Stephen Travels

And he's ready to take you with him.


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Mesh Makes a Magnificent Mix in Indianapolis

Mesh, IndianapolisOn the recommendation of the friendly folks at the visitor center in Indianapolis, Indiana, I headed to an early dinner at Mesh. The name truly reflects the cuisine, a creative blend of ingredients that you may not intuitively combine, but, once assembled, transform into an excellent meal. Read about it >


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Through The Looking Glass (Inn) and Into a Resplendent Past

The Looking Glass Inn, Indianapolis, IndianaI could have stayed at a new hotel in the heart of Indianapolis, but I was repeatedly drawn to a stunning historic district a mile or two from various points downtown. I was confronting a tradeoff: Stay in the more convenient downtown to have easy access to many of the city’s key attractions and restaurants but lose out on character and charm, or stay in a genteel neighborhood evocative of the city’s golden age but spend more time traveling to and from the city’s main sights. One glance at The Looking Glass Inn made the decision to choose the latter simple. Read about it >


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B-Town’s Best Thai

Bloomington, Indiana, was jumping. Indiana University was hosting an outdoor science fair and recruitment drive that kept its gorgeous campus lively, spilling down popular Kirkwood Avenue. Eventually I made my way to the downtown square and grabbed an early outdoor dinner at Blooming Thai, a family-run business that brings its traditions and recipes from Thailand to hungry diners in Indiana. Read about it >


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An Indianapolis Standby for Food Lovers of All Ages

Harry & Izzy's, IndianapolisIn the heart of downtown Indianapolis, Indiana, Harry & Izzy’s attracts an eclectic clientele, from businessmen in suits from the nearby office towers to ladies out for a retirees’ lunch to high school students from across the United States in town for a convention for future farmers. Like me, they were attracted to this upscale American grill that prides itself on a fine menu and refined service amid a sophisticated setting. Read about it >


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Elegance and Luxury in a Small Ohio Village

Fireplace, Granville Inn, Granville, OhioI couldn’t decide on an accommodation in Columbus, Ohio, for a two-night stay. Nothing clicked. Nothing called out to me, “This is the place to stay.” So, after an exhaustive search, I expanded my geographical limits. As soon as I came across Granville Inn, about a half hour east of Columbus, I immediately knew I had found what I was hunting for. And it didn’t disappoint. Read about it >


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A Cabin With a View

Signal Mountain Lodge, Moran, WyomingWhat better way to enjoy Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, one of the most beautiful parks in the United States, than by staying within its 310,000 acres at Signal Mountain Lodge? Located in the heart of the park on the shore of Jackson Lake, this lodge is an idyllic setting to enjoy spectacular scenery, friendly four-legged visitors, excellent meals, and dramatic weather that continually presents one of nature’s free shows. Read about it >


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Get Your Mojo Back at Mojo BBQ

Mojo BBQ, St. Augustine, FloridaAfter an exceptional Mexican dinner at the bustling Casa Reina, I found myself at the more subdued Mojo BBQ the following evening. Also located in the historic district of St. Augustine, Mojo BBQ can definitely satisfy any discerning carnivore, as evidenced by its expansion to eight locations across Florida. And, unless you’re here on a night with live music, it comes with some fairly quiet neighbors. Read about it >


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Allelujah and Amen, Atlanta!

Central Presbyterian Church, AtlantaMore than one thousand churches are scattered around Atlanta, Georgia. The destruction of the Civil War did away with the oldest ones, so all of those that I was admiring were erected after 1865. It’s not uncommon to see clusters of them in, say, a two-block radius—churches built for different denominations and faiths—which makes it exceptionally convenient to cast a not-so-wide net and still visit an abundance of these beautiful buildings. Read about the top five churches in Atlanta >


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Standout Buildings of Sioux Falls, South Dakota

First Congregational Church, Sioux Falls, South DakotaChartered in 1856, Sioux Falls didn’t take very long to swell into the largest city in South Dakota. With a population growth over 10% every decade since 1910, the city started erecting fantastic buildings almost from its earliest days. Many of them, from municipal masterpieces to residential gems, still survive as some of the city’s defining structures. Read about the top five buildings in Sioux Falls, South Dakota >


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A Historic B&B in America’s Oldest City

Just a block or two from the heart of the historic district in St. Augustine, Florida, four bed and breakfasts stand next to each other on the same quiet street. By chance, I selected Penny Farthing Inn, a Victorian inn built as a private home back in 1893. It’s a cheery, peaceful B&B with an accommodating host, some delicious breakfasts, and a wonderfully noise-free night to enhance your slumber. Read about it >