Welcome to Backpacker’s Boutique. Every Sunday, this spot will feature a new travel blogger. Some weeks it will be a really fun interview about packing, fashion, and fitness so you can snoop inside their bags & lives a little bit and other weeks it’ll be a detailed luxury guide to a city the featured blogger/expat knows very well. E-mail me if you’d like to be featured.
A Luxury Guide to Atlanta
Tell us a little about yourself and tell us why you’re an expert on luxury travel in Atlanta.
I’m a full time attorney and part-time travel blogger based in Atlanta, Georgia. I moved from Milwaukee, WI ten years ago seeking a more cosmopolitan city and have called Atlanta my home ever since! It’s no secret that I enjoy “the finer things” in life (who doesn’t, right?), so over the past few years I’ve made it my mission to experience all this great, Southern city has to offer.
What makes Atlanta a perfect destination for travelers seeking a glamorous trip?
Atlanta offers a great array of dining and shopping experiences with a level of luxury that rivals most any city in the world. Atlanta may not have as many “must see” tourist attractions as other cities, but it’s a fantastic place to visit for a weekend trip to spoil yourself!
What 5 star hotel is the best in your town?
Atlanta offers a slew of upscale lodging options including the Ritz Carlton, St. Regis and Mandarin Oriental, but my favorite is the Four Seasons. Not only does the hotel exude classic luxury, it’s in a prime Atlanta location. Smack dab in the midst of Midtown, you can walk to many dining and nightlife options from the Four Seasons.
What about boutique hotels, of them all, which would you send your friends or family to stay at?
My personal preference is the Artmore Hotel which has a modern, funky vibe and a beautiful courtyard which is the perfect setting for happy hour cocktails.
Are there any fun activities for the adventurous traveler?
You don’t need to travel to an exotic location to dive or swim with whale sharks – you can do it at the Georgia Aquarium without even boarding a boat!
Where are the best hang outs during the day?
During the daytime, you’ll find locals and tourists alike at Piedmont Park, Atlanta’s own (smaller) version of Central Park. There’s plenty of green space for sports, playing with your pup or for a picnic. If you’re hungry or thirsty, Park Tavern offers food and libations with a great view of the park and the Midtown Skyline.
If you have a big date night, what are the most delicious restaurants in Atlanta and what are their best dishes?
Atlanta has so many amazing restaurant options! For a mouthwatering steak (and 5 star service) head to Bone’s. If you love Italian and crave carbs, Sotto Sotto is a great choice (and so is their mushroom risotto with truffle oil). If you prefer farm-to-table fare, Miller Union can’t be beat. For innovative, eclectic cuisine try Rathbun’s, and if you’re craving Southern delights, head to South City Kitchen, The Southern Gentleman or JCT Kitchen. For more great dining recommendations, check out my Local’s Guide to Atlanta.
Let’s talk desserts- what place makes the best?
A solid Atlanta stand-by brimming with dessert options is Café Intermezzo. The bar/restaurant/cafe also serves an extensive list of coffee drinks and cocktails.
Tell us all the hot shopping spots; who’s carrying the trendy local designers?
The best designer shopping can be found at Phipps Plaza where you can find classic shops such as Dior, Fendi and Gucci, or the Buckhead Atlanta shopping complex which is home to luxury brands such as Christian Louboutin and Hermes.
What are a couple of the best salons and spas in Atlanta?
You can’t beat the spas at the Ritz Carlton Buckhead and the Four Seasons.
Time for a great sunset view… where would you go?
I’d recommend that you head downtown to the Westin’s Sundial Restaurant and Bar. The bar occupies the 73rd floor of the hotel and the floor slowly rotates, offering you a 360 degree view of the city.
Now that the sun’s gone down, fill us on the best places to go for some evening drinks or a great pre-gaming spot.
Since the weather in Atlanta is warm or mild for most of the year, I’m a huge fan of roof-top bars. Try SkyLounge atop the Glenn Hotel Downtown or Community Smith which tops the Renaissance Hotel in Midtown.
If you end the night at a fancy club, which one do you head towards?
Atlanta does have a thriving club scene, but you’re more bound to find young professionals out at one of the many bars in the Virginia Highlands neighborhood (my favorite for live music is Limerick Junction). If you’re looking for a perfectly crafted cocktail in an interesting setting, check out Prohibition in Buckhead.
You’ll find the entrance of the speakeasy styled bar hidden inside a telephone booth in the East Andrews complex. To gain entry, you have to dial the phone and give the bartender the password.
Karisa Klee is a full-time attorney (and part-time adventuress) who resides in Atlanta, Georgia. Despite working a demanding job, she’s found time to travel to nearly 40 countries. Her blog, Flirting with the Globe, is filled with travel tips and itineraries to encourage other busy professionals to make travel a priority and to help others make the most of their limited and precious vacation time in a city or country. Check out Flirting with the Globe to learn more about Karisa and the places she’s traveled. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
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