AFTER A WHIRLWIND FEW years of hosting Pope Francis in 2015, the Democratic National Convention in 2016, the NFL Draft in 2017 and even the city’s first-ever Super Bowl win followed by an epic parade in 2018, it’s no wonder Philadelphia earned GQ’s City of the Year, 2018 title. With such an exciting ascension, it seems “trust the process” isn’t just for the 76ers basketball team — it’s for the whole city.
Between Philadelphia’s rich American history, inspiring present and skyis- the-limit future, this city is having a moment, and nowhere more so than in South Philadelphia. Possibly the largest neighborhood in the city, South Philadelphia boasts culture, international flair and authentic neighborhood personality.
A bit of advice to travelers: Come hungry and keep heading south.
Start at the Italian Market, then head to the Latin section, boasting the now-famous Mexican restaurant South Philly Barbacoa, located just around the corner from Pat’s King of Steaks and Geno’s Steaks — the famous cheesesteak rivalry-turned-obligatory tourist visit.
The established but somehow still-growing foodie scene along Passyunk Avenue represents the neighborhood well, as it cuts through the city’s gridorganized streets in a diagonal line, commanding your attention. Walk south along East Passyunk Avenue, exploring the upwards of 20 restaurants consistently making Philadelphia Magazine’s Best Restaurants list; unique stores; and rotating, year-round outdoor festivals and events.
Dozens of local boutiques and quirky shops line the avenue, including The Singing Fountain, surrounded by fresh produce during farmers markets in the summer and Christmas carolers in the winter.
The farther south you go, the more mom-and-pop eateries, dress shops, men’s tailors, vintage shops and dive bars you’ll find, but for something uniquely South Philadelphia yet modern and swanky, the famous Bok Building offers a bit of everything.
Built in 1936, Edward W. Bok Technical High School — or Bok Vocational High School — welcomed students across a plethora of studies, from welding and auto mechanics to culinary arts. In 2013 the historic building went up for public auction and now boasts some of the most exciting restaurants, event spaces, homemade boutiques and rooftop bars in the area.
A local favorite gaining city-wide popularity, Bok Bar’s seasonal rooftop bar boasts one of the best views in the city. The former high school, now community space, is located in a residential area, offering an unobstructed city view and far less street noise than Center City’s rooftop locales. A newer resident in the building, Irwin’s was affectionately named for the building’s architect and boasts Mediterranean-inspired small plates with a twist, cocktails and sweeping views from the terrace.
Attend seasonal fitness classes on the rooftop or in the high school gym and tenant studios. Keep an eye out for local events like movie nights and tours through the local businesses housed in the building.
The South Philadelphia streets are lined with homes where residents sit outside chatting and people-watching. The region’s strong Italian heritage is palpable, but the neighborhood is definitely diverse. With so many old, new and up-and-coming local businesses and community events, South Philadelphia offers a blend of thriving cultures.
Six Senses Zighy Bay sets sail for its latest out-of-the-ordinary experience. The newly refurbished Dhahab, meaning gold in Arabic, offers one- or two-night voyages for the ultimate sea-hotel adventure.
There’s no better time to plan the vacation you’ve been missing. Step aboard with your better half, your friends or the whole family and reconnect, reunite and rejoice with 25 percent off cruise fares for all guests. We’ll also help everyone get there with 25 percent off airfare from 20 major gateways across the country or $100 savings per person on flights from all other gateways when you book your air travel using Flights by Celebrity.*
It’s time to start dreaming of your next trip. Here’s some destination inspiration for you. Take a visual journey through Minneapolis, Minnesota, with us.
Experience the beauty of Alaska and save 60 percent off cruise fares on your second and fourth guests. Plus, drinks, WiFi and tips are all included.
This October, The Bodrum EDITION hosts its third Zen Weekend in collaboration with artisanal lifestyle brand Caravana. Oct. 6–9, guests can indulge themselves in rebalancing wellness sessions aligning the body and soul before winter starts.
Copa Airlines celebrated its 75th anniversary recently by showcasing a Boeing 737-800 NG in an aircraft livery that harkened back to the airline’s look in the 1990s. During that time period, Copa Airlines launched an expansion of their network to become the Hub of the Americas, connect the Americas and promote Panama.
IHG® Hotels & Resorts certainly has a lot to celebrate, starting with an incredible growth story. Over the past five years, IHG has acquired or launched six new brands: Six Senses® Hotels Resorts Spas, Regent® Hotels & Resorts, Vignette™ Collection, voco™ hotels, avid® hotels and Atwell Suites™. Most recently, IHG reached an important milestone with its 6,000th open hotel. The company looks to further expand its portfolio by 30 percent with 1,800 hotels in the development pipeline, with significant focus on growth in the luxury segment where IHG is positioned as one of the top two hotel chains.