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Oxford Exchange: A Trendy Hotspot of Downtown Tampa

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Oxford Exchange: A Trendy Hotspot of Downtown Tampa

Photo by Lexi Mariash

Photo by Lexi Mariash

Photo by Lexi Mariash

Photo by Lexi Mariash

Lexi Mariash, Staff Writer

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Everyone living in Tampa has either heard of The Oxford Exchange or seen posts on social media of people next to the restaurant’s classic brick wall and sign.

The Oxford Exchange is located at 420 W Kennedy Blvd, Tampa, FL 33602 and was originally constructed in 1891 as a stable, then later used in the 1920’s as “an arcade of local shops and businesses” states the Exchange’s website. The building was then left vacant for decades until a heavy restoration project allowed it to reopen in 2012.

The idea behind the restaurant was “[inspired by] the historic clubs, libraries and shops of London, whose charm and history seem to spark spontaneous social interaction.” according to the Oxford Exchange.

Walking inside, the interior aesthetic has a vintage luster because of the light pouring through roof and the art decorating the old brick walls. Vines and candles complement the walls, tying together the enchanted library look of the restaurant.

The Oxford Exchange is open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. during the weekend. Breakfast, brunch, lunch, and afternoon teas are available. The menu is filled with specialty teas and coffees along with classic bistro-style dishes.

I made a reservation for three people at 2:45 p.m. for brunch. The waiter took us immediately back to our table and provided great service. For the drink here was pages of tea and coffee options to choose from. The Moroccan Mint tea was refreshing and tasted better and fresher than any other iced tea I’ve had at another restaurant before.

The chocolate chip pancakes. They arrived in a stack of five pancakes topped with a handful of strawberries and sprinkled in chocolate chips. The whole meal was then sitting pool of their fresh maple syrup that lightly sweetened the stack.

The Oxford Exchange provides an amazing experience and offers a wide variety of breakfast or afternoon tea options, which always bring costumers back.

After dining, guests are welcome to wander around the building. There is a small bookstore, a gift shop, and store with candles, soaps, and other sundries. People can sit on the couches and order from the café in the lounge area. The feel of a cozy and warm environment draws in groups of people to chat, study, or relax.

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Oxford Exchange: A Trendy Hotspot of Downtown Tampa