Townsend Wentz and his chef, Michael Millon, want people to think that A Mano is just some little neighborhood Italian restaurant. But don't be fooled. A Mano is really a poor man's Vetri — a place where remarkable precision and care are brought to classic Italian pastas and entrées, resulting in something uniquely modern and uniquely Philadelphian. 2244 Fairmount Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19130, amanophilly.com/.
Although Double Knot is getting all the love for being the cool new thing on the block, its next-door sister still kills it at happy hour, doing some of the same dishes you'll find at Double Knot (edamame dumplings, satay, kimchi fried rice) but with fewer crowds. 124 South 13th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19125, sampanphilly.com/#sampan.
Your mama may be Italian, but her meatballs can't hold a candle to Triangle Tavern's veal-beef-and-pork version. That's shocking, we know -- but so is the fact that the best meatballs in South Philly aren't at some storied red-gravy joint, but inside this reborn hipster bar on East Passyunk. 1338 South 10th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147, triangletavernphilly.com/.
We're talking rice noodles, lots of greens, roasted veggies, pickled daikon, zucchini, fresh herbs, lemongrass and pan-seared tofu (or shrimp, or even filet, if you insist) -- and it's at a bar, not some health-food store. You won't even miss your usual fried fill-in-the-blank. 501 North 13th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19123, theprohibitiontaproom.com/.
Anyone who thinks America's best Ashkenazi and Sephardic foods are locked up in some Lower East Side deli simply hasn't tasted the matzo brei and pastrami-style short ribs at this Rittenhouse newbie. And how a restaurant with a checkerboard-tile floor ends up with a cocktail bar this sexy is a Talmudic mystery. 1623 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103, abefisherphilly.com/.
Most of the 60,000 or so gently used items at this 17-year-old stalwart are, indeed, half their original price or less. Then there are new reads and rare works — some with a Philly provenance — all stocked by bibliophilic owners Shannon and Cathy Rutherford. 7 Manoa Shopping Center, 1305 West Chester Pike, Havertown, PA 19083, cathysbooks.com.
If you’re in a running rut and in need of views other than the Schuylkill River Trail, this virtual running challenge sneaks your routes through some of the area’s hidden gems — Wissahickon Valley Park, historic Valley Forge, the streets of West Philadelphia, and Brandywine Creek State Park. gorundiscover.com.
For $70, Skate the Foundry’s expert skateboarders will spend an hour one-on-one with your budding Lizzie Armanto or Tony Hawk at a variety of skate parks throughout the region. For $80, they’ll even come to your driveway. Because the coolest kid on the block is always the one who knows how to ollie. 120 Yorktown Plaza, Elkins Park, PA 19027, skatethefoundry.com.
You can hop from the TRX bands to the spin studio to an aerial yoga or barre class thanks to Paoli's new one-stop-shop fitness studio. The idea is to keep your mind and muscles busy with lots of workout options, accomplished (and then some) by way of more than 90 stellar classes a week. 21 Plank Avenue, Paoli, PA 19301, purenergystudio.com/.
The pet sitters here are all professionally trained (and some are even pet-CPR-certified yup, that's a thing), and will meet with you before the first official visit to get your pet's routine down before you take off.
Savvy shoppers (and interior designers) hit this outlet–and hit it often–to score up to 40 percent off on gorgeous chairs, chaises, sofas, soft goods, tables and lighting. Tips for the semi-savvy: Come prepared with room measurements, be ready to comb through a lot of inventory, and ask the staff about any unmarked sales. 2100 Route 38, Cherry Hill, NJ 08002, restorationhardware.com/.
As indie boutiques continue to shutter along this vaunted shopping row, this newly opened handmade furniture haven gives us hope. Hit it up for subtly curvilinear bed frames, leather-wrapped seats, and writing desks so inviting, they’re sure to inspire productivity. 1605 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103, thosmoser.com/.
You already know about the always-fun first-floor piano bar. But upstairs is a music-pumping hideaway where the city’s cool-kid creative types go to blow off some steam. Diverse, inclusive and hassle-free—a rare combination in a dance club these days. 243 South Camac Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107, tavernoncamac.com/.
Why go to Vegas when with as little as one week’s notice, you can get hitched in the company of up to 25 guests in a cozy, light-filled space on Spruce Street? Package rates vary, but each comes with an on-site officiant who definitely won’t be dressed like Elvis. 1209 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107, vauxstudio.com.
Anthony DeFazio and his team expertly handle all the annoying stuff that comes with owning a pool: chemicals, cleaning, repairs, and, in one case, evicting a pesky family of ducks. Plus, they answer texts and calls quickly. (We’re talking within the hour.) rockwaterpools.com.