Edmonton Economic Development Corporation

Edmonton Economic Development Corporation

August 30, 2011 12:15 ET

Edmonton Economic Development Corporation: Spend a Summer Day on 124 Street

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Aug. 30, 2011) - There are still plenty of good summer days ahead. Start off your day with an intimate stroll down one of Edmonton's most picturesque and distinctly European areas: 124 Street. Start with brunch at one of the 124 Street area's many quaint bistros. Then break for coffee at the Duchess bakery. Their Americanos are incredible, but you'll be more than tempted by their treats.

The Duchess bakery is a labour of love, a finely-researched truly European bakery that makes all their products daily, from scratch, no mixes. They strive to make their pastries with the highest quality ingredients possible, including specially imported butter and delicious Valrhona chocolate from France. In other words: go ahead and treat yourself.

Whatever kind of leisurely summer day you're looking for, you'll find it in the 124 Street area: with art galleries, fine dining and restaurants, health and beauty, and stores offering everything from high end fashion to giftware and home décor. Or as Helen Nolan of the 124 Street Business Association puts it, "Taste, Style, Character...we have it all!"

Nolan just returned to Edmonton after traveling to Europe. When she first came back to the 124 Street area, she was moved by the very thing you'll be moved by. "That European flavour… 124th Street has that!" she says.

She's right. Walk about the cobbled sidewalks under the decorative street-lights and you'll quickly discover that the 124 Street area invites each passerby to linger, to explore and to discover the charm of an area not much bigger than the heart of a small town.

There is something beautifully, blissfully old-fashioned about the 124 Street area. "What you'll find here are many unique small businesses that believe in customer service and repeat business," says Nolan. "That's the backbone of what's keeping the economy going. Small shops like these don't have the advertising power that the big box stores have, but they know that service is the key to success."

Gallery Walk

One of the best ways to spend your leisurely summer day stroll in the 124 Street area is to do some fantastic window shopping (and maybe even some buying) in the area's famed Gallery Walk. There is no shortage of art galleries in the area, with galleries such as: Agnes Bugera Gallery, Bearclaw Gallery, Peter Robertson Gallery, Scott Gallery, Snap, West End Gallery, and the new kid on the black: Daffodil Gallery. "It's just opened and it's already making a name for itself," says Nolan.

The Fine Art of Dining

Anywhere you look in the 124 Street area, you'll find another restaurant… and another! There's d'Lish Urban Kitchen and Wine Bar, Café de Ville, Urban Diner, and the high end cuisine of Blue Pear, for starters. If your tastes tend toward the Mediterranean, one of the greatest spots in the area is Dahlias. "It's THE place to have your lunch!" says Nolan, who raves about their sandwiches. Try the smoked beef sandwich, made with only the freshest ingredients.

Nolan raves equally about The Dish. In particular, she speaks highly of their "secret garden. I've taken people from out of town there and they love it!" (Of course, it's no secret now…)

If you love Greek food, the 124 Street area offers a number of delectable choices, with restaurants like Koutouki and Cosmo's (which has an eye-catching mural on the side of the building, yet another must-see in this already wildly scenic area). There's also Hellas Foods, a Greek grocery store. "I buy my olive oil there," says Nolan, "and their food is delicious."

Speaking of delicious, here's a tip: when you go to the Duchess bakery, order the hummingbird. It's banana with cream cheese icing. Incredible!

High Fashion

To say that the 124 Street area is "fashionable" is an understatement. There are plenty of noteworthy fashion stores and designers in the area, including: Thread Hill, Black and Bold, Pear Tree, and Floc Boutique. What's particularly interesting is how they work together. "If they don't have a particular brand, they'll suggest another store in the area that has it," says Nolan.

Once again, good old-fashioned service seems to be in style. And it's not just the fashion stores who are getting involved. Restaurants in this area are promoting little fashion shows too.

It's that sort of attitude that best sums up the charms of 124 Street. It's all about that feeling you get when you walk into a shop and the person behind the counter instantly knows (and remembers) what your taste is. When you walk down the streets in this picturesque area on a summer day, you truly do get that sense. "And when you see the beautiful flower barrels we have on our streets, that helps too!" adds Nolan.

Spend a summer day – any summer day – in the 124 Street area and you'll fall in love with its taste, style and character. Incidentally, come September and October, when this area is awash with the crisp colours of autumn leaves, it is once again a sight to behold!

About Edmonton Tourism

Edmonton Tourism promotes Greater Edmonton as the destination of choice for tourism, conventions, major events and film production and is a division of Edmonton Economic Development Corporation (EEDC). For more information, visit www.edmonton.com. Learn more about Edmonton through the stories of people who've experienced it at www.edmontonstories.ca.

Contact Information

  • Edmonton Economic Development Corporation/Edmonton Tourism
    Bernie Borgeson
    Director of Marketing, External Relations
    Edmonton, Alberta T5J 1P7
    780.969.0462
    bborgeson@edmonton.com

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