If you're looking for a city getaway that oozes Southern charm, it's hard to beat drop-dead-gorgeous Savannah, which was laid out in a grid in the 1700s by Georgia's founder, James Oglethorpe, and continues to wow visitors with a vibe that is simultaneously majestic and intimate.
Savannah is a small city of about 143,000 residents and feels much more like a hip town than an urban jungle. Its antebellum architecture and vibrant food scene helped the Georgian city earn a spot on Travel+Leisure's list of World’s Best Cities. It's also a creative city, thanks to a thriving art culture and the presence of the Savannah College of Art and Design.
For visitors, hitting the jackpot means landing a hotel in the city's lovely historic district, the largest urban National Historic Landmark District in the country. Inside the 2.5-square-mile area are streets lined with ancient live oaks dripping with Spanish moss, hundreds of historic buildings and antebellum homes, and 20 tranquil squares that survive from Oglethorpe’s dream of the Hostess City. Savannah's true soul is this network of small parks that feature statues or fountains, and walkways and benches shaded by canopies of live oaks, dogwoods, and blooming magnolias.
Blessed with a stellar location on the fringe of the historic district, Embassy Suites by Hilton Savannah is an all-suite hotel within a few blocks of the Savannah History Museum and Visitor Center, Savannah Children's Museum, and the Savannah College of Art and Design Museum of Art. (The location is also ideal for families visiting SCAD students, with several dorms just a few blocks away.)
Scores of restaurants and shops are within easy walking distance from this hotel, and you'll want to take time to explore River Street's waterside cafes, Broughton Street's trendy shops, and Bull Street's colorful galleries. Savannah is easy to explore on foot, and there's also a free trolley service that can take you between various sights in the historic district.
At Embassy Suites Savannah, families have plenty of room to spread out in large suites that feature multiple rooms, contemporary furnishings, large flat-screen TVs, and modern bathrooms. Our one-bedroom suite felt like a small apartment, with a door that closed between the bedroom and living area, which had a comfy sofa, TV, work desk, and wet bar area with a fridge, microwave, and coffee maker. It is an ideal set-up for families with a young child who is on a nap schedule or who may have an early bedtime, and it's also ideal for families with older kids and teens who might want to crash on the pullout sofa and have their own space.
The room rate includes a full, made-to-order breakfast and an evening reception of complimentary snacks and drinks, which can help families cut down on their dining bills. In addition, you can pick up light snacks at 39 Rue to Go Market, an on-site deli, or enjoy a sit-down meal at 39 Rue de Jean, French-style brasserie. The hotel also offers a fitness center and outdoor pool, and guests receive free wi-fi. For families with young children, cribs and high chairs are available upon request.
Best rooms: The hotel offers a variety of stylish two-room suites, each with a separate bedroom (king or two queen beds) and a spacious living room with pullout sofa, desk and wet bar with a microwave and refrigerator. For larger families, three-room suites feature an extra bedroom and bathroom.
Best season: The city is beautiful year-round yet summer may be hotter than many visitors can handle, with temperatures in the 90s accompanied by high humidity. If you hate that kind of heat, aim for late fall through mid-spring for more moderate temperatures.
Visited: September 2016
Disclaimer: As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with complimentary services for review purposes. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our Ethics Policy.