THE FULLEST Guide to Kansas City
In our Kansas City City Guide, we were incredibly fortunate to have local Gina Holmberg share all of her top picks. A lover of food, style, art, vintage, interiors, and clean beauty, her guide is brimming with the best of Kansas City’s wellness studios, fashion boutiques, restaurants, and galleries. Gina herself is a makeup artist and owner of clean beauty and homewares boutique, Welwythn. She moved to Kansas City (KC) from Los Angeles fifteen years ago. As Gina pulled together this extensive guide, she said “it has been amazing to watch this city grow and expand, yet stay true to its roots. I am so excited to show you a few of my favorite places — KC has so much to offer!” We’re pretty sure that after reading this — you’ll be excited for a Midwest weekend away too.
Located in the heart of the Crossroads Art District, No Vacancy is a guest house and gathering space. There are eight beautifully designed studios to choose from, as well as a common area to gather, work, or connect with other guests. The attention to detail here is felt in everything you experience down to the palo santo wafting in the air.
When I first moved to KC, I was really missing all of the amazing boutique hotels that LA had to offer. The Crossroads Hotel was the answer! Also located in the Crossroads District, this gorgeous hotel offers several rooms including the famous Pendergast Suite which provides plenty of space, a pool table, and incredible views of the city. Also housed in the hotel is the Lazia Italian Restaurant, XR Café, and Percheron rooftop bar.
Located in one of Kansas City’s historic buildings, this hotel oozes history. The Kansas City Club was established in this space in 1882. The club was originally organized for the “purpose of cultivating social and business associations among the leading business professionals in Kansas City.” Many of the original features of the club can be found in the hotel including the champagne bar, which is now used as the Lobby Café. Hotel Kansas City is also the home of one of my fave restaurants, The Town Company — more on that soon!
Nestled between the Power and Light District and River Market in downtown Kansas City, this hotel is such a gem. Part museum, part boutique stay, it was voted the number one hotel in the Midwest. Plus, it has an incredible restaurant, The Savoy, known for its famous patrons including Harry Truman, Theodore Roosevelt, William Taft, and John D. Rockefeller.
We are incredibly lucky to have Chef Micheal Smith in Kansas City. Farina is his most recent restaurant, and it’s the place I frequent the most. Chef Smith seeks out the freshest ingredients from local growers and farmers, and the fish and shellfish are flown in daily. Recently, I sat in the gallery part of the restaurant and I don’t know if there’s anything better than oysters and art while dining!
The Antler Room is known for small plates using local ingredients. The menu is always changing, the cocktails are always unique, and their wine list is very trustworthy. My husband loves sitting at the bar, sharing a few plates, and chatting with the knowledgeable team about the menu.
Enjoy is a wellness dream. You can find tonics, smoothies, acai bowls, cold-pressed juices, and all around incredible clean food on the menu. We frequent Enjoy at least once a week for breakfast, lunch, or dinner — sometimes all three! My kids love the little chicks gluten-free chicken tenders, my husband loves the Mexicali wrap, while I am a huge fan of the classico salad. Don’t forget to grab a cookie-and enjoy.
Another weekly destination is Billie’s Grocery. Located in the historic Luzier building in the Midtown area, Billie’s serves mostly organic whole food eats and treats that all can enjoy — no matter the dietary restriction. I am especially grateful that we have a place for my kiddos to get a grass-fed burger and fries not cooked in a terrible oil, as well as get a gluten-free baked good — our favorite being the donuts!
Located in the gorgeous Hotel Kansas City, The Town Company was voted one of KC’s best restaurants, and I couldn’t agree more. My husband and I took the Welwythn team there for our holiday dinner, ordered two of everything, and wished we’d ordered three. The menu changes throughout the year, but if the radicchio salad is available, it’s an absolute must! The entire experience was a delight from the ambiance, to the team, cocktails, and food.
A little off the beaten path, Culinaria is located in Lawrence, KS and is one of the area’s best kept ‘secrets.’ What started as a catering business in 2009 grew to a weekend-only restaurant in 2017. Located in one of Lawrence’s most historic buildings, their Mediterranean cuisine is made from scratch, authentic, and delicious. There are plenty of vegetarian options, including my favorite small plate, the beets and tehina. If you can snag a table on the charming patio, even better.
Typically when a restaurant first opens, there is a period of time where the kinks need to be ironed out a bit. This is most definitely not the case with Earl’s. Just opened in May, Earl’s is my new go-to spot. Considered an American bar and grill, it feels more like a New York or Chicago neighborhood spot that places an emphasis on shellfish. It’s also the perfect place to meet a friend for a dozen oysters on the half shell at the bar, or a date night cozied up on the banquette for dinner. Our highlights were the peri peri chicken, oysters, and the romaine salad (which was pretty much perfect).
Welwythn is a clean beauty and lifestyle shop in the Prairie Village area. We carry the best of the best in clean beauty which includes THE FULLEST’s Inheal™ probiotic saffron milk bath and Exheal™ soothing saffron salt bath (which make incredible gifts by the way)!
Our mission was to create a beautiful space filled with gorgeous clean products that have been vetted for hours by us — so you don’t have to. We also wanted a well-rounded experience, so if lotions, potions, and lipsticks aren’t your thing, we have an incredible pantry selection, a sweet assortment of books, clean elevated candles, incense, and beautiful ceramics.
Finefolk’s Instagram “about me” sums it up perfectly, “A shop and studio offering considered and elevated goods for the discerning woman.” Every piece in the shop, from a Lauren Manoogian sweater, a pair of Chimala denim, or the Emily Johnson art on the walls is thoughtfully chosen by its owner Leslie Fraley. Leslie’s attention to detail is also felt when she’s pinning the sleeve on the shirt you’re trying on, to make it perfect, to make it yours. Finefolk is where I spend my birthday money before it’s even hit my bank account.
I love a brand that is thoughtful, tells a story, and isn’t overwhelming. Pearl and Palm is that shop. Here you will find independent designers such as Anaak, Maryam Nassir Zadeh, and Cordera. While technically an online shop, you can find Pearl and Palm popping up all over KC, and you can find yourself wanting every piece.
Golden and Pine is a dreamy home décor destination in the Prairie Village Shops (and also our dear neighbors). They offer ethically sourced goods from all over the globe for every room in your home. There’s always a new bowl, set of glassware, or couch that I have my eye on. Interior design services are also offered.
Clairvaux is a specialty boutique with a whole lot of style. Located in the Fairway Shops, here you’ll find established and emerging designers such as Isabel Marant, Rag and Bone, The Great, and Staud to name a few. Although for me, the thing I love most is the Clairvaux team! The diversity in the age range of the lovely women that work there is both refreshing and helpful! It’s so awesome to see the same shirt on a 20-something as well as a chic 60-something.
Find yourself in a great mood at Big Mood. One of KC’s best shops in my humble opinion, Big Mood carries wines from small family owned and operated farms that have a commitment to using organic and/or biodynamic farming practices. Every time we visit, we leave with something new and suggested by the owner Richard (who never lets us down).
Duet is the sweetest little modern gift shop but be warned — you will pick up something for yourself as well. If you’re looking for something for that special someone, you will find it here. Ceramics, candles, incense holders, and the perfect little mezcal glasses are the items we usually find ourselves picking up at every visit. This shop and studio hybrid is the home of The Object Enthusiast, a local ceramicist; and there’s always an amazing artist featured in the gallery.
Do Good helps you feel good as you shop as you end up helping two amazing causes. Do Good accepts clothing donations, but this isn’t just any resale shop. Here you can find incredible designers both present and vintage. I have found vintage Chanel, Escada, Oscar De La Renta, and more. Proceeds go to Wayside Waifs, Kansas City’s largest no-kill animal adoption center, and Kids TLC, an incredible organization offering support for families with autism, developmental disabilities, trauma, and psychological issues.
Also one of our neighbors, The Body Lab is a boutique fitness studio featuring the Lagree fitness method that utilizes the Megaformer. The high-intensity, low-impact workout combines Pilates, resistance training, and cardio to strengthen, tighten, and tone the body. If you’re looking for the most kick-butt, shirt drenching class around, you have found it!
You may be familiar with the incredible botanical-based body and skincare brand, but in KC we are lucky to have its founder, Alexia, located here. Alexia is an esthetician with healing hands and years of experience. Her signature facials are so reflective of who she is as a person: thoughtful, calming, and caring. After a treatment I leave lifted, glowing, and loved on. Give yourself the gift of a microcurrent series — it’s one of her areas of expertise and (no longer) my little secret. You’re welcome.
Located in the Crossroads Arts District, Blue Gallery is a modern gallery showcasing a range of work from emerging, local, and national artists in a stunning, light-filled space. Owner Kelly Kuhn is extremely knowledgeable and passionate about the artists and the pieces she selects for the space, and I highly recommend attending an exhibition if you can.
You could spend an entire afternoon at this stunning 75 acre, historical park. The park is well-known locally as being a major site for the Battle of Westport where Confederate forces were routed by Union forces in the area in which the park is now located. Enjoy a walk around the trail, a picnic on the greens, a stroll through the rose gardens, or visit the garden center for a horticultural exhibit. There is also a playground, spray park, and tennis courts on the property.
The Nelson is such a gift to Kansas City, known for its impressive collections from all over the world, especially its extensive collection of Asian art. The museum expanded in 2007 with the iconic Bloch building, which is home to modern and contemporary works. Be sure to walk the grounds, enjoy the sculpture garden, and then grab a bite at the museum’s restaurant, Rozzelle Court. Designed in the style of a 15th century Italian courtyard, you forget you’re in the Midwest for a bit.
This ones for the dudes. Buffalo Mane has all of the bells and whistles of a traditional barber shop with a modern flair. Home of KC’s best barbers, sip on a whiskey while you get cleaned up for the night. The shop has such a neighborhood Cheers vibe to it — you might not want to head to the next destination.
Don’t let the name fool you. All of the areas on your face that you wish to improve will be addressed but practitioner Amy Satterfield also treats the whole body. Amy has spent years studying Traditional Chinese Medicine as well as nutritional studies, and can really help hone in on imbalances both physically and emotionally. Holistic harmony.
If you happen to be in KC the first weekend of the month, here’s an insider’s tip: rent a U-Haul. Urban Mining is a vintage lover’s dream. Here you will find furniture, lighting, art, objects, clothing, and more from over 40 of KC’s local vendors that search high and low to bring the treasures straight to us.