Gene Todd is no stranger to hard work. Currently, Todd is the Executive Vice President and Managing Director of Wealth Management at First Bank in St. Louis. Born in Cincinnati, Todd has been everywhere working in financing and investments — including Wall Street — which makes him a master at his craft. Once he found his niche in St. Louis, he stuck around, and the businessman will tell you its one of his favorite places.

“I grew up in Cincinnati. I love St. Louis because it’s very much the same as Cincinnati. It’s similar in size. Cincinnati has a very large German influence; St. Louis has a very large French influence. They both have these beautiful historic homes,” says Todd. The similarity is part of the reason Todd loves the city so much. “They’ve got all the attractions of the major city. Because of the size, it’s easy to get to places.”

It was his first time living here and moving into a condo in the Central West End that truly sealed the deal for the Cincinnati native. “The Central West End is so diverse. I love the diversity. Forest Park is one of the greatest parks in the country. I’ve got an interest in technology. The technology ecosystem that’s being built [at Cortex] — there’s nothing like it in the Midwest,” says Todd. The Lou’s bar and restaurant scene attracts him too. “My favorite place in St. Louis is in the Central West End. It’s a bar called Brennan’s. First of all, I’m a cigar aficionado. I have a humidor; it’s a private bar. It’s amazing.”

Todd is also a self-proclaimed foodie. “I love Gamlin’s, the Tavern, Wildflower; these types of places are my favorites.” But his love for the best the city has to offer doesn’t stop there. Once he left the Central West End, he moved to Lafayette Square and fell in love with the neighborhood instantly. “[Lafayette Square] has these old Victorian homes that date back over 100 years. My favorite coffee shop, Park Avenue Coffee, is here. There are great restaurants like Eleven Eleven and Polite Society,” says Todd.

The real reason Todd believes he is maximizing his St. Louis lifestyle is the size. “The neighborhoods [in St. Louis] are amazing; I love the charm. I love how accessible top-notch things are in such close proximity. It’s easy to get to the stadium, the art museum and the best restaurants in town.” M