Going Glasgow

Scotland’s hip and happening city

By: Yvonne Horn

Brash and improvisational Glasgow is on a roll, revealing itself as a trendy and multi-cultural city for connoisseurs.

In the 1880s when Glasgow’s industries exported products all over the world, and the River Clyde was lined with shipyards the city center exploded with a grand exhibition of style, producing Victorian architecture at its most buoyant and romantic.

Today, the city’s enthusiastic policy of advocating renovation over demotion has resulted in gloriously revamped classical buildings endowed by Glasgow’s early tycoons. Museums abound as well as theater, opera, symphony and ballet in these rejuvenated architectural masterpieces.

Not to be missed are the Burrell Collection, displaying the 9,000 works collected by Sir William Burrell; the Gallery of Modern Art, with its mind-bending eclectic collection; and the Mackintosh House, a recreation of the world-renowned architect, designer and artist Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s Glasgow home attached to the Hunterian Gallery.

In July, the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, the most visited in the UK outside London, is emerging from a more than $52 million refurbishment.

Nightlife thrives in the West End, particularly along Ashton Lane, and in chic Merchant City, the revitalized town center. Advise your clients to pick up List magazine for the latest in entertainment offerings.

To experience Glasgow’s beloved tea ritual, few places are more adorable than Miss Cranston’s and the Willow Tea Rooms.

Glasgow offers many places to stay in and around downtown. Among those to consider are the sleek Radisson in the city center; the Kelvingrove, ideally situated in the West End; One Devonshire Garden, an elegant West End townhouse; and McLay’s Bed & Breakfast, spread across four townhouses on trendy Renfrew Street.

While clients will find Glasgow to be among the most walkable cities, public transport is clean and reliable, including the “Clockwork Orange,” as the subway is known because of its color. For short hops, taxis are relatively inexpensive.

Glasgow’s charm unlike its rival, Edinburgh can be found in its laid-back, creative and visitor-friendly vibe.