Photo by Robbie Caponetto
See and Be Seen
Like New York City, Atlanta's strength lies in the great diversity of its neighborhoods, each possessing a distinct mood and look. The Westside, a redeveloped industrial area around Howell Mill Road, thrives with some of the city's best galleries (Poem88), boutiques (Billy Reid), and dining (Abattoir). Chef/entrepreneur Ford Fry's expansive new restaurant, The Optimist, focuses on seafood with dishes such as whole Georgia shrimp grilled à la plancha. His beloved JCT. Kitchen & Bar features Sunday dinners with an upscale take on the traditional meat 'n' three.
Dress Like a Local
This is the town that grunge forgot. With luxury malls like Phipps Plaza and Lenox Square, women favor the latest designer options. Men tend to show appreciation for tweed and broadcloth. Neat, preppy, and cool, Sid and Ann Mashburn are walking advertisements for their stores, two of the best-appointed options for Atlanta's men and women, respectively. Sid's an international fashion hero, not least of all for his appreciation of monk-strap shoes sans socks. Meanwhile, Ann is known for streamlined classics such as the tailored cotton blouses in her namesake clothing collection.
It's all white-glove service with luxury trappings in tony Buckhead at The St. Regis Atlanta (rooms from $310), where suites come with full butler service.