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Looking for information on visiting Nashville

Discussion in 'Non-Vegas Chat' started by bsmithy2k, Apr 3, 2017.

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  1. bsmithy2k

    bsmithy2k Tourist

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    Hello everyone, I have learned so much from this forum in planning my Vegas trips, and I am hoping I can glean a little information regarding Nashville.

    My wife and I are planning a Spring (May) trip to Nashville, and we're looking for information from either residents or recent visitors in guiding us.

    Where to stay: I think we want something centrally located, but I am not sure what that means in regards to Nashville. My wife was a big fan of the show Nashville and wants to see some of the Music Row stuff or maybe see the Grand Ole Opry.

    Things to see: We won't have a car so would prefer things within walking distance unless there is good access to taxis or Uber/Lyft cars. Any recommendations or things to avoid.

    Places to eat: On vacation we tend to avoid chain restaurants unless they have a local connection.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks.
     
  2. Tarstarkas

    Tarstarkas High-Roller

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    For bkfast...highly recommend Pancake Pantry usually a wait for a table but well worth it ..try the country ham. For dinner try Jacks BBQ..get a sampler plate
     
  3. hammie

    hammie VIP Whale

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    We just visited Nashville for the first time about a month ago with another couple who had been there previously, it was a blast. Great town with nice folks, everyone is very chill, didn't run into one knucklehead the entire time. On the way in from the airport, I counted about 14 construction cranes, this place is growing like a weed.

    We stayed at the Homewood Suites near Vanderbilt and took Lyft all over the place because hotel parking was about $30 per day plus you will have to pay to park downtown. Nashville is a party town and I didn't want to worry about drinking and driving. Those Bootwhackers at Losers bar have a way of catching up to you.

    We went to the Grand Ole Opry for the backstage tour, I don't follow the country music scene, but you will enjoy it if you do. Walked through the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and the place is enormous with tons of restaurants and some shopping and a short indoor "river". We did the bar crawl on Saturday night along Broadway and heard some great music and visited one of the Rooftop bars. Stopped at Martins for really good BBQ, the ribs were great, but I would get them wet.

    In Nashville, Sunday is Funday, so we hit some bars along music row and did some day drinking at Dawghouse and saw the Spazmatics. All in all a great time and even with all of the crowds, folks were respectful and things never got out of hand. Very different from a trip to Memphis two years ago, I had to line up for security to check for weapons to get on Beale street, and there was a big police presence.
     
  4. vegasvic

    vegasvic VIP Whale

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    As a non country music fan I really enjoyed Nashville. Went a couple of years ago for a few days for my girlfriends birthday (she loves country music). Had a great time in virtually all of the bars on Broadway. Most of them start live music in the morning. No cover charge. Some get packed, some are very small. Even as a non CM fan I enjoy talent and there is a lot of talent here. The difference between a lot of the acts/performers and the "big name" acts are access to the best song writers. Talent-wise there isn't a lot of difference. Many of them are a couple of hit songs away from the big time. It's not unusual to see someone performing in a band in the morning and with a different band later in the day.

    We stayed at a Hilton Garden Inn by the airport and it was fine. It's really easy to get around Nashville. Even at rush hour there were no backups when we headed to/from downtown. The Opryland hotel looks cool inside and out but we chose not to stay there. It can be pricey and tons of kids running around :)

    I would also recomment the Grand Old Opry. It's a unique experience. Carrie Underwood was one of the performers the night we went. The Bluebird cafe is suppose to be fun but we couldn't get tickets (tried and tried but the ticket process is kind of convoluted, maybe it's better now).

    We also did the Jack Daniels tour (roughly an hour away), enjoyed it quite a bit. It's not at their modern production facility, it's at an older facility. You can do a tasting tour even though it's a dry county. You don't get to taste much though :)

    Jack's BBQ gets a lot of publicity and it's right on Broadway, always busy. It was good but we had better in Nashville, I don't remember the place, if I do I'll edit this.
     
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  5. wwcd

    wwcd Tourist

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    We've been there twice in the last 5 years and had a great time. Hotels are pricey (Nashville in the top 5 most expensive U.S. cities to stay in according to an online list I once saw). We stayed at the Hampton Inn downtown. Great location. Walked everywhere. So much to see: museums, architecture, parks. Music in the bars started about 11a.m. No cover charges, just a tip jar at the door. Enjoyed the Country Music hall of Fame, Bicentennial Mall Park and everything in between. Drove over to the Opry one night. But otherwise, so much to see within walking distance downtown - many hotels to choose from.
     
  6. bshowell

    bshowell VIP Whale

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    This is my favorite place to stay in Nashville: http://www.huttonhotel.com/
    I've also stayed here (right down the road): http://www.aloftnashvillewestend.com/
    And here: https://www.thehermitagehotel.com/

    The latter is the only one of those right downtown. The others are an easy Uber (or private car in the case of Hutton) away from the major stuff. I suggest a hop on hop off trolly tour for easy viewing of the sights including the original Grand Ol Opry. Also a visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame - not a country fan, but I spent several hours there. I second the Pancake Pantry. So worth it. I agree about Jack's BBQ - good food but if you don't get there, you're not missing anything. Had to try Hattie B's Hot Chicken, too. And we did Merchant's Restaurant, too. That was a good meal. If you like zoos, there's a good one outside of town.
     
  7. bsmithy2k

    bsmithy2k Tourist

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    Thank you everyone, this is exactly what I was hoping for. These are great ideas and will help me research the hotels mentioned. Now that I know a little more about the cost of hotels, I will reset my expectations, close my eyes, and spend the cash.

    Also, great suggestions on the food scene and music places, as well as, the Lyft idea. I think we will plan some and wander some, and just enjoy the town. Thanks again.
     
  8. Richard Alpert

    Richard Alpert LOST

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    Thanks for the timely question, bsmithy2k, and for the great responses from everyone else above! :thumbsup:

    The Alperts are heading to FL for another family adventure this summer, but this time we're not speeding :biker: to and fro.

    We're going to break up the drive and enjoy some of the sights and cities along the way, including Nashville! :cowboy: Lots of great info above! Thanks so much!!!

    RICHARD
     
    The Alperts Take Polo Towers!
  9. Miller12pack

    Miller12pack High-Roller

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    Try to stay on Broadway. It's more expensive, but well worth it if you don't have a car. Most of the bars are what I believe they call shotgun buildings. Long and narrow with an upstairs and downstairs for seating. They have back doors you can go out for some fresh air and most are in alleys. One night we saw Willie Nelson having a smoke and another night Keith Richards. They have a place called printers alley that is a short walk from Broadway that has 3-4 bars with amazing bands. Get some information from their chamber of commerce or whatever it's called. You will love Nashville.
     
  10. thammer

    thammer Tourist

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    Walk along Broadway...the country music establishments are almost endless.
    Try a "pedal bar tour" - always having a fantastic time.
    Favorite breakfast...Loveless Café
    Favorite breakfast/lunch...Puckett's Grocery
    Favorite dinner...Demo's (got to try the Mexican spaghetti!)
     
  11. OhioStateAlum

    OhioStateAlum High-Roller

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    Nashville is frigging awesome; I go several times per year. If you find that the hotels within spitting distance of Broadway make you cringe price-wise, you could look into AirBnb. The last few times I've been, I've stayed in the 12South area near Vanderbilt. Very nice, very safe. About a 7 minute ride to Broadway. All the bars on Broadway have a unique style to them, and they're so close together that you can damn near hit every single one in the course of a day and a half. Tootsies has always been my personal favorite, but it can get unbelievably crowded later in the evening. To get in quicker, go in the back alley entrance. The Stage and Bootleggers are also old-time bars that you might want to pop into just to say you did. You might bump into a celebrity or two over the weekend- I actually ran into Vince Vaughn at The Stage a year or so ago.

    Martins BBQ is orgasmic. Hattie B's is pretty good, but there's no shortage of good hot chicken no matter where you go. Pancake Pantry and Biscuit Love are really good, but you'll wait until Christmas just to get seated. It's the south, and the south just oozes fantastic food.

    Enjoy your trip, and again...Nashvegas is frigging awesome. IMO if someone can't have fun in Nashville, Vegas, or New Orleans then they're just a wet damn blanket.
     
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  12. UKFanatic

    UKFanatic The Arbiter of Taste Caviar Kid

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    As a local, I am happy to answer any specific questions you may have. For hotel, it really depends on what you're wanting to focus on. Music Row is mostly business (and a few bars and restaurants) and can be seen pretty easily in half a day or less. There is more touristy stuff downtown, including the original home of the Opry (the Ryman Auditorium). But if you're wanting to see the Opry now, its out at the Gaylord Convention Center and Hotel, which is not near much of any of the other tourist stuff (its next to a really big mall). If you pick a hotel downtown or along the West End corridor, you should be fine. Nashville has a ton of Lyft drivers and a pretty good bus system. if you're downtown or on West End, there will be plenty within walking distance of the hotel.

    As for what other people have listed, I say skip Pancake Pantry and go to Loveless instead. PP is average food that you have to wait an hour to get if you try to go on a Friday or weekend. I would also skip Pucketts and Demos. They are local, but both are mediocre. They are located downtown, which is why tourists flock to them. But really, they both were set up as quick lunch places for people working downtown. There is nothing special about either one.

    For quality, non-chain dining, I would suggest: Pizza Perfect, Desanos, Salt and Vine, Baja Burrito, Marche, Bar Taco, Germantown Café, Bobby's Dairy Dip, or Chauhan. Not really sure what you're into, so I tried to give you a diverse list.

    Downtown has plenty of tourist stuff to do. I would also suggest checking out Centennial Park (with its scale replica of the Parthenon), Hillsboro Village, the 12th south neighborhood, the Gulch, Green Hills (which is also where Bluebird Café is located; right next to the barber shop I always got my hair cut at as a child, lol), Cheekwood Botanical Garden, Frist Art Center, and the Warner Parks. The Jack Daniels distillery tour someone mentioned is very cool, but not really realistic if you don't have a car (its an hour away and neither Lyft nor Uber serve that area of the State).

    Feel free to PM me if you have specific questions
     
  13. bsmithy2k

    bsmithy2k Tourist

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    Thank you everyone for your responses. We had a lot of fun in Nashville. We did some touristy things and we ate at some touristy restaurants, but we also just walked around a lot finding little places here and there.

    We couldn't do everything on our list, but that is just like Vegas, it gives you a reason to go back and visit. And we probably will go back when time allows.

    Thanks again everyone for your suggestions.
     
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