They say Virginia is for lovers and that may be true, but I have found another place that gives that sentiment a run for it’s money. Back in January my husband took me to Savannah for a romantic getaway. It wasn’t our first trip there so we were familiar with the feel of the city. If you’ve never been let me set the #mood: Southern Romance with a bit of sexy and a whole lot of fun.
On previous trips we discovered the horse drawn carriages and charming shops, as well as the wonderful restaurants and cobblestone streets. You know, the classic romanticized touristy things. They all put you in a relaxed state of mind and elicit a need to be close to each other despite the heat.
Speaking of heat, Savannah is notorious for its hot temperatures, but luckily during our most recent trip the weather was wonderfully cool. But don’t get your hopes up! It is full fledge spring now and that means heat, humidity and more heat, but like The saying goes if you can’t stand the heat…
We stayed at The Westin located across the river and away from the hustle and bustle of the town. Located next door to the convention center, the hotel is a haven for business movers and shakers. It is quite large and the rooms are extremely comfortable. The amenities such as the fire pits, both waterfront and poolside, and the river walk aided in the romantic theme of our trip. The waterfront location afforded a picturesque view of the Savannah River and the river walk portion of the city. Our room shared the same river view as well as one of the Talmadge Memorial Bridge which we enjoyed from the comfort of our balcony.
The river is mesmerizing and makes you want to fall in love all over again. Watching the enormous cargo ships coming and going with countless numbers of containers stacked on their decks was a fun pastime for my husband while he waited for me to get ready. He has a thing for ships and especially tug boats. Even if you aren’t into ships the charm of the water and the glow of lights from the ships passing by at night provides an picturesque backdrop.
Being true foodies, we made the most of the hotel and took advantage of the excellent restaurant , Aqua Star located on the second floor. The view of the river was breathtaking at night and made for a very intimate dining experience. It was the idyllic setting for a couple in love. The staff was friendly and efficient and the food was on point. Doug being a fan of seafood lost himself in the Aqua Star Signature Pot Pie (lump crab,shrimp, scallops, lobster,) with butternut squash and potatoes, while I chose the Meyers Angus Short Rib served with mashed parsnips, carrots and potatoes. Usually a fan of white wine, I decided I wanted to switch things up and try some Pinot Noir instead. The change in vino was a nod to a character in a book I was reading before taking the trip. She was always drinking her Pinot so I wanted to see what all the hype was about. I was not disappointed. The bold sweet flavor danced on my tongue and made me a fan of the red stuff. You see reading is fundamental! The rest of the night was filled with romance of another sort that is really not up for discussion. I will say to the fellas, this setting will put your girl in the mood.
The next day we were starving and since we have visited the city before, we decided to explore new places to eat lunch that are off the beaten path. We were not disappointed. Doug found a local Jamaican restaurant and let me just say we hurt ourselves trying to sample the cuisine. Sweet Spice Jamaican on Waters St & 70th has some of the best authentic Jamaican cuisine I have had in a very long time. If you go be sure to get the oxtails with rice n peas, macaroni n cheese and a side of cabbage and fried plantain, but order the small because the portion size is quite sizable. Wash it down with a ginger beer or lemonade. I promise you we had to do some serious walking at our next stop to keep from falling asleep. Soo good.
It was a good thing we didn’t fall asleep because our next stop was a cemetery. It would have been easy to mistake is for residents the way we were feeling. You may not think a cemetery would seem like the most glamorous place to take a date, but you would be wrong; in Savannah anyway. A nice walk through historic Bonaventure Cemetery can set the mood in an off kilter kind of way. The large oak trees that line the paths make for great cover as you stroll through the various tombs. The people buried there have some of the most beautiful resting places. The cemetery is just off the Wilmington River and features interesting and eclectic tombstones. One such tombstone boasted miniature Sphinx statues guarding the DeRenne family plot. Since I am fascinated by Egyptian culture this particular tomb caught my eye. What I found most intriguing about this place was the way the plots were sectioned off, especially where it pertained to religion. There was a separate Jewish section where visitors customarily leave pebbles on the headstone. There was also a section for fallen soldiers, as well as a Christian section. I looked for a section that housed slave remains, but of course found none. It was not customary to bury slaves in the same cemetery as the slave owners, but I had to check. There is a popular slave cemetery in Savannah called Laurel Grove, but we were unable to fit it in on this trip. The next time we go it will be on the itinerary for sure.
The stroll through the cemetery was eventful, but we still had a bit of the ‘itus’ so we decided to hit up a local park. There are a number of parks throughout the city that are the perfect setting for a picnic or a romantic walk. Forsyth Park is just such a place. It is a wide open space of grass for you to walk on, lay on or simply admire from a bench. It is a great spot to toss a ball or a frisbee as well. The highlight of the park is the famed fountain. Can you say photo op! Get your selfie sticks out because the natural lighting is perfect. The only issue I saw was there was not sufficient parking. The location is great for residents who live nearby, but if you have to drive there, you may have to park over the river and through the woods. Just playing, it wasn’t that far away, but it wasn’t that close either.
As I mentioned before Savannah is an old city. If your honey is a history buff this is a prime location to take them. This city is rich in Southern historical spots from the Civil War era. Lord knows I do not go around all nostalgic for that era in history, but I can appreciate the natural beauty of the town. The city has done a good job keeping the buildings and some of the cobblestone streets in good condition. If you’re up for it there are several historical tours to show you the sights and for you brave readers there are the famous ghost tours. They say the town is really haunted. This is not something that interests me, but I can see how the thrill of being scared could turn into a steamy night. Ladies, that’s really why guys take us to scary places anyway. Am I right?
Night time is the right time to snuggle up next to your lover and steal a kiss or two. One place that has the perfect ambiance for this is the rooftop bar atop the Bohemian Hotel on the riverfront. Now it was too cold outside during our visit to partake in the rooftop, but now that it is warm I am sure you will have a ball. Have a cocktail, listen to some music and make out like teenagers until the staff asks you to leave.
The next day why not visit Huey’s for breakfast? It is a popular spot on the waterfront that just screams Southern charm. I have always wanted to try Eggs Benedict and I figured it was the perfect time. The restaurant has a Louisiana flair and they even serve beignets!!! It was a no brainier after reading the menu. I had no idea what to expect from the eggs, but I must say I was happily surprised that I liked them. Paired with cheese grits and some hot chocolate to warm my chilly bones was the way to go. Ok so I know I shouldn’t confess this, but we ordered the beignets too. I had never has any and since we were throwing caution to the wind…. Can I just say AMAZING! My husband and I agreed, they taste so good when they touch your lips.(A Frank the Tank reference)
After breakfast we walked the cobblestone streets window shopping and looking for bargains. We ran across an interesting booth at the open air market called River Street’s Elegant Creations, where a nice lady named Candi showed us how she makes lamps out of recycled plastic milk containers. They come is a variety of colors and shapes and some even have lights that change color via a remote control. I love eclectic things and this spoke to me so now we are the proud owner of a hanging lamp made from recycled parts. Don’t judge me, the lamp is awesome and looks great hanging over our table in the breakfast nook.
Continuing our stroll down the river walk, we ran into a beautiful lady who I won’t soon forget. Her name was Thalia and I was immediately drawn to her. Entranced by her beauty. In another lifetime she would be mine. Wait, what? That sounded like it was headed somewhere else. Get your minds out of the gutter for a sec and let me explain. Thalia is a 53 meter sailboat with teakwood and steel dressings. She is the creation of famed yacht designer Ron Holland. Even though She was undergoing a little face lift at the dock, she was still quite gorgeous. Oh what I would have given to take a peek inside, but alas we were mere mortals and had no place being near her. I did snap a few photos so I could remember her always.
Overall the experience was one that will last in my memory of one of our best weekend trips together. I am a sucker for love and romance so it was almost perfect. If you are looking for a nice spot to take your homie, lover, friend for a getaway look no further… Savannah is HOT!