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‘Today’ hosts say ‘Richmond has changed’ in ‘Best Places to Travel in 2016’ feature

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RICHMOND, Va. — Bicycles, beer and Broad Street are just three reasons Richmond was recently ranked #3 on Travel + Leisure’s newly released list of Best Places to Travel in 2016.

The list was the topic of discussion today, on the Today show, as Travel + Leisure Special Project Editor Jacqui Gifford joined the hosts to discuss the list of 51 vacation destinations.

“I think old school, colonial – but it is changing a bit,” said Dylan Dreyer.

Left to right; Dylan Dreyer, Natalie Morales and Jacqui Gifford discuss Richmond.

Left to right; Dylan Dreyer, Natalie Morales and Jacqui Gifford discuss Richmond.

“It is changing, so what is happening in Richmond – first of all, it is Virginia’s capital, it’s known for its Civil War monuments, its history, its distinctive architecture – but a lot of creative types are moving here and opening up tons of galleries,” Gifford said. “So there are several neighborhoods to check out, Church Hill, Jackson Ward…the West Broad Street area is also famous right now because there’s a new hotel that just opened, called The Quirk.”

“We love this property…$199 a night, it is set in an old department store,” she added.

“How cool….it’s quirky!” comments Natalie Morales, along with host Dreyer.

“Exactly! Pink and cream rooms, they have a stand out restaurant downstairs called Maple and Pine, a coffee shop, galleries showcasing work by local artists – so really, it is setting a new vibe in Richmond,” Gifford said.

“I love that – contemporary,” Morales said.

And then they were on to discuss Bozeman, Montana. Scroll to the bottom for the video.

Here’s what the original entry by Sara Ruffin Costello said:

Virginia’s capital, with its Civil War monuments, distinctive architecture, and intriguing galleries, has started to draw a cosmopolitan crowd. For an ideal weekend trip, start by checking in to the new Quirk Hotel, in a former department store. Then tour nearby Jackson Ward, a beautiful neighborhood that was once the epicenter of Richmond’s black culture, and roam the many restaurants and galleries of Broad Street on foot or on a hotel bicycle. Make time to take in the architecture of Monument Avenue and shop in Carytown for labels like A.P.C. and Herschel at Need Supply Co. Some of the best restaurants in town are in the Church Hill neighborhood: try the gastropub fare at Dutch & Co. or the Southern poutine at The Roosevelt. Finally, stock up on vegan baked goods at WPA or wood-fired traditional breads at Sub Rosa before tackling a bike ride along the 52-mile-long Virginia Capital Trail. Reward yourself afterward with a craft beer at the Hardywood Park brewery.  —Sara Ruffin Costello

Costello said, in a series of tweets with Style Weekly editor in chief Jason Roop, that she grew up in Richmond and has fallen in love with it all over again. She still has family here, and a brother who lives on Monument Avenue.


In an article on its website, Travel + Leisure discussed how the list was created:

To compile our annual list of the best places to travel in the upcoming year, T+L editors thoroughly and meticulously consider a variety of factors. Which under-the-radar gems are most exciting to our network of contributing writers and global correspondents? Which destinations are our A-List travel specialists fielding requests for? Which classic vacation spots are starting to emerge—but for entirely new and compelling reasons? Which global events and changes in travel restrictions have made certain destinations easier to get to?

Closer to home, once-overlooked spots have proven themselves worthy of another glance. The bike-friendly town of Richmond, Virginia, has standout architecture, a burgeoning art and food scene, and a brand-new design hotel. Detroit’s renewal has been on our radar for a while, and with signs of life springing up in its abandoned buildings—including a hotel that set up shop in a historic fire-department headquarters—it’s finally earned a much-deserved spot on this list. And in San Antonio, the Roman and Williams–designed Hotel Emma, in a former brewhouse, sits at the heart of the restaurant- and shopping-packed Pearl district.