Monday, August 24, 2009

More Moore, more gardens

The Atlanta Botanical Garden is often overlooked by travelers in favor of other, glitzier attractions - the Georgia Aquarium, Coke, the High Museum, Stone Mountain.

Don't. It's well worth a visit any time and particularly now through October when 20 works of renowned British sculptor Henry Moore are nestled among 30 acres nature's beauty.

Tip: It's perfect for Levelers. There are a few steps but always ramps are an alternative and while elevations change, it's so gradual you'll hardly notice.

Moore in America presents Moore's sculpture as the artist meant for it to be seen - in the open out of doors. His reclining figures look right at home and his popular mother and child images are an artistic complement to the mothers and their children roaming the gardens.

The gardens themselves are lovely. The Dorothy Chapman Fuqua Conservatory and Orchid Center is spectacular with its lush, tropical flora. You and the young ones will love the Children's Garden so save the energy to include it.

Best of all, the Atlanta Botanical Garden it's in the middle of the city in Midtown, just north of Piedmont Park on Piedmont Avenue. Admission will set you back $15 - $12 for seniors and children ages 3-17.

Tip: If Southern summer heat is too much for you - and it is for most Southerners - visit on Thursday for Moore at Night: Cocktails in the Garden, 6-10 p.m., through September. Come October it's Fest-of-Ale, same hours.

This is the largest showing of Moore's work in one place, let alone the best place, you are ever likely to see so if you are in the Atlanta area, don't miss it.

Tip: Where to stay. Kimpton's Hotel Palomar is the newest spot in the Midtown area; cool, contemporary but friendly, especially to dogs, and very well equipped. Pacci, the adjacent restaurant, serves superb Italian inspired cuisine. W Atlanta-Midtown, 404-892-6000, on 14th Street is the closest. The Sheraton Atlanta downtown, another pet friendly facility, has undergone a multi-million dollar transformation and with its large, lush pool is especially good if you are traveling with children.


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