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A Local’s Guide to Downtown Boise

Wednesday, August 18, 2021   /   by Greg Langhaim

A Local’s Guide to Downtown Boise

With so much to do and explore, it is easy to spend an entire day in downtown Boise. It is one of my favorite places in the Treasure Valley because I always find something new and exciting every time I visit. With that being said, in this blog post I will be sharing some of my favorite downtown Boise things and places, whether you are a local looking for some recommendations or new to the area, I’ve got you covered.


Hotels:

If you are coming from out of town to visit, or are a local in need of a getaway weekend, look no further than all the amazing hotels located in the center of downtown.


The Grove Hotel

This is by far my favorite hotel in all of Boise. It has such a warm, welcoming interior with very luxurious amenities. On site, they have an amazing full fitness center with a pool and spa that overlooks the downtown Boise cityscape. My favorite thing about The Grove is their fourth floor terrace, which is a large outdoor balcony where you can enjoy food and drinks while enjoying some Boise views. Not to mention, their rooms and suites are super clean and comfortable. 


Inn at 500

This is another hotel in downtown that you simply cannot go wrong by choosing to visit. The Inn at 500 is very different from all other hotels in the area, as it has a very retro/vintage theme with the exterior giving off a very old Hollywood inspired vibe. Each room has its own private balcony where guests can sit outside and enjoy some fresh air while looking over the valley. The hotel also has an amazing restaurant on site, Richards, which has especially great brunch.

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Food:


Goldy’s Breakfast Bistro

If you ask any Boise local their favorite breakfast spot, they will likely mention Goldy’s, and for good reason. This cute little breakfast spot has a very intimate feel to it, with loads of great food. They are best known for their homemade Hollandaise and their unique entrees like the spinach frittata or andalusian eggs. Goldy’s uses locally sourced ingredients and has a full specialty coffee bar. Since Goldy’s is so popular, it can get very busy, so be ready to wait a little while for your table-- it’s worth it!


Fork

This is my absolute favorite lunch spot in Boise. They have really amazing food that focuses on using key ingredients from local Boise and Northwest farmers, ranchers, bakers, brewers, etc. In addition, they have a wide variety of drinks that also come from the Northwest region. Their food is fantastic, you can definitely taste the care and effort that they put into their menu items. My favorite thing to order is the asparagus fries, be sure to try them next time you visit!


Chandler’s Steakhouse

For dinner, check out the high-end steakhouse, Chandler’s. They specialize in premium steaks and fine seafood as well as alcoholic drinks. Seven nights a week you can listen to live jazz music while you enjoy your dinner. Reservations are strongly encouraged, so make sure to check out their website ahead of time. 

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Things to do:


Freak Alley Gallery

Located in the heart of downtown Boise, Freak Alley is an outdoor graffiti/art gallery. The art painted throughout the alley is from that of Boise locals, and it is constantly being updated with new paintings and murals. The best part of Freak Alley is that it is entirely free, so grab your friends and family to see some amazing art and get plenty of great photos. 


Spacebar Arcade

The Spacebar is a really unique venue in Boise, which makes it a must to check out if you are 21 or older. This indoor arcade/bar has a ton of nostalgia with over 30 classic arcade cabinets, pinball, and a collection of original game systems like the Gamecube. The Spacebar also has card games and board games that you can play with your friends while enjoying their wide array of craft beers, wines, and cocktails.


Boise Foothill Trails

One thing Boise is known for is its hiking trails. Downtown Boise is located within a walking distance of many of them, including the notable Table Rock hike. The Boise foothill trails are fairly easy and are tons of fun! While hiking, you will see wildlife as well as views of the Boise valley. The top of the foothills also has some great photo backdrops making this a perfect activity to do with friends and family.


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