Take Your Cues From the Concierge of Charlotte's Ballantyne Hotel

A top luxury hotel concierge shares his recommendations for exploring the Queen City.

Jay Serio, concierge at The Ballantyne, A Luxury Collection Hotel, in Charlotte, shares his advice on how to make the most out of a visit to the Queen City.

What do you love most about Charlotte? 

I love the diversity in and around Charlotte. You have some great restaurants of various ethnicities, as well as a diversity of activities. Whether it is hiking up Crowders Mountain, boating on Lake Norman, or museum-hopping around the city, there is something for everyone.

What stops should be on everyone's "bucket list" when they come here?

As so many of the landmarks and sights are so well-known and don’t need to be highlighted, I always recommend exploring South End. It has so much variety to offer and to me, is a must.

What's the best tip for seeing the city like a local?

Take yourself to NoDa. Wonderful local business owners, outstanding music options, an abundance of food and drink options, and great street art. It is all there in NoDa.

Any Instagram-worthy street murals?

Neptune at the Nook Apartments in Plaza Midwood is both visually pleasing and has a wonderful statement behind it.

Favorite local restaurant for a special occasion?

McNinch House in Fourth Ward is my favorite when it comes to celebrating a special occasion. The setting, a Victorian-era home, combined with the service, makes for the perfect restaurant.

For a guest looking for a night out on the town, what do you suggest?

I am a fan of the arts, so taking in a Broadway show at the Belk Theater and then heading to Fahrenheit for a drink and the view would be the ideal evening.

Best places to take kids of all ages?

NASCAR Hall of Fame and the Whitewater Center are fun for anyone.