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  • Downtown
    Enjoy a huge range of entertainment, dining, shopping and sightseeing opportunities, all within an easy, eye-catching 10-minute walk.
    West Side
    From tigers and coffee to meat markets and Mexican restaurants, the West Side is a fascinating mix of old-school and up-and-coming.
    East Grand Rapids
    A charming business district, all-season sports lake and beautifully maintained parks and homes distinguish this family-oriented suburb.
    Grit, growth and creativity characterize this downtown neighborhood, which boasts unique galleries, clever dining spots and many pleasant…
    Heritage Hill
    One of the nation’s top old-house neighborhoods – with 1,300 buildings dating back to 1844 – is just a five-minute walk from downtown.
    Medical Mile
    This world-class health-sciences corridor is spurring new retail and residential developments well beyond its namesake mile.
    North Quarter
    The city’s largest park, tiniest burger joint, oldest sweet shop and newest best-bar winner are just a few of the pleasures that await visitors.…
    Diversity is the hallmark of Southtown, with numerous ethnic groups contributing to a vibrant mix of restaurants, shops and events.
    An eclectic mix of specialty shops, galleries, restaurants and entertainment venues reflect this area’s friendly, funky, fabulous character.
    Choose from our curated Personas.

    The Insider Experience

    Eat, stay, and play like a local in Grand Rapids, Michigan

    Category - Cool City. Hot Eats.

    In my opinion, a year in the customer service industry should be just as required as the two semesters of a foreign language in college. Service, particularly in the food and beverage sector, provides a unique world view for every one who partakes. It's also just a fun job! Heather Missad, a Grand Rapids service industry trailblazer, might agree with me. "I love creating a legacy for other people who treat this job as a profession," says Missad. In the past twenty years, Heather has been a part of GR's cocktail culture from the ground up. After admitting how behind the times the city had been in the past, she says "I understood Grand Rapids was going to come into its own...and I wanted to be a part of its growing up." After opening restaurants all over the city and helping the staff prepare to move forward with creative cocktails, Missad finally feels as though Grand Rapids has made progress toward that goal. She credits restaurants as the main reason this transition has not been pretentious: the slow ease into the cocktail scene has made it accessible and fun for all palates.... Read More ›
    There are certain realities about bartenders that the casual beverage consumer understands. They should be good listeners, it's awesome when they memorize your drink of choice, and it's weird to see them out in real life without the bar between you. But what about that fact that they are artists: creative, socially adept, and chock full of pairings, recommendations, and drink know-how? Grand Rapids is lucky to have many local bartenders that fit this description. I spoke with Josh Hallwachs, General Manager at Grand Rapids Brewing Company , to hear about his journey in the beverage business.... Read More ›
    This is a guest post by Tory O'Hare, Founder of the Grand Rapids Cocktail Guild . With the Grand Rapids Cocktail Guild’s mission reflecting the group’s passion and desire for strengthening West Michigan’s cocktail culture, and ExperienceGR’s consistent creative efforts to boost Grand Rapids’ community engagement, a cocktail festival seems like the perfect collaboration. The Grand Rapids Cocktail Guild is excited to join Experience Grand Rapids and the Michigan Distiller’s Guild to invite you to the first-ever Grand Rapids Cocktail Week! We’re kicking off an 11-day long celebration focuses on the burgeoning cocktail movement and helping the public explore and educate themselves to enjoy a higher standard of drinking culture, plus encourages local bars and restaurants to step up the caliber of their spirits programs and learn more about Michigan and craft distilleries.... Read More ›
    November 11-22 is gearing up to be quite an exciting transition into the 2015 Holiday Season! The GR Cocktail Guild is excited to bring the 1st Annual Cocktail Week GR to town. Photo Courtesy of Experience GR The cocktail culture has been growing in Grand Rapids for years now: local bars, bartenders, new distilleries, and passionate sippers have made cocktails just as relevant and just as hand-crafted as craft beer. The Grand Rapids Cocktail Guild was founded in March of 2015 by chef and cocktail lover Torrence O'Haire and is making waves in the hand-crafted culture of West Michigan, and this year, for eleven days you can enjoy events around town designed to showcase the talents and local ingredients of bartenders all over the city.... Read More ›