Located in the heart of Center City, Philadelphia, the Rittenhouse Square neighborhood is one of the area’s most fashionable and well-to-do locales. From luxury apartment buildings to high end retail outlets, the neighborhood is known for being well-heeled. Although it’s a largely residential area, Rittenhouse is also known for its restaurants, shops, and most importantly, the park at the center of it.
Rittenhouse happens to be one of the more walkable areas of Philadelphia. Whether you need to go grocery shopping, pick up a new outfit, or meet a few friends for drinks, you can get pretty much anywhere on foot. If you want to combine exercise with your daily travels, you can hop on an Indego Bike, a rent by the half-hour bikeshare program, and pedal away. The program has locations throughout the city, including several around Rittenhouse. If the weather’s not so great, you can head to the subway at Broad Street to travel north and south, or catch a ride with Uber.
Rittenhouse Square is the heart of the neighborhood. It’s here where you’ll see people out walking their dogs, or where you’ll see musicians performing for a crowd and artists working on their latest masterpiece. The Square is also home to a year-round farmers’ market on Saturdays and to a seasonal market on Tuesdays. The Square also holds semi-annual crafts and fine arts fairs. Although it’s not really the type of park for running around or playing sports, it is an ideal spot for an afternoon picnic or for simply relaxing with friends.
Top Spots to Eat
The neighborhood also happens to be home to some of the area’s best places to eat. You can grab a park-side, outdoor table at one of the many restaurants that surround the square. For a French-inspired meal, check out Stephen Starr’s Parc, a bistro and cafe that serves breakfast, brunch, lunch, and dinner. Another park-side spot is Rouge, which happens to be best known for its burger.
If the weather isn’t cooperating, you can head up 18th street to find a spot to eat indoors. Another Starr restaurant, the Dandelion, is modeled after a British pub. In it, you’ll find pub favorites such as steak and chips and bangers and mash. The pub also has a full selection of British drink favorites, such as a Pimm’s Cup and a Dark & Stormy. Beer on tap is available in full imperial pints (20 oz) or half pints (10 oz).
Several art galleries dot the neighborhood around Rittenhouse. The Philadelphia Art Alliance is located just south of the park. Founded in 1915, it features a variety of exhibitions throughout the year. Each exhibition is open for just a short period of time and features the work of craftspeople, artists, and sculptors. The Alliance also hosts occasional events, such as “Last Fridays,” which are free to the public. It also hosts happy hours and other events at its on-site restaurant, Le Cheri. Regular admission to the Alliance’s gallery is $5 for adults, $3 for students and seniors, and free for members.