No trip to OC is complete without a stop in Ocean Gallery. This place is filled to the brim with paintings, posters, and prints. It is cramped inside, but worth the hassle just to look through all they have to offer. Though I rarely buy anything--it is a bit pricey--I could spend hours just looking. When I have made purchases, the staff have always been friendly and helpful. Definitely stop in to see this eye-catching attraction!
The Stowaway Grand is a large hotel right on the beach that offers reasonable weekly rates (still exhorbitant, but below average for ocean front hotels in OC). The hotel is a little fancy, with a clean, well-decorated lobby with a piano bar. The front is curved, so each room has a slightly different view of the beach. The rooms were clean and comfortable, though we could occasionally hear our neighbors through the walls. Another plus, there's a bathroom on the ground floor, so you don't have to trek up to your room covered in sand if you just want to use the bathroom. Parking was a little inconvenient, having to use a garage across the street. Overall, a pleasant experience.
We stayed at the Executive Motel right out of college, when we had no money. It was cheap, so we weren't expecting much. The room was ok, it seemed clean. The bathroom was tiny, and water pressure was almost non-existent. The building itself was a little dirty, and, with the low prices, it attracts a lot of senior-weekers, who are loud and easily heard through thin walls. Unless you're impoverished, or a high schooler looking for a cheap place for the week, I wouldn't stay here.
The Lighthouse Club Hotel was by far my best hotel experience in Ocean City. I stayed there about 2 years ago for a week, and it was a wonderful vacation. The rooms are beautiful, spacious, with a stocked fridge. Continental breakfast every morning--usually a breakfast bread and fruit! We had a deck overlooking the bay, and a whirlpool tub in the bathroom. This hotel does not cater to kids or teens--it was very couples-oriented, and QUIET! Everything was cleaned promptly, we had no problems with the service at all. They have weekend packages, and I can't wait to go back!
Towson Commons was the place to see movies before the arrival of the big cinemas, like Loews in White Marsh and Hoyts in Hunt Valley. Today, it's more of a hang out for middle and high school kids who litter its entrance and lobby on the wknds. The movie-going experience doesn't compare with the larger cineplexes--theaters are small, food offerings are basic. But, if you're not interested in all the bells and whistles, it's a great place to just catch a movie, especially on weeknights when it's not a hang out spot.
The Towson branch of the BC libraries is enormous, with a great selection of books. Though perhaps not quite extensive enough to function as a good college-level research library, this branch offers enough information certainly for high school-level research projects. It is quite spacious, with plenty of room for reading and studying. It tends to get crowded on the weekends, so you may have to wait in line for a few minutes to check out. The biggest dilemma, as with anything in Towson, is the parking.
I lived here several years ago, and found the overall experience to be pleasant. The apartment unit was decent-sized--the kitchen was a bit small--and the appliances were old but still functional. The buildings themselves were clean and well-kept. Maintenance always quickly addressed our concerns. Noise was at a minimum. The pool was nice in the summer, usually plenty of chairs and space to relax. Prices were a little high, but reasonable for the area.
This is by far the worst place I have ever lived. While the apartment itself was spacious and fairly well maintained, we had nothing but problems from the day we moved in. The walls are so thin, you can hear right through them. Our neighbors would play music so loud our apt would shake, and the office did not respond to our complaints. Our water heater broke, and we were without water for several days. The apt's idea of helping us with this situation was to put us up in the model apt--we would've had to drag half of our belongings over there to make it livable, including toilet paper, towels, etc., not to mention food. We had to fight with them to get a partial refund of our rent for those days. Anytime we had a maintenance problem, the office was slow to respond.
The hallways in the apartments were open-air, and were never cleaned. Once a dead bird lay there for nearly a week before anyone cleaned it up.
I have a million stories; in sum, while rents are reasonable and the apartment units themselves are fairly nice, the service is horrible. I could not move out fast enough.
We generally shop this liquor store as a matter of convenience--it's just a few blocks from our home--rather than any particular satisfaction with their service. They have a fair selection of liquors, wine and beer, are open reasonable hours, and service usually runs smoothly. Employees aren't particularly friendly, prices are higher than average, and, particularly at night, people are usually hanging around outside, which is odd for Columbia.
Overall, not my favorite liquor store, but convenient when we need to just pick up a bottle of wine.
My now-husband and I took our pre-Cana classes at Trinity. We were unsure what to expect, but the couple leading the classes was friendly and helpful. They conducted each class very professionally, but at the same time, we did not feel that it was overly formal. Everyone was encouraged to participate. One of the parish priests also visited one class to discuss a topic, and was equally friendly and helpful. No one ever acted as though the class was an imposition, we really felt we got everyone's full attention and that they assisted us to the best of their ability--even when they were feeling under the weather. Overall, we found it a warm, welcoming parish community.