Discovery, Featured

Family Friendly Fun

With the long leisurely days of summer here, it’s a perfect time for the whole family to plan their next vacation. The promise of great weather and ample activities makes Charleston the perfect destination for a family getaway. There are horses to ride, stingrays to touch, pirate ships to climb, and fly balls to catch.  Seabrook Island Beach Horseback Riding Located just a short hour drive from downtown Charleston, explore the picturesque beaches of Seabrook Island. The Equestrian Center at Seabrook Island is one of the few beach rides on the East Coast and caters to riders of all skill levels, from pony rides to professionals. Your family can choose between three miles of trails or the beautiful beachfront. After your excursion, enjoy a gourmet picnic packed by our team with delicious Southern delights.  The South Carolina AquariumLocated right on Charleston Harbor, The South Carolina Aquarium is home to more than 5,000 plants and animals. Its Toddler Cove play area features life-size aquatic play structures, perfect for those that like to jump and climb. The largest exhibit in the Aquarium, the Great Ocean Tank which extends from the first to the third floors of the Aquarium, is the tallest in North America and contains more than 300 animals. The Aquarium’s exhibit, the Saltmarsh Aviary, features a Touch Tank where guests can touch horseshoe crabs, stingrays, and other marine animals. Charles Towne LandingCharles Towne Landing, a state park that was once the site of the first permanent settlement in the Carolinas, has a natural habitat zoo featuring animals indigenous to the Carolina Lowcountry including bison, bears, and elk. The Otter Exhibit features a viewing area that provides a look at the animals’ movements underwater. Programs are also held regularly on The Adventure, a replica trading ship moored at the park. Children’s Museum of the LowcountryTake a visit to the recently renovated Children’s Museum of the Lowcountry; Charleston’s only hands-on learning environment designed just for children up to 10 years old and their families. The museum’s eight interactive exhibits range from a full-scale pirate ship to a Medieval Castle to an area just for infants and toddlers. And the museum is within walking distance from Charleston Place hotel.  Charleston RiverDogs Bring the whole family to a Charleston RiverDogs baseball game. Games are held every week at Joe Riley Jr. Park downtown. Each night, the RiverDogs have a variety of family-friendly activities. From face painting to kids running the bases, to kids eat free and fireworks displays, there is entertainment for everyone. Family Time Savor summer’s warm embrace, and escape on a family adventure with Charleston Place, A Belmond Hotel, as your guide. Set out for nearby Seabrook Island to ride horses on the beach and relax under the oaks with a gourmet picnic lunch. Then, return to your home away from home to lounge by our rooftop pool and end your day with a movie-night in your luxurious suite. Our hotel is the ultimate family friendly retreat in the center of it all. To book Family Time, visit our website or call 888-635-2350.
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Discovery, Featured, Sip & Savor

Charleston Is Your Oyster

Both culinary playground and educational classroom, set out on an aquatic adventure in the ACE Basin. With a professional fisherman and oyster farmer as your guide, you’ll experience the lifecycle of an oyster and its sustainability firsthand from your perch in a boat in the winding estuary creeks of South Carolina. The ACE Basin, located where the Ashepoo, Combahee, and Edisto rivers converge, is one of the largest undeveloped estuaries along the Atlantic Coast. Located just over an hour south of Charleston, this 350,000 acre wildlife refuge and natural environment is home to marshes, wetlands, cypress swamps, and hardwood forests. As the city landscape gives way to lush green spaces, glimpses of marsh grass beckon beyond. After arriving in Bennetts Point, South Carolina, you’ll be greeted at the rustic dock by the bearded crew behind Lowcountry Oyster Company. What started as a boyhood dream is now a daily endeavor for owner and operator, Trey McMillan. Along with his team, McMillan raises millions of oyster seeds each year, helping to replenish the diminishing oyster supply while purifying the area’s waterways. Your tour will start in the nursery, where millions of baby oysters are starting their maturation process before setting out from Mosquito Creek via boat for the floating oyster farm. As dolphins swim past and pelicans glide overhead, you’ll enjoy a leisurely 30 minute cruise through the winding estuary creeks as a gentle sea breeze blows the marsh grass and fish jump beyond. On the water, you’ll have a chance to see firsthand the hard work that goes into hand raising these single, select oysters. The entire process takes up to a year, before the oysters are shipped out nationwide, within 24 hours of being harvested. When you sample some of the Lowcountry Cups, you get a true taste of the place they come from. Lowcountry Oyster Company’s are high in salinity, a result of the pristine waters they are raised in. Not only does the water produce a better oyster, but the oyster helps better the water. Because oysters feed by filtering algae, they function as a natural filter, helping to improve the water quality. Truly one of the most sustainable from start to finish. After the tour and boat excursion, you’ll head around the corner to a private undeveloped forest for a picturesque Lowcountry oyster roast. Overlooking the Combahee River and a historic rice field, savor more oysters as you sip Champagne and enjoy black angus pepper-seared roast beef filet, mesquite-smoked grilled chicken and more while our team attends to your every whim. After living the Lowcountry lifestyle, you’ll depart for downtown Charleston and your home away from home. Later, shed your oyster overalls for fine frocks as a celebratory evening awaits at the Charleston Grill. If you haven’t had your fill of Lowcountry Cups, order the Local Oysters with Heirloom Pepper Mignonette or sample one of Chef Michelle’s other Southern delights that celebrate the bounty of our area’s rich waterways. Charleston is Your Oyster is exclusively available for guests of Charleston Place, A Belmond Hotel. For more information or to book this incomparable experience, contact us at 843-722-4900.
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Arts & Culture, Discovery, Featured

Spring Blooms in Charleston

When the sun begins to cast warm rays on the city’s historic buildings and backyard gardens blossom vibrant splashes of color, you know spring is finally here. Charleston is known for its quiet and charming secret gardens, Palmetto trees and local flowers sprinkled throughout the city. While the Holy City has a long list of reasons for travelers to explore, spring brings a variety of floral delights; the most breathtaking regional flowers including Azaleas, Wisteria, Tea Olive, Magnolia Trees and Camellias.
Wherever you turn in Charleston, you will surely see Azaleas blooming in hues of pronounced pinks, brilliant reds and warm purples, adding sweet, rich pigment to secret gardens and public parks. Azaleas, also called “the royalty of the garden,” are from the rhododendron family and one of the most sought-after shrubs locally, producing brilliant full color.
While its arrival is shortlived, Wisteria, a wispy, willowing vine that climbs and wraps around historic stone buildings and arching iron gates, welcomes visitors with it’s pretty purple color and slightly sweet scent. The curious vines of a wisteria can reach as high as 65 feet above the ground and spread out 32 feet wide.
The fragrant Tea Olive’s dark glossy, green leaves and dense foliage can be discovered all throughout Charleston in the form of well-manicured hedges providing shade and privacy. These sweet shrubs bloom tiny but amazingly fragrant, creamy white flowers which give gardens a crisp and fresh aesthetic.
Jasmine, an evergreen that climbs walls, posts, arbors and more, signals the start of warmer weather ahead. It’s rich, intoxicating scent envelopes the city each spring, a true favorite of locals and visitors alike.
You can also find beautifully strong and tall Saucer Magnolia Trees blooming light pink flowers. Part of the Magnolia family, these can grow as tall as 80 feet at full maturity. Often selected for their joyful robust tulip-looking blooms, the tree also provides cool shade for Charlestonians on warm spring days.
Camellias, another Southern favorite, come in many different shapes and sizes, yielding hues of red with colors ranging from stark white to rich pink ombré. These gorgeous trees, growing up to 65 feet tall, can be seen at Middleton Place, which is home to the oldest Camellias in North America. Charleston Place is currently offering an exclusive, behind-the-scenes experience at Middleton Place, home of the oldest formal gardens in America.

Floral insights were provided by Bloom at Charleston Place. Utilizing local product as much as possible, Bloom provides stunning floral arrangements for weddings and events, creating some of the most breathtaking arrangements inspired by the city of Charleston itself.

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