Space Replace in Raleigh

As Southern cities like Raleigh, North Carolina become more densely populated, the development of a multi-functional space becomes more of a challenge. And that’s exactly how hip urbanization projects for compact design like raleigh [ ] space are born. Formed by local art community Deco Raleigh and students at NCSU College of Design, raleigh [ ] space’s Kickstarter campaign seeks to create “parklets”: versatile, highly functional areas in urban communities.   What is a parklet, you ask? Basically, it’s just a small space – as in, the size of two parallel parking spots [... more]

Because Chocolate.

Move over, Willy Wonka: we’ve just died and gone to chocolate heaven. Located in uptown Charlotte, North Carolina, Bar Cocoa offers one of the most extensive chocolate and dessert experiences in the South. Let’s say that again: A bar. Of desserts. Made with lots – and lots – of chocolate. From tasty nibbles, to wedding cakes, to event catering, to cooking classes, this upscale boutique leaves your sweet tooth with nothing left to be desired. We recommend indulging in their wide variety of French macarons, which will transport [... more]

Road Trip-Worthy Tacos

If you’re hungry for authentic Southern, Southwestern, and Mexican fare, then you may want to join the line outside Taqueria del Sol. At first glance, you realize this isn’t your usual dining establishment. Lines often snake outside the door, but thankfully tables turn over very quickly. The popular restaurant wows with savory from-scratch dishes served quickly within a casual setting. Menu options include the Brisket, a flour tortilla with shredded beef topped with pico de gallo, and the Memphis, a juicy, smoked and chopped pork soft taco [... more]

Raleigh’s Newest Draw

Though it may not boast a fancy name, the Raleigh Warehouse District has transformed into one of the hottest spots in North Carolina. Though originally built as an industrial zone, the six-block district filled with spacious, old brick buildings now hosts several retail shops, businesses, restaurants, and art galleries. Some of the most popular creative spots include the Litmus Gallery & Studios and the Contemporary Art Museum Raleigh. For good eats, locals and visitors flock to Tuscan Blu for fine Italian cuisine and Humble Pie for jazz [... more]

Smelly Cat Coffee

“Smelly cat, smelly cat, what are they feeding you?” Who doesn’t recognize the lyrics from the iconic song Phoebe Buffay performed at her local coffee shop in the popular TV show Friends. Named for that catchy ditty, Smelly Cat Coffeehouse in Charlotte, North Carolina, has charmed patrons since 2000 with its offbeat atmosphere, a superb roaster menu, fresh baked goods, and probably the most clever moniker of any coffee shop. Next time you’re in Charlotte, scoot over to the North Davidson District (NoDa), pull up a chair [... more]

Durham’s Spanish Flavor

Durham, North Carolina, is widely known for its intricate architecture and captivating cathedrals. However, visitors to this college town should not miss another gorgeous gem—Mateo Bar de Tapas, a restaurant on West Chapel Hill Street that is the talk of the town. Located in the old Book Exchange building, the eatery features a modern rustic décor and an inviting atmosphere, making it the ideal place to grab a drink with friends at the polished wood bar or settle into one of the plush booths to bask in [... more]

Grand Accommodations

For three years, the hit HBO series Game of Thrones has thrilled our imaginations with grandiose sitting rooms complete with blazing, stone fireplaces and medieval furniture fit for a time when the sword spoke more loudly than the pen. We might not be able to get you an encounter with your favorite characters (like the beautiful John Snow), but the Grand Bohemian Hotel in Asheville, North Carolina, will make you feel as if you are among medieval kings. Designed as a rustic beauty, this hotel stands as [... more]

The Truth Will Set You Free

Truth & Salvage Co. has emerged as one of the South’s hottest new bands. Originally from North Carolina, the six-man group relocated to Los Angeles, but recently settled in back down South in Nashville, Tennessee, to work on their music, a blending of country rock, folk, gospel, and indie pop. “We’re really not aiming to be any kind of genre band,” said Walker Young (piano, organ, vocals). “Everybody writes and everybody has different styles they gravitate toward. When we bring it together it becomes our sound.” In [... more]

A Folk Family

A combination of Americana and rock, Delta Rae’s most recent EP, Chasing Twisters, provides a soulful collection of songs clearly rooted in their hometown of Durham, North Carolina. The group began as a trio of siblings, Ian and Eric Holljes, and sister, Brittany Holljes, and later became the sextet they are now with the addition of singer and friend Elizabeth Hopkins, drummer Mike McKee, and bassist Grant Emerson. Together, they produce exquisite four-part harmonies, intricate instrumental interludes, and storytelling lyrics that will set your heart soaring and [... more]

Take It All In

For the first time, the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina, has introduced a children’s audio tour, told from the viewpoint of Cedric, the Vanderbilt’s dear Saint Bernard. It coincides with the standard audio tour so families can stay together. Other audio tours worth the fee include the Architect’s Tour and the Butler’s Tour, both of which take in areas not usually open to the public. The garden walks and orchid talks in the conservatory always delight, and new educational tours give expert gardeners the chance to [... more]

Raise a Glass to Asheville

Portland and San Diego have long been destinations for local-brew fanatics. But one Southern city aims to replace them as BeerCity USA. In fact, it already has. Asheville, North Carolina, won that title in 2009 and has yet to relinquish it. And for good reason: The town’s burgeoning Ale Trail attracts visitors year-round with its 22 breweries and craft beer goodness. Soon there’ll be one more reason for beer fans to tour the trail. California-based Sierra Nevada chose Asheville as the home of its East Coast expansion and is in the midst of the [... more]

Avett Brothers Touring the South

The Avett Brothers, that red-hot band from North Carolina, begin the Southern leg of their tour March 20 in Savannah, Georgia. From there, they perform across Florida and into Louisiana and Texas. The highly touted trio—their original sound has been described as the “heavy sadness of Townes Van Zandt, the light pop concision of Buddy Holly, the tuneful jangle of the Beatles, and the raw energy of the Ramones”—rushed onto the music scene in 2009 with their break-out single “I and Love and You,” and shows no [... more]