A luxurious weekend in the “Hostess City of the South”
A chance to visit the charming Southern escape of Savannah, Georgia is not one that can be easily passed upon! After hearing nothing but wonderful things about the oldest city in Georgia, it quickly became one of my top bucket-list destinations and remained there until my long-awaited opportunity finally came this summer. From horse-drawn carriages and cobblestone squares to trendy boutiques and coastal cuisine, Savannah was a world straight out of a fairy-tale movie, and Andaz Savannah proved to be the perfect accommodations for the show.
Located in the heart of the Historic District, Andaz Savannah is a stylish boutique hotel experience that draws in visitors from around the world. Upon my arrival, I was greeted by staff with a cold beer and warm smiles that immediately made me feel at home in my new home for the weekend. As if a complementary local beer wasn’t enough reminder that I was in the “Hostess City of the South,” the luxurious amenities in my guestroom were sure to finish the job. Having recently announced the completion of an extensive transformation of their 151 guestrooms and suites, I was eager to see what the all-new Andaz Savannah had to offer.
Andaz Savannah’s redesigned guestrooms and suites exhibited a color palette rooted in its surroundings and fresh, abstract focal pieces by NG Collective. As a guest, I also enjoyed a playful ode to the “Three Wise Monkeys” found throughout the revitalized guestrooms and suites. My own spacious suite featured luxurious furnishings, European style showers, a pedestal tub and a balcony overlooking the city and historic downtown. Large windows and artful decor brightened the room and set the mood for the Southern sophistication I was about to experience over the course of the next couple days.
With that being said, there was no time to waste when it came to experiencing all that Andaz Savannah had to offer so I tore myself away from the gorgeous accommodations and made my way down to 22 Square Bar for craft cocktails that have been named the best in town! Fortunately, it didn’t take long to see why as my companions and I enjoyed a refreshing mix of classic and contemporary beverages infused with a variety of fresh juices, homemade syrups, tonics and artisanal liquors. Naturally our 22 Square Bar cocktails were followed by a taste of the flavors of the Georgia coast at 22 Square Restaurant. The chic market to table eatery featured modern Southern inspired cuisine made from locally grown produce and sustainable ingredients. From local caught seafood straight out of the Atlantic to Heritage Poultry raised humanely and naturally, 22 Square’s quality ingredients and commitment to sustainability was evident in every tasty bite.
In addition to exquisite evening dining, 22 Square also features a bountiful breakfast buffet of market fresh foods, baked goods and espressos, but be mindful not to eat too much if you intend on participating in my favorite activity of the weekend: Savannah Taste Experience! Regularly ranked as a Top Thing to Do in Savannah, The First Squares Food Tour by Savannah Taste Experience was a tasty and historic journey to six unique foodie spots surrounding the initial squares built in the city. My companions and I sampled an eclectic mix of delicious foods as our firecracker tourguide, Country, shared her vast knowledge about the food, the restaurants, and the rich culture around us. Tasting locations included everything from Molly MacPherson’s Scottish Pub—a traditional Scottish restaurant highlighting dishes consumed by some of Savannah’s earliest settlers—to award-winning honey store Savannah Bee Company and everything in between.
In addition to tasting the best of Savannah, the First Squares Food Tour also helped us to familiarize ourselves with the city which proved to be abundantly helpful as we set of to explore on our own later that afternoon. From walking the Savannah Riverfront to embracing local culture and must-have shopping at quaint boutiques, the long weekend in Savannah just wasn’t enough to see it all! Still full from our Savannah Taste Experience, my companions and I rounded out the day back at Andaz Savannah with craft cocktails and light bites poolside on their second-floor terrace surrounded by colorful views and luxurious cabanas. As late afternoon gave way to night, my companions and I set out again to explore a different side of Savannah. Our desire for a nightlife adventure brought us to the famed Alley Cat Lounge.
A single doorman stood guard over the inconspicuous entry as we made our way down an unassuming staircase and into a secret world that every tourist needs to experience. Sleek decor and a classy environment set the stage for the innovative speakeasy that was packed with both Savannah locals and tourists alike. A complimentary bowl of popcorn tickled our taste buds as we browsed through a menu unlike anything I’ve seen before. The menu, named the Alley Cat Rag, was creatively displayed as a 32 page newspaper with entertaining booze-related content separated by types of drinks. With so much to choose from, it’s impossible not to find a beverage suitable to your taste. As my companions and I came to find out, there was truly something for everyone. Returning to the Alley Cat Lounge upon my next trip to Savannah is an absolute must!
As Floridians, we have no excuse to not treat ourselves to a long weekend in this nearby, beautiful city and I’m ashamed it took me so long to finally see it for myself! Savannah lived up to being the “Hostess City of the South” in every sense of the word and the renowned Andaz Savannah proved to be the perfect host for my travel needs. With its artful décor, relaxed modern vibe, and new South sophistication, the redesigned Andaz Savannah allowed my companions and I to experience a fashionable urban oasis without ever setting foot outside although an authentic adventure could be found just minutes away. The prime location being just steps away from the riverfront helped us to take advantage of trendy shopping, dining, historic sightseeing, and more. I hope you’ll consider planning your own weekend getaway to this quintessential Southern town where you’ll quickly discover the enchanting soul of Savannah, a vibrant destination for travelers across the world.