Monday, April 12, 2010

Madras Monday: Charleston, SC

In writing this post, trying to answer the question about where I like to stay in Charleston, I came to the realization that the three hotels that I have stayed in over the past several years are now all owned by the Holiday Inn group!  That's fine with me....I am a Priority Club member and there is always a little something special waiting for me whenever I stay at one of their hotels, so last week was places other than Charleston, too! I stayed in three of their hotels during the journey down and back.....

The place I have stayed most frequently in Charleston is the Mills House.  (That was Miss Betty's favorite by far!)  It is beautiful and so "old Charleston."  Having 82 Queen, my favorite downtown restaurant, just across the side street, is great, too....Not to far to get home after one of their amazing dinners! The Mills House was always our family "headquarters," and I never thought I would go anywhere else... but my niece, who was a student at the College of Charleston, recommended the Holiday Inn Historic District in 2008....and it was grand!  Such great service!!  It, too, is in a great location....

For this trip I had to be able to get downtown, get to my cousin's house and get back and forth to Seabrook Island, so I was looking for somewhere easy in/out.  For years I had been fascinated by the cylindrical hotel on the river, so I booked into the Holiday Inn Riverview.  To be sure, it was not quite as elegant as the Mills House or Holiday Inn Historic District....BUT.....the rate was unbelievable, my room had a great view, parking was easy, and I could zoom around to all my destinations with no problem.   They have a lovely restaurant on the top floor, with a spectacular view and an amazing breakfast.  Starting each day there was a delight!

Here's the link to these hotels for more information: Priority Club.

Of course, there's always the Francis Marion Hotel  and City Place....They're on my list to try, too. Charleston has a lot to offer when it comes to places to stay!!

Now that we've covered where to stay in Charleston, let's talk about when to go.  Answer?  Anytime....but spring is especially beautiful.   Because this was a different type of trip for me, I didn't do any house tours, garden tours, etc....but I did get to see some things I hadn't seen before.  (Thanks to Miss Betty, I started on the house tours as a child, so feel I have covered a great deal of Charleston in that respect over the years!)

One of the places we spent time last week was beautiful Ashley Hall.....the private school for girls.  One of the cousins I was visiting works for Ashley Hall, and we had a lovely tour, meeting many of the faculty and staff.  I don't know if Ashley Hall is ever open to the public or not, but its history is fascinating and its buildings and grounds are spectacular.

Aren't the dresses made from "trash" just great? These students are really talented!!  A bridal gown and something fun in pink and green, too!  And speaking of pink and green......

I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Palm Avenue on King Street!  It's an awesome Lilly shop, with a helpful and friendly sales staff.  They had some items in stock that I had never seen before....including a precious "Lilly shift" eyeglass case....I bought every one they had, and checked several names off my Christmas list!!

  Just up from Palm Avenue was Affordables, with their terrific display of rainboots!

I love to stand on a corner in Charleston and watch the people go by.....the locals who are shopping or on their way to work, the first time visitors who are taking a horse drawn carriage ride, the occasional wedding party, going to and from the church.  It's a magical city that holds a lot of amazing memories for me....and I hope to go back often to make even more!!


  1. What a fun Madras Monday post! Loving all your pictures, I miss Charleston, and look at these reinforced my need to make another trip down there soon, it is indeed a magical city. Those Lilly shift eyeglass cases are to die for! :) And wow, what a great selection of rainboots!

  2. Just found your blog! A truly wonderful place to go in Charleston is The Jack Patla Co., at 181 King Street. It has been around for decades and has amazing silver and English antiques. When I was in there, a local lady was buying a sterling biscuit box to hide her t.p. in! It is a treat.