Hee hee hee! I can certainly understand that. Here's a tip...snag a matchbook before you order your wine. That's how I remember all the great places. And if they don't have matchbooks or business cards out, I make a note, just in case it's wonderful.
Always thinking!!! I will use the matchbook idea - I always need a light for my -now that the weather is better - nightly bonfire on the water. Warmer Wisconsinweather will clear my head as well. You are very funny Fredhashaway - hope to cross paths traveling someday...Funtimes
I recently returned from Charleston, South Carolina and was very pleasantly surprised at how enjoyable the city was. I stayed at two wonderful places which I will add to the list of locations that should be added to LL later. The hotel you mentioned, I'm sure is quite nice as well, given the area it is in.
A few items that you might find helpful: Restaurants/Food:
Charleston proper is "Low Country". Low country fare can generally be described as Southern, plus a lot of seafood. There is plenty of crab and fish for everyone to enjoy while visiting. A couple of places to suggest:
Jestines - If you adore Southern food as much as I do, Jestine's is the type of place that will absolutely bring a smile to your face. This restaurant is almost a century old and has a line around the building. It moves fairly fast, though I would bring light reading material while you wait. While I usually recommend a specific dish they are known for, it was generally all fantastic. Don't forget the sides or appetizers (you can find the fried green tomatoes here, the she-crab soup is everywhere, so don't fret). YUM!!
Magnolia's - a decent southern breakfast (apparently Lunch and dinner too from what I understand)
Cyprus - A slightly higher end restaurant and run by the same folks who opened Magnolia's. We had excellent service that was very attentive to details. Ask about the salad that is prepared at your table. That was delicious. Everyone's main course was delicious, though they change their seasonal menu nightly (so hard to suggest anything specific).
What to Buy: They are known for their sea grass baskets, though I think they might be slightly more affordable if you buy them in the carribean. That said, they are incredibly well handcrafted at the market. There are also a few fairly good semi-precious gemstone vendors in the market. I found the prices incredibly competitive. The city itself is known for antiques of all periods. I would also recommend a walk down High Street - the oldest market in the US.
History: History is really the major reason to go to Charleston. I would highly recommend the carriage rides, though I would make sure to use some judgement in picking your guide. While most are fairly well trained, some are better story tellers or simply have had more years to absorb the vast quantity of history and anecdotals of the region. One can also go on both a walking tour and a ghost tour, where you will get the opportunity to see a colonial dungeon. A few of the houses have viewing hours and have some of the most beautiful Southern decors around.
There are numerous plantations in and around Charleston, all of which are quite spectacular. If you are going to some of the farther out plantations, you may want to bring some deep woods off.
Notable Bar: While I can not say that I did the best job of scoping out this category, I would suggest a the Blind Tiger Pub. http://charleston.citysearch.com/pro...tiger_pub.html
I'm not sure if I am telling the story with complete accuracy as the teller had a few drinks in him, but "legand has it" that the pub use to be one of the nations first Speak Easies. During prohibition, they would advertise a show involving a Blind Tiger and people would pay a cover to come in. Each evening, once the guests had settled in, someone would announce that there was something wrong with the tigers but that all were welcome to stay and enjoy the beverages.
Regardless, the setting is worth taking a look at as the building that is in ruins (in a good way), with no roof.
Hope that helps. Have a great time!
Message Edited by maylinglai1 on 03-30-2008 09:23 PM
I know for sure that you will enjoy your trip in Charleston. It is the most beautiful cities I've seen in US. They have the popular Gone with the Wind & Charleston City Tour. Also check out Boone Hall Plantation, Historic Harbor Boat, and Middleton Place Plantation.
Charleston is a wonderful city - one of my all time favorites.
I agree with maylinglail you must go to Jestines. They have the most unbelievable pecan pie.
Also, if money allows, try to book a table at Robert's of Charleston. Robert is a retired opera singer and his daughter is the chef. He sings through out the dinner courses and it is truly wonderful. There are only 20 tables, so it books quickly. We celebrated our 20th anniversary there and it was perfect.
For lunch SNOB (Slightly North of Broad) is nice.
One of the best garden walking tours is Charelston Tea Party Walking Tour. It takes about 2 hours and the ladies can get you into some gardens that are off limits to tourists.
Middleton Place is a plantation outside of Charleston that is worth a visit.