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Jun 30, 2021
On-site amenities: Rooftop bar, co-working spaces Pros: The pilot property for the new Reverb concept by Hard Rock, this is a trendy pick that won't break the bank but won't feel skint, either. Cons: Common complaints have been that this hotel is a bit too Smart: there are fewer contact points for service and technical bugs may crop up. Technically, as a "select service" hotel with lots of DIY, minimal contact features, this new entrant of the Hard Rock brand is a budget stay. It certainly doesn't look like one, though, with bright, modern, and quirky design and a lot of techy bells and whistles. The entire property is built for efficiency, with self-check-in rooms that are all Smart and sustainable. You can use voice commands within your accommodations to do everything from playing music to changing the temperature thanks to EVE, the hotel's in-room chatbot that syncs up with Amazon's Alexa to customize your environment. These rooms are on the smaller side as they're meant to be commuter hubs, but upscale amenities make up for it, including Sealy Posturepedic pillow-top mattresses, premium bedding, and Malin & Goetz bath products. Other amenities to take advantage of outside your room include the reasonably priced Constant Grind coffee shop, the cocktail lounge, gelato bar, and the TR60 rooftop bar, which hosts live music performances. Groups of friends should look to the fun Roadie room category, which offers three pairs of Queen-sized bunk beds built into an oversized wall, as well as two bathrooms, a separate lounge, and an in-room karaoke system. Hotel Clermont Cons: There are fewer on-site amenities and no pool, spa, or fitness center. This hotel calls itself downtown, but it's closer to what's typically considered Poncey Highland. Set close to the eastern edge of Midtown, Hotel Clermont has fast become a local favorite as well as one of the most frequently booked properties in Atlanta's heart's center. It wasn't always, though. Less than ten years ago, the landmark building with an infamous basement strip club. Today, after six years of renovation and almost $30 million put into its glow-up, it's a lavish boutique hotel, boasting interiors by Reunion Goods and Services that pays cheeky tribute to its seedy past and intriguing history. You'll find plenty of lovingly restored vintage touches here, laced with modern luxuries, like fun wallpaper in bathrooms and neon signs. Another touch of whimsy are their bunk bed rooms, which sleep up to four in handmade, modernist twin bunks, and maybe a crasher or two in the plush sectional, too. You can request a bucket of PBR, drinking and board games, and a mini-fridge , too. The basement lounge is in full swing, but equally attractive is the hopping rooftop bar. Unlike even the Ponce City Market — which is walkable from here via the Eastside Beltline Trail — there's no cover charge to take in the view, and guests love its rum-centric bar, retro furniture, and faux green spaces. There's also a café and French-American brasserie. The Westin Peachtree Plaza Best for: Business travelers, couples On-site amenities: Fitness center, restaurant, room service, sundry/convenience store, full-service Starbucks in the lobby, staffed business and FedEx center Pros: This iconic building is an easily recognizable landmark on the Atlanta skyline and offers business travelers a host of conveniences. Cons: Having to pay extra for in-room Internet (unless you're a Bonvoy member) feels petty for a business hotel. The indoor/outdoor pool is currently closed due to COVID-19. The dazzling John C. Portman open atrium in this 73-story cylindrical hotel is only the start of impressive views at this iconic hotel. From the ground floor, large columns and oversized murals impress, but going up leads to floor-to-ceiling windows with sweeping views in every room and The Sun Dial, a tri-level complex at the top of the building with a panoramic 360-degree perspective of the city. This venue is popular among tourists and locals alike for special occasions that warrant memorable, budget-busting dinners and spectacular vistas. Staying over is a similarly classy affair, with understated but sophisticated rooms best described as "boardroom chic." Earth tones and a large desk with an ergonomic chair further support that feeling, but these are design choices that make sense for a downtown property that often hosts large-scale events, as well as guests visiting for conventions at nearby AmericasMart and Southern Exchange. For smaller groups, this property also offers Tangent, a flexible workspace for up to four that's rentable by the hour. The typical Westin amenities are also present and accounted for: Heavenly® beds, baths, and showers; a 24-hour WestinWorkout fitness center; a New Balance-partnered RunWestin program; BikeWestin tours; and Westin Workout Room categories, which set you up with an in-room stationary bike and more. Atlanta Marriott Marquis Best for: Business travelers, large groups, groups of friends, families On-site amenities: 12-hour FedEx, full-service spa, fitness center, multiple restaurants, mini marketplace, Starbucks, private dining spaces Pros: Designed by Atlanta celebrity architect John C. Portman, known for his open atrium concepts, this iconic hotel once had the world's highest — and still Atlanta's most photographed — atrium. Cons: Temporary closures include the spa and some restaurants, such as the steakhouse. Room service has also been temporarily suspended for COVID-19, but grab-and-go pick-up is available at the M:Store downstairs. The minute you step into this iconic hotel and into the 52-story open atrium, you might instantly feel transported into the world of the Hunger Games . This architectural gem, like the Westin above, is also designed by John C. Portman, but while the exterior of the sister property is often the subject of outdoor photography, it's the interior of this one that stars. It's why it's often the primary — and award-winning — host to numerous conventions, including the famous Dragon Con . In the rooms are floor-to-ceiling windows for dramatic views of downtown, and themes designed to accommodate. For instance, the allergy-friendly Stay Well rooms boast special air purification technology, aromatherapy, and sleep-optimizing lighting. Rooms equipped with Peloton bikes let guests focus on staying well a different way. And a litany of configurations with flexible features like Murphy and sofa beds offer even more options. Clearly, this hotel is a choice that's meant to please a crowd. And if your group wants to split up but not stray too far, no worries. The Marriott Marquis is connected via sky bridge to the Hilton Atlanta, the Hyatt Regency Atlanta, and The Hub at Peachtree Center. Within walking distance of all of these are AmericasMart and the Atlanta Convention Center, plus the MARTA Red and Gold lines that get you to the airport for only $2.50 . Even closer is the High Velocity sports bar in the lobby, which offers 20 screens and access to all Atlanta United games thanks to their partnership, and a Pulse bar lobby lounge that you'll find locals in, too. Omni Atlanta Hotel at CNN Center On-site amenities: Fitness center, FedEx Office business center, outdoor pool and deck Pros: Directly connected to the CNN Center with voyeuristic views into these important headquarters, a stay here is more of an experience. Cons: A lot of amenities are temporarily unavailable due to COVID-19, including room service, pool/sundeck access, the fitness center, and one lobby bar. The rooms themselves at this hotel are not much to speak of; they're minimal, on the smaller side, a little dated, and have stuffy decor. But it still makes our list thanks to its fantastic location. Staying at this hotel is more about the center-of-the-action, insider peek at the attached CNN Center and the downtown location than the accommodations. After all, most visitors are here to explore the city, not hole up in their hotel rooms. This hotel is also unique for its suites that offer views directly into the CNN Center Atrium and it's the closest hotel to the Mercedes-Benz Stadium, where the Atlanta Falcons and Atlanta United FC professional soccer club play. It's also right on top of the College Football Hall of Fame in the Centennial Park District, and directly connected to the State Farm Arena and Georgia World Congress Center. Two blocks away is the aquarium; just as many miles out is the zoo and botanical garden. Also steps from your room will be newly renovated dining via New South Kitchen, which is highly anticipated for its interactive breakfast buffet station that will veer away from predictable favorites and instead focus on Southern fare with a twist. Expect items like shrimp and grits, sweet tea fried chicken, and peach cobbler French toast to appear. For now, Centennial Grounds — a coffee and wine bar serving fresh-baked goods and housemade ice cream — is a good start to a morning downtown. Hotel Colee Best for: Couples, friends, locals staycation, business travelers On-site amenities: Rooftop bar and infinity pool, two outdoor patios, rooftop infinity pool, 24/7 fitness center, 24-hour room service Pros: Bold, beautiful design and a location to match a similarly on-trend personality — it's only steps from Lenox Mall and Phipps Plaza for shopping, and set among other upscale hotels and high-rise residences. Cons: There's no full-service restaurant on-site and the daily parking charge could add up. Experience life among the well-heeled locals in this completely revamped and renamed newcomer that was once a W Hotel. It offers cheeky character just steps from the neighborhood's famous shopping hubs. The boutique property features a bold design that plays up fun textures and patterns and features almost enough quirky details to distract you from the cozy window seats that overlook sweeping views of Buckhead. There are five categories of rooms here, and all are pet-friendly with a low one-time fee of only $50. Couples may want to splurge and indulge in the dark, sexy vibe of the Grand Suite and its cozy sectional in the separate living room. Or, appreciate the drama of the loft-inspired Grander Suite. This one stands out with a textured statement wall, barn doors to separate living and dining rooms from the bedrooms, and floor-to-ceiling windows meant to dazzle at night. Affluent young professionals as well as visitors to Atlanta frequent Whiskey Blue, the indoor/outdoor bar on the hotel's roof, and the Bubbly Bar in the lobby, which features cocktails by local Rori Robinson of Bloom Bar Garnish Co . and snacks by Cacao Atlanta Chocolate Co. For even more local flavor, this hotel's partnership with The Print Shop means that the lobby also serves as a revolving art gallery for local creators, whose prints are available for purchase. Omni Hotel at The Battery Atlanta On-site amenities: Fitness center with Peloton, rooftop pool and bar, room service Pros: Baseball fans can enjoy a truly unique experience, right on top of Truist Park. Watching the game from your room's balcony is one of those once-in-a-lifetime stories you'll want to tell again and again. Plus, parking is reasonable at $38/night with in/out access. Cons: If you're not a baseball lover, this is probably not the right fit since you'll need a car to get back to Midtown and the city center. Local life is just as vibrant OTP, as Atlantans call "outside the perimeter" the I-285 creates. The Battery is proof. This mixed-use community is where you'll find Truist Park, the home of the Atlanta Braves, well as plentiful restaurants, entertainment, dining, and shopping. Among the headliners are the Coca-Cola Roxy music venue, Cobb Energy Centre, and Cobb Galleria Centre. All of these are within steps from the Omni Hotel at The Battery Atlanta, which is the official hotel of the MLB team. This affiliation creates the opportunity to make going out to the ballgame something really extraordinary. The rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows, but baseball fans will want to opt for the rooms overlooking the Battery and the park itself. An unforgettable experience can be had by booking a room with a balcony that overlooks the diamond during a game for a true VIP moment above (but still part of!) the live, energetic feel of the action. A 55" flat-screen TV lets you watch the game from multiple views if you're so inclined. You can also catch every pitch with the many locals that frequent the Battery from the outdoor patio, which has a great view of the plaza screen. Within the standard rooms are more contemporary nods to American tradition, with earthy materials and rich colors that once again tie into baseball. You can also multi-task by requesting an in-room Get Fit Kit to work out without missing a moment. Alternatively, a full-service fitness center with new, modern equipment including a Peloton bike is also open, along with the 5th-floor rooftop pool and its cabanas. But if multitasking is your thing, staying here benefits more than just you. With their Goodnight to Hunger program, this hotel makes a donation to Feeding America with every booking. Kimpton Sylvan Hotel On-site amenities: Restaurant, rooftop bar, pool, fitness center, room service Pros: This landmark hotel is a favorite among locals, not least for its supper club-style restaurant, rooftop bar, "secret garden," and outrageously lenient pet policies. Cons: Sundry additional charges can run up quite a tab: there's an Internet fee of $12.99 per 24 hours if you're not in the IHG Rewards program and daily overnight parking is $42/night. This midcentury modern enclave gives off live-like-a-local vibes, making it no surprise that it was once a luxury residential community. Features that contribute to that feeling include complimentary cruiser bikes to explore the neighborhood, a house car at your disposal for destinations within two miles, hosted evening social hours, and the most exceptionally pet-friendly policy I've ever encountered. Here, there are no additional charges or deposits for dogs nor restrictions on how many pets are visiting. But out of consideration for those with allergies, designated pet-free rooms are also available. All feature a botanical color palette with 1950s greens and natural wood and gray stone tones. This is perhaps a nod to the 5,000-square-foot secret garden behind the hotel, where a DJ spins on the weekends as guests and Atlantans sip flora-inspired drinks at the Willow Bar. During the day, picnic baskets brunches are a fun way to while away a Sunday. Hidden nooks and social spaces make this a sexy venue for intriguing dates, too, as does The Betty, a premier supper club with low lights in the dining room and local, seasonal highlights on the table. This is helmed by Chef Brandon Chavannes, whose snacks also appear on the menu of the St. Julep rooftop bar. To work it off, there's a small 24-hour gym with a Peloton and you can request yoga mats for your room. The Candler Hotel Atlanta On-site amenities: Fitness center, business center, room service, restaurant and bar on site Pros: This stay is a gorgeous historical setting on the National Register of Historic Places with art deco glamour. Cons: $45 daily valet parking can get expensive, even with in/out privileges; By George, the on-site bar and French restaurant, is closed until further notice due to COVID-19. Art deco glamour and classical style are never more apparent than in the ornate lobby of this hotel built by Coca-Cola magnate Asa Griggs Candler , which impresses upon entry into this historic property. The entire entry is encased in swathes of elegant gray marble, those swirls broken up by scrolling carvings along the staircases, stately griffins at their base, and sparkling chandeliers. The rooms themselves are less grandiose — in fact, they have a more modern minimalist slant. Stark white walls and bedding are a blank slate to let you focus on the Art Deco-inspired headboard and modest, simple furnishings. This is practical, as kids typically stay free here and pets are permitted with a fee. But the furnishings are not meant to star when oversized windows that open lead to views of downtown Atlanta. Location, décor, and cleanliness have all played a role in earning this Hilton Curio Collection property a perfect score on Tripadvisor, but the greatest common denominator is the service the staff provides, with Jerome the doorman is a particular point of mention to many guests. Loews Hotel Atlanta Best for: Business travelers, groups of friends, families, locals staycation On-site amenities: Paid public and valet parking available, full-service spa, on-site restaurant, complimentary Wi-Fi throughout, room service, 24-hour business center Pros: Recently renovated and truly centrally located, this hotel is walkable to many attractions and only two blocks from the Midtown MARTA station. Cons: Late check-out fee is very pricey at 50% of the daily rate, and the restaurant and bar are temporarily closed. This well-located hotel is well decorated, too. And we don't just mean the interiors. It's ranked as a Four Diamond hotel by AAA and CAA, has won a Trip Advisor Certificates of Excellence every year since 2013, and was also voted "Loved by Guests" in LGBTQ+, Pet-Friendly, Family Frinedly, Business Travel, Luxury, and Spa categories by Hotels.com . But design-wise it stands out, too. The rooms and suites all have floor-to-ceiling windows and understated, contemporary decor that's posh without being fussy. I love the executive-style desk provided in every room, giving you that corner office feel and providing a good separation from work/life for visiting business travelers. For a more "vacation" feel, its (also) award-winning Exhale Spa is just the thing, with 15 treatment rooms and generous discounts for all guests and staycationers on spa days and fitness classes. A lower-than-average daily parking rate also makes it a locals' favorite — $32 to self-park with in-and-out privileges. Another themed stay is one with tickets to the Georgia Aquarium, for which they're a Preferred Hotel. When Saltwood Charcuterie & Bar opens back up, you can also make your visit a deep dive into local culinary culture with the Flavor by Loews Atlanta Hotel program, which features hyper-local artisans such as sustainable grass-fed beef and pasture-raised pork purveyor Hunter Cattle Farm in Savannah and ASW Distillery for whiskey. But for now, it's walkable to a ton of great restaurants on your way to Piedmont Park just two blocks away, the Fox Theatre, and other attractions you'll see marked on the running map they offer guests. Bellyard, West Midtown Atlanta On-site amenities: Electric vehicle charging station, free Wi-Fi throughout, fitness center with a Peloton Pros: For those who like to see and be seen at the forefront of social media-optimized trends, this hotel puts you in the center of that up-and-coming, youthful feel. Cons: If you're looking for a lower-key stay and central location, this may not be the hotel for you. Not to be confused with actual Midtown, West Midtown is a flexible new name for The Interlock, a new $450-million multi-use development that takes its cue from the successful Atlantic Station project. It's named for a nearby historic site where four railroad lines once converged and draws upon those trendily pseudo-gritty roots for inspiration and hipster vibes. This hotel is rife with Instagram traveler appeal, from its rooms with carved-wood geometric statement walls to its long marble bar with leather stools. The hotel is also heavily tech-focused and every room includes lots of USB outlets, an oversized Smart TV, and in-room work zones with a folding writer's desk so you can work on your content. Other buzzy amenities are just outside: an open-air Caffeine + Cocktails venue, Pour Taproom, Cleveland's Cathy's Gourmet Ice Cream Sandwiches, and soon-to-open St. Germain French Bakery of Ponce City Market fame. For post-worthy entertainment, there's Puttshack in the complex for ultramodern, "tech-infused mini golf" and a TruFusion gym offering their usual mix of fancy fitness programs at additional cost. Stonehurst Place Bed & Breakfast Best for: Couples, families On-site amenities: Free parking, free Wi-Fi and high-speed Internet, outdoor patios, electric car charging stations, included gourmet breakfast Pros: Intimate luxury, oodles of character, and timeless elegance make this an unexpected gem in the middle of action-packed Midtown. Cons: No on-site dining outside of their excellent breakfast. This utterly enchanting former family home is cheekily summed up by the hotel thusly: "Imagine staying at your favorite rich aunt's house, but you don't have to hang out with her." And if that doesn't give you a good idea of the unpretentious grandeur of this place, I don't know what will. Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, this 125-year-old boutique property constructed for engineer, builder, and philanthropist George Butch Hinman has been preserved and improved with above-and-beyond, award-winning eco-friendly systems in 2007. What that means is all of the character of a 19th-century manor and carriage house meet the conveniences of the 21st. Pair that up with the fact that this private manor-like property is actually tucked away in the heart of bustling Midtown, and it's obvious that romantic, AAA Four Diamond Stonehurst Place really is a best-of-all-worlds option. I love that all of the rooms and suites have their own special features and design inspirations. For instance, the two-story Fowler Suite, named after British artist Nina Mae Fowler, channels Old Hollywood, while the Stedman Suite has clean contemporary lines. Then there are the architectural details throughout, like stairwell nooks, window seats, and built-in bookshelves, and charming traits such as an award-winning garden, from which herbs and edible flowers might be gathered for an included gourmet breakfast. Two indoor lounges and a big porch with garden or skyline views are incredibly cozy and inviting, providing a real sense of "live like a local" with more than a touch of luxury. Waldorf Astoria Atlanta Buckhead Best for: Couples, groups of friends, business travelers On-site amenities: Full-service spa, on-site restaurant, indoor pool, fitness center and classes, room service, business center, personal concierge Pros: An over-the-top three-story spa steps up any wellness weekend; keep an eye out for online-only promotions, too, for special discounts on treatments. Cons: Room decor is traditional and upscale but a little dated; some spa amenities are temporarily unavailable; valet parking is expensive at $49/night. This hotel is everything you want and expect from a staid, society hotel — especially one located near Buckhead's Fashion District and its "Six Blocks of Style." It's beautiful in a classic way, with spacious rooms featuring marble baths with a large tub and toiletries by Salvatore Ferragamo. The rest of the hotel follows suit, apparent in its use of large-format black and white glossy stone tile and rich woods in the walk-in-friendly bar. Then there's indoor/outdoor dining at The Café, which offers locally inspired dishes done simply and an afternoon tea experience that steers even further into that old-fashioned upmarket feel. I can't think of any better experience than a fancy afternoon tea to go with a spa weekend, which is just one of the on-site experiences that set this iconic hotel apart. Though some of its luxurious amenities are currently closed due to COVID, during normal times, the hotel offers "vitality pools," a sauna, steam room, and relaxation areas. The fitness center is also well-equipped and the yoga studio is available for general use or for booking private meditation and yoga classes. Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta Best for: Couples, locals staycation On-site amenities: Restaurant, bar, full-service spa, indoor saltwater pool, 24-hour business center, steam room, whirlpool, fitness center with Peloton bikes and personal training, room service, free Wi-Fi throughout Pros: Well-heeled travelers will appreciate the updated rooms and business visitors the refreshed event meeting spaces, but the location and service are its standut features. Cons: Even in the Presidential Suite, a maximum occupancy of three adults applies. Not all rooms have workstations, making it less than ideal for business travelers. With this brand, you expect over-the-top luxury and this hotel doesn't disappoint from the moment you walk in. The entrance is grand with its soaring ceilings, warm exotic stone flooring and trim, enormous columns and chandelier, and oversized windows. The pool area and its adjacent outdoor terrace is of a block-style neoclassical design. But while the public spaces have all the glamour of another era, the just-renovated meetings and event areas and Meyer Davis-designed rooms are fully present. Modern, geometric patterns and clean lines rule the eye, all cool grays punctuated with pops of orange. Amenities include BVLGARI bath products and Bose sound systems, and residential-style suites add on with curated art collections, wall-to-wall windows, and even a fully stocked kitchen and hardwood floors throughout. But let's be honest, most of us aren't staying at a hotel to cook, which is where Bar Margot downstairs comes into play. For something really special, consider planning a Chef's Tasting Dinner for up to 10 for a once-in-a-lifetime multi-course experience complete with wine pairings. Another Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta-only experience is the Garden Table on the terrace, which features seasonal dishes prepared tableside. Seasonality doesn't end there, though. The spa also alternates the ingredients used in their treatments based on the time of year. However, if you're dead set on a certain flavor, folks love the interactive aroma design bar. St. Regis Atlanta Best for: Couples, locals staycation, families On-site amenities: Restaurants, full-service spa, afternoon tea experience, 24-hour concierge, free Wi-Fi throughout, fitness center, whirlpool, business center, 24-hour room service, seasonal outdoor pool and terrace with bar, butler service for select suites Pros: This lavish hotel is the epitome of over-the-top yet tasteful old-world luxury that has earned it a AAA Five Diamond rating. The on-site dining is not to be missed. Cons: Staying here is already a splurge without the $50/day parking charge. One can't help but be blown away by this genteel, of-another-era, opulent hotel. With 151 guestrooms, this property lives up to the brand's promise, impressing with classy touches that extend from service — such as complimentary luxury car service with a driver within a two-mile radius — to architecture and decor. Elegant rooms feature 65" TVs, French doors that open up to soaking tubs, and handcrafted chandeliers, all highlighted by plenty of natural lighting. Outside of them, including in the acclaimed Remede Spa, are bespoke furnishings, displayed fine art, and a famous phoenix mural at the St. Regis Bar. There's also a 40,000 square-foot Pool Piazz, modeled after Roman sensibilities and open seasonally. Just as transportive is Astor Court, a fine-dining venue that takes after English traditions and mixes it up with Southern flair. Afternoon tea here is a refined event no matter the theme, which can range from Alice in Wonderland, Downton Abbey, Memories of Japan to seasonal ones like cider. These are especially fun for families, and the St. Regis also offers numerous child-friendly amenities. Another upscale dining option is the Atlas Buckhead, a traditional fancy resort-style restaurant whose menu surprises with new offerings every day. The tasting menu is an adventure, but for just a nibble, the new Tavern at the Atlas has small plates for smaller appetites. Then there's The Garden Room, a playful indoor venue filled with lush plant life. To feel truly elite, purchase a $100 ticket for their often sold-out Summer Sundays Brunch Club. That credit goes toward your minimum spend toward an a la carte menu. Either way, don't leave without trying the hotel's signature Bloody Mary, a tradition every St. Regis has. This one's features pickled green tomatoes. FAQ: Atlanta vacations Where should I stay in Atlanta on vacation? The best area in Atlanta will depend on your interests. If you want to shop and stay in a center of affluence, Buckhead and its designer malls will likely be appealing. If you want artsy, hip vibes with industrial touches in historical spaces, you want Midtown and its eastern and southern radius. For more of a genteel feel, Virginia Highlands is lovely. And for raw energy and modern vibes, plus stadium proximity go Downtown. Or, if baseball is more your speed than football, stay closer to Truist, just outside of the city. When is the best time to visit Atlanta? From March to May is one of the best times to visit Atlanta. The weather is warm enough to take advantage of the numerous outdoor activities, but it's not too hot and humid yet. Summers in Atlanta are known for being very muggy, and prices often soar during the weekends. On the other hand, during the winter lows are often in the 30s and ice storms can occur, so pack accordingly. What are the best things to do in Atlanta? There's seemingly endless options to explore in Atlanta no matter your interests. There are events, festivals, and farmer's markets every weekend. Some of the perennial "don't miss!" attractions include walking the Beltline, visiting the botanical garden, the aquarium, World of Coca-Cola and Centennial Olympic Park, major Martin Luther King, Jr. sites, and going to at least one of the plentiful food halls and breweries. Are hotels safe?