Past Places

New Smyrna Beach: Art & Artist Enclave (Fall 2016)

Charleston's Most Unique Low Country Dishes (Fall 2016)

Grab a Life Vest, Helmet, and a Paddle (Fall 2016)

Upcoming Exhibitions at the North Carolina Museum of Art (Fall 2016)

The Ultimate Staycay? A Homegrown Mediterranean Get-Away (Fall 2015)

Eight Uniquely Charlotte Experiences (Fall 2015)

Hitting the High Notes of Macon's Music Scene (Fall 2015)

Florida's North Peninsula (Fall 2015)

12 Reasons to Visit Huntsville, Alabama (Fall 2015)

Alabama's Captivating Capital (Fall 2014)

Exploring South Carolina Old 96 District (Spring 2014)

Weekend Getaway to Lake Charles, La. (Spring 2014)

Exploring Northwest Florida's Natural Side (Spring 2014)

Discovering the Lake Oconee Area (Fall 2013)

Cumberland Island National Seashore (Fall 2013)

The Best of Today's Waterpark Rides (Summer 2013)

COOKING CLASSES IN THE SOUTH (Spring 2013)

Have a Southern Houseboat House Party (Spring 2013)

Take Flight: Yes, You CAN Get a Pilot’s License (Spring 2013)

Discovering Hollywood's Backlot (Fall 2012)

Color-Fall Tennessee (Fall 2012)

NASCAR 2012: Upcoming Events Around the South (Summer 2012)

RVacations (Summer 2012)

People Go Wild for Glamping (Summer 2012)

Best Beaches for Beach Bums (Summer 2012)

Heirloom Gardens (Spring 2012)

Unforgettable Experiences Await You at Select Registry Inns in the South (Winter 2011)

Golf with a Southern Drawl (Fall 2011)

Bring Rover on Over - Hotels That Want to Pamper Your Pooch (Fall 2011)

Cabana Mania! (Summer 2011)

Time to Plan for Summer Sleepaway Camps (Spring 2011)

He Said Golf, She Said Spa (Spring 2011)

Edu-Vacation Destination: Charleston, S.C. (Spring 2011)

Getting Your Adventure on in the Mountains (Spring 2011)

Freeze Action (Winter 2010)

No Ordinary Love (Winter 2010)

Spa Spectacular: The Natural Choice (Winter 2010)

Freestyle Mountain Adventures (Winter 2010)

Unforgettable Experiences Await You at Select Registry Inns in the South

Want an unforgettable getaway this winter? Why not spend a weekend at a one of a handful of Select Registry Inns in the south. Whether you want to be active or just chillax with loved ones (or a good book) during your vacation, there's a Select Registry Inn just for you.

What makes these inns special? Well, only 350 inns nationwide have qualified for the designation, passing rigorous inspections to maintain membership. So, when you are staying at one, you know it's like no other.

Intrigued?

Ready to book a getaway?

Consider these...

Elizabeth Pointe Lodge

Amelia Island, Fla.

“It's a different experience staying with us,” says David Caples, innkeeper/owner, Elizabeth Pointe Lodge. “We're more of a boutique hotel than a traditional bed and breakfast.”

Situated on Amelia Island, Fla., the inn offers 25 guest rooms (20 in the main house, four in the Ocean House and a cottage) ranging in sizes. He says it is one thing that distinguishes them from others in the area. That, along with the fact Elizabeth Point Lodge itself faces the ocean which allows over half of the rooms to enjoy an ocean view. However, don't think the other rooms don't offer any views. They do - one of the sunset - which Caples says is “pretty darn nice.”

And its location is convenient, too.

“It's a 100 foot walk to the beach,” he adds. “We are a comfortable destination for a beachside experience in a low-key environment. We are easy-going here.”

The property includes all the necessities and extra that you would need (or want) while on vacation. There's a library on the main floor, complimentary WiFi throughout, a wine and hors d' oeuvres reception each night and more.

Then there are the personal touches, such having service staff on duty 24 hours a day to arranging specific activities for the guest along the island.

“One nice thing about Amelia Island is that it's 13 miles long and you can experience just about anything here,” says Caples. “There's a lot of walking and hiking trails around. We have bikes available for rent, and you bike into town if you like.”

There's also Segway tours at Forth George Island, horseback riding on the beach and other activities to choose from, both non-water and water oriented.

In addition, Cumberland Island is located north of the area, and Caples says with advance notice they can arrange a picnic lunch for you take along when you go exploring.

He adds you can learn or enhance you skills while staying at Elizabeth Pointe Lodge, too. Would like to try your hand at, say, watercolors? The inn can connect you with local artisans and/or classes. You can also spruce up on your tennis, golf or sailing skills. You just need to make a request at reservations.

“We work with you to provide you with a personalized stay.

http://www.selectregistry.com/members/glen-ella-springs.asp

Clarksville, Ga.

There is something about Glen-Ella Springs Inn & Meeting Place in Clarksville, Ga. This something (or somethings) has captured the attention of travelers for over 100 years. Perhaps you can discover for yourself when you visit the property.

Ed Kivett, innkeeper/owner, sums up the property's specialness, “It's a place where you can truly getaway.”

“It's somewhere casualness, nature, fine dining and hospitality all come together.”

Located about 90 minutes north of Atlanta, the inn is home to 16 well-appointed rooms, with little touches that include such items as period antiques and locally-made crafts. You can choose from the four different room types, complete with their own unique amenities. There's also a villa, featuring six bedrooms, idea for families or groups, located about two and a half miles from the inn.

While you may not want to feel to remote or removed from it all, the property does have WiFi. But when you do want time reflect or reconnect with nature, this is the place to do it. Glen Ella's upper and lower gardens, along with 17 acres are boarded by the Chattahoochee National Forest. You can also explore the 12-acre meadow along the walking path.

And if the natural setting doesn't impress you, then the restaurant will.

“Our restaurant is top-rated,” says Kivett. “We have a great chef, who's style is continental cuisine with a southern flair. As for the restaurant, it has  a quaint atmosphere with heart pine walls and a dining terrace overlooking the gardens.”

When you are ready explore the area (that is, if you can tear yourself away from the property), Kivett says there's a lot to do.

“There's a lot of cultural venues as well as outdoor adventures.”

For those staying over a weekend, you can expect something a little special with the breakfast on Sunday. It's the time Kivett makes pancakes.

“Although Sundays are my day, I can prepare them at other times upon request. I make blueberry, apple cinnamon and chocolate chip.”

Bed and Breakfast on Tiffany Hill

Mills River, N.C.

“Casual elegance filled with southern hospitality,” is how innkeeper/owner Selena Einwechter describes Bed and Breakfast on Tiffany Hill.

“My goal was to create a place of rest and restoration that brings guests back. Recent guests have commented about experiencing a sense of peaceful here that's not found anywhere else.”

Opened in 2009, the Bed and Breakfast on Tiffany Hill is also a tangible symbol of a 25 year old fulfilled dream. Einwechter wanted to be a bed and breakfast owner, and she researched and worked diligently for it to happen.

Thus, the Bed and Breakfast on Tiffany Hill was established.

Built from the ground up, she says the property is more of a 21-century estate bed and breakfast because of all of the modern technological amenities available, such as WiFi, keyless entry, flat screen TVs and more.

The five guest suites, named after her favorite southern towns like Seaside, Fla., Madison, Ga., and Natchez, Miss., feature fine linen seven-layer beds and private baths.

Other amenities include a 24 hour accessible guest pantry filled with snacks and beverages.

“Bed and Breakfast on Tiffany Hill appeals to a different clientele,” she says. “We attract those who want something a little different when it comes to a bed and breakfast experience.”

The mornings begin with a three-course gourmet breakfast that includes dessert, because Einwechter says it (dessert) shouldn't be limited to dinner.

Once you've finished you meal, you can explore the property's six acres and relax in the Secret Garden or at the Circle of Trees.

“I've created an atmosphere that allows guests to do as much as they want to, or as little as they want to.”

The location of the inn is adjacent to Asheville, Brevard and Hendersonville, allowing you to take advantage of all that's offered in western North Carolina. Upon request, she can also create day trip itineraries.

“When I set out to do this (being an innkeeper), I was going to do it right,” comments Einwechter. “I strive to offer the very best to the traveling public.”

Bloomsbury Inn

Camden, S.C.

There are some bed and breakfasts you visit to experience the destination, and then there are some that are the destination themselves. Bloomsbury Inn in Camden, S.C. , is the later.

The home, located four blocks from the downtown historic district, is best known from the writing of Mary Boykin Chestnut's  A Diary From Dixie, and  her diaries used by Dr. C. Vann Woodward for his book, Mary Chestnut's Civil War.

Bruce and Katherine Brown, owners/innkeepers, are more than happy to share the history of property with you. In fact, Bruce conducts a historical talk and tour, either before or after breakfast. It includes a sit down 30-minute oral review, and then a hour to an hour and a half walking tour.

“We keep guests pretty busy,” he says.

While its history does set Bloomsburg Inn apart from other properties, the Browns also believes it their attention to details and special touches that also make a difference. The four comfortable guest rooms feature individual sitting areas, fireplaces and antiques. The property's amenities include WiFi, private baths, custom soaps and more.

“We really try to make it special for every guest,” says Katherine.

And this includes afternoon socials on the verandah to chocolates on the pillow at evening turn-down. The Browns even take it a step further, as Katherine points out one time they mapped out bicycle routes for a couple who asked.

That Bloomsbury Inn experience is highlighted further at breakfast. Katherine admits she loves cooking breakfast. Using fresh local and regional ingredients, your morning can start with such dishes as Eggs Benedict, or Biscuits and Chocolate Gravy.

“Every guest is special,” says Bruce. “We want them to have an experience. We want them to leave saying, 'wow, that was great.'”

White Gate Inn & Cottage

Asheville, N.C.

“People travel to Asheville, N..C., because of it's a great town with an eclectic downtown,” says Frank Salvo, innkeeper/owner. “And White Gate Inn & Cottage happens to be the closest inn to downtown.”

Now, that's just one of a handful of reasons guests stay at the property. Salvo also points to the fact the inn is the highest rated bed & breakfast in Asheville; and even though they are four-diamond, AAA rated, he says expect a “casual atmosphere” when you're here.

“We are not stuffy. We offer a friendly experience.”

However, the piece d' resistance  is the inn's award-winning gardens. An urban oasis of sorts, it's home to 18 varieties of Japanese maples and over 300 different varieties of perennials, hostas, roses and herbs. Salvo adds, “It's spectacular. There are waterfalls and sitting areas throughout.”

The property offers 11 rooms (five in the Inn, two suites in the Bungalow and three suites in the Bungalow), all named after poets.

“Guests help us choose the poets. It was a fun way to keep guests in touch.”

As an added touch, the rooms contain volumes of work by each of the  poets. Some of the other amenities found in the rooms are fireplaces, WIFI, private baths and antique furnishings. Features vary in the suites and can include as kitchens, private entrances and larger bathrooms.

“We want the guests to feel as if they are visiting a private home.”

Of course, it's not a true getaway without a little indulgence. Of course, everyone can enjoy there's three-course breakfast, with features a fruit dish, an entree (either sweet or savory) and a dessert.

“Breakfasts here are fun and lively,” says Salvo. “It's a great experience. It's elegant, yet relaxed.

If you want to indulge a little further, consider arranging a spa treatment. Select from an extensive menu for an in-room treat.

Cuscowilla Golf  Club and Resort

Eatonton, Ga.

It's not often that a property appeals to both golfers and non-golfers. However, Cuscowilla Golf Club and Resort does exactly that, and quite successfully.

Located in Eatonton,Ga., about an hour east of Atlanta, off I-20, the 700-acre property is all about tranquility and relaxation.

“We have a unique design and approach,” says Craig Smith, director of operations. “We retained the natural setting. There's a lot of green spaces and trees around.”

There's also a fun factor woven throughout the resort as well.

Situated on Lake Oconee, the second largest lake in the state, the lake afforded the resort about six-and-a-half miles of shoreline. During the spring and summer (and even in the fall), there's ample opportunity for some sort of water play for all ages. From fishing to kayaking to canoeing to playing in the water, Cuscowilla has you covered. There's also bike rentals, jet ski rentals, pontoon boat rentals and more.

A prime destination for families, the resort has a Kids Club with age-appropriate activities that will keep them engaged and entertained.

And for the golfers, this might be their dream property. The challenging par-70 course , designed by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw, features both Bermuda  fairways and Bent grass greens. Additionally, there's a golf academy with great golf pros, says Smith.

“You can arrange for an hour-long private lesson, regardless of your skill level.”

The property has two restaurants, Golf House Grill, overlooking the golf course and Waterside Restaurant, offering views of the lake.

When it comes to accommodations, you can choose from Golf Cottages, Lodge Villas or Lake Villas. Amenities vary, as well as the space.

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