|Forsyth Park fountain.|
Savannah is a charmer, a Southern belle from her brick pavers to the curlicues of moss that swing flirtatiously from her gracious oaks.
She calls herself the Hostess City of the South and with good reason. Residents greet visitors with smiles and genuine Can I help you's.
Tip: Best news of all for Levelers, she's flat. Not such good news, it took a long time to pave all of the streets so historic buildings and houses were built with entrances and living rooms on the second level to avoid the dust and to better catch cooling breezes.
Like any tourist-popular city, she has attracted hotel chains, major and minor, many of which are conveniently located.
|Professional hostesses of Savannah, (from left) Shannon Romine, Dresser Palmer House; Theresa Jacobson, Azalea inn and Gardens; Savannah Mayor Edna Jackson, Jackie Heinz, Zeigler House; and Diane McCray, Green Palm Inn.|
Recently I was invited to "try on" the four inns of www.Savannahinns.com. Here are my impressions.
|Back entrance, Dresser Palmer House|
|Rock coffee or cocktails on Savannah's longest gallery.|
Enter from the front and the longest gallery (that's front porch to non-Southerners) in town greets you first.
Park and enter from the back and you pass through wrought iron gates to a gracious, wisteria-topped patio with an elevator (!) to the porch if you'd rather not do the stairs, although they aren't bad. Either way, innkeeper Shannon Romine is there to welcome you.
|Elevator is on the right.|
Tip: This may be the only historic B & B with an ADA-approved room (it's in the back) and there is a large front bedroom suite at porch level.
|Cheery, welcoming parlor.|
If you hear strange noises at night, it might be little Madeline, the playful ghost child.
Tip: Step count - six steps at front entrance, seven steps sidewalk to back entrance main level, 18 steps to the second floor.
|Green Palm Inn, where sailors once roamed.|
With only four rooms, this is the smallest of the four inns, but its charm is big, thanks to innkeeper and owner Diane McCray. A former history teacher, she loves to tell you about her adopted city and to share stories of its highlights, lowlifes and secrets. She's also a superb cook.
|Parlor, Green Palm Inn.|
Originally a duplex built for two old seamen, it is closest to the river (four blocks) and sports eight fireplaces; the stately Sabal Palm suite has two. Fodor's described it as "a gem of an inn" and its small size belies the large suites within.
|Sabal Palm suite.|
|Rock lively at the Azalea Inn.|
The brightly covered chairs on the small front gallery barely prepare you for the lively decor inside.
|Who knew Teddy Kennedy was with Oglethorpe when he met with the local Native Americans?|
|One of guests' many temptations.|
|Pool and garden cottages.|
Tip: Step count - 12 steps from sidewalk to house, 19 steps to the second floor, six steps to the pool level.
|Street cred comes with Zeigler House.|
You've heard of keeping up with the Joneses? Jones Street may be where the expression began: it was the first paved street in the city to be paved because the residents paid for it themselves.
The Zeigler House is on Jones Street, just around the corner from the famous Mrs. Wilkes' Dining Room, some good shopping and several of the city's prettiest squares. In its past, the structure has been a boarding house and a bordello. "My ghosts are very friendly," quips owner innkeeper Jackie Heinz.
|Fruit, juices and baked goods are delivered to your suite each morning.|
|Suite with private outside entrance.|
Tip: Step Count: 12 steps up to house.
NOTE: Recipes from each of the inns will be
featured on www.foodafar.blogspot.com
with each Savannah post here.