Hotel at a Glance: Radisson Hotel Madison
Radisson Hotel Madison—which recently underwent a $3 million renovation—lies in the West Side shopping district about 15 minutes from downtown Madison. The nearby West Towne Mall houses fashionable retailers including J.Crew, Coach, and Pottery Barn. About 6 miles from the hotel, the University of Wisconsin-Madison stretches across 936 acres along the southern shores of Lake Mendota. Popular spots on UW’s campus include the Geology Museum, Camp Randall Stadium, and the waterfront Memorial Union Terrace, where students watch sailboats, listen to music, and drink Rathskeller ale.
- The new Twist Bar and Grill serves regional all-American cuisine such as Nueske’s Bacon Burgers and Carr Valley fresh cheese curds deep fried in Spotted Cow batter; one of this Getaway’s options includes a daily $40 dining credit.
- Guest rooms feature modern amenities such as 37-inch flat-screen TVs and mini refrigerators where you can store leftovers from late-night room-service orders.
- Gather in the lounge area during happy hour for drink and appetizer specials and to cheer on the Badgers, Packers, Bucks, and Brewers on big-screen TVs.
- Take a dip in the indoor pool and relax in the whirlpool.
Madison, Wisconsin: Capital City and College Town Surrounded by Water
Madison is nicknamed “The City of Four Lakes” because of its proximity to Lakes Mendota, Monona, Waubesa, and Kegonsa. All that water gives Wisconsin’s capital city an almost coastal feeling—there are striking views almost everywhere you look.
A few blocks from picturesque Lake Monona, you’ll find the capitol building, a white-domed structure that’s the tallest building in Madison. You can take one of the free tours that leave hourly from the information desk or just gaze at the colorful murals painted on the rotunda 200 feet up. On Saturdays, make sure to check out the year-round Dane County Farmers’ Market at Capitol Square. More than 160 local vendors at indoor and outdoor stands sell handmade cheeses and honey as well as farm-grown produce.
From Capitol Square, make your way down State Street, a popular pedestrian thoroughfare packed with quirky and upscale shops, ethnic eateries, and bookstores. It’s also packed with students—State Street eventually leads to the campus of the University of Wisconsin–Madison.
Several museums worth visiting are located nearby. The Madison Museum of Contemporary Art is currently showing a collection of prints by famed American painter Ellsworth Kelly, and the Wisconsin Historical Museum has an exhibit of popular inventions and ideas born in Wisconsin.