Rediscover Pittsburgh with Lou from @PghHappyHour

COVID-19 has put a damper on everyone’s summer, but there is still a ton to do in the great city of Pittsburgh.

Our natural landscape offers the opportunity to engage in a myriad of awesome activities that other cities simply cannot provide. 

Where to Stay

The Kimpton Hotel Monaco is the perfect place to stay for a visit to Pittsburgh. Not only do they offer a full menu at their in-house restaurant, The Commoner, but you can also hop up to their ultra cool rooftop bar for a selection of lighter fare and an extensive collection of European beers. Biergarten offers a unique rooftop atmosphere right in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh, they’ve expanded the size of the patio to accommodate for COVID restrictions. Whatever you do during your stay at Hotel Monaco make sure that you stop by the upper lobby for their complimentary happy hour. The snacks and drinks rotate regularly and are a wonderful treat. 

Where to Visit

Kennywood is open! Although that seemingly innocuous phrase might seem harmless to an outsider, it is actually a fantastic double entendre. Kennywood may not be as large as some modern amusement parks but it was designated as a National Historic Landmark in the 1980’s and has some of the best wooden roller coasters in the entire country. The great thing about the coasters at Kennywood is that they make perfect use of the hilly terrain that surrounds the park and the city of Pittsburgh. You’ll have a hard time finding another amusement park that features roller coasters that were built in the 1920’s that are still operating to this day. 

Where to Eat

Cafe Du Jour in the historic south side of Pittsburgh has been doing an absolutely incredible job of keeping their doors open during the pandemic. Not only have they been providing a wonderful takeout service, their intimate back patio is currently open for dine in service. I simply cannot recommend their European inspired cuisine enough. Every meal at Cafe Du Jour feels like a celebration and their staff is always warm and accommodating. Unlike  many other eateries, they’ve actually lowered their menu prices during COVID-19, a real reminder that we are all in this together. 

Outdoor Spaces 

Hays Woods is the most undeveloped wilderness area close to downtown Pittsburgh. Although the area is technically not open at the moment, the land has been gifted to the city and when they complete their plan for preservation of the park it will be the second largest public park in the city. (The site is larger than Schenley Park but slightly smaller than Frick Park) Don’t miss the majestic views of the Monongahela and keep an eye out for bald eagles. 

Emerald View Park in Mt. Washington has the absolute best views of downtown Pittsburgh. In addition to the incredible views the park has a number of amenities including a playground and an off leash dog park. Be sure to check out some of the fantastic artwork featured around the trails including the fish mosaic and the point of view statue. 

Hidden Gem

One of the things I’ve missed the most over the last few months is live music. Con Alma in Shadyside has created an outdoor music program that is nothing short of breathtaking. Just walk down Ellsworth Avenue in Shadyside on most weekend evenings and you’ll be able to enjoy some world class music in addition to Con Alma’s fantastic cocktails and food.