Culinary Travels

the plaza hotel tower room Pair The Tower Room at The Plaza with dinner at Rotisserie Georgette. 

By Jan Walsh, Photography by Jan Walsh 

It was my family’s mission to make my 60th Birthday memorable. Mission accomplished. The Tower Room at The Plaza is a once in a lifetime luxury. And I shall never forget my beautiful birthday dinner at Rotisserie Georgette—my newfound, favorite restaurant in New York City.

kiawah island sanctuary resport roomDiscover a new dimension at Kiawah Island Resort.  

By Jan Walsh

If Kiawah Island Resort and The Sanctuary Hotel were across the globe, I would travel the world to arrive here. Fortunately from Birmingham, I can leave early morning and arrive here in time for a late lunch. This is our second trip to Kiawah Island, and I do not plan for it to be our last—as it is one of the most special places I have ever visited, and it is Southern.
Henderson Inn suite Discover a private piece of Destin at Henderson Park Inn.

By Jan Walsh

Henderson Park Inn is a beachfront, adults-only, all-inclusive, boutique hotel. Located on a quiet cul-de-sac on Scenic Highway 98 in Destin, Florida, the property is situated beside the 208-acre Henderson Beach State Park and its long stretch—1.3 miles—of unobstructed beach. Henderson Park Inn also has a fine dining restaurant, Beach Walk Cafe. My husband, Kevin and I enjoy a long, quiet, and delicious weekend here for Valentine’s.
Pair The Hermitage Hotel with Nashville Wine Auction.  

By Jan Walsh

I recently enjoyed a lovely weekend in Nashville, without the country music. I paired a stay at The Hermitage Hotel with a weekend of wine at the Nashville Wine Auction’s inaugural Pairings event, held at Noah Liff Opera.

This was my first stay at The Hermitage Hotel. And I do not plan for it to be my last. I fell in love with this place as soon as I entered the Tennessee marble columned lobby with its magnificent painted glass ceiling. The Hotel Hermitage opened in 1910, as the namesake of Andrew Jackson's Hermitage estate. Five Presidents of the U.S. and countless celebrities have stayed here. I could write a book on its history. But that has already been done by Ripley Wills, II: The Hermitage Hotel at One Hundred. The hotel was purchased in 2000 by Historic Hotels of Nashville, LLC, which led to the $17 million renovation of the guest rooms and public areas, after which the hotel reopened on Valentine's Day 2003. Less than nine months later it received the prestigious American Automobile Association Five-Diamond rating, and it remains Tennessee’s only Forbes Five Star and AAA Triple Diamond Hotel.

Rediscover world-class wineries, a fairy tale town, and one spectacular lake.

By Jan Walsh

In the previous issue of this column, I shared the perfect Napa Valley trip. Picking up our suitcases where that trip left off, we take the top down on the convertible for a scenic drive to Healdsburg, in Sonoma County. This weekend we revisit our Sonoma County favorites.
We combine the best of Napa Valley into one perfect trip.
By Jan Walsh

Touring Napa Valley is a yearly pleasure. Typically I repeat very little in order to have new experiences. But this year instead of new, past favorites are synthesized into one wonderful trip—luxury accommodations, legendary wineries, sensational cuisine, and a convertible.
Discover great restaurants, awesome views and interesting tourist attractions.

By Jan Walsh

Kevin and I take a couple’s weekend to Chattanooga. Making better driving time (less than three hours) than expected, we arrive in time for lunch in the city—rather than on the road as we had expected. Yet this unexpected pleasure also creates a problem. I have not researched where to have lunch and quickly begin to do so on my iPad.

A weekend at The Ritz Carlton Lodge at Reynolds Plantation pleases all.

By Jan Walsh

Family time is precious. Yet with busy schedules, it is difficult to find time to be together as a family. Yet when I mentioned a weekend at the AAA-5 Diamond Ritz Carlton Lodge at Reynolds Plantation, schedules suddenly freed up a bit.

A weekend at Barnsley Gardens is long enough to fall in love.

By Jan Walsh

Weekend escapes are my favorite travel. And I recently spent the perfect weekend escape at Barnsley Gardens. I arrive knowing little about the property and leave two days later in love with this place.

High Hampton Inn offers a rustic mountain escape.

By Jan Walsh

If you like camping out, try “camping in” at High Hampton Inn & Country Club, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Since 1922 High Hampton Inn has hosted families who want to get away from the hustle and bustle and simply enjoy what life used to be—before we were “wired.”

Listed on National The Register of Historic Places, the property is reminiscent of the camps of the Adirondacks. The Lodge was constructed of local materials in 1932. The lobby boasts a huge stone four-sided fireplace. Beyond the Inn’s guest rooms are mountain cottages, for couples or large families. Some have fireplaces and screen porches, and all have fabulous views. For honeymooners or couples on a romantic getaway, the secluded Honeymoon Cottage is highly recommended.