Mother’s Day Appreciation

There are many ways to show someone how much you care. The most effective of course depends on the individual. For me personally it’s time. Spending rare free time with someone I care about, as well as knowing they are doing the same is important to me; it’s about the quality not quantity. For others it is gifts, little knick knacks to treasure, while others appreciate kind words in a card, help throughout the day like the chore they just can’t get to or breakfast in bed, or even just a simple hug. Whatever it may be, this weekend is the time to put on your thinking caps and show your mother, in a way she will truly appreciate it, how much you care. And here is a little clue; the way they show you love is the way they want to receive it.

Mother’s Day is celebrated all over the world in many different ways, on many different days. The majority of the world celebrates on the second Sunday in May, as we do. Anna Jarvis led the way in making this a National holiday. After her mother passed away, during a memorial service she held, the idea was hatched. She campaigned to get it recognized and President Wilson signed it into law in 1914. However by 1920 Jarvis became appalled by how commercialized the holiday she worked so hard for had become and spent the rest of her life speaking out against it saying “A printed card means nothing except that you are too lazy to write to the woman who has done more for you than anyone in the world. And candy! You take a box to Mother—and then eat most of it yourself. A pretty sentiment.”

What she was truly asking was take a day and appreciate the person that gave us life. And this Mother’s Day that is what we in Atlanta are going to do! If the mother in your life is like mine then Atlanta is the place to be. With a weekend packed full of events it’s gonna be hard to decide what to do. We have the Sweet Auburn Springfest going on this weekend, as well as the 31 day Jazz Fest celebration, and Mary Poppins at the Fox just to name a few. While a card with a personal note goes along way, you could go the extra mile and write mom a thank you letter for the mother that likes words of affirmation. Some moms would love nothing more than a day of doing nothing and having all the chores magically completed. As far as gifts go the best gift idea I’ve found that doesn’t break the back is a magazine subscription. For mom it’s never about the money spent but the thought behind the gift. Pick up your mom’s favorite mag; just send in the form inside, plus it’s the gift that keeps on giving! Happy Mother’s Day from all of us here at the Inn at the Peachtrees!

Advertisements

How Does Your Garden Grow

Tomorrow the Atlanta Botanical Gardens will be doubling in size. The previously 30 acre garden nestled into Midtown Atlanta has added an Edible Garden, a Canopy Walk, and a Cascade Garden to their already lavish gardens and ever changing exhibits. Celebrating tomorrow with a Grand Opening which kicks off at 10 a.m. there will be a little bit of something for everyone.

With a mission to “develop and maintain plant collections for the purposes of display, education, conservation, research and enjoyment” the Atlanta Botanical Gardens incorporated as a non profit in 1976. Nearly 35 years later they are living up to the mission with their newest expansions. The Edible Garden transformed from a parking lot is intended to encourage visitors to grow beautiful healthy food. They go a step further as well by having guest chefs come in and teach visitors how to cook with home grown fruits and veggies, with leftovers to be donated to local shelters.

The Canopy Walk is the first one of its kind designed to completely respect its surroundings, as it allows visitors to roam through the trees of the Storza Woodlands. As it structurally disappears into its surroundings you will feel like you are walking on clouds as you look down at tree tops and other native plants. This is truly going to become a destination for visitors and we are lucky enough to have it in our back yard.

With the Grand Opening also brings a new welcome way, the Cascade Garden. The peaceful waterfall and tropical plants, including about 50 varieties of ginger, add dimension to the entrance transforming it into a Hawaiian post card.

This weekend’s date suggestion, of course, is an afternoon at the botanical gardens followed by the Braves game. Our boys need some encouragement now that they are finally home. Tickets start at $6, and they need the help to end the losing streak! Besides there is nothing better than a spring afternoon at the ball park.

I Love the Night Life

On this day in 1977 Studio 54 opened its doors bringing discos to the tips of every tongue. Night clubs have been around for years as had Disco but none as famous as Studio 54. It set the standard for what defines the character of many cities. Atlanta is no different. Our nightlife is an attraction for many.

Studio 54 was a second venture for Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager. They successfully managed the Enchanted Garden in Queens when they came across the old CBS studio. They signed the lease a week later in the winter of 1976 and began a $600,000 renovation with the financial backing of Jack Dushey. The place was transformed to the club all other clubs try to emulate. With lavish parties and an array of famous faces the club made $7 million in its first year. For a New Year’s party they covered the dance floor with 4 inches of glitter which party goers say made the club look like there was a magical cloud of fairy dust on the dance floor.

Steve the front man of the club made sure all the right people were always at the Studio. The first night there were 5000 invitations sent out! By the time the club opened, a half an hour late, there was a line outside. At midnight there were people with invitations that couldn’t even get in. Steve was very particular about who was let into the Studio. He and door man Marc Benecke had perfected a salad mix that was to include a combination of celebrities such as Elton John, Calvin Klein, Andy Warhol, Mick and Bianca Jagger as well as unknown beautiful people leaving the rest in wanting. Even celebrities like Frank Sinatra, Woody Allen and Diane Keaton were denied entrance. In fact “Le Freak” by Chic was written when Neil Rodgers and Bernard Edwards weren’t allowed into a New Year’s party.

Here in Atlanta we are known for our nightlife. But where do the celebrities go when they are in Atlanta? While there are plenty of thriving nightclubs in Atlanta none compare to Primal on Spring Street. Primal is a baby compared to the rest of Atlanta’s club scene, barely a year old, but it has established itself as the place to be. With celebrities like Pamela Anderson launching into headlines, it is a destination spot for celebrities when they visit. Most recently Primal was chosen as the location for the Hall Pass wrap party. Christina Applegate, Alyssa Milano, and Owen Wilson partied alongside Atlantans and we are sure they will be back the next time they visit our fair city. Next time you are there don’t be surprised at who you run into!

Going Green!

“It organized itself” Senator Gaylord Nelson claims humbly, but every big events starts with a small idea and passion to follow through. For that vehemence we should thank the Senator because it was that which brought about this awareness campaign and took it global. There are now celebrations in over 175 countries.

For years Senator Nelson was making conservation tours trying to raise awareness of the environmental degradation issue and have it put into the political agenda to no avail. In November of 1962 he met with Robert Kennedy and discussed with him the need for conservation and the government to get involved. Robert Kennedy agreed as did President John F Kennedy. In September of 1963 President Kennedy even went on an 11 state conservation tour but the politicians still didn’t take notice. Senator Nelson didn’t give up. He continued speaking about the adverse effect we had on our environment. The first Earth Day, April 22 1970, was meant to be a form of grassroots protest. Senator Nelson got the idea in the summer of 1969 while on an environmental awareness tour. He noticed the anti-Vietnam “teach-ins” and how engaged the college students were and realized that this was the push the politicians needed to put global awareness on the forefront.

At a conference in Seattle in September of 1969, Senator Nelson announced that “protest” for the following spring. About a month later the New York Times ran an article about the event and the necessity of action. When Senator Nelson claims it organized itself he gives credit to the thousands of schools and communities and over 20 million people that took part to make that Earth Day a success!

Why April 22? Well that was no accident. It was very strategic on Nelson’s part. Nebraska already regarded it as Arbor Day and had been celebrating since 1885. But Nelson also took into account that since his key was to engage the college students he had to work around their schedules. The week did not conflict with any exams, breaks, or holidays, and it promised pleasant weather. And he chose Wednesday because it wouldn’t have to compete with as many programs. I say we thank Senator Nelson for letting Earth Day organize itself.

So what are you doing to “Go Green”? It can be as simple as taking your own mug to the coffee shop to as large as changing out your appliances. We at the Inn at the Peachtrees are about to undergo an extensive renovation and are heading in the right direction to preserve our planet for future generations. We will replace our bathroom fixtures to conserve water, invest in energy efficient appliances and lighting and are looking forward to reducing our carbon footprint.

This weekend to wrap up Earth Week the Inman Park Festival will be the destination spot. While Atlanta has many festivals this is the one that you should never miss. It is truly a local festival that celebrates the Inman neighborhood. With hundreds of artist and merchants and the best food Atlantans would be crazy not to be there. And as any good festival does of course there is a parade, but not just any old parade. This one is lead by the Inman Park Butterfly! Live music of all genres and a dance festival wrap up the reasons why this is my favorite festival of the year and the best date spot for this weekend. And since you will already be at Inman Park check out the Pacific Kitchen and see how much flavor organic food brings to the table!

Weekend at the Park

Atlanta is not known to have much of a spring. We tend to go from winter to summer, however mild the winter may be. We always have a rapid weather transition that goes from lows in the 20’s to highs in the 80’s in a matter of weeks. There for while I would like to say this is a perfect spring weekend for the outdoor festivals I can’t. Better yet I’m going to say we are going to enjoy beautiful summer weather all weekend long. No pesky wind, but don’t forget the sunscreen. This weekend is jammed packed with events so get out there and see what Atlanta has to offer!

The spotlight event this weekend is the 74th annual Dogwood Festival. Back at Piedmont Park this year it is expected to be bigger than ever with something for everyone. The Dogwood Festival was originally founded in 1936 by Walter Rich who was the founder of Rich’s department store. He wanted Atlanta to be international recognized for its dogwood trees. He launched a beautification of Atlanta project planting dogwoods in parks, around businesses, and along the roads. The Junior League then started holding pageants, parades, and carnivals and the festival grew. There was a brief hiatus due to WWII that started in 1941. By 1964, however, under the guidance of the Women’s Chamber of Commerce the Dogwood Festival became the largest civic celebration in the Southeast including fashion shows, light shows , and symphonies. In the 70’s hot air balloon races, regattas, and home tours were added. By 1987 The Dog Wood Festival became a month long event including around 40 events. This year it is a 3 day event and includes Artist Markets, Kid’s Activities, and Eco Village, and International Village, Food and Wine Tasting and more than can be explored in one day!

Sweet Water 420 Fest is a newer festival in Atlanta that has exploded into one of the most anticipated of the city. The 6th annual Sweet Water 420 Fest is going to be at Chandler Park this Saturday and Sunday. The proceeds go to benefit the Chandler Park and the community. The 420 fest is attempting to raise environmental awareness. So along with the great live music and the hoopla of children’s activities there will also be seminars on how we can take little steps to improve the health of planet earth. While you’re there check out the confessional, and cleans yourself of all your wrong doing to the environment as you take the first step to becoming part of the solution.

By far hands down the best date night idea this weekend is the Dogwood Festival and the Atlanta Film Festival coming together this Saturday for Movie on the Meadow at Piedmont Park. They are brilliantly presenting Alford Hitchcock’s Psycho! So bring a blanket and get ready to cuddle up under the stars!

The Dream Lives On

Dr Martin Luther King Jr. is a true legacy that one cannot fully verbalize. Although many have tried they all seem to stop shot of aw when trying to put into word how much hope Dr. King gave this country in a time of turbulence. On this day in 1968 he was laid to rest right here in Atlanta, where he was born, and where his dream was conceived.

Atlanta has not forgotten Dr. King nor have we forgotten his dream. The King Center is in fact dedicated to making Dr. Kings famous dream into reality. In Atlanta this week we went a step further. At Atlanta’s Ebenezer Church community leaders attended the ground breaking of a financial resource center. Dr King like his father before him and his son after him knew that without economic equality there couldn’t be social equality. The purpose of the center is to empower and educate people about homeownership, entrepreneurship, and even banking. The center for financial literacy and economic empowerment could not come at a better time either. With the country slowly attempting a recovery to the recession, Atlanta hopes to lead the way because “Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

As for date night this weekend Inn at the Peachtrees can’t stop talking about the Fernbank Museum! Martini’s at Imax is a weekly Friday night event they do where you can take in their current shows and enjoy tapas and drinks, but today if you visit Groupon.com you can get half off a year membership! It’s a great idea! Two adults and up to four kids, this opens up possibilities all year long!

Atlanta’s Rose

This week Atlanta has lost one of the most consistent faces of the city. No not Ted Turner, or Mayor Reed; Robert Hiestand, otherwise known as “Robert the Rose Dude”. Robert Hiestand passed away Tuesday at the age of 55, but for the last 20 years Hiestand has diligently stood at the corner of West Paces and Northside making everyone’s day a little brighter as they pass by. Hiestand’s goal in life was never to sell flowers on the side of a road. He actually was passing through Atlanta going from South Carolina where he studied welding to Alabama where he was to start a job. He happened to run out of gas in Atlanta and the rest as they say is history. When interviewed in 1994 Hiestand said that he said with no regrets, that he was glad to have a job he enjoyed and could make friends with and was still was a successful business. As Thomas Jefferson said “I find the harder I work the luckier I become” and Hiestand did work hard. Selling flowers was no day in the park. He was out there in the pouring rain and the cold only holding back on days the weather could damage the flowers. Many nights he stayed till 3 am until his last flower was sold, but all the hard work did come with rewards. Hiestand had countless stories of Governors, each one in office since he started, as well as the rich in famous stopping to say hello. Robert Hiestand is an Atlanta son and will truly be missed by all of us here at Inn at the Peachtreees.

This weekend brings with it Easter weekend and a sense of renewal. Families gather and celebrate faith and the coming spring and this week in Atlanta is going to be a great one to enjoy outside. With the weather in the lowers 80’s and Easter egg hunts all weekend long it would be insane to stay inside. So where are you taking the kids of any age? Zoo Atlanta is having their Gorilla Egg Hunt Saturday while across town indoors the Fernbank is holding a Dinosaur Egg Hunt! Both Egg Hunts are free with admission. Atlantic Station is also having an Easter Egg Hunt in their central park that will have a fair like atmosphere free of charge with games and food as well.

This takes us to date night! Any of these three places would be perfect on their own for some quality time. You have your pick from shopping, natural history or animals, but on any good date you gotta eat! And on a great date you gotta eat great food! This weekend at Valenza Chef Matt Swickerath is creating an Italian Easter masterpiece that can’t be missed in addition to his already amazing daily selection. For this one I would recommend reservations!

Bouncing back!

It’s no secret the country is in a recession. In the cyclical economy we live in, it was inevitable. The positive of this is that the bounce back is inevitable as well. In the past what helped was a rise in consumer spending. The theory behind the trickledown effect was just that. Give big businesses money to spend and then slowly they will create jobs and pass the money along to the consumer and boost the economy. However in Atlanta there are still 5 applicants for every available job. The situation in Atlanta is much more positive than in other cities.

For the fifth month in a row the country did see a rise in consumer spending. The margin was minimal and was focused more on clothing and food and not larger items. The climb was slowed last month because of the unusual weather and snow storms in the north east but it is a great sign none the less! Still forecasters, the economic ones not the weather ones, are saying that the key to our bounce back is job creation and travel! Of course here at the Inn at the Peachtrees that is EXACTLY what we believe as well. So we are doing our part.

We would like to welcome the new face at our Front Desk, Crystal. As we get ready to embark in our renovation there are many more changes to come. We look forward to adding a full restaurant as well as renovating our banquet hall to accommodate larger gatherings and of course our rooms will be getting a facelift and we fully expect to double our staff by the end of summer. So come by and visit, that a spring break, and check out our progress when you are in next in Atlanta!

Published in: on March 29, 2010 at 8:17 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags:

A Little Bit of Romance

Wednesday like every good Atlantans with a flexible work schedule I was out celebrating St Patrick’s Day in true Irish fashion. It was amazing to see how vibrant this city truly is. Q100 sponsored an event at Fado’s unofficial, official Iris pub of Atlanta. Bands started playing in the misty afternoon and but by 6:00pm the light afternoon crowd had turned into a large eclectic mix we call Atlantans. All three floors of Fado’s were packed and as I leaned over the railing of the third floor patio to watch the Irish dancers I was filled with pride for our city. It was so nice to see so many people of such unique backgrounds come together and celebrate a rich culture.

A bit later at Dunwoody Tavern I ran into a few transplants. After explain to them what I do for a living I was asked what a good idea for a date night in the city would be and I am ashamed to say I couldn’t answer him. Not because we don’t have anything to do in the city of course but because I was so overwhelmed with ideas that I couldn’t decide what to tell him. So for the next few weeks we are going to review date night ideas!

First dates should be memorable, romantic and fun. The Atlanta Botanical Gardens is a perfect start. They have the Towers of Flowers, an Orchid exhibit going on right now in addition to their beautiful permanent blooms. And of course it not just flowers; the garden has sculptures as well. On a beautiful spring day or evening there would be nothing more enchanting than a visit to the garden. While this would be a perfectly great date, I think we should go further for the more established couple. Dinner should follow!! Some amazing restaurants near the gardens include Mu Lan Chinese restaurant, Silk, Steel, Repast, and Baraonda. Each of these restaurants have an inviting yet romantic atmosphere, and depending on what you are in the mood to eat they would all be in keeping with the theme of the evening, romance. Keep in mind that we are not done yet. No passionate date is complete without chocolate!! Our end to the perfect evening is of course the Chocolate Bar! With an amazing assortment of desserts, drinks and of course the smell of chocolate encompassing you as you step in, your night will scream fairy tale. We here at the Inn at the Peachtrees wish you good luck in your romancing!

NASCAR and Glam

It feels so much better to have fun when it’s for a good cause! Last night the place to be to watch the Academy Awards was at the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center. While black tie was optional it was a marvelous looking crowd that enjoyed the Oscars in style and helped raise money for a very important organization. And what a night it was for Atlanta. We had many Atlanta natives attending the Academy Awards of course but Tyler Perry stood out from the crowd! Asked to be a presenter, Perry was funny and elegant all at the same time. We are honored to call him one of our own and look forward to a win or two in the future. The C.E.P.A.C hosted about 600 guests for a night of great food, drinks, and dancing, and of course the glitz and glamour of Oscar. It was the 9th annual Atlanta Red Carpet event and they raised money for The Center of Family Resources.

CFR has been helping low-income Atlanta families since 1960 with things such as employment, education, housing services, leadership development programs, mentoring opportunities, temporary financial, and food assistance. It is truly inspiring to see such selfless people still exist in our society and make such a difference. We here at the Inn at the Peachtrees salute you and all the work you do to better our city!

On the other end of the spectrum good old family fun was had at Atlanta Motor Speedway with NASCAR in town. What a perfect weekend for NASCAR. With the temperature reaching the 60’s things were heating up. Most notably with Brad Keselowski and Carl Edwards we look forward to seeing how this little feud plays out and look forward to NASCAR and our friend the HardCore RaceFans returning to Atlanta and the Inn at the Peachtrees in September.