In the heart of Charleston’s downtown district sits the iconic Belmond Charleston Place. Considered relatively new by Charleston standards, the 30-year-old property blends seamlessly with the 17th and 18th-century architecture of its surroundings. Large in scale, taking up an entire city block, the exterior brick façade gives the property the appearance of a small boutique hotel.
Upon arrival, the bellmen were quick to unload my luggage, whisk my car away and guide me to the front desk. The lobby was abuzz with activity as guests congregated around a dazzling Venetian chandelier and a pair of Georgian open arm staircases. An adjacent shopping concourse – stretching all the way from Meeting to King Streets – accommodates a selection of luxe boutiques including Gucci, St. John, Godiva Chocolatier and Louis Vuitton. A tree-lined brick courtyard that opens onto Market Street offers quick access to downtown Charleston’s extensive collection of shops and restaurants.
Once I swiped my key and entered my Junior Suite, I knew this hotel would forever rank high on my “favorites list.” A short hallway led me to a comfortable living area that was connected by a pair of glass French doors to the spacious sleeping quarters. The suite’s interior was elegant and richly decorated without being fussy or overdone. Understated tapestries, chintz and damasks provide a sense of history amidst a muted grey palette.
After my sumptuous meal at The Bar at Husk, I swung by the Thoroughbred Club for a nightcap. The lounge’s dark wood-paneled walls and rich burgundy tones made my cocktail go down even smoother than expected. I resisted the urge for “just one more” and let the deep amber flavor of my Uptown Manhattan linger on my tongue while I soaked in the bustling activity around me.
The next morning, my day began at the Palmetto Café, accessed from the hotel lobby. The atrium-style dining room was open and airy. Plantation shutters shielded the morning sun from above, yet still flooded the charming space with natural light. I ordered the Palmetto Omelet – stuffed with fresh lump crabmeat, lobster knuckles, mozzarella cheese and spring onions. Served with a side of cheese grits, I was definitely fueled for a day of exploration.
If you only have one night to spend in Charleston, I recommend staying right downtown at the center of the action. The Belmond Charleston Place is definitely a splurge but well worth every penny.
This trip occurred in collaboration with Frontiers International Travel.