Glasgow is a city that continues to bask in its previous City of Culture status; embracing multi-cultural diversity in every way from the many arts venues, galleries and festivals it plays host to – via the colourful fusion of food and drink in its wide and varied restaurants and bars – over to its well-earned reputation as Scotland’s most stylish city.
Book your stay at the newly refurbished Travelodge Glasgow Central hotel and find yourself in the heart of the city’s famous Style Mile; otherwise known as the ‘golden Z’ – where a criss-cross of pedestrianized streets burst to the brim with High Street favourites and flagship stores – including Scotland’s only Forever 21, all fabulous and fluorescent glass-fronted with super speedy catwalk inspired fast fashion; quirky shopping malls (Princes Square is a must-visit if only for a gawp at the incredible intricate ironwork Peacock that casts its eyes over the city’s busy Buchanan Street) – and some seriously desirable designer wear in the Beverly Hills style boutiques of Ingram Street, where you can at once be seduced by the delicate tease of Agent Provocateur’s famous window displays and fall for the swagger of Oasis frontman Liam Gallagher’s exclusive Pretty Green boutique.
And while Glasgow has been crowned the best shopping city out of London, it’s not just its shops that merit this city its famous ‘Scotland with Style’ status.
Glasgow really is a city that knows how to beguile. Cast your eyes upwards and you’ll be truly inspired by its breath-taking architecture. Beautiful Victorian facades where tiny little door-fronts become tall, quirky hat rack style buildings, sit side-by-side with the darker Neo Gothic sights of the city’s vibrant Merchant City, known to most for its eclectic mix of traditional whisky bars, Scottish fusion restaurants, burlesque style clubs and even vintage curio shops and vegan rock joints. Those in-the-know can follow a secret ley-line to the epic Glasgow Cathedral – home to the tomb of St Mungo (he of Let Glasgow Flourish fame) – and where brave visitors can indulge in the beautiful stillness of the Necropolis with a free, downloadable heritage trail.
Perhaps most celebrated however is the work of one of Glasgow’s most famous sons – world-renowned Architect and Designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh. And where better to explore Mackintosh’s stunning and intricate ‘Glasgow Style’ than at two of the city’s most respected Arts institutions.
Enjoy a one-hour guided tour of the incredible Mackintosh building at Glasgow School of Art. Perhaps Mackintosh’s most famous masterpiece and certainly his largest commission, Glasgow School of Art is a busy, world-respected working school and former home to Turner Prize winning artists such as Martin Creed, lauded fashion designers including Jonathan Saunders – and even Doctor Who himself (actor Peter Capaldi). It regularly offers exciting ticketed fashion, textile and art degree shows to the public.
Mackintosh fans can also pay a visit to The Lighthouse – Scotland’s award-winning centre for Design and Architecture and an insightful glimpse into the origins of Mackintosh’s architectural career (his first public commission). This re-modernised warehouse and former 8,000 gallon water tank now homes an ever-changing gallery space packed with world-class exhibits, as well as a range of vintage fairs, fashion shows and music gigs. Visitors can even make a quick stop to the in-house gift shop to indulge in one of Scotland’s other famous creations – the Tunnock’s Teacake (!) – or at least a range of quirky giftware from tongue-in-cheek Glasgow designer Gillian Kyle, created in homage to the kitsch sugary snack.
For more information about Glasgow take a look at our Get Up & Go Guide