Have you ever just wanted to get away from your day-to-day routine, but circumstances keep you in your own city? Have you considered a staycation, kicking back, getting a room at a local hotel, revisiting your city through tourists’ eyes and releasing your everyday anxiety? It is a quick and easy escape – one the husband and I enjoyed recently in Downtown Baltimore.
Let’s talk hotel. The Hyatt Regency Baltimore wanted us to enjoy the many services and accommodations they offer their guests. With our suitcase packed we were off to the Hyatt to play Baltimore tourists. The Hyatt Regency Baltimore, with its expansive atrium façade, recently remodeled their lobby. The look is modern with purple abstract silhouettes of sails behind the registration desks, cream colored floors, grey upholstered couches, and a fireplace. Also in the lobby is the refreshing station with fruit enhanced chilled water and house baked cookies. There are numerous recharge stations for laptops and phones throughout the lobby and in their sun lit alcoves that face the inner harbor.
The room key is also your security key to access the elevators to your room, swimming pool and gym. You aren’t able to get above public spaces without a key.
Our host, the Hyatt Regency wanted us to enjoy the luxury of a Harborview suite. More than what we needed, but it was nice to enjoy the extra space – two flat screen televisions – one for me and one for the husband. You can also enjoy the Bose sound system throughout the suite; even dock your smart phone for your favorite sounds.
The first business at hand, open up the curtains and behold the beauty of Baltimore’s inner harbor; sailboats gliding into dock, the Yellow Dog racing boat heading out to open waters and kicking in at full tilt, the merry-go-round by the Science Center spinning memories for children – the voyeur in me could just sit and watch for hours.
Like the Snicker’s candy bar commercial, the husband turns into someone not-so-pleasant when he is hungry. We took the bridge from the Hyatt Regency over to Harborplace where a Philly sub and fries from Johnny Rockets squelched his nagging need for food. A bowl with a happy face in ketchup was delivered along with my burger. We went back to the suite, the husband napped and I went in search of their STayFit gym and the swimming pool/sun deck at hotel. The gym had a very good cross section of equipment, though I wasn’t ready to exercise at that time.
The rooftop pool was nicely landscaped with shrubs, flowers and plants, with a giant sized chessboard, and fire pit. One can come at dusk and roast s’mores at the fire pit, see the reservation desk for the s’mores kits.
There are numerous restaurant choices at Harborplace but an invite from the Bookmakers Cocktail Club in Federal Hill to dine was an opportunity no one should refuse. I was excited to again partake of Executive Chef Sarah Acconcia’s creative and tasty creations and of course, a craft cocktail. The hotel is less than a block to the Orange, Purple and Banner free Charm City Circulator bus stops – we took the Purple Line to Federal Hill, the Cross Street stop, and onward to Bookmakers which is adjacent to the Cross Street Market. The speakeasyesque destination with its dark interiors, craft cocktails and cuisine didn’t disappoint. (Slideshow and review HERE.)
I was out and about early taking a walk at the Inner Harbor, joining the other early bird walkers and joggers, enjoying the view and harbor breeze. My jaunt was past Harborplace, Baltimore Visitor Center down and around the Maryland Science Center, Rash Field and back before breakfast. Breakfast, an indulgence from my normal routine, would be at Bistro 300 in the Hyatt Regency Baltimore.
Back in 2013 in a global effort to support sustainable and responsible food and beverage for their guests, Hyatt Regency Baltimore re-branded with an eye focused on sourcing and providing healthy food and beverage options; portion control, sustainability, local suppliers, meat without supplemental growth hormones, cage-free eggs, lower sodium, and natural sweeteners like agave nectar.
Bistro 300’s dining room, just off their lounge, enjoys an open airy feel with the multi-floor high atrium ceiling, fans spinning just above the large circular light fixtures and segments of the restaurant jutting out over the pebble-based pond, it is a serene environment. Breakfast can be a buffet event with cooked-to-order omelets, meats, fresh fruit, pastries, and cereals. We chose ala carte and like most tourists, ordered dishes with crab; the husband with the Crab Cake Benedict with Old Bay cream sauce and I, the Asparagus and Blue Crab omelet. Our server, Penny Holtz, has been with the Hyatt for over 30 years. Knowledgeable in all things Baltimore, Penny most graciously answered questions from her guests on where to go, what to do and city trivia.
On our walk over to the Maryland Science Center we stopped in at the Baltimore Visitors Center checking out options for the day and watching young children running in-and –out of the fountain just outside its’ doors. It was still a school day so the Science Center was jammed packed with kids who were excited, enjoying the interactive nature of the exhibits. We paid the little bit extra and watched Tornado Alley 3D in the IMAX theatre.
With the weather so toasty, we went back to the Hyatt Regency Baltimore to relax by the rooftop pool. The view from there ranged from Pratt Street, the National Aquarium, the USS Constellation down through the harbor beyond the Domino sign and Federal Hill. After our time in the sun, a quick, but refreshing shower for the both of us and we were good to go.
Because breakfast was so hardy, we skipped lunch, but chose to go back to Bistro 300 for dinner. As we did before at Bistro 300, we were seafood focused in our choices: Cream of Crab Soup, their Harbor Salad with feta, Kalamata olives, tomatoes, cucumber and sweet peppers. I’ve never known the husband to turn down crab cakes and he didn’t disappoint nor did the crab cakes, a good rendition of this Maryland favorite. The Wild Caught Rockfish adorned my plate with thyme scented quinoa, spinach and lemon citronette.
Too hot and too full to take a walk after dinner, we meandered back to our suite, watched as night fell over the Inner Harbor and we gave into sleep – perhaps to dream, of our next Baltimore staycation.
Hyatt Regency Baltimore – Inner Harbor – 300 Light Street – Baltimore, MD 21202 410 528-1234 www.baltimore.hyatt.com Social media Baltimore Hyatt Regency: Twitter / Instagram @HyattBaltimore Facebook
Bistro 300 – Hyatt Regency Baltimore – 300 Light Street – Baltimore, MD 21202 401 605-2839 www.baltimore.hyatt.com/en/hotel/dining/Bistro300.html Social media Bistro 300: Twitter/Instagram @Bistro300