Set amid a cluster of lakes just north of downtown Orlando, Ivanhoe Village feels far removed from the city’s theme-park persona. Formerly home to Orlando’s first water park, Joyland, built in the 1920s, the neighborhood is now a flourishing cultural hub, packed with indie-minded shops and restaurants, including these six.
Becoming a mom and encountering the abundance of greenwashed products out there led Alyssa Bourmeche to open this new shop. She sells “sustainable-ish” items such as reusable bottles, bamboo toothbrushes, and candles. “There’s a sense of community in the area, where everyone looks out for each other and the neighborhood,” she says. “That dedication to humanity really called to us.”
The fragrances from boutique brands at this perfumery and apothecary, which opened in 2021, are largely unisex and custom-matched to the individual shopper’s taste. Owner Joseph Todd says he knew the concept would work well in the neighborhood: “Ivanhoe Village caters to niche little boutiques,” he explains. “Each boutique is very unique and a destination for travelers to come and visit.”
Owner Jeffrey Starks worked in retail at Disney before opening this boutique in 2020 in what he calls “one of the most charming, eclectic, coolest areas in Orlando.” The shop focuses on selling “good goods” from socially responsible companies (Duke Cannon, Fun Socks), and it also highlights local makers and minority-owned businesses. “Almost everything in our store,” Starks says, “has a story attached to it.”
The Hall on the Yard
Thanks to the nine culinary concepts and three cocktail bars on site, this food hall was met with much excitement when it opened in 2021. Visitors can enjoy ramen, ceviche, samosas, and vegan flatbreads, as well as sports on the big screen. “We just felt that Ivanhoe Village was kind of the perfect intersection between downtown Orlando and Winter Park,” says developer Jamal Wilson.
Neighborhood beer lovers rejoiced when Gnarly Barley relocated from Belle Isle to Ivanhoe Village in 2021. “We already had a great following over here,” says co-owner Joey Morris. “We knew we were coming into a really cool and fun neighborhood.” Aside from craft brews, the menu boasts inventive sandwiches such as the Johnnie Mac n’ Cheese, loaded with roast beef and, yes, cheesy macaroni.
This restaurant, which opened in 2021, is named for the pineapple farms that once populated the area, and the fruit appears in some menu items (pineapple jam on the burger, grilled pineapple with the chicken). “Ivanhoe Village chose me, in a way,” says operating partner Carol Holladay. “Most people think that Florida is just a tourist destination; we are so much more than that.”