DESCRIPTION: This 15-square-block outdoor shopping and entertainment district is filled with romantic Spanish architecture, European art and dazzling fountains. Designed in 1922, the Country Club Plaza features boutiques and fashionable national stores as well as distinctive restaurants, outdoor cafes and nightlife hotspots.
ADDRESS: Plaza Customer Service: 4750 Broadway, Kansas City, Mo. 64112
LOCATION: 10 minutes south of Downtown.
WEB SITE: www.countryclubplaza.com
STORE HOURS: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Thurs., noon-6 p.m. Sun. Check with individual merchants for specific hours.
ANNUAL ATTENDANCE: Approximately 15 million.
HISTORY: Designed as the nation’s first suburban shopping district for the automobile, the Country Club Plaza was the vision of developer J.C. Nichols. Seeking to create a real estate development that captured the allure of Spanish marketplaces, Nichols purchased several small lots of land in a swampy and undeveloped area in 1907 and opened the Plaza’s first buildings in 1922. Highwoods Properties acquired the Country Club Plaza in 1998. Originally nicknamed “Nichols’ Folly,” the Country Club Plaza’s Moorish architecture now features more than $1 million in artwork, comprised of the district’s fountains, murals and more than 30 statues.
WHERE TO GET LUNCH: With 30 restaurants and 17 outdoor dining venues, the Country Club Plaza offers a diverse dining landscape to busy shoppers. From Kansas City favorites like Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue and Plaza III Steakhouse to emerging places like Gram & Dun, Coal Vines and Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant, there is something to suit every appetite and budget.
VISITOR INFORMATION: Plaza Customer Service (at 4750 Broadway) offers extensive Kansas City and Plaza visitor information, luxurious public restrooms, public lounge and complimentary coffee and tea.
WHAT’S NEARBY: The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art and the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art are just minutes away. The National Museum of Toys & Miniatures is just to the south on the University of Missouri-Kansas City campus.
ANNUAL SPECIAL EVENTS:
DID YOU KNOW: The Seville Light, at the eastern gateway to the Plaza, is an exact replica of a fountain in Seville, Spain, one of Kansas City’s sister cities. The Giralda Tower was also built to match the one in Seville, Spain, yet at half the height so it would complement the surrounding building heights of the district.
DON’T FORGET: Your camera. The Plaza’s 40+ whimsical and artistic fountains create fantastic photo opportunities. Check out the elaborate J.C. Nichols Fountain at 47th Street and J.C. Nichols Parkway; it remains Kansas City’s most photographed fountain.
TOURS: Two carriage companies—Elite Carriages of Kansas City and Kansas City Carriages—offer horse-drawn tours everyday, while gondola rides are available through Ambiance on the Water, every Wednesday through Saturday, or for special occasions.
PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION: Take the MAX to the Plaza stop.
From the north: Take I-35 S, exit on Southwest Trafficway after traveling through Downtown. Stay on Southwest Trafficway for approximately 20 blocks. Go left (east) on 47th Street, taking you directly to the Plaza.
From the south: From I-35 N, take the Shawnee Mission Parkway/56 E exit. Continue for about 10 minutes. After passing State Line, stay to the left with Ward Parkway traffic traveling east. The Plaza is just a few blocks away. Turn left on Wornall Road or J.C. Nichols Parkway.
From the east: Take I-70 W, travel through Downtown and join the I-35 S traffic. Exit on Southwest Trafficway and drive for approximately 20 blocks. Go left (east) on 47th Street, taking you directly to the Plaza.
From the west: Travel on I-70 E, exit on I-35 South and then exit again on Southwest Trafficway after traveling through Downtown. Stay on Southwest Trafficway for approximately 20 blocks. Go left (east) on 47th Street, taking you directly to the Plaza.
PARKING: Nine parking garages offer free parking on the Country Club Plaza. Free street parking also available.
PUBLIC RELATIONS CONTACT: Gayle Terry, director of marketing, 816-960-6232 or firstname.lastname@example.org.