirts, whimsical skin care products and trendy outfits with a bit of an edge.


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