Spotlight on Baltimore
Plastic Surgeon and Baltimore local Dr James E Vogel reveals the hottest spots to stay, dine and explore in his home town of Baltimore.
DESCRIBE WHAT YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT THE CITY OF BALTIMORE?
It is a very easy (15 minute) drive to get downtown and enjoy the city from the county residential district. Once there, a variety of distinct neighborhoods await; trendy, historic, Italian, waterfront (see below).
WHAT ARE THE MUST-SEES THAT VISITORS SHOULDN’T MISS WHEN TRAVELLING TO BALTIMORE?
Baltimore is the largest independent city in the United States, the backdrop of Hairspray and the birthplace of baseball legend Babe Ruth, so there is lots to see and do.
I always take my visitors to Inner Harbor, Harbor East, Science Center, Aquarium, Raven and Oriole Sporting events and the stadium.
WHAT ARE THE THREE BEST EATING SPOTS IN THE CITY?
Balitmore is renowned for its variety of authentic cuisines and my personal favourites are:
Tio Pepe, 10E Franklin St Baltimore 21202 – Spanish cuisine Ambassador Dining Room,
3811 Canterbury Rd Baltimore 21218 – Indian cuisine
Ouzo Bay, 1000 Lancaster St Baltimore 21202 – Greek cuisine ‘
THE BEST KEPT LOCAL’S SECRET?
Best crab cakes in the world are served in Baltimore!
As the souvenir t-shirt states ‘Maryland is for crabs’, and these crabs are blue crabs.
Here are some of my favourite crab places: Koco’s Pub, Pierpoint, Pappas and Gertrude’s.
WHAT’S THE MOST UNUSUAL OR UNIQUE PLACE TO VISIT?
Fort McHenry where Francis Scott Key wrote the Star Spangled Banner during an epic defense against a British Attack of Baltimore Harbor
WHERE WOULD YOU RECOMMEND VISITORS STAY?
I always recommend Four Seasons, Marriot Inner Harbor, Baltimore Harbor Hotel. AMP
Baltimore has always been a city of neighbourhoods, each an identity that can only be truly understood after years or generations of experience.
While still the destination of choice for young urban professionals looking for restaurants and nightlife, more of them are staying to get married and have kids.
A boom in the gaming and tech industries of nearby Silicon Hunt Valley has given this lush suburb, full of great restaurants and country charm, a new lease of life.
Nestled on the banks of the Patapsco River, Ellicott City’s walkable 19th-century Main Street remains a drawcard for visitors seeking antiques, one-of-a-kind shops, cozy restaurants, and an escape from suburban sprawl.
Steeped in history from the port to Fort McHenry, Federal Hill is eternally stylish.
Old and young, entrepreneurial and community-minded, blue-collar and bohemian: Hampden is an intriguing microcosm of Baltimore styles.
Once a no-man’s-land between the Inner Harbor, Little Italy, and Fells Point, this district has become Baltimore’s Soho – a destination for high-end boutiques, restaurants, and nightlife.
The cobblestone streets lined with history and urban charm in central Baltimore mark not only a cultural and epicurean center, but, increasingly, a family-friendly residential neighbourhood.
Launched a decade ago, Station North was the first area in the city to receive state designation as an Arts and Entertainment district. Today, the edgy arts neighborhood continues to blossom on North Avenue.
A college town situated at the edge of Baltimore City, Towson’s walkable downtown strikes a unique balance, serving students and professionals alike while maintaining the homey feel of leafy residential neighborhoods nearby.
WHAT LED YOU TO PURSUE PLASTIC SURGERY?
I always knew I wanted a surgical career and Plastic Surgery offered the widest variety of options within the specialty. Helping people improve their self esteem by reconstructing their appearance and function through surgery was very appealing.
WHERE DID YOU STUDY?
Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, University of North Carolina, and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT YOUR WORK IN PLASTIC SURGERY?
Seeing happy patients return following surgery
HOW HAS BEEN YOUR EXPERIENCE PRACTICING IN BALTIMORE?
It has been fantastic. I have been able to combine the benefits and flexibility of private practice with the academic stimulation of the Johns Hopkins Plastic Surgery training program.