About this trip idea
Allow 2 days.
Clear your calendar for a couple days, grab the girlfriends, make sure there’s room in the trunk, and head to Columbus for a mega-shopping adventure.
Plenty of Shopping to Suit Everyone’s Taste
Spend hours at Edinburgh Premium Outlets , home to 85 top-name stores with discount prices. Shop Ann Taylor, Loft, Nine West, Coach, and The Cosmetics Company for yourself. Cruise through Carter’s and the Nike Factory Store for the folks you left at home. Antique lovers can head next door to the Exit 76 Antique Mall ; as the largest in the state, its 600 booths promise hours of browsing for that elusive item. If you like jewelry, don’t miss the rows full of everything from high-end estate jewelry to kitschy collectibles. Just a few minutes away in downtown Columbus, find one-of-a-kind shops like Lockett’s Ladies Shop and Baker’s Fine Gifts. Then wander through Art in the Heartland and Stillframes Gallery for fine art photography prints or unusual items like dulcimers. The Columbus Visitors Center also has many unique gifts, many made by Indiana Artisans. And while you’re at the Visitors Center…
Learn Why Columbus is Nationally Ranked for its Architecture Tour
The American Institute of Architects ranks Columbus 6th in the nation for architecture innovation and design, and Smithsonian magazine said it’s “a veritable museum of modern architecture.” No wonder. The 70 buildings and pieces of public art you’ll see are by top international names like I.M. Pei, Eliel and Eero Saarinene, Dale Chihuly (one of his chandelier works of art is at the Visitors Center) and Richard Meier. You can hop on the bus for a two-hour narrated tour or get instructions for the cell phone tour and go at your own pace.
After the tour, stop for a bite to eat at Zaharakos recently restored in its original 1900 building. Enjoy a sandwich and fountain treat as you listen to the 1908 Welte orchestrion self-playing pipe organ. Sleep in one of the city’s most famous downtown homes.
The Inn at Irwin Gardens Opens a Famous Mansion to You
The vision behind Columbus’ architecture prowess was J. Irwin Miller, great-nephew of the businessman who had this mansion built in 1864. Now the five large rooms of this four-generation home are open to guests. Each has its own sitting room and private bath. Wander the two-acre estate to take in the exquisite maze garden, based on the Casa degli Innamorati in Pompeii. Awaken hungry for a mouthwatering breakfast served in the formal dining room.