by Sing Weist and Fiorella Calderoni
photo by Jeremy Lawson
On a gloomy day, the best place to be is somewhere cozy. For some, June gloom is a reason to stay home and binge-watch their favorite show. And for others, it is a great opportunity to seek places that are cozy and warm! This blog is an exploration of places to visit on a gloomy day in Ventura.
Coffee Shops Galore
One of the best places to snuggle up with a good book and an amazing cup of coffee is Palermo Coffee. They provide a surplus of chai latte options, espresso beverages, and if you’re feeling courageous on a gloomy day, delectable gelato that come in multiple flavors: sea salt caramel, birthday cake, & more! While sitting in one of their comfy couches, you can watch the rolling fog outside and the soothing music inside. As you take sips of your coffee or tea, the steam immediately warms your body and you feel sheltered from the gloomy weather.
This coffee shop in downtown Ventura brings visitors from neighboring towns and locals. You hear the humming of conversations next to you, and you find yourself immersed in smiles and chatter between friends and family. Seeing happy faces around you is what makes Palermo an ideal place to venture to on a gloomy day. But it is far from your only option. Downtown Ventura is lucky to have a few new worthwhile coffee shops including Stoked Coffee in Ventura’s Instagram-worthy Spanish El Jardin Courtyard. If you need a little more than caffeine, Stoked also has fruit-filled acai bowls and a wonderful group of young entrepreneurs eager to fulfill your cravings with a smile.
On a quiet corner somewhere between downtown and midtown Ventura, the newly-opened Prospect Coffee continues to attract folks looking for friendly faces, youthful feels, drinks with an edge, and a cool space for an afternoon pick-me-up.
Ventura’s newest place to cozy up with a book and a latte is Cafe du Suro -an authentic French bakery featuring delicious, fresh baked goods served alongside Intelligentsia Coffee.
A Touch of History
After the coffee shop, you can explore the Museum of Ventura County. As a Venturan, it makes you proud to read and see the history of our town, and as a visitor, it showcases the love and community we pride ourselves on throughout the years.
As you can walk through the different museum rooms and read about Ventura’s history, you get to admire the beautiful paintings, photography, sculptures, and artifacts. When you are at the museum, it is easy to lose track of time and forget that beyond the museum doors it is a gloomy day.
San Buenaventura Mission also has a small museum that’s totally worth your while. They are home to the mission’s original wooden bells and doors from 1782. The museum features amazing baskets woven by Chumash and other native peoples that have lasted with minimal preservation efforts throughout the years. One theory on the bells is that the unusual sound of their chimes against wood helped the mission evade pirates who were familiar with traditional mission bells and listened for them in their hunt for treasure. The mission is also home to the second oldest library in California and continuously lends items from its collection for traveling exhibits.
The Show Must Go On
Perhaps underrated in today’s busy world, one of the best places to escape to on a gloomy day is the theater. Ventura is lucky to be home to a hidden gem like the Rubicon Theatre Company. They bring a variety of quality performances to an intimate setting that will not disappoint. Everything from Shakespeare to A Christmas Carol are done with the highest attention to the smallest detail to transport you to another place and time. The best part is that there is no bad seat in the house! You won’t miss a beat because you will never be more than 30 feet from center stage.
If you can’t catch a play, at least head to Century Downtown 10 which offers multiple current movies with stadium seating and amazingly comfortable (maybe too comfortable?) recliners. Sit back, relax, and enjoy your favorite theater snack, whether it be popcorn, candy, or a soda. And keep an eye out for a beer and wine bar coming this fall!
The latest Craze
Have you tried an escape room yet? Make your way to The Ultimate Escape Rooms at Ventura Harbor Village and give the riddle-solver in you a chance to shine. There are different rooms with different themes and they are filled with clues that will help you escape. (For those who think this sounds too scary, there is also an emergency code you can use on the door and there is a camera feed from the room to front desk. They are there to help you if anything comes up or if your entire group decides you need a nudge in the right direction for the next clue). This is a lot of fun and a great bonding activity on a gloomy day.
We Made it!!! #WeEscaped the #AliceInWonderland #WeAreAllMadHere #UltimateEscapeRoom. Had so much fun with only 1 clue/help, we escaped and survived! I can’t wait to do more #EscapeRooms!!!!! I really recommend doing this to people especially if they love clue/puzzle challenges. We did it with about 3-1:45 min left (even thought we wasted like 5 minutes twice trying to open a door that we’ve already opened)!!!! Now this is #TeamWork, make that #GreatTeamWork!! #NoFilter #TheUltimateEscapeRoom #EscapeRoom
Don’t let June gloom stop you from reading a good book, watching a movie, or learning about history. Ventura has multiple places that are ready to make you feel warm and cozy!