Established in 1733, Savannah – Georgia’s oldest city – is a living movie set, where cobblestone streets, 18th-century mansions and charming historic squares lined with moss-draped live oaks conspire to make visitors believe they’ve traveled through time.
Hugging the southern bank of the Savannah River, the northern portion of the city’s Historic District is the city’s heart and soul, and it’s also home to Stay Alfred’s new location: Stay Alfred at West Congress. So grab your “traveler” (the city’s official nickname for to-go cups of alcoholic beverages, which are perfectly legal to roam the streets with) and join us for a tour of this updated historic property and its out-of-the-ordinary locale.
First, a word of warning: 31 West Congress Street – a vintage brick structure built in 1900 – is home not only to 2nd- and 3rd-floor travel apartments, but also to 1st-floor businesses, one of which is Wicked Cakes of Savannah, a purveyor of pastries both large and small. It’s the small ones you’ve got to watch out for: while choosing to refrain from purchasing an entire birthday may be an easy task, cupcakes are another matter entirely. It’s diabolically easy to justify grabbing just one. And then another. It’s a slippery slope upon which many of our guests are all too eager to slide. The building is also home to The Witches Brew & Perfume Bar (we’re sensing a theme here) – a purveyor of essential oils, scrubs and soaps where you and a friend or two can take a class that will help you create your own fragrances. (Or just buy a few of their pre-made scents.) And, if you’re really enjoying your trip to Savannah, you’ll find both a residential and a commercial real-estate office on the premises – if need be, you could arrange to move here and start your own business, witch-themed or otherwise.
On the second and third floor of this historic brick building, you’ll find a wide range of freshly updated apartments in a wide variety of configurations. Choose from a 2-bed/1-bath that sleeps 6, a 3-bed/2-bath that sleeps 8, a 4-bed/2-bath split-level loft that sleeps 8, or even a sprawling 5-bed/3-bath split-level loft that sleeps up to 10.
While the building may be historic, only the best of its vintage features have been preserved, and its more modern elements include stainless steel appliances, central air (it gets hot in Hostess City), and new hardwood floors.
Of course, like nearly every all of Stay Alfred’s travel apartments, Stay Alfred at West Congress features a washer and dryer in in every unit – so you can travel light and still be confident that a spilled traveler won’t ruin your trip, and you can avoid having to travel home with a suitcase full of dirty laundry.
Every travel apartment also features a full kitchen, outfitted with a dishwasher, a refrigerator and a full complement of tableware and cookware. After all, while it may be fun to eat out Savannah’s top-notch restaurants, there’s no reason you should be compelled to do so every night. Get out and explore the local farmers markets, then bring a cartful of ingredients home and whip a feast on the cheap. If you’re in town for an extended stay, the ability to save some money by making your own breakfasts is a welcome change from staying in a cramped hotel room.
Private bedrooms, too, set travel apartments apart from hotels. If you’re traveling with a group, the ability to close a bedroom door and get a little privacy does wonders for the preservation of sanity. And, when it’s time to gather with a group, spacious living areas mean that you can host a meeting or social gathering without having to use the ends of the beds as seating.
Of course, you could get this kind of space at a typical vacation rental, but Stay Afred’s professional management means that booking and checking-in will be easy, your travel apartment will be dependably clean when you arrive, and there will be a guest-services representative just a call or text away should you have questions.
Savannah’s Historic District
Chances are, you’re visiting Hostess City to do more than just hang out in your travel apartment, as nice as it is. Take a stroll down the cobblestone streets, and you’ll discover at least of handful of the neighborhood’s 22 verdant town squares, be tempted by the offerings of nearly 100 restaurants and bars (The Olde Pink House has a reputation for serving Savannah’s best food – and Vic’s on the River, located in an 1858 building that offers impressive views, along with amazing seafood dishes), and have ample opportunity for unique shopping experiences at the galleries of City Market, the high-end retailers of Broughton Street, and the fashion boutiques of Whittaker Street in the Design District, located just north of Forsyth Park.