Michigan’s second largest city offers the state’s coolest urban experience. It starts in a safe, clean, compact downtown that combines the amenities of a major metropolis with the warmth of a small town.
More than 100 restaurants, shops, performance venues and cultural sites are located within a 10-minute walk of nationally recognized hotels – and hundreds of other entertainment and lodging options are just a short drive away.
As Thrillist noted in 2017, Grand Rapids offers “the art, food and music trappings you’d find in Chicago or Detroit, only at half the price and one-quarter the commute times.”
Art & Culture
The most attended public art event on the planet doesn’t take place in New York City, Paris or Rome – it sprawls out through the streets of downtown Grand Rapids every year. ArtPrize is just one of many cultural treasures that rival those of top cities.
Many Grand Rapids chefs trained at the city’s Secchia Institute for Culinary Education, one of the nation’s finest culinary arts programs – and they are able to access fresh ingredients from one of the world’s best agricultural regions, just 10 minutes away. This urban/rural partnership made Grand Rapids a forerunner in the farm-to-fork movement … and helped us achieve the title of Michigan’s Best Food City.
This year-round hub of local food innovation brings gourmet vendors, restaurants, teaching kitchens and food-focused social events together under one greenhouse-covered roof.
Cooking classes, farm markets and farm tours combine for a hands-on journey through the food cycle, from the soil to the plate. Cool Brews. Hot Eats. (Feb.-March), Restaurant Week GR (Aug.) and the International Wine, Beer & Food Festival (Nov.) indulge palates with an astonishing array of culinary splendor.
Grand Rapids Food Trail
This self-guided tour includes 70+ delectable destinations, from artisan sweets shops to ethnic markets.
There’s nothing quite like an outdoor summer concert in Grand Rapids – and there’s no better place to see one than the lush grounds of Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park. Festival of the Arts, GRandJazzFest and Picnic Pops are other outdoor faves.
From Taylor Swift to Kanye West, Grand Rapids welcomes the biggest names in music. The Lumineers, Miranda Lambert, Def Leppard, Aretha Franklin, and Tim McGraw & Faith Hill are just a few of our 2017 concerts.