IN THE SHADOW OF, BUT NOT OVERSHADOWED BY SHORT HILLS MALL, THIS DISTINCTIVE BURB WITH A CHARMING AMBIANCE CONTINUES TO THRIVE

BY LAURA D.C. KOLNOSKI

Suburban Essex County doesn’t get much better than this township, which, while small, maintains a major statewide profile. A “burn” (the Scottish word for “stream”) once powered mills in the area; hence the name. This community of just over 20,000 may be in the shadow of the upscale Short Hills Mall, but is never overshadowed by it. With charming ambiance, Millburn continues to thrive and evolve, largely due to an urbane population and vibrant arts, shopping, dining, and entertainment scenes. Its quaint shops, some family owned for decades, are tirelessly supported by locals. Add in the eclectic range of cuisines and the famous Paper Mill Playhouse, and it’s easy to see why this is one of New Jersey’s best places to live, work, and play

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Things to do LET’S GO

GREENWOOD GARDENS
28 acre public garden adjacent to the South Mountain Reservation. Main 1906 house, reflecting pool, guided tours. 274 Old Short Hills Rd., Short Hills, 973.258.4026.greenwoodgardens.org

MILLBURN CINEMA
S350 Millburn Ave., 973.376.0800.
bowtiecinemas.com/locations/millburn cinemas

MILLBURN SHORT HILLS STREET FAIR & CRAFT SHOW
Downtown streets host artists, vendors, crafters, and visitors 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Sunday, April 22. Live music, rides, and food. Free admission. 908.654.1400. info@streetfairs.org

Avora Spread

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PAPERMILL PLAYHOUSE
Picturesque, nationally recognized theater and recipient of the 2016 Regional Theater Tony Award, known for launching Broadway productions and hosting luminaries. On site is the Carriage House Restaurant & Bar, serving seasonal American cuisine. A new musical version of The Sting runs March 29 to April 29. 22 Brookside Dr., 973.376.4343. papermill.org

PMP exterior

SOUTH MOUNTAIN RESERVATION
A 2,110 acre nature reserve on the Rahway River in the Watc hung Mountains adjacent to Maplewood, Millburn, and West Orange. The Turtle Back Zoo and a recreation complex are on site. Other features include a scenic overlook, hiking and skiing trails, fishing, wildlife refuge, wildflower Sculpture Park, picnic areas, and more. W. South Orange Ave. & Cherry Lane, West Orange, 973.268.3500.essexcountyparks.org/parks/south mountain reservation.

THOMAS EDISON NATIONAL HISTORICAL PARK
Part of the National Park Service, this 21 acre site is “where modern America was invented.” Visit Glenmont, Edison’s 29 room Queen Anne mansion, explore his Laboratory Complex, and watch the inventor’s 1903 silent movie The Great Train Robbery. The park is also a stop along the Washington Rock and roll bicycle tour. 211 Main St., West Orange, 973.736.0550.nps.gov/edis

Shop‘TIL YOU DROP

BEDAZZLED JEWELRY BY RANDA
Family owned over 50 years. 350 Millburn Ave., .973.376.0004.bedazzeledjewelry.com

DRESSED BY LORI
Where women dress for success from day to play. 304 Millburn Ave., 973.218.6206.dressedbylori.com

DESIGN HUB HOME
Full service home and commercial design services. 344 Millburn Ave., 973.258.0000.designhubhome.com

FOOTNOTES
Fine and fancy female footwear. Other locations in Englewood and Deal. 275 Millburn Ave., 973.379.2085.footnotesonline.com

GAMBERT CUSTOM SHIRTS
Hand cut and stitched men’s shirts, accessories, and full wardrobe services since 1933. 348 Millburn Ave., 973.376.1400.gambertcustomshirts.com

HIGH GEAR CYCLERY
Equipment, services, clubs, events. Second location in Stir ling. 20 Main St., 973.376.0001.highgearcyclery.com

J HANNA FINE JEWELRY
Award winning pieces since 1981. 357 Millburn Ave., 973.376.9225.jhannafinejewelry.com

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JIA BOUTIQUE
Contemporary wardrobe essentials. 359 Millburn Ave., 973.379.2215 jia boutique.com

MARINA’S TREASURES
Boutique with jewelry, art, and men’s, women’s, and children’s items. 358 Millburn Ave., 703.220.6885.Facebook

NANCY AND DAVID FINE JEWELS
Mr. and Mrs. Stone (really!) sell stylish pieces that rock. 266 Essex St., 973.219.9640.nancyanddavid.com

ROXY SHOES
Top brands in comfortable fashion. 356 Millburn Ave., 973.376.8551.roxyshoes.net

SHALA GIFT BOUTIQUE
Fun, functional furniture, art, gifts, and finds. 343 Millburn Ave., 973.467.7855.shalas.com

SNEAKER FACTORY RUNNING CENTER
Equipment, advice, fittings, and services since 1978. Other locations in Basking Ridge and Florham Park. 308 Millburn Ave., 973.376.6094.sneakerfactorynj.com

STROLLER XPRESS
Cleaning, repair, and accessories, plus baby gifts and gear. 87 Main St., 973.970.3736.strollerxpress.com

UNWINED BOUTIQUE
Wines, beers, spirits, and cigars. Who could ask for more? 345 Millburn Ave., 973.467.4100.unwined boutique.com

VARIAZIONI
Twelve locations in Manhattan; only one in NJ of this boutique fashion forward retailer. 311 Millburn Ave., 973.218.9700. variazioni.com

Dining DIG IN!

BASILICO’S
Casual Italian, homemade pasta. 324 Millburn Ave., 973.379.7020.basilicomillburn.com

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CAFÉ MONET
Authentic French bistro and on site bakery. 309 Millburn Ave., 973.376.8555. cafemonet.info

CARA MIA
Extensive menu and warm atmosphere. 194 Essex St., 973.379.8989.caramiamilburn.com

CASITA’S
Fresh Mexican fare. 321 Millburn Ave., 973.218.9500.Vcasitamexican.com

COMMON LOT
International couple creates seasonal contemporary cuisine. 27 Main St., 973.467.0494.commonlot.com

DA NICO
Northern Italian gourmet prepared from family recipes by a son of Italy. 291 Essex St., 973.467.7873.danicomillburn.com

EVOO & LEMON
Mediterranean (Greek) dishes, including fresh seafood. 45 Main St., 973.564.6075.evooandlemon.com

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GIAN MARCO TRATTORIA
Authentic Italian favorites and pizza. 301 Millburn Ave., 973.467.5818. gianmarconj.com

LA CUCINO DI CLEMENZA RISTORANTE
Here, descendants of The God father actor Richard Castellano (who played the unforgettable capo, “Take the cannoli” Peter Clemenza) do Italian the old fashioned way. 382 Millburn Ave., 973.379.6700.lacucinadiclemenza.com

LA PERGOL
BYOB elegant Northern Italian; homemade pasta. 120 Essex St., 973.376.6838.lapergolanj.com

LA STRADA RISTORANTE
Thirty years of offering an extensive, varied Italian menu.355 Millburn Ave., 973.467.3420.lastradanuova.com

MOONSHINE MODERN SUPPER CLUB
Award winning, bi level dining with a 30 foot oak bar. 55 Main St., 973.218.6042.moonshinesupperclub.com

PETER’S OF MILLBURN
Old World recipes with modern flair. 61 Main St., 973.564.9600.petersofmillburn.com

SAKURA
Japanese sushi in sleek new de cor. 44 Essex St., 973.379.4900.sakuramillburn.com

THE HILLS TAVERN
Elevated American pub fare and creative cocktails. 40 Main St., 973.376.4444.thehillstavern.com

Lights OutWHERE TO STAY
LES SAISONS BED AND BREAKFAST
Four seasonally decorated bedrooms, flowering gardens, and elegant authentic décor grace this circa 1840 respite. 304 Elmwood Ave., Maplewood, 973.699.8276. lessaisons.us

THE GRAND SUMMIT HOTEL
Classic elegance and a storied past make this a standout historic boutique hotel. 570 Springfield Ave., Summit, 908.273.3000.grandsummit.com

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THE SUMMIT DEBARY INN
Victorian splendor updated for modern convenience. 265 Springfield Ave., Summit, 908.277.0005. thedebaryinn.com

HILTON SHORT HILLS
All the regular Hilton perks, plus The Retreat, a great little cocktail hideaway. 41 JFK Park way, Short Hills, 973.379.0100. Hhton.com