Finding Atlanta’s hotel hidden gems

Hyatt Atlanta Zen Garden
Hyatt Atlanta Zen Garden

Hotel amenities often drive booking decisions for travelers when looking for places to stay for business or leisure. These include complimentary breakfast and free Wi-Fi or spa treatments and concierge service, but visitors booking a stay in Atlanta may be surprised to find one-of-a-kind hidden gems tucked within hotels throughout the city.

Known as The City in the Forest, Atlanta prides itself on its large tree canopy, parks and multi-use greenspaces. However, the city’s efforts to connect with nature go beyond grass and leaves. Towering 25 stories above famed Peachtree Street sits the Polaris Bee Garden at Hyatt Regency Atlanta. The garden’s 60,000 bees, once saved from a truck accident, produce “Blue Dome Honey”, named for the hotel’s iconic saucer-like restaurant, Polaris. Guests can taste the honey in the restaurant’s dishes and cocktails or take home a jar from Hyatt’s 24-hour market.

Tucked away on the lower level of Hilton Atlanta sits Trader Vic’s, a Polynesian-inspired bar and restaurant transporting visitors to the Pacific Islands without ever leaving the hotel. Guests enjoy a taste of history as they dine on Indonesian chicken satay, coconut crusted crab cakes or the original Mai Tai in the franchise’s oldest and one of the last remaining U.S. locations.

Grand Hyatt Atlanta houses another exotic hotel hideaway in the middle of the city’s Buckhead neighborhood. Designed by an award-winning Kyoto architect, the hotel’s Japanese Zen Garden features classic Japanese gardening, Azuyama, an open tea house; and traditional bamboo fence. Native Georgian stones and plants dot the landscape and
surround the garden’s crown jewel, a 32-foot waterfall viewable from the hotel lounge, restaurant and outdoor pool deck.

One of Atlanta’s tastier hidden gems is only available once a day - the Burger Bar at Loews Atlanta Hotel’s Saltwood Charcuterie & Bar. Exclusive to Atlanta, restaurant-goers make a reservation for the limited-seating, behind-the-scenes experience with opportunities to interact with the hotel’s chefs and see the inner workings of the restaurant. Menu items include Georgia-inspired menu items such as the Midtown Bleu burger, Tybee Island fried grouper sandwich and Southerner pulled pork sandwich.