Stunning Southern Honeymoon Stays under $300

by Ariel Felton

For modern couples that have elopements and honeymoon registries on their mind, here are twelve Southern reasons to pack the bags and get away.

 

1. The Kimpton Brice Hotel

 

Downtown Savannah. 601 E Bay St, Savannah, GA 31401. Photography by Izzy Hudgins.

As fairy lights go, this boutique hotel has the corner market on inspiring outdoor light scenes for the perfect honeymoon getaway (with the added perk of being able to host wedding in their courtyard, so consider a destination wedding). White washed brick walls, apartment style rooms, and a dog-friendly atmosphere mean the feel is just right for the modern couple looking to make a Savannah getaway with the pooch in toe. Make reservations at their award-winning Italian restaurant Pacci, and enjoy the bike rental for afternoon tours of the Historic District—this hotspot hotel is next to Bay Street on the eastern side of the city, making it a quiet getaway from the hustle of downtown, without being far from the festivities. Nightly rates start at $179.

The Best Part: The reading nooks. The Brice is one of those boutique hotels that prides itself on making guests feel at home, and the toombs that decorate the boutique atelier walls of The Brice are more than just eye candy, they invite you to grab a volume and get to reading—not that you’re going to have time for that during your stay, but it’s a nice rain day plan.

What Not To Miss: A detail about something related to the stay, but not necessarily about the location. 1-2 sentences. Staying at the Brice means one thing—Savannah’s best Bloody Mary is within walking distance, at B. Matthews. Cancel the Uber but don’t forget to make reservations; the spicy brunch cocktail complete with pickled veggie garnish is no secret to the locals and the line can get very long.

 

 

2. The Cotton Sail Hotel

Downtown Savannah. 126 West Bay Street, Savannah, Georgia 31401

Located in the heart of Savannah’s Historic District, this refurbished late-1800’s cotton warehouse blends its celebrated past with modern amenities from top to bottom. Take a guest room elevator down to the locally owned River House Restaurant or up to Top Deck, a rooftop bar offering dramatic views of the Savannah River. Cotton Sail is just a stone’s throw away from Savannah’s River Street, where you can view local art, visit unique nightspots, or simply soak in the view of the sun setting over the Talmadge Memorial Bridge. Nightly rates start at $161.

The Best Part: The history. The 200-year-old heart of pine hardwood floors found in the main lobby and all 56 guestrooms were preserved and revitalized, originating from the roof of the old cotton factory.

What Not to Miss: Chatham Artillery Punch from River House Restaurant. It’s rumored this boozy concoction was presented to George Washington upon his arrival to Savannah in 1792 when he presented the esteemed regiment with two cannons. Raise a glass or two in salute of your honeymoon–but hold the cannons, please!

 

3. Presidents’ Quarters Inn

Downtown Savannah. 225 E. President Street Savannah, GA 31401

If you’re looking for personal touches, look no further than this historic bed and breakfast located in twin Federal-style mansions on Oglethorpe Square. With such special features, as decorative fireplaces, exposed brick, private balconies and beautiful oil paintings, each of the 16 rooms is named after a United States President who has visited the Hostess city. Enjoy a made-to-order breakfast in the front parlor or the courtyard gazebo before you venture out to see the city’s many attractions. And when you return from a day of sight-seeing, treat yourself to afternoon hors d’oeuvres and wine, or evening cordials. Nightly rates start at $189.

The Best Part: The courtyard. Guests often rave about this charming on-site, brick-lined courtyard with patio furniture. Enjoy your breakfast underneath Savannah’s famous Spanish moss, or come back in the evening for a well-lit romantic cocktail hour.

What Not to Miss: 17Hundred90. Just across the street from Presidents’ Quarters Inn sits what Gourmet Magazine called “the most elegant restaurant in Savannah.” Named for the year it opened, this restaurant serves brunch, dinner and everything Savannah. 

 

4. The Gastonian

 

Downtown Savannah. 220 East Gaston Street Savannah, Georgia 31401

Voted by Condé Nast Traveler as one of the top 50 B&Bs in the world, these adjacent mansions are comprised of local handmade brick and feature white stucco in cleanlined Regency-Italianate style. Known for the seamless blend of grand decor and southern charm, The Gastonian is perfect for a couple looking to enjoy a luxurious stay that’s as upscale as it is intimate. By day, stroll through residential neighborhoods and gated gardens, enjoy complimentary wine and hors d’oeuvres receptions in the evening, and complimentary homemade desserts and cordials at night. Personalize your stay by selecting one of the romantic guest gifts, such as a turndown complete with chilled champagne and chocolate covered strawberries. Nightly rates start at $171.

The Best Part: Caracalla–The Honeymoon Suite. The Caracalla Suite is the Gastonian’s most requested room type for couples celebrating weddings and anniversaries. Book this romantic 850 square feet and enjoy a soak in the private bath with whirlpool tub elegantly framed with sheer drapes.

What Not to Miss: Forsyth Park. This hotel is just a stone’s throw away from the biggest and greenest park in the historic district.

 

 

5. Fulton Lane Inn

Downtown Charleston. 202 King Street, Charleston, SC 29401

Tucked away in a quiet corner of downtown Charleston, this three-story building from the late 1800’s has seen many changes–from YMCA building to Civil War-era blockade runner to apartment-style housing, and finally in 2008, to the 45-room guests enjoy today. The inn offers romantic touches such as jacuzzi-style tubs, fireplaces, complimentary breakfast in bed and of course, a classic evening sherry–a nod to a lovely Charleston tradition. More adventurous couples will appreciate the city’s range of history, culture and events, most within walking distance of Fulton Lane. Nightly rates start as $159.

The Best Part: The inn’s sister property, Kings Courtyard Inn, hosts an evening wine and cheese reception just next door. Enjoy a perfect evening in their courtyard and share love stories with other honeymooners.

What Not to Miss: The Charleston Farmer’s Market, just a quick stroll away, is open every Saturday from April through December. Take in some true Charleston culture with fresh, organic foods, and view eclectic offerings from local artists and craftsmen.

 

6. DeSoto Beach Bed and Breakfast

Tybee Island. 212 Butler Ave Tybee Island, GA 31328

This historic B&B, circa 1936, boasts the closest location to the Tybee Island Beach and is literally only steps away, making it perfect for the couple looking for a quaint island getaway. Book either of the inn’s three unique rooms to enjoy authentic antique furniture and decor. Venture out and taste local seafood at a variety of casual Tybee Island restaurants and bars within walking distance, or stay in and enjoy the Southern breakfast and evening refreshments that come with each reservation. Nightly rates start at $170.

The Best Part: “The Sleeping Porch.” This front porch is complete with large hammocks for napping or sightseeing over Butler Avenue, Tybee’s main road filled with a variety of nightlife options.

What Not to Miss: Tybee Island Social Club. Join the locals for a casual, yet delicious seafood meal at this laid-back beach-chic restaurant. Stop by on Blues n’ Bingo nights for smooth tunes and a tradition you’ll want to carry well into your years together.

 

7. The Sanctuary Hotel at Kiawah Island Golf Resort

Kiawah Island. 1 Sanctuary Beach Drive Kiawah Island, South Carolina 29455

This grand scale oceanfront hotel and spa, found just 30 minutes from downtown Charleston, provide casual Southern comfort and hospitality on one of the most picturesque islands in the U.S. Elegant, but not stuffy, this seaside mansion combines Charleston brick, stone, stucco and woods with more modern slate, copper and ironwork, while inside, the grand spaces and high ceilings are punctuated with traditional decor and antiques. Sporty couples will fall in love with the tennis courts and five golf courses, including The Ocean Course, site of the 2012 PGA Championship. Nightly rates start at $270.

The Best Part: The resort houses its own variety of on-site shopping options, from fashionable golf and beach attire to handbags and jewelry from distinctive designers as Dooney & Bourke. Take home a reminder of your time at the resort, or make lasting memories with art classes or bike and board rentals.

What Not to Miss: Fishing, dolphin and whale watching with Sonny Boy Charters. Take a boat out with Captain Brad to explore local history, test your fishing luck or simply watch a beautiful sunset over the low country scenery.

 

8. Blockade Runner Beach Resort

Wrightsville. 275 Waynick Blvd Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480

Located on the luxurious Wrightsville Beach Island, this intimate resort offers a tranquil atmosphere on all sides. The east end faces the Atlantic Ocean and a wide sandy beach while the west side looks out on the Intracoastal Waterway harbor and anchorage. Enjoy an expansive indoor/outdoor feel complete with private balconies and panoramic views of the seashore and the gardens. Each reservation comes with a complimentary southern breakfast buffet, or in-room dining options. Nightly rates start at $113.

The Best Part: Boat Slips. If your honeymoon plans involve more time on the water than on land, this resort has two docks that offer access to anchor vessels up to 70 ft. in length. Overnight guests are welcome to dock at a daily rate of $2/ft.

What Not to Miss: Adventurous couples won’t want to miss nearby outdoor activities such as surfing and paddle boarding lessons, yoga, fishing and sailing. Ask the resort for recommendations and have them book an afternoon of active coastal fun.

 

9. White Doe Inn

Manteo. Outer Banks. 319 Sir Walter Raleigh St., Manteo, NC 27954

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places for its architectural significance, this grand three-story Victorian home is the largest residence in Manteo. Bedchambers are loaded with such special features an all-season gas log fireplaces, private balconies overlooking the veranda and gardens, and spa tubs for two. Start each day with a four-course breakfast, and when you return from exploring the island, enjoy desserts and teas on one of the inn’s comfortable wrap-around porches. Nightly rates start at $230.

The Best Part: In-room spa services. Designed to encourage relaxation, enhance circulation, eliminate toxins and minimize stress, these treatments are provided in the tranquil seclusion and privacy of your guestroom.

What Not to Miss: Sanctuary Vineyards. This vineyard is a 40-minute trip, but you’ll be happy you made the drive once you taste their wine selection–crisp Chardonnays with hints of apple and pear, medium bodied Roses with subtle strawberry and The Triangle wine, named so because of the mysterious blend of Viognier, Roussanne and Albariño flavors that lures you in. Call ahead for a tour!

 

 

10. The Greystone Inn

Downtown Wilmington. 100 South Third Street Wilmington, NC 28401

 One of the most elegant structures in Wilmington, this inn is a historic landmark that recently underwent extensive renovations to return to its original “turn of the century grandeur.” With common areas such as the parlor and the library decorated with coffered ceilings, fireplaces, Honduran mahogany paneling, and built-in glass fronted bookcases, guests will feel like they’ve time-traveled back to the early 1900s. Guestrooms are appointed with period-style furnishings and luxurious modern amenities. Enjoy quiet moments together in your room’s reading niche by the window, soak in memories in large Victorian claw foot tubs or meet other honeymooners at the evening reception with complimentary wine and hors d’oeuvres in the library. Nightly rates start at $139.

The Best Part: The veranda. Relish in the view from this covered veranda anytime day or evening. Enjoy a bottle of wine in comfortable seating, or step down to the patio and stroll through the romantic garden.

What Not to Miss: Downtown Wilmington. If you’re enjoying feeling like you’ve gone back in time, you can’t miss the ambiance of the nationally recognized historic district during the day and in the early evening hours. From local clubs to shops to theatrical performances and museums, Wilmington has something to satisfy every couple.

 

11. Azalea Inn and Gardens

Downtown Savannah. 217 East Huntingdon Street, Savannah, Georgia 31401

Carefully groomed to reflect a typical 1885 Savannah garden, this romantic inn offers the spirit of southern hospitality and elegance at its finest, making it the perfect honeymoon for a couple looking for a slow-paced, relaxed getaway. The historic inn, located in the heart of downtown, features heritage gardens, balconies, a courtyard pool, and veranda with rockers. Enjoy a stay in one of the luxurious suites, or go all out and reserve one of the inn’s private vacation villas. Nightly rate starts at $219.

The Best Part: Recipes. Like the shrimp and grits served at breakfast? Or the creamy lemon squares from the inn’s nightly social? The inn is more than happy to share the recipe for a variety of their sumptuous cuisines, so you can recreate the honeymoon memories back home.

What Not to Miss: 700 Drayton Restaurant. Found inside the Mansion on Forsyth Park, this dining experience brings a modern twist to the opulence and history of Savannah. Grab a signature cocktail in the Casimir’s Lounge rooftop terrace overlooking the park, or take it to go and explore the rest of The Hostess City.

 

 

12. Chateau Elan Winery and Resort

North Georgia. 100 Rue Charlemagne, Braselton, Georgia 30517

Southern charm meets the French countryside at this lush resort within the sweeping panorama of the north Georgia foothills. Starting as just a few vines in 1981, the retreat now encompasses 3,500 acres, with high scale features to occupy every minute of your time–from daily wine tours and tastings to 63 holes of championship golf to a 35,000-sq. ft. European style mansion reserved solely for spa treatments. Guestrooms are designed with subtle touches such as an antique Eglomise mirror of gilded glass as a full-length wall leaning mirror, and reservations can be enhanced with personal touches like flowers and wine baskets upon request. Nightly rates start at $164.

The Best Part: The Viking Culinary Studio. Learn from an international team of chefs and schedule a cooking class for two in the beautiful 1,600 sq. ft. teaching kitchen. The resort offers public and private cooking classes that allow you to choose from a selection of menus.

What Not to Miss: Nature trails. With so much to do at this resort, make sure you take a moment to explore the grounds. Rent a bike or walk through private roads or off-the-beatenpath trails through canopied forests of trees, quiet nature trails and acres of vineyards.