Boyd Farrow

There has always been much to love about historic St. Louis, with its charming brownstone neighborhoods, wide sidewalks and pretty churches. But many of these neighborhoods are being enriched further as eye-catching new hotels, modish retail spots and striking cultural hubs keep pace with the city’s ambitions. You can still eat the best ribs in America here, or grab a Bud in the biergarten of the original brewery, but increasingly you can visit St. Louis and find gourmet restaurants, indie taprooms and cocktail bars that can compete with the country’s finest. Even the city’s iconic Gateway Arch suddenly finds itself the center of a brand-new national park, with a 150,000-square-foot museum and visitor hub.