Located in one of the swankiest areas of Atlanta, this Ritz-Carlton property epitomizes Southern sophistication and class. From its large luxury spa and stunning pool to its suites with bay windows that frame city views, the hotel has all the major amenities and small touches you would expect from a four-star property. No matter what room you stay in, you’ll rest on 400-thread-count sheets and down pillows and get pampered with Asprey bath products from England. Club Level accommodations also include special access to the Club Lounge, where you can enjoy breakfast, snacks, and hors d’oeuvres while taking in panoramas of Atlanta.
During your stay, you don’t have to be an anonymous face. Get to know the hotel a little better at the manager’s reception every Wednesday evening in the lobby, where you can help yourself to wine and cheese, and the sommelier-led wine tasting in the Café every Friday evening. Both events are free for guests. Kids get special time, too: On Friday nights a family-friendly “dive-in” movie is projected at the pool and comes with popcorn.
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The upmarket neighborhood of Buckhead has no shortage of shopping, dining, and entertainment options. At Phipps Plaza you can catch a movie, visit the Legoland Discovery Center, and browse more than 100 stores. Take a break and treat your sweet tooth at Henri’s Bakery, known for its wide selection of decadent French pastries, pies, and cakes. In the evening, check out Flip Burger Boutique, where you can order such haute options as duck confit nuggets, a blackened shrimp burger, and a peach moonshine milkshake. End your night at Prohibition, a 1920s-themed club where you have to enter a password in a phone booth to gain entrance.
Need to Know
Rooms: 454 rooms, 56 suites. From $289. Check-in: 3 p.m.; check-out: noon. Dining options:The Café serves fancified classics at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The popular Sunday brunch features made-to-order omelets, carving stations with meat and fish, and mini desserts prepared by the Ritz’s pastry chef; reservations are recommended and can be made online. Visit the Lobby Lounge for afternoon tea Wednesday through Sunday, or stop by for sushi, specialty cocktails, and live jazz Thursday through Saturday evenings. Spa and gym details:Open daily, the spa has a menu of seasonal and locally inspired treatments, including the Georgia red-clay body wrap, the Southern comfort facial, and the sweet magnolia pedicure. Guests can access a sauna and an indoor lap pool with an adjoining sundeck, where a weekend pool butler provides sunscreen and infused water. There’s also a 24-hour fitness center with cardio and weight machines.
Who's it for: Well-heeled and health-conscious travelers and families who prefer to be away from the hustle and bustle of downtown. Our favorite rooms: All rooms on the ninth floor—the Spa Level—come with such health-minded amenities as a yoga mat, blocks, and DVDs; an air purification system; and a Tempur-Pedic bed. Request a room facing south for views of Midtown and downtown Atlanta. The two spacious Buckhead Suites on the 20th floor have separate living rooms, and the bathrooms feature a marble soaking tub and a rain shower with body jets. Southern charm: The hotel hosts a “Bourbon and Bowties” party every Friday and Saturday evening. For $199, guests receive a pour of rare bourbon, such as 20-year-old Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve, as well as a Ritz-Carlton bowtie and a lesson on how to tie it properly.