EA Guides are natural born explorers and constantly sharing their findings with each other. Here is the most recent list of random things about our region that were shared recently:
A few ways to give you that last jolt of holiday spirit as we head into Christmas week: 

  • Proud of the Cleveland Metroparks (Best in Nation”award again in 2021) so here’s a few ways to be part of the parks even when it’s cold and dark outside: Merwin’s Wharf Winterfest open until early January with real ice rink, fire pits, live entertainment, igloos for dining alongside the Cuyahoga River;
  • Zoo Lights at the Cleveland Zoo Thursdays – Sundays thru the end of the year with live music, ice carvers, hot chocolate for kids and Great Lakes beer stations for adults (they even offer a “drive thru” version on a few nights for those elderly or disabled relatives or for those who are just allergic to the cold or excercise)

  • So many fun holiday events & exhibits at University Circle  – how about A Garden Holiday at Cleveland Botanical Gardens?
  • So, this week the Browns might be either putting in 3rd stringers, defaulting due to COVID positive tests or calling one of us to quarterback, but there are still a handful of home games and we know there will be Santa outfits in the stadium! Why not avoid the traffic and costly nearby parking lots and tailgate in The Flats near Columbus & Scranton and for $20 take a water taxi (AKA The Holiday), a charter boat with permanent dock space on the Cuyahoga River. While admittedly it would be way better to try this in Sept/Oct, it runs for ALL the games including those in December!

Holiday Boat charters to the Browns games

When you’ve decided you are ready to downsize to carefree apartment living: 

  • If you aren’t ready to leave a beautiful old home with all the character and charm but are ready to give up the cost and maintenance, College Club Apartments on Overlook Drive in Cleveland Heights could be the answer.  Leaded glass windows, beautiful fireplace mantels, built ins….all part of this historic 20,000 SF Tudor Revival house, designed by Meade & Garfield. This century home is now ten apartments. The first tenants have moved in to real estate developer Jim Wymer’s latest creation. His team at WXZ Development also manages Circle 118 and Hazel 8 apartment complexes in University Circle.

The ballroom, shared space for residents, at the College Club Apartments

  • Tinnerman Lofts, in Cleveland’s Ohio City neigborhood is a cool repurposing of an old warehouse near Lorain and Fulton; Fifty apartments with great shared space indoors and out including bocce ball courts, pizza oven and deck. Look at this bright atrium space used for co-working or happy hour!

shared work/social space at Tinnerman Lofts in Ohio City

  • The brand new enormous black building alongside the Towpath Trail in Tremont is Electric Gardens, an apartment building by J. Roc Developers; four stories tall with rooftop decks for tenants to grill and watch tv in warm months, dogs welcome, and the bike/hike trail is 30′ from your door. Limelight co-working space, and a coffee/wine bar that is open to the public, just walk in off the Towpath Trail if you need a refreshment
  • A mix of apartments and townhomes and pocket parks are being built on the former site of Woodhill Supply in Little Italy on E. 123rd near Euclid Avenue with the beautiful wall of Lakeview Cemetery as your across the street neighbor
  • Waverly & Oak is a new development in the early stages, on the eastern edge of the Gordon Square Arts District (5506 Detroit Road), 120 apartments, commercial space on ground floor and underground parking. First multi-use multi-story built in this neighborhood in a century

Some more places that might have you saying “So that’s what that construction site was!”:

  • Chagrin Valley Islamic Center is now open on Liberty Rd in Solon
  • University Hospitals’s Health System has a new new westside outpost in Avon for Seidman Cancer Center. This new 38,000 SF outpatient medical office goes up on 2 acres at corner of Rt 83 and Detroit Road is expected to open within months
  • The Bowery in West Akron is getting an influx of new life with six historic buildings in one block all being re-imagined for residential, retail and office space
  • Grove Kosher Marketnow open in Oakwood Commons in South Euclid on Warrensville Center Rd. good resource for Jewish families looking for a marketplace
  • Dan Whalen, of Harbor Bay Real Estate Advisors is the force behind the construction project at W 25th and Lorain known as Intro.  Nine stories high with roughly 300 apartments this site will also include Truss, an event space and soon to be announced restaurants will occupy the first floor with move ins in early ’22
  • The Foundry Lofts are under construction Carnegie Avenue at E. 72nd and will include up to 2 bedroom apartments, including micro-studios (how tiny can you live?) – opening end of ‘22
  • WOW, the progress on Ascent at Top of the Hill is really changing the whole look for those driving up Cedar Hill into Cleveland Heights from University Circle. In addition to 260 apartments and a 500 car garage, there will be more retail and restaurants on the first floor making the Cedar/Fairmount neighorhood more vibrant and we have a soft spot for this area as our offices were here for 11 years before we went virtual in 2020

New shops & restaurants:

We will be the first to admit that “new” means something different now as most haven’t explored our region as often as they did pre-COVID:

  • Four new tenants coming to Pinecrest including CLE Fount leather bags, sushi w/a spot already in Aurora, kids’ trendy clothes and a Cbus based restaurant. Fun to have a mix of national, state, and local shops and restaurants
  • We have heard good reviews about Keep the Change Kitchen Collective, Ben Bebenroth’s latest offering. Take out with style and a nod to fresh ingredients
  • Leavened Artisan Bread & Pastry in Tremont has the most amazing breads…..their head baker cut his teeth at On the Rise in Cleveland Heights and ventured out on his own to bring great bread to the near west side! The sourdough bread with olives as worth the drive
  • All Saints Public House in Gordon Square Arts District which opened just weeks before the shelter in place order in February 2020 has managed to survive and know why – it’s good! This space has had many iterations (Snickers, Reddstone, Grafitti) but this one just feels like it’s going to stick
  • BrewDog opened in early December on the Scranton Peninsula in The Flats and while we probably won’t be dining on patios for a few months, this 10,000 SF bar & brewpub feels airy and bright and 50% of the menu is either vegan or vegetarian appealing to a wide swath of patrons
  • Chagrin Falls new places to try: Sushi Junki just opened up in the historic district right next to soon to be open Jojo’s (former Gamekeeper’s Tavern) and Pub Frato (old Raintree) is a fun one to try; PonyBoys modern Mexican  and another “coming soon” is M Bevy (old Wine Bar).  And second location for Brazilian restarurant  Batuqui (other spot is on Larchmere near Shaker Square)

Parks, greenspace, public art…..

  • Loved this story on Western Reserve Land Conservancy who quickly stepped in to buy the 28 acre lakefront parcel that is currently a mobile home park to insure that the land is developed with public access and the best use for the community in mind. Thanks to WRSC’s Matt Zone and Greater Cleveland Partnership’s Yvette Ittu for your big picture thinking! We are dreaming of more greenspace and lakefront access for everyone in the region!
  • Want to see a bald eagle’s nest (and hopefully the bird as well)…..take a hike on the Ohio & Erie Canal Towpath from either Canalway Center or from the trailhead  on Harvard Avenue and just about at the half way point from either side, very visible this time of year with no leaves in the trees, you’ll come to a section of the trail where there are almost always a few people with binoculars as they look at the huge nest in the trees off the side of the trail by high tension wire supports.   This paved all purpose trail hugs the Cuyahoga RIver and was a vital part of commerce a century ago but is now just a peaceful quiet path thru woods and meadows just minutes from Tremont’s Steelyard Commons shopping center. If you need better directions, just comment on this and we’ll get you there
  • If your Work-From-Home new life has you venturing into downtown less frequently, we get it. Now we might have to make an effort to go places that we drove past on our commute to an office. But you have to drive thru MidTown and check and check out the 19 new murals created during the Cleveland Walls Festival. Most are clustered on Euclid and Carnegie and here is a recent blog post of ours that shares more on these former blank walls that are now vibrant splashes of color. Public art is a great way to beautify a city!
  • And speaking of murals, Stamy Paul’s Grafitti heART has a mural registry so that we can keep track of public art on walls around our town and most recently WRDSMTH (local grafitti artist) added 18 new murals in the theme of How Do I Love Thee? How about giving the person you love most a coupon for Christmas that will be you leading them on a driving tour of all the murals in CLE for Valentine’s Day….wouldn’t that be romantic?
  • The new Lindsey Family Play Space near the upper picnic pavilion at Edgewater Park is one of the best playgrounds in the region!

photo courtesy Cleveland Metroparks

  • If you haven’t walked or biked the new Wendy Park Bridge – here’s a fun hike. Put the address for the Harbor Inn (classic old bar in The Flats) into your GPS and park there and then walk across the street to the trailhead for the Cleveland Foundation’s Centennial Trail – it will take you to Wendy Park via a connector trail and ther are amazing views and you will walk OVER the Cuyahoga River and OVER the  always busy railroad tracks with Amtrak and freight trains headed to Chicago.

A few newish hotels:

Getting good reviews from our candidates and might inspire you to be a tourist in your own town and spend a night out…..

    • Hotel Indigo Huron Rd, across from entrance of Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse’s parking garage, formerly a Radisson – great for after a Cavalier’s game or a show at Playhouse Square
    • Residence Inn, University Circle on E. 101st Street just north of Chester and ideal for an overnight after a Cleveland Orchestra Christmas concert or dinner out in Little Italy

Other Interesting ways to learn about our region:

  • The Cleveland Leadership Center is well known for it’s flagship programs like Leadership Cleveland, Cleveland Bridge Builders and the Civic Leadership Institute, but they also have a fabulous YouTube channel that has an archive of  all of their past The Way Forward Leader Lunch Break. Begun in 2020 during the pandemic as a way to continue to do what they do best, connect people who care about our region with the local resources and contacts they need to make things happen, these are quick 30 minute conversations between one of the CLC staff (usually CEO Marianne Crosely or Executive VP, Rachel Ciomcia) with an incredibly diverse group of people from every sector of Greater Cleveland. The topical videos recently included insights on the Rock Hall induction ceremonies with Rock Hall CEO Greg Harris and how Cleveland is helping to resettle Afghan refugees with Patrick Kearns, Executive Director of Refugee Response. Take 30 minutes and learn something new about a niche of Cleveland you might not be familiar with.
  • We  have really enjoyed following Haley Mills, Founder of The Cleveland Bucket List and she recently launched a sister Bucket List for Akron; website and an Instagram page! Get inspired with new ideas for how to explore your own town.
  • Have you listened to CLE Food podcast? 20-30 min features of small business owners and worth a listen. Try this one from one of our favs: Balancing Profit and Values, a Conversation with Ben Bebenroth
  • Students and residents confront the “invisible line” around CWRU’s campus. and get to know one another. When is the last time you stepped out of your comfort zone to meet a neighbor who didn’t think you had much in common with? Here is a great example of how that is happening Know Your Neighbors

If you have interesting info to share with EA, let us know. If you have a recruit of newcomer at your organization that you think could benefit from a day of highly customized exploration of Cleveland or Akron led by EA, call us. Happy Holidays!