Yall, we had the absolute best time in Charleston this past weekend! Imagine a 10 bedroom historic southern mansion, decorated nicely, with about 10 bloggers. It was madness but oh so fun! This was my second time in Charleston and my first round of places to stay / eat can be found here! As for this trip, I will break it down below!
The Inns Charleston: If you are looking for the real southern experience, I would HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend The Inn. Yall, the decor itself makes me want to move in. SOOO cute and the perfect location. There were a few brunch spots we walked to and everything was about a 5-8 minute Uber ride away. I definitely would love to stay again at The Inn and had no complaints! We rented out all of the units but its built to rent out separately as well. Emily and I shared the third floor and it was the perfect home!
You can’t go wrong with the Southern Food in Charleston. My last guide had some AMAZING places and here are a few more we tried to add to the list!
Juliet: Just opened up in Charleston but a delicious Pizza bar!
The Darling Oyster Bar: This was my second time there and it did not disappoint the second time around! The ambiance is amazing and the oysters are even better!
Poogan’s Porch: Yummiest brunch ever! SO many recommendations that we had to try it! The hot chicken sandwich was probably my favorite meal ever!
Rainbow Row: I feel like we spent the majority of our time at Rainbow Row taking pictures! The houses are so beautiful!
Prohibition: We went out here for drinks after Darling Oyster and the back patio is so much fun! Highly recommend walking over after dinner for drinks. We called for reservations!
We also got glammed up at Colur Studios who uses all organic products. This was so fun to do with the girlies!
So this past weekend, we were so excited to spend a couple nights at The Inn at Willow Grove in Virginia! My brother in law and soon to be sister in law go to Liberty University for med school so I have been to Lynchburg, Virginia once to visit! I knew Virginia had a few wineries but nothing like we experienced in Orange! The Inn at Willow Grove is only a 40ish minute drive from Charlottesville, Virginia! That is where I flew into, but you also can drive about 1.5 hours from DC’s airport!
Hotel: Ok hands down the cutest little boutique hotel I ever stayed in. They actually have won many awards and were voted number one for the most romantic hotel! They just did renovations and the decor made me want to run home and finish decorating my own place! Everything was thought of and the decor just constantly put a smile on my face. You can either rent a small log cabin with its own living room or get a room that shares a hall with three other rooms. The service was AMAZING and yall I come from a hotel – restaurant major so I am a snob when it comes to this stuff. They thought of everything from heated floors in the bathroom, your very own fireplace, to delivering complimentary coffee and beignets to your room every morning. I want to plan another getaway here and bring Ted because they did no wrong here! Truly an amazing experience!
Activities: As far as activities went, we were scheduled for Montpelier Plantation, Barboursville Vineyards, and a spa appointment at The Mill House! Montpelier Plantation was President James Madison’s home and we had a full walking history lesson on his life! It actually was super interesting and I learned so much. I haven’t been on a legit history tour in years so it was fun! After the tour, we were headed to Barboursville Vineyards which was the highlight of the trip for me! So many of you all recommended this vineyard and I can see why! The views were amazing, but their wine was even better! We had a full lunch and tasting session with winemaker Luca Paschina. I definitely recommend eating lunch there while enjoying a good glass of wine! Our last activity consisted of a spa at The Mill House which was amazing. You can’t go wrong with ending a jam-packed day with a massage!
Restaurants: I don’t know where to begin because I feel like I had the absolute BEST meals during this trip. Like we didn’t go wrong once and I want to go back just for the food! I already mentioned that the wine + lunch pairing at Barboursville was out of this world. Another favorite was Forked On Main. Holly smokes everything I took a bite out of was amazing. We had Forked on Main the very first night we got there and we even had a surprise guest, James Madison the fourth president! Haha! It was so entertaining I definitely want to invite him to the next dinner I host with friends! Another amazing dinner spot that I really enjoyed was The Inn at Willow Grove’s dinner spot called the Vintage. Even if you are passing by the area, stop at The Inn for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. I loved dinner so much that we went back the next morning for brunch and THAT DIDN’T DISAPPOINT either. I may have gained 8lbs on the trip because I cleaned plate each time haha! Probably how you know it was yum 🙂
Where to begin! Paris was absolutely stunning! I know, cliche, but the more I travel, the more I realize the hype around Paris. I have been to Paris several times before but it truly is a romantic city with your significant other. This was our first time together and we made everlasting memories!
For this post, I am going to give you a quick round-up of what we ate, toured, and stayed for those who asked!
Eat: unlike other trips, this one, I was thoroughly prepared for reservations before we arrived. And believe me, this is a rarity, lol! Ted was impressed so I definitely will continue to do this for him 🙂
Les Climats is a high-end restaurant that serves top quality French food (1 star Michelin rating). Not budget freindly, but oh well, we were in Paris lol. I absolutely loved this place. The ambience was romantic, the service was good, and the food was delicious! We splurged a bit on this one and went with the Chef’s choice (9-course meal) and a bottle of wine (or 2 lol). I would recommend going with this option, especially if you are not familiar with french food. The waiter will ask if you have any allergies, and the chef works around your needs. If you don’t mind breaking the bank a little bit, I would highly recommend it. I especially loved siting by the fire. It was so Pariseanesque (not a word) lol!
In my opinion, this is the cutest place on earth! Similar to Les Climats, Firmin is a high-end restaurant. The difference, the owners are literally in the restaurant too. This place seats about 15 people, and the food was fantastic. I ordered the Foie Gras, and the hubby had Escargot (heck, we were in Paris, might as well eat like they do, lol). Dinner was good, but the dessert was excellent!! Hubby and I shared the Chocolate Ganache with passion fruit ice cream, which I LOOOVED. I wish I didn’t share lol. I honestly would go back to Paris just for this dessert. I think about it all the time!
This restaurant is a California-fusion. What that means? No clue really, but that’s what they said, lol. On the menu was a mix of American classics and french food. Also, eat outside and enjoy the fantastic view of the Eiffel tower!
Crepes, Croissants, Baguettes, etc., etc.,
I probably stopped at every crepe stand I could find, lol. They are so good and it is so fun to watch them make it! Nutella crepe allll the way.
You know, when you’ve had too much Escargot and Foie Gras, lol. I honestly don’t eat McD in the states but I always have to make a stop. Reminds me of home!
Sights to see:
It’s Paris. You can literally walk down any street and there is going to be a story there, with beautiful architecture and the cutest shops! Outside of the main attractions (Eiffel Tower, Louvre, Arc De Triomphe, The Louvre, Seine River tour, etc., etc.,), Paris is really yours to make. The hubby really wanted to do the Hop-on, Hop-off tours, since he so loves the history of the city, and they have English guides to explain everything. Unfortunately, I lost the tickets after the first day, lol, so we went around walking the city the old-fashioned way, and we absolutely loved it! I would recommend doing the same.
Where to stay:
Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel: Hubby had a ton of points with Accor hotels, and found the Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel with the Eiffel Tower view. Absolutely lovely! They had incredible service, conveniently located to the Eiffel Tower. I will say though the room was updated but the bathroom was not. The doors were chipped and needed a major renovation but other than that the bedroom was modern and did the job! Location was a bonus for this one!
Shangri-La Paris: Always a high-end classic. This is where hubby initially wanted to stay, but the place was completely sold it!
Y’all, these have to be my favorite photos yet. How magical does Central Park look? We woke up early yesterday and went straight to the park to explore since New York had a small overnight snow fall. We could not stop smiling, it was such a magical experience! I wanted to talk about my Givenchy mini antigona purse today since I have received lots of questions. I got it at Nordstrom a couple months ago after spending months eyeing it and I couldn’t be more in love with a purse! It’s probably my only designer purse that can be worn with a super casual outfit or with a dressier look! I especially think it is perfect while traveling or running out the door and needing just a purse to carry a few items in. I love wearing a designer bag with a causal outfit just to up the level of your look a tad. I have always been a huge believer of investing in a good designer bag over anything else! This bag is so versatile I do always carry it to dinner as well with a more dressier look!
I absolutely love when Nordstrom carries the designer bags I have my eye on because of triple point days. It’s like a double win getting so many points while shopping designer items!