ZAP Wanderlust: Madison, Wisconsin

Chicago this time of year is so much fun, especially in November and December with the holidays. But sometimes it’s nice to get out of the city and sit back, relax and unwind. So naturally, I head home to Madison, Wisconsin, for a nice long weekend. Madison is the perfect place for a staycation because it’s roughly a 2.5 hour drive without traffic and there are buses that run directly from downtown Chicago that take you straight into Madison. Not to mention, Madison is surrounded by lakes that are breathtakingly beautiful. But mostly I’m just looking forward to curling up by the fire and spending time with friends and family.

Photo via:  @sallyecarpenter

Photo via: @sallyecarpenter

Food: Madison is known for their restaurant scene. There are so many great places to eat it can almost be overwhelming. Some of my favorite local hotspots include Tornado Room for steak, Cento for an amazing Charcuterie plate and The Old Fashioned for cheesecurds. Tornado Room is also great at night because they have an awesome late night menu from 10:00 p.m. until 1:00 a.m. with half price steaks and bottles of wine!

Shopping & Fun: Madison has a great downtown area, especially around the capital square. It’s fun to walk around and poke into the different shops on State Street. If you want to head out of the downtown area, I would recommend shopping at Hilldale Mall, it was just recently renovated and includes great shops. There you can also check out a movie at Sundance Theatre. The chairs are so comfy & the popcorn is delicious.

Now where to stay? The Edgewater Hotel is by far my favorite place to stay in Madison. It’s recently renovated and is located directly downtown. The property is located on Lake Mendota and the views are beautiful! If you’re looking for some relaxation, be sure to stop by and check out the Spa at the Edgewater, their 90 minute signature facial is my favorite.

Photo via:  @theedgeh2o

Photo via: @theedgeh2o

Sally Carpenter, Summer/Fall 2016 Intern