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America's Coolest Cities

25 September, 2010 11:52  Erin Erin

America the beautiful, the trendy, the place to be. Forbes, one of the premiere magazines on business and finance, recently put out a list ranking trendy metros from 1 to 10.

Criteria

"Coolness" can be a tough measure to rank. Market research company Harris Interactive was responsible for conducting the poll. Approximately 2,000 adults from across the U.S. were asked which of the 40 largest metropolitan statistical areas in the country were "the coolest". Rankings by poll takers were paired with number of bars, nightclubs, restaurants, museums, galleries, live theater venues and sports stadiums in each city using data from AOL City Guides.

Most of the cities on our list have seen their coolness ranking change little over the past four years. Many of the cities have one thing in common: an abundance of things to do. Many cities ranking directly correlates with number of venues. The Minneapolis–St. Paul metro ranks 12th for the number of nightlife venues and 14th on our coolness list. However, there are notable exceptions to this comparison.

Top 10 Cities

1. New York City
There is a tie! New York, NY has held the title for the past three years. It attracts 47 million visitors annually. It is the USA's largest city and is home to some of the finest and best loved restaurants, museums, sports venues, bars and theaters.
Interestingly, single people were the largest group voting NYC into number one, with Vegas taking the title for married couples.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 37,851 (Rank 1)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 1,339 (Rank 1)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 2,268 (Rank 1)

1. Vegas
Married people agree- Vegas is number one! The city of sin has had a tough time dealing with the economic downturn and a particularly difficult real estate crash, but Vegas still draws 36 million tourists per year. Respondents between 18 and 34 years old thought Las Vegas was cooler than New York. However, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority still estimates the average age of vacationers in 2009 at 50.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 3,928 (Rank 24)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 52 (Rank 37)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 149 (Rank 27)

3. Seattle
Known for its java, technological prowess, and beautiful cityscape, Seattle proves there is a lot going on after hours. Several major sports franchises, a plethora of happy hours and bars, plus diverse and eclectic neighborhoods are all elements that help place Seattle above the rest.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 6,278 (Rank 13)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 192 (Rank 11)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 341 (Rank 13)

4. Chicago
The all American city of Chicago is at the epicenter of "cool midwest". Along with a phenomenal sports scene, there are many notable cultural venues. The city hits the mark of comfortable cool.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 17,144 (Rank 3)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 509 (Rank 2)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 698 (Rank 4)

5. San Francisco
The city by the bay is both peppy and hip. San Francisco also ranks in the top four for all 3 categories. For tourists and residents, the second densest US city has something for everyone.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 14,355 (Rank 4)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 466 (Rank 4)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 1,395 (Rank 3)

6. Orlando
Florida is a mecca for people looking for tropical USA. Orlando's nightlife sets it apart as a hot city that never sleeps.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 2,989 (Rank 29)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 59 (Rank 34)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 115 (Rank 32)

7. San Diego
This picturesque pacific metropolis is known for its laid back, beach vibe. Interestingly, San Diego only has just over half as many nightclubs, bars and restaurants as Philadelphia, which ranked at 24.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 5,569 (Rank 14)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 174 (Rank 14)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 359 (Rank 12)

8. Los Angeles
Known throughout the world for the glitz of Hollywood, LA has a lot to offer, including cool. The city ranks in the top 3 for all three categories.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 23,583 (Rank 2)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 476 (Rank 3)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 1,441 (Rank 2)

9. Miami
The second city from Florida recently jumped from 19th place all the way to 9th. A cutting-edge art scene, hip galleries, and a never ending night scene have only increased the city's popularity.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 10,098 (Rank 6)
Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 194 (Rank 10)
Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 626 (Rank 5)

10. Washington, D.C.
The nation's capitol has a growing culinary scene and is a hotbed of social activity.
Number of Restaurants, Bars and Clubs: 8,137 (Rank 11) Number of Museums, Theaters, Stadiums and Arenas: 324 (Rank 7) Number of Galleries and Concert Venues: 409 (Rank 9)

Links

For Forbes's story: http://www.forbes.com/2010/08/02/coolest-cities-metros-lifestyle-real-estate-cool.html

For pictures of the cities including stats: http://www.forbes.com/2010/08/02/coolest-cities-metros-lifestyle-real-estate-cool_slide.html

 

Erin Ball, Freelance writer from Seattle

   



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         EasyExpat on

I Love NY [Reply]

I love New York because it makes me nostalgic and they have hands down the BEST Italian ices. Ha. Love the shops, the rush of people constantly moving, driving through the city (never been upstate or to the 'burbs of NY), and a million other things.

  Office     01 Oct 2010, 04:53

[Reply]

I'm completely agree with the author about the coolest cities of the US. However as for me I will give my vot for the Washington DC. Why? Can't answer. I just like it.

  Apartments Kiev     08 Oct 2010, 19:05

San Diego is special [Reply]

I lived half a year in San Diego and I absolutely loved it. There is a lot on offer for young and old. You can feel the love in San Diego. In my opinion it should rank better than 7.

  Marie     12 Oct 2010, 03:22