Rittenhouse Square is famous in Philadelphia. To give you a little history (so you can impress your friends and family) it was initially known as southwest square, because it was one of the five squares drafted in William Penn’s plans for the city in 1682. (The other squares are Logan, Washington, Franklin and Center Square which is present-day City Hall). In 1825, it was renamed after David Rittenhouse, an astronomer and clockmaker. Much has changed since then, but one thing that hasn’t changed is the essence of quality it exudes.
Now, on to our 36 Hour Guide to Rittenhouse Square. There are so many great restaurants that it is hard to narrow down a best brunch spot. Lacroix Restaurant- 210 West Rittenhouse Square- sets the bar for great service and menu selection for brunch. Their Sunday brunch is an experience and epically expansive. It is a bit pricey at $59/ a head, but will likely be the only meal you need that day. IC Insider tip: Lacroix has an Express Breakfast Buffet Monday-Friday, 7-10AM. It’s $18 per person and it’s all you can eat!
After brunch, head outside and take in all of the beauty Rittenhouse Square Park has to offer – it’s a great spot for people watching. It’s also a place where a lot of musicians and other artists gather. While you are in the park, make sure you check out the “Lion Crushing the Serpent” sculpture. The sculpture was created by in 1832 by French artist Antione-Louis Bayre.
You can’t visit Rittenhouse without shopping on Rittenhouse Row. Aoki- 115 South 22nd Street- is a fabulous woman’s boutique with loads of charming merchandise. There truly is something for every ladythere. For all of our gentleman travelers, there is Duke & Winston- 1822 Chestnut Street. This hip spot is Philadelphia based and independently operated. They have some great casual looks that represent Philly style.
It wouldn’t be a 36 Hour Guide to Rittenhouse Square if we didn’t talk about the beautiful architecture. The brownstones in and around the square are quintessential Philadelphia. The residents take great pride in keeping their places looking well-manicured, be sure to admire the homes as you bounce from place to place.
Finally, dinner, drinks, and fun! Always a favorite for dinner is Parc- 227 South 18th Street. It’s a Rittenhouse classic. This Parisian Café’s menu is full of French favorites, and the wine list is extensive. A few items we suggest are: lamb shank, beef bourguignon, the fresh tuna and mushroom tarte. Save room for desert — the crème brulee is exquisite!
For a little fun, head to Rumor. It’s a nightlife destination with two dance floors and four bar areas. The resident DJs know how to get the dance floor moving.
After Rumor you will be ready to fall into your bed, so that sums up our 36 Hour Guide to Rittenhouse Square. Have fun!