The Locals-Only Guide to Nashville

by Jillian Finley

Nashville is a haven of up-and-coming restauranteurs, concert venues, and swank cocktail dens. The music-centric city is rife with options for sound hounds, from a classic night at the Opry to open mic at the Bluebird, or taking in a refined performance at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. Here is a recap of local-approved hangouts.

COFFEE

WHAT: This petite artisan coffee hotspot draws style-setters and highbrow caffeine seekers alike with its top-notch cappuccinos and hip ambience. The location, a former motorcycle repair shop, is open and inviting, staffed with friendly, well-versed baristas.
WHERE: Lockeland Springs
 
LUNCH
 
WHAT: A stellar spot for lunch, this charming eatery is known for killer sandwiches and a rotating seasonal menu. Don't leave without ordering the King Kong couscous and a side of seasonal lemonade.
WHERE: Lockeland Springs
 
DINNER
 
WHAT: Five-star meals are prepared as you watch, making this delightful restaurant an ideal choice for date night and special occasions. Expect first-rate cocktail pairings and decadent cuisine in an intimate and refined setting. 
WHERE: Midtown, Music Row
 
WHAT: Hyped for impeccable quality fare in an up and coming neighbourhood, the warm ambience of reclaimed wood communal and individual tables lends this trendy spot an air of laid-back cool to accompany the exquisite menu. Dishes and cocktails are as stylishly inventive as they are delicious.
WHERE: Buena Vista
 
WHAT: A well reputed, spectacularly slick speakeasy is the perfect haunt for swilling martinis and cleverly concocted libations. Home to an impressive craft beer selection, the exotic refreshment roster promises to satisfy any palette. 
WHERE: Midtown, Music Row
 
PLAY
 
WHAT: This smart, well-to-do bowling alley and lounge is a group-friendly establishment that beckons for weekend revelry. Aptly named, it's a place you'll want to return to with friends again and again to partake of both the tasty brunch menu and à la mode cocktail list. 
WHERE: Downtown
 
SHOPPING
 
WHO: H. Audrey
WHAT: A well-curated designer boutique flush with a spectrum of high-end names from Rag & Bone to Helmut Lang, this chic contemporary brick and mortar counts Gwyneth Paltrow and Nicole Kidman among its fans. The industrial loft-like space has a polished, East Coast flair.   
WHERE: Bellmont/Hillsboro
 
WHAT:  This well-appointed boutique is host to a fabulous denim selection and treasure trove of one-of-a-kind vintage scores from Stetson hats to turquoise jewellery. Garnering its name after the owner's maternal grandparents, the store itself is unaffected and charmingly cultured. 
WHERE: Bellmont/Hillsboro
 
WHAT: Trendsetters flock to this hipster-friendly, full-service hair salon and vintage and consignment shop. Brimming with soulful wares and seasoned barbers, it's poised to appease all your styling proclivities, head to toe. 
WHERE: Bellmont/Hillsboro
 

Have a favourite Nashville spot? Tell us in the comments below. 

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