The Mills House Wyndham Grand Hotel
The Mills House Wyndham Grand Hotel is in Charleston, SC. It sits right on Meeting Street, which is in the heart of the city.
Video by Alsenio
Day One Travel and Arrival
For me, the trip to Charleston is not too long, about 7 hours if there is light traffic. I chose to leave in the early morning to avoid as much traffic in Virginia and North Carolina Interstate as I could.
If you look at Google maps, it shows a travel time of about 6 ½ hours, but you need to stop for gas and the basics at least once, so 7 hours is more practical. The distance for me was 445 miles.
If you come in on Interstate 26, it drops you right in town, so you only have a few city streets to find the turns on to locate Meeting Street and the resort.
The resort offers free parking for guests as I discovered, which is a wonderful benefit for a resort in the city. They also offer valet parking. When I arrived, I opted for the valet in part because I was not aware of the free but also because I had just driven 7 hours and I did not want to fool with figuring things out. I was more in the mood to get checked-in and settled as soon as I could. Valet was the path of least resistance.
This grand hotel is more than a theme it is reality. From is spa like pools, grand restaurants, and large rooms, it has the scale and style to impress. No wonder many choose this as the site for the weddings and important meetings.
The onsite restaurant, the Barbadoes Room, has true southern charm and a menu that will call to you. After getting everything up to my room, I headed to the restaurant for a bite.
Here they have a breakfast buffet Monday through Friday and brunch on the weekends. 7 days a week they have happy hour from 4-6PM and dinner is served 5-10PM. I imagine on the weekends in season you should call for a reservation.
They have a small menu here, but everything looks good. My dinner was great and I look forward to catching the breakfast buffet in the next 2 days.
The rooms here offer a great deal.
- Cable TV
- Coffee Maker
- DVD Player
Then the resort itself offers all of these options.
- Activities Center/Desk
- Business Center/Fax
- Fitness Room
- Concierge Services
- Hot Tub
- Outdoor Pool
- Internet Access
- Valet Parking
Day Two Out on the Town
Charleston has a little for everyone. You are a short drive from Folley Beach should you want to dip in the ocean or sunbath on the beach, and in town you have history, art, museums, and a unique charm and culture.
At sunrise or sunset one place you likely will find many fellow travelers is the Battery. This strip of land along the southern tip of the city offers some of the best views around. It even made U.S. News’s top of the list of things to do in Charleston.
If you are here for either the Sunrise or Sunset, you will get it instantly. The views of the water are amazing, and the surrounding architecture puts it all in an elevated setting.
I wanted to see even more of the water, so I headed for the Isle of Palms Park, which is about 16 miles east of the city. I had driven my convertible down, so it was the perfect time on a 76-degree day to drop the top and head for a beach.
After hours at the beach just watching the waves come in, I decided to head back into the city and get some lunch, then see what else I could get into. Since the weather was still only 78, it was warm but not one of those oppressive days of southern summer.
In Charleston, if there is a breeze, you might get the cool air from the water that cuts the heat some while in some parts of the city.
I went to Drayton Hall next for the tour. Drayton Hall is one of the oldest surviving plantation houses left in the South, it dates back to 1738. I grew up in Yorktown, VA where Cornwallis surrendered the sword, so I am used to historic sites, and some of the oldest homes in the Nation. But Drayton Hall is special. This home has not been updated with AC, heat, or really any modern convivences. So, it appears much the same as it would have in 1738.
There are even some signs of damage and modest repairs from the 1886 earthquake. The Earthquake was thought to be a 7.0 on the rector scale and some report over 100 dead, and thousands of homes damaged. It was one of the most powerful earthquakes to hit the East Coast in our nation’s history. Here is an interesting report on the quake if you would like to learn more.
If you do not have time to visit on your trip, you can still learn more about Drayton Hall with some of the online exhibts.
Day Three: the Art of the City
Here I sit in the heart of the city of Charleston. I thought it would be great to see some of the art of the city today.
I stated my day back in the Barbadoes’ Room for the breakfast buffet this morning. There are few things (food related) better than a breakfast buffet. I enjoyed the omelet made for me and the fresh juices and sausage. What can I say I am a simple man, and it is hard to beat fresh juice in the morning and a great omelet anytime.
There are many art museums and galleries in Charleston. Here art must be as big of a draw as the history. I started my art day at the Gibbs Museum of Art. Here you will find traveling art exhibits as well as noted collections from some of the world’s greatest artist. They have paintings, decorative art and sculpture here.
After a delightful time at Gibbs, I moved to the Principal Gallery. The paintings here are more my cup or tea than the contemporary art gallery. At the Principal Gallery, you will find the art of over 40 artists in a very large and meaningful collection.
Next, I had to see Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel Exhibit at the Festival Hall. I travel a good deal, but other than the Caribbean I do not like leaving the USA much. This means this exhibit is likely as close as I will get to the real thing.
This is just a short-term exhibit from July 21-Sept21 should you miss it, look for another exhibit here the venue is very nicely maintained. Here there are taking small groups through and trying to use social distancing as they can while still letting as many people enjoy the work as possible.
Hours of viewing and enjoying art and even with just the leisurely walking, I was ready to go back to the resort for some rest. Tomorrow I was going to head to nearby Myrtle Beach after I checked out.
If you want to save like I did on this vacation book with TZort and save even at this same great resort.