The Glasgow Guide: Finnieston

We all know that Glasgow is one cool city. Electric, ballsy and a little rough around the edges, the West Coast capital is home to world renowned musicians, the UK's best art school and was once described by Scarlett Johansson as the world's second New York

So it's no surprise that one of Glasgow's most up-and-coming areas has been named the hippest place to live in the UK.

The Finnieston strip - a former warehouse and dock land wedged between Dumbarton Rd and Argyle street-  is the only way to spend a day in Glasgow. This place is a hot bed of cool bars, trendy restaurants and a unparalleled nightlife.  Finnieston has it all. 

From live music venues to bustling bars and blow dry salons - you can't escape the excitable energy that floods these streets. So whether you are a Glasgow native looking to impress your pals or a tourist hunting for the local hot spots - look know further than Finnieston. 

Here’s the Two Birds ultimate guide on how to spend 24 hours in Britain's trendiest neighbourhood

 

Where to be arty ?

Nothing beats a day wandering around the speculator surroundings of the Kevingrove Museum - the UK's most popular museum outside of London. The architecture alone is enough to give Monet and co. some fierce competition. 

Where to shop?

Forget jewels and clothes- don't you know that glasses are the only accessory you need? To fit in with the edgy crowd source your specs from Iolla. The Scottish brand are only a year old but offer the best in designer glasses without the designer price tag. All glasses are £65 whatever the style - that includes anti-scratch and anti-glare coatings on all lenses. One pair won't be enough

Where to brunch?

For an all day breakfast to nurse you weary head and aching belly, The Scullery's brunch menu promises to handle every hungover need. 

Where to go for a afternoon pick-me-up?

Piece -there is no better sandwich shop in the city.  Select your own fillings and bread or go for one of their choices - stick safe with the delicious Falafel piece or go all out with a Dirty Fat Boy- egg mayo, ham. cheese and pickles all packed in a bloomer. Perfect. 

Where to go to exercise?

Forget the stuffy gym (though there is a nearby Virgin Gym if that's what floats your boat) head for a run around the spectacular Kelvingrove Park. Running not your thing? Kelvingrove also boasts tennis courts, a skatepark and outdoor bowling - all free to the public. Into something a bit more calming? Give Pilates at Fitness Therapy Glasgow a go. 

Where to get glam?

Gents look no further than Soul Barber Room when you are next in need of a chop. This place offers rum cocktails along with your trim and with these hipsters holding the scissors there's no need to worry about walking out with a dodgy do. 

Ladies. Real talk. I know that Blow in Finnieston has made a name for itself as THE place to get your hair did in Glasgow. And while they deserve props for their friendly nature, daily cocktails and flawless social media - I've gone twice and I've never been blown away (no pun intended). Instead I recommend the amazing Stuart and Jack at Mesart for cut and colour. In need of a bouncy blow dry on the cheap? Look no further than Connie at Cusp Salon.

Where to go for dinner with friends?

For a relaxed easy-breezy atmosphere, nothing beats the Ox and Finch. Their regularly changing menu sources only the finest and freshest ingredients served in tapas-style “sharing dishes”. The perfect excuse to order everything on the menu. 

What is the best date spot?

The Crab Shakk is an amazing fail-safe option for seafood lovers but this tiny restaurant tends to be packed out all week so always try and book ahead. That said, bar seats are never reserved, so if you and you date are ready to get close and squeeze onto a stool, huddle close and order the achieve fried scallops. 

Those looking to pull out all the stops however should hop over the road to The Gannet. Earlier this year the restaurant received three AA Rosettes for culinary excellence. Though it's pricey (you won't be paying less that £15 for a main) prepare to drool as soon as your eyes hit the menu. The smoked scallop carpaccio and Stornoway black pudding scotch duck egg have got all the foodies talking, but it's the desert menu that is not to be missed. Milk chocolate delice, peanut brittle and hazelnut ice cream or salted caramel fondant with tonka bean ice cream? Sorry, it's a trick question. I strongly suggest you order both. 

The Gannet Glasgow

The Gannet Glasgow

Where to go for a pint? 

A wee bit of the Highlands in the heart of Glasgow, Park Bar is a home-from-home for visiting Gaels or locals looking for a wild night out.  With traditional Scottish music four nights a week, it attracts its biggest crowds at weekends when around 250 can turn up to listen to the bands or join in with the ceilidhs. But if you cannae keep up the Teuchters - head across the road to Ben Nevis for a cosy wee dram - you can't beat their huge whisky collection and roaring fireplace. 

Where to go for cocktails?

Work your new found edge with a visit to Glasgow's coolest cocktail bar The Kelvingrove Cafe. Don't let the name full you - this dimly lit, exposed brick bar was made for late night drinks. 

Where to go dancing?

Sorry Sub Club but someone stole your crown. Undeniable the hottest club in Glasgow is the cooler-than-thou SWG3. This warehouse venue has hosted DJ sets from everyone from Hannah Wants to  Julio Bashmore. 

Worth an honorary mention is the Electric Frog Festival from the people that bring you the popular SWG3 club night of the same name.  In May, down at the Riverside Museum – they will be host acts three outdoor stages, comedy on the Tall Ship and plenty of street food. Get your tickets now.

Kirsty McKenzie