Five Fun Outings in Old Town
In our April 2009 issue, we covered the best shopping and dining in Old Town Alexandria. Here are five ways to enjoy the quaint area’s charms.
A Romantic Date
Start with a meal and some good wine at Restaurant Eve (110 S. Pitt St.; 703-706-0450; restauranteve.com). Then take a stroll past the Carlyle House (121 N. Fairfax St.; 703-549-2997), which was built by Scottish merchant John Carlyle in 1753. Finish the night in the lounge at Vermilion (1120 King St.; 703-684-9669; vermilionrestaurant.com), where you can find a selection of dessert whiskies and a quiet nook for canoodling.
A Casual Date
Grab a beer and a burger at the Union Street Public House (121 S. Union St.; 703-548-1785; unionstreetpublichouse.com) and then catch a movie at the Old Town Theater (815½ King St.; 703-683-8888; oldtowntheater.com). After the film, hop on the King Street Trolley, which runs every 20 minutes daily until 10 PM. The trolly is free and can drop you off at the Waterfront Park (1-A Prince St.) for views of DC and the Potomac River. Pop into Pop’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream (109 King St.; 703-518-5374) for a hot-fudge sundae made with Bailey’s Irish Cream.
Girls’ Day Out
Gather your girlfriends for lunch at Brabo Tasting Room (1600 King St.; 703-894-5252; braborestaurant.com), where you can share a pot of mussels and a gourmet flatbread or two. Then head to Sugar House Day Spa & Salon (111 N. Alfred St.; 703-549-9940; sugarhousedayspa.com) for the Short & Sweet—a facial, manicure, and pedicure for $165. Next, shop at Hysteria (125 S. Fairfax St.; 703-548-1615; shophysteria.com) and Treat (114 S. Royal St.; 703-535-3294; shoptreat.com) for clothes and accessories. Check out An American in Paris (1225 King St.; 703-519-8234) for hard-to-find European and American labels and the Shoe Hive (115 S. Royal St.; 703-548-7105; theshoehive.com) for everything from sneakers to stilettos. Finish your day with cocktails at the speakeasy-style lounge PX (728 King St.; 703-299-8385; eamonnsdublinchipper.com).
Wander around the Torpedo Factory Art Center (105 N. Union St.; 703-838-4565; torpedofactory.org) to get ideas, then head to Paint This! (1013 King St.; 703-519-7499; paintthis.com), a paint-your-own ceramics shop. Next, go for an early dinner at the Majestic (911 King St.; 703-837-9117; majesticcafe.com), where the kids’ menu features fish and chips, grilled cheese, and the Royal, the restaurant’s yummy hamburger. Head to the Ramsay House (221 King St.) for Alexandria’s original ghost tour with Alexandria Colonial Tours (703-519-1749; alexcolonialtours.com). Tours are Friday and Saturday at 7:30 and 9, Sunday at 7:30, through June 14.
A Doggy Day
Start with a jog along the Mount Vernon Trail, which passes through Old Town. Stop at one of the 17 off-leash dog parks. We recommend the Duke Street Dog Park (5000 block of Duke St.) and the Simpson Stadium Dog Park (500 Monroe Ave.). Give your pet a treat at Barkley Square Bakery (2006 Mount Vernon Ave.), where you’ll find Obama Paws and Bacon & Cheddar Bones. If it’s a Tuesday or Thursday, head to the Hotel Monaco Alexandria (480 King St.; 703-549-6080; monaco-alexandria.com) for a doggie happy hour; from 5 to 8 PM, there are gourmet snacks for four-legged friends and food from the hotel’s restaurant, Jackson 20, for those on two legs. Finish your day with a canine river cruise with the Potomac Riverboat Company (205 The Strand; 703-684-0580; potomacriverboatco.com), offered every Thursday during summer at 7 and 8 PM.