Why Travel Guides Recommend Vacation Rentals When Staying in St Louis
One of the best parts of traveling is getting to experience the food, culture, and nightlife of other towns. Oftentimes, it’s the parts of the city that are not the day’s destination which can be the most memorable. Take St. Louis for example. Staying in a vacation rental in this city helps travelers better experience what it’s like to live like a local.
Travel bloggers like Lucy on the Local, write about their experiences as they immerse themselves in the places they visit – not through the views from a hotel lobby, but sometimes literally in a camper. The short-term rentals available for long weekend stays or family getaways are perfect for getting to know the local vibe, or getting to know the people you’re visiting. For those who maybe grew up in St. Louis, but moved away, staying in vacation rentals can be more convenient when returning to visit friends or family.
Since most vacation rentals or short-term rentals are located in residential areas, it’s best to book through a local professionally managed company. You can even let the owner know if there is a special reason you’re in town. They might know of a property better suited for your party size or one that is located closer to popular venues like The Steel Mill or Urban Chestnut.
A Relaxing Night after a Full Day
St. Louis has a walkability score of 85 out of 100. That means pedestrians can access most attractions, sights, and restaurants without a car, but it will require comfortable shoes. It’s easy to find rideshare brands around town, or use MetroLink within the city since the Red and Blue lines are right next to the Gateway Arch and Busch Stadium. Most people get around using their own car, however, and find it easy to locate a two-hour paid parking spot or an hourly garage.
Packing a full day in one city can leave guests, and those traveling with children, exhausted and feeling spent. While most areas do offer food delivery services from local restaurants, having a high-end kitchen to make dinner is incredibly convenient. Not only can cooking in the rental save money while traveling, but it can save time too, as most restaurants have long wait times during peak seasons and times of day.
Shop Like a Local
One of the most unique experiences you can have in a new city is shopping for groceries. St. Louis is no different, with its urban marketplaces and smaller sundries shops, you’ll find everything you need for your vacation rental, and maybe some new favorites you weren’t expecting. The downtown area has a Shnucks, a one-stop shop for groceries, pharmacy needs, a coffee bar, a deli and a liquor department. If you’re looking for something special, try Straub’s first. It’s a higher end market with top notch service.
There’s also the Jay International Food Group and Fields Foods, which also has a wine bar. If you’re looking for a good organic selection, Local Harvest Grocery might have what you need, in addition to fresh baked bread. If for some reason your vacation rental doesn’t come equipped with kitchen supplies, most of these stores will have you covered as well.
The Guest Treatment
St. Louis hosts several large, crowd-drawing events throughout the year. Traveling with small children and finding yourself sharing a hotel with a noisy bunch can be frustrating. Because this city, bifurcated by the Mississippi River, offers such a diverse range of activities – from concerts to kids’ museums – being able to leverage the privacy of rental has huge advantages.
Being able to grab a cold beverage from the refrigerator that didn’t cost an arm and a leg at a bar? Now we’re talking. What may seem like small amenities when booking online can quickly add up to that feeling of winning after checking in. And since everyone works on vacation these days, fast, free wifi might just be one of those big wins.
Finding a place to stay in St. Louis that is also pet friendly can be a challenge. Many families adopted a dog during the pandemic and now want to bring their new member of the family with them when they travel. While hotels might allow for some small pets there can occasionally be additional charges. Renting a single family home with a backyard is a much more relaxing option for furry friends.
Where To Go From HomeBase
Setting out for a day in “The Gateway to the West” should include a trip to the famous 630-foot tall Gateway Arch, where a tram takes visitors up for sweeping views of the Mississippi River and surrounding city. Tickets for adults are about $15-$19 and can be purchased on site. Those afraid of heights have the option to enjoy a ferry ride instead.
There are a lot more museums in St. Louis than you might think. The Missouri History Museum, Saint Louis Art Museum, the St. Louis Science Center, The National Blues Museum, the little known Edwardsville Children’s Museum, the Healthworks! Kids’ Museum, and the International Photography Hall of Fame can all be found in this sprawling city. Theater fans will enjoy the Fabulous Fox Theatre and the Stifel Theater, which was built in 1934.
For days not cooking at the rental, it’s highly recommended to taste the barbeque before leaving St. Louis. Another local favorite is toasted ravioli, their unusually thin pizza, and butter cake. For the truly adventurous there are fried brain sandwiches made from calves brains. A delicacy that became popular with the rise of the stockyards in the 1880’s.
If you’re one of the 25 million visitors headed to St. Louis, be sure to at least check out some of the vacation rental accommodations available during your stay. You might even get a discount if you stay with the same company on your return visit. And you’ll see why travel guides recommend staying in a vacation rental, especially for cities like St. Louis.