In my imagination, Atlanta meant to me as much as the wind matters. It is history, romance and greatness; nothing more and nothing less. In other words, I was somewhat disappointed. We had passed through Atlanta with Sarah on our way to New Orleans in a hurry. Between two buses, we had just had time to see cold streets, grey buildings, a lot of homeless people and not much else. The Atlanta downtown is really not welcoming at first glance.
I was heading back to Atlanta. One night and two days in transit to discover the city, visit the Aquarium, the Coca-Cola Museum and the historic sites linked to Martin Luther King and Margaret Mitchell. But in the end, that’s not what happened at all.
I arrived in Atlanta in heavy rain that has been almost unrelenting throughout my stay. Tired, wet, sad to have left Sarah and not very happy with my first glimpse of Atlanta, I decided to take a break, not to run all over the place to discover the city and enjoy the luxury of my room. Sometimes you need to rest and does little, except read books, take a nap and take a bath. What I did in Atlanta in my little luxurious bubble for one night.
Atlanta is one of those sprawling American cities, and without a car, it is difficult to access some neighbourhoods outside the city centre. And the city centre is generally dead and lacks any cheap housing options. Not feeling that the city is very safe either, I didn’t want to go too far from the city centre and so I chose to sleep at the Best Western Plus Inn at Peachtree in Atlanta. It is a much more luxurious option than usual, but much more affordable than its downtown neighbours.
The hotel is very small, but well located in the city centre among the various attractions and a stone’s throw from the bus terminal (if you are like me in transit). The hotel is therefore quite small, but very cosy and offers you everything you need for a hundred dollars. Free Internet, gym, room with computers and printers for work and comfortable room with King Size bed, fridge, desk, armchair, television and private bathroom. I spent a very comfortable night in this huge bed, greatly appreciated the sympathy of the staff and I would always remember this huge breakfast buffet which included rice, pancakes and waffles. Choice, quantity and quality on the agenda!
It is a hotel to recommend if you want to sleep in the city centre and with a limited budget.
When I managed to get out of the comfort of my room, I ventured into the streets of Atlanta. The city has few charms, but there seem to be some nice corners and cafes around the university. Other neighbourhoods are a little scarier. One of my missions in Atlanta was to test an incongruous specialty, chicken and waffle invented by Gladys Knight, the Empress of Soul and served in his restaurant. The restaurant doesn’t look like much, the waiters are in a hurry and only friendly until they have received their tip and the sign on the window “Do not bring weapons inside” is a little scary. Anyway, Chicken and Waffle is an interesting specialty that I really liked and probably one of my favourite dishes in the United States. The wedding is strange, but it works well and I recommend of course covering it with maple syrup! You can tell me about it if you’re passing through here!