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Roy Munson
09-26-2006, 04:36 PM
I'm making my maiden voyage to Indy next week, staying at Hyatt Regecy. What is it near? Is it within walking distance of interesting things? I'd like to visit Conseco...do they let people wander around in there when there isn't an event going on?

How about places to eat? Are there any good/famous food places nearby?

ABADays
09-26-2006, 04:47 PM
Everything is around you. Circle Center Mall is basically across the street. The RCA Dome is a block south. Conseco is 4 blocks east. St. Elmos Steakhouse is right across the street. Monument Circle is 2-3 blocks NE. You are right smack dab in the middle of everything.

Frank Slade
09-26-2006, 05:14 PM
Ok yes. I work in one of the Hyatt Regency business offices in the evenings.

Walking distance for just about everything. The sky walks are your friends. Try visiting Indydt.com or sites like that for a maps of the various skywalks.

Just a few blocks west of the Hyatt you can visit the NCAA Hall of Champions , the Eitlejorg and Indiana states museums.
Just west of that area is the The Indy Zoo.

If you want to walk to Conseco from the Hyatt, I always just cut through Circle Centre mall, and take the Nordstrom elevators down to
the street (that is between Georgia and Maryland).. Conseco is straight ahead one block.


Actually here is your map for the skywalks to avoid going outside
http://www.indydt.com/skywalkmap.html

And for the general area downtwon map
http://www.indydt.com/dtmap.html

Like ABA said you are right in the middle. Plenty of choices Restaurant wise, depending on your tastes.

Roaming Gnome
09-26-2006, 05:17 PM
Conseco Fieldhouse and the RCA Dome offer tours, but you have to call ahead to schedule them, I believe. Enjoy your stay.

lumber man
09-26-2006, 06:51 PM
Rock Bottom has some great beer and chicken-fried-chicken, you should check it out (unless you have already experienced it in your town).

PacerPerspective
09-26-2006, 09:18 PM
Have a blast. I've been to Indy twice and I can't wait to go back. You'll notice how friendly everyone is!

Naptown_Seth
09-26-2006, 09:45 PM
Conseco you can at least go into the main ticket foyer and look around, and the Starbucks is usually open even if the home court gift shop isn't. So definitely walk over no matter what.

St. Elmo's is the Indy-only steakhouse that is popular with teams during race weekend. One of the F1 teams apparently dropped a bundle in there last USGP weekend according to Derek Daly. Plenty of horseradish in their shrimp cocktail sauce, which I like.

It's on Illinois just south of the Hyatt (see Cantebury Suites hotel listed on downtown map).
http://www.stelmos.com/

Go to the canal/military park, which is NW of the Hyatt basically straight through the capital building. State Museum is cool (and main area is free I think). Right next door is the Eiteljorg Indian Museum (the deer fountain in front) and they serve food in their CANAL SIDE restaurant (sky city cafe) without charging museum admission. Definitely a cool location for a meal.
http://www.eiteljorg.org/ejm_planyourvisit/skycitycafe.asp

Monument Circle is usually a pleasant walk. Starbucks or grab a slice of pizza at the hole in the wall just around the corner.

Another fun restaraunt/bar if the weather holds nice is Bourbon St which is a few blocks up Indiana Ave. Basically just 3-4 blocks up Capital from the Hyatt. They have outdoor deck and sidewalk seating and often have live jazz, etc playing in the evenings, and have the torches lit up for atmosphere. This current weather is perfect for it.
Bourbon Street AOL cityguide entry (http://www.digitalcity.com/indianapolis/restaurants/bourbon-street-distillery/v-125954?squery=39%3Acityids+AND+45%3Avenuetypekey&skip=67&uquery=skip%3D60%26stid%3D%26tid%3D%26pid%3D%26vfi d%3D%26vptid%3D%26)
Indy Star review of Bourbon Street (http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060503/ENTERTAINMENT02/605030359/-1/ZONES04)

Let me also strongly recommend Hoaglin to Go for SAT or SUN breakfast. It's over on Mass Ave, so a bit farther. Still you could put in a 10-15 minute morning walk to another nice part of downtown and end it with a great breakfast. Pancakes with berries and killer bacon are always my choice.
The Hoaglin Menu (http://www.hoaglinfinecatering.com/htgmenus/HTG_WEEKEND_BRUNCH_MENU.pdf)

The Mass Ave area gets overlooked by people from out of town since it's not right in the heart of stuff, but you can see where it is on the downtown map - the light orange/pink section. Lockerbie (see James Whitcomb Riley home near Mass Ave) is also a surprise in downtown - quiet, tree lined streets just off the beaten path. Good for jogging or an after dinner walk.

Also I would say that the mall (grass type I mean) and parks a bit north on Meridian is a good place to walk to. There are some nice monuments, the Scottish Rite cathedral is pretty cool, especially at dusk when the sun comes through the windows, and there are some decent fountains. You could eat at the Elbow Room at the corner of Penn. and North right next to the funky colored federal building (70's style paint job). Elbow Room isn't great food, just okay, but its a cool place with the main room coming to a point thanks to Ft. Wayne coming in at an angle. Nice view for lunch perhaps.

There is a Bertolini's in the mall that I recommend for good Italian dining, but moderate cost. That's a chain though.

14 West on Maryland is unique to Indy and high dollar food.
14 West is good enough for the Colts (http://www.tasteofthenfl.com/menu_detail.asp?id=49024894)
http://www.14westindy.com/

Oceanaire is the best seafood in town, very pricey, and part of a chain. Still if you haven't been and want to spend then its worth it.
http://www.theoceanaire.com/

Rock Bottom is a chain too but again if you haven't been its worth a visit (on Washington just past the mall).

Cabs downtown are fine, but if the weather is even moderately okay they are a waste of money. The city is designed intentionally for accessibility during conventions. You could go west one day, east another, north a 3rd and then just stay right in Hyatt area for another 2-3 days of different things to do and places to eat.

And the Hyatt has the fun glass elevators to goof around in, plus their own restaurant at the top of the hotel - Eagle's Nest. One thing that sucks about the Hyatt right now is that there is a ton of construction going on for the new Simon HQ planted right on what used to be some nice open park area between the Hyatt and the Westin. There will be some space when they are done, but for now it's still kind of a pain in the rear.


Also, key tip for getting around Indy. Addresses are based off of WASH. and Meridian (1/2 block south of the circle). Every city block is a tenth of a mile and is 100 on the address scale. The proper mile is bounded by streets named for the side they mark - East, West, South, North - though this mile is offset a little so North Street is 600 (Michigan is 500). You can use addresses to estimate your walk pretty well, and to find your way back. That's the benefit of having no mountains, river valleys or lakes. And no weirdo street name changes out of nowhere either. :)

vapacersfan
09-26-2006, 09:53 PM
Thanks everyone. Keep 'em coming.

I only have a day, maybe a day in a half, but I will def. be paying attention to the advice in this thread. I was esp. curious about the cab rates, good to hear that the city is pretty accessible via foot. I love just walking the streets.

Naptown_Seth
09-26-2006, 10:03 PM
Thanks everyone. Keep 'em coming.

I only have a day, maybe a day in a half, but I will def. be paying attention to the advice in this thread. I was esp. curious about the cab rates, good to hear that the city is pretty accessible via foot. I love just walking the streets.
Our neighbors love cabs for some reason, but they are experts with them and have caught them in many gimmicks. If you do use them, don't give them a break on change and other BS, its apparently a common trick. It's like $5 to get in one, maybe an extra buck for additional people, and after that no trip in town is more than $1 I don't think.

Me, I walk.

Hmm, a day. I'd say walk the canal, at least between the NCAA Hall of Champions end and up to about the USS Indianapolis monument. If you can do St. Elmo's then add that. See the circle. Give the downtown mall a walkthrough, at least to see the Artsgarden (big glass dome thing).

I know that a carriage ride typically is a romance thing, but my wife and I were walking back from dinner during the last 500 weekend and I swear we passed Michael Madsen (of Kill Bill, Sin City, Resevoir Dogs fame) riding in one with his kids and wife/girlfriend, they were waiting on another couple to get in over in front of the Oceanaire. Could be a fun alternate way to check some things out, and obviously its cool enough for a tough guy like that to try it.

Oh, and the liquor store is at Pennsylvania and Washington (just north). John's Fine Spirits IIRC.

vapacersfan
09-26-2006, 10:16 PM
Our neighbors love cabs for some reason, but they are experts with them and have caught them in many gimmicks. If you do use them, don't give them a break on change and other BS, its apparently a common trick. It's like $5 to get in one, maybe an extra buck for additional people, and after that no trip in town is more than $1 I don't think.

Me, I walk.

Hmm, a day. I'd say walk the canal, at least between the NCAA Hall of Champions end and up to about the USS Indianapolis monument. If you can do St. Elmo's then add that. See the circle. Give the downtown mall a walkthrough, at least to see the Artsgarden (big glass dome thing).

I know that a carriage ride typically is a romance thing, but my wife and I were walking back from dinner during the last 500 weekend and I swear we passed Michael Madsen (of Kill Bill, Sin City, Resevoir Dogs fame) riding in one with his kids and wife/girlfriend, they were waiting on another couple to get in over in front of the Oceanaire. Could be a fun alternate way to check some things out, and obviously its cool enough for a tough guy like that to try it.

Oh, and the liquor store is at Pennsylvania and Washington (just north). John's Fine Spirits IIRC.

A couple of questions, if you dont mind (Sorry to hijack your thread, Roy)

How far away is the IND airport? I am also staying at the Hyatt, I imagine Ill just get a cab to get to the hotel.

I come in on Friday mid-day, then we play the Knicks at 7PM, so I doubt Ill get much sight seeing in, although depending on time I will try to at least walk a block and see some quick things.

I have all day Saturday, though, at least till the forum party thing, which I imagine will be late night.

I am coming in by myself, so I think I am going to stay away from the alcohol, at least I will try, lol. Im a loser, it was just cool to go into a ABC store here in VA and show my ID and say "yeah, Im legal" :D

Last question, I promise. I just got my two tickets for the Pacers game when I come to town, and I have been informed I will be given access to the "Best Locker Room", but how does that work. Is it open X amount of hours pre game and post game, is it a bar/resturant? Is it worth checking out?

Thanks a bunch guys

grace
09-27-2006, 01:24 AM
How far away is the IND airport?

At least five miles from the airport to downtown. It's more than ten to get from downtown to Castleton where the forum party is.


Last question, I promise. I just got my two tickets for the Pacers game when I come to town, and I have been informed I will be given access to the "Best Locker Room", but how does that work. Is it open X amount of hours pre game and post game, is it a bar/restaurant? Is it worth checking out?

All you have to do is show your ticket and they'll let you in. I assume it opens when the arena opens, but I don't know that for a fact. I assume people have had food there that they like, but Kegboy and I have never had any luck whatsoever with the food in the Best Locker Room or in the restaurant on the club level (but the food at the lunch with David Stern was great :shrug: ). Since you have access to it you should at least go see it, but for the love of God DO NOT get the taco salad. :puke:

As far as I'm concerned you're better off eating before you get inside Conseco. There are plenty of restaurants close to Conseco (Smokey Bones, Jillian's, Hard Rock, and BW3 come to mind). Heck go to Subway or Taco Bell so you can save up for beers at the game.

Bball
09-27-2006, 01:31 AM
The airport is on the outskirts of town. The downtown Hyatt is... ummmm... downtown. Certainly would want a ride for that one. The airport must be 10-15 or so miles away. I've never really checked the miles before.

If you look on a map it is just off 465 on the west side of town. Near I 70 as well. Basically, find where I70 crosses I465 on the west side and you have found the airport. The Hyatt is so close to downtown that you can basically judge the distance on the map by looking at the center of town for the Hyatt position.

-Bball

heywoode
09-27-2006, 08:14 AM
Seth, are you with the tourism and visitor's bureau?!

Your posts in this thread should be added to indydt.com or something similiar....great advice! I've been downtown a lot, and I learned quite a few things in your post....

:)

Roaming Gnome
09-27-2006, 11:25 PM
IND Int'l is 7 miles from downtown Indy. A little too far to walk with luggage, if you ask me... ;)

Naptown_Seth
09-27-2006, 11:43 PM
Seth, are you with the tourism and visitor's bureau?!

Your posts in this thread should be added to indydt.com or something similiar....great advice! I've been downtown a lot, and I learned quite a few things in your post....

:)
I live downtown and obviously enjoy it.

Also as a BSEE I'm pretty freakin anal and list oriented. Indy isn't massive and awesome like Chicago or NYC where you really need help finding the hidden gems, but at the same time I still think it's cooler to step just to the side of the run of the mill without getting off into the scary hole in the wall places.


Airport from downtown. The wife travels for work a lot and I pride myself in my pickup timing. :) Sincerely I get PO'd if I don't make the run in 12 minutes door to door. That involves some excessive speed and avoiding idiots at the parking garage though. :D

Airport to downtown is 5 miles and one of the few places cabs will regularly go-between. In contrast GFL getting a cab to run between Broad Ripple and downtown. Outside of downtown and the airport Indy is a call-n-wait cab type of city. Bus line stinks. No light rail.


Best Locker Room
When you come in Conseco there is an elevator close to the East (Delaware St) side. If you have a BLR caliber ticket then you just show it and ride the elevator to the BLR level. It's open when the arena opens as far as I know. I've never gone in 2 hours early, but I assume you could.

If you go in some other way then you will just be asked to show your ticket to get down past a certain row. Once you are down there you can roam as you like. There is a bathroom out of the way just out the tunnel where the Pacemates wait during timeouts (the end with the 2 corner tunnels). The other tunnel on that end leads right to the BLR and Pacers lockerroom.

Make sure you are in the BLR when the Pacers come out, or perhaps cut out of the first half a few minutes early so you can get in there. Most of the tables will get reserved, but you will still get to enjoy seeing the team go off the court. Before the game players will sometimes sign stuff just outside the BLR, but it is roped off and sometimes they clear people back a little.

BTW, back to the table reserve thing, I suppose if you got there early you might get them to hold a table for you, but its hard to say if you don't know someone. I have some buddies that often do get a table held, but I've never asked for one myself.


Also in the BLR at the back (near the elevator) is the practice court and there are windows in the BLR that look out on it. Doubtful you'd see any pre-game warmup, but sometimes the players let their kids run around out there after the game and stuff.

Players do come into the BLR after games. Not all of them, I don't think it's required at all. So its up to them and how they are feeling. But it's common.

Jarrod from Subway fame is often in the BLR with one of the local DJs for what that is worth. The night that Gene Simmons was in for the 500 he had a BLR table reserved next to ours, but then he never did come back there. And on occassion I have been going out as a player or Rick is and I had the chance to exchange pleasantries with them.

A few years ago during the playoffs when Rose was still with the team Juwon Howard sat right next to myself and a couple of friends as he waited on Rose to get cleaned up after the game. It's hit and miss. Best just to not have expectations and take things in stride.


If I were you I'd probably get in there (the BLR) early enough to get comfortably seated and have something to eat. They always have some pretty good food going in the BLR, plus standard bar favorites. Of course cell phone signals are crap so keep that in mind.

There is a bathroom in the BLR, but its at the back and kind of a pain with a crowd. Better to use the one out the other corner that I mentioned before if its busy. If you are lucky you might enjoy a handwashing chat with Bill Walton...well, maybe enjoy is the wrong word. :)

They also have a satellite bar/drink stand over that way if you want to avoid the bigger line and don't mind the limited selection.

Unfortunately there is no wait staff for the lower section like there was at MSA. And when you leave the BLR make sure you pour your bottled beer into a cup, which they keeped stacked by the door for just that reason. They get PO'd about any type of glass or bottle in the arena area and its easy to forget.


Okay, that's about as pathetically thorough as it gets. :D

vapacersfan
09-27-2006, 11:48 PM
Thanks all.

I plan on traveling light, but I think a cab will work out fine. I just wish I was I could get a rental car, but oh well. (I rushed 21, I think I can wait for 25. lol)

EDIT: Wow. Thanks a lot Seth. The Redskins offer free buffet for us season ticket holders, but the food is average at best. I apprecaite the advice, though. I think I will have a guest with me for the game, and I would love to take them into TBL, even if it is just for a snack or a drink

Naptown_Seth
09-28-2006, 12:35 AM
Thanks all.

I plan on traveling light, but I think a cab will work out fine. I just wish I was I could get a rental car, but oh well. (I rushed 21, I think I can wait for 25. lol)

EDIT: Wow. Thanks a lot Seth. The Redskins offer free buffet for us season ticket holders, but the food is average at best. I apprecaite the advice, though. I think I will have a guest with me for the game, and I would love to take them into TBL, even if it is just for a snack or a drink
You have a pair of BLR seats together, right?

Sounds obvious but I often go alone (avoid scalpers) and if the other person didn't have a BLR seat you could have some trouble.


Again, on the cab thing, if that's how you get up to Castleton. You will have to call for a cab to come get you up there, there will be some wait involved, and make sure they know you want to go downtown before you get off the phone with them. A lot of cabbies won't make the trip between downtown and any place north.

They just want to circulate in downtown or take people home from the bars in BR to the nearby area. This isn't Chicago or NYC and Castleton is a lot farther out than the airport.

You might want to investigate the cab situation beforehand, maybe even Pizza King knows which cabs pick up around there. And I can ask my friends who sometimes get cabs up there to come home (downtown).

- sidenote, one of those friends just had a hilarious (but frustrating) experience with a cab showing up 45 min late (on the northside) and then getting a flat. The fixing of the flat...well, that didn't go so well. At one point the cabbie got so PO'd he just drove his cab right off the jack and sent it flying. The end of the story was the company sending another cab if that tells you anything.

Roy Munson
09-28-2006, 08:29 AM
Seth, are you with the tourism and visitor's bureau?!

Your posts in this thread should be added to indydt.com or something similiar....great advice! I've been downtown a lot, and I learned quite a few things in your post....

:)

I want to second that!

Thank you very much for the tips. I'm sure i'll take advantage of some of your advice when I get there next Tuesday.

I'm in New Orleans today...strange place...and I don't just mean because of the flood, although I'm sure that some of the weirdness is a result of the flood. I'm downtown so I haven't been around to see the damaged areas yet.

Pacersfan46
09-28-2006, 09:45 PM
Nobody going to mention Ruth Chris Steakhouse?

I don't know where you live, you may not have it anywhere near you. Or you might, but it's a pretty hard place to find unless you live on the East Coast, like I found one while I was in Annapolis.

I love that place, but it is expensive. No doubt about that.

vapacersfan
09-28-2006, 10:04 PM
Nobody going to mention Ruth Chris Steakhouse?

I don't know where you live, you may not have it anywhere near you. Or you might, but it's a pretty hard place to find unless you live on the East Coast, like I found one while I was in Annapolis.

I love that place, but it is expensive. No doubt about that.

I beleive I went to one somewhere here in VA.

Yes, the food was great but it was mighty expensive