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All this week, Julia Buckley will be taking us down the Blues trail in the Mississippi Delta and giving us the lowdown on the hotel scene. So kick off your blue suede shoes and get comfy.
It’s almost exactly two years since we visited the Mississippi Delta to follow the Blues trail, and we were so entranced by what we found there that we’ve spent the last two years fantasizing about a return. Finally, two weeks ago, we made it out there, and for old time’s sake, we chose the Tallahatchie Flats in lovely little Greenwood as our first stop.
Last time, we adored it – comfy bed, gorgeous setting and, the Flats’ jewel in the crown, their fantastic manager Les. This time, though, we couldn’t help but be a little disappointed, and not just because it turned out Les was no longer chez Tallahatchie (he’s been replaced by an equally nice lady).
No, what bugged us this time was noticing that the cleaning standards had gone down a steep hill. Last time we’d noted that our bathroom sink could have been cleaner; this time, it wasn’t just the streaky sink that was the problem; the toilet didn’t look as it if had been cleaned, the shower almost certainly hadn’t (it had the label off someone’s facecloth on the dirty shelf, and we had to rinse black dirt from the shower tray) and the entire bathroom smelled a little, err, steamy.
Hotel Retail / Hotel Beds / Delta Hotels / Mississippi Hotels / Road Trip Hotels / Hotel Swag / → All Tags
We’re always suckers for hotel tat – whether it’s nicking a pen and notebook from the room, buying branded crockery or saving up for one of those Kimpton animal print bathrobes.
So imagine our excitement when we popped in to see the posh Alluvian hotel in Greenwood, Mississippi and found that, as well as the beds in the rooms (which we couldn’t hunker down on, what with not being hotel guests), there’s a bedroom for visitors to try out in the hotel shop across the road.
[Ed. Note: Hotel Maven Tim Leffel got all Betty Crocker on us, checking out some high-end ovens only to discover they were made in Mississippi. Naturally, when you follow the oven, you're bound to find a hotel. Er..not quite but read on to find out what hotel is worth a stop down South.]
Greenwood, Mississippi has a population of only 17,344 and one substantial employer. But when that employer is an upscale appliance maker, a swanky boutique hotel starts to make lots of sense.
Inc. Magazine is not a publication we normally turn to for advice on hip boutique hotels, but a story on the hometown of Viking Range caught our eye. The high-end stove company was founded in little Greenwood, Mississippi and is still headquartered there. The founder, Fred Carl, was tired of bringing sales reps to town and having no decent place for them to stay. So he took things into his own hands and financed the development of the Alluvian Hotel, in a restored building downtown.
This lovely boutique hotel is to the existing highway motels in town what a Viking stove is to a Kenmore starter model. As one "admirer" says in the article, "It don't belong in Greenwood!" Picture fine fabrics, stylish furniture, attractive lighting, commissioned art, and all the attention you would expect in an upscale hotel. There's a plush lobby and bar, plus a great restaurant (also owned by Viking) on the corner. It's $175 a night for one of the 45 regular rooms, but plan ahead to get a reservation. They're so booked up that they don't even let you do it on the web--you have to call and see where they can squeeze you in.
Image via DeepFriedKudzu/Flickr