Beale Street heart - David Meany

Have a Romantic Weekend in Memphis

Did you know that Travel & Liesure named Memphis #4 Most Romantic City in the US? Here are some of the reasons why. 

Beale Street Heart by David Meany 

Aisling Maki | March, 2019

Searching for an easy getaway for a romantic weekend? Look no further. With a reputation for serving up the finest the South has to offer, Memphis is a versatile destination for couples looking for a romantic escape. Each neighborhood boasts its own unique charms and amenities. Here are some ideas to help you plan the perfect trip for two. 

DOWNTOWN

Center your stay in the heart of downtown at the legendary Peabody Hotel. Known as the “South’s Grand Hotel,” The Peabody offers gracious rooms with every imaginable amenity, including nightly turn-down service and chocolates on your pillow. And if that isn’t sweet enough, the hotel has Feathers Spa, a full-service resort-style spa that provides a variety of luxurious treatments.

After all of that pampering, make your way to the lobby for cocktails and watch the famous Peabody Duck March before heading out for a night on the town. Stroll hand-in-hand down Beale Street, America’s Most Iconic Street, on your way to experience Itta Bena, a posh restaurant tucked away on the top floor of B. B. King’s Blues Club. The azure-tinted windows mean that everywhere you look, you see “the blues” of Beale Street, and the mood lighting gives off an exclusive, speakeasy vibe.

After dinner, head downstairs to one of the city’s best live music venues showcasing legendary musicians. Bring your day full-circle with a moonlit carriage ride through the streets of downtown. The horse-drawn tours usually run late into the evening, and start and stop at the Union Avenue entrance to The Peabody.

SOUTH MAIN

Check into the Hotel Indigo in the heart of Downtown Memphis, where you’ll be surrounded by art and memorabilia from blues, rock and soul legends, and can enjoy an evening dip together in the rooftop pool and a sip drinks at the cocktail lounge cabana.

After breakfast in bed, take the trolley to the South Main Arts District, where you can explore a number of art galleries and public installations, shops, bars and historic sites. Enjoy the backyard at Loflin Yard, where you can relax on the porch in rocking chairs while sipping on a julep. For an elegant dinner, make reservations at rustic-chic Rizzo’s, where the creme brulee -- along with the company -- will have you floating on Cloud 9.

End the day at Earnestine and Hazel’s, one of the city’s most famous juke joints, where you can slow dance to soulful tunes on the jukebox before walking up the hill to watch a romantic sunset over the Mississippi River.

HARBOR TOWN

Harbor Town, a charming riverside neighborhood in downtown Memphis, is another option. Recognized as one of the top hotels in the country by Travel & Leisure, The River Inn at Harbor Town is an intimate, boutique hotel that offers upscale lodging and unsurpassed service. Take in a panoramic view of the sunset while overlooking the storied Mighty Mississippi River from the hotel’s rooftop bar, Terrace at the River Inn. Stroll the pathways that meander alongside the river’s banks or amble over to Mud Island River Park to walk a scale model of the Mississippi.

Dining options range from casual dining at gourmet store Miss Cordelia’s to the bar and grill atmosphere of Tug’s or the fine dining at one of Memphis’ most charming restaurants, Paulette’s. Or opt for an evening dinner cruise aboard one of the Memphis Riverboats and see the river and the city skyline from a whole new perspective.

SOUTH MEMPHIS

Give your romantic weekend the royal treatment by checking into The Guest House at Graceland, a posh hotel that celebrates the legacy of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.

The Guest House is located just down the street from Graceland, which you and your love explore on a tour. Elvis Presley’s Memphis, located across the street, offers additional options for dining, music history, and shopping.

If soul music makes your heart beat faster, take your sweetheart to the STAX Museum of American Soul, where you can explore music history together and take a spin on the Soul Train dancefloor.

For an immersive Memphis experience, hop in the backseat of a 1955 Cadillac for a ride around town with Tad Pierson of American Dream Safari. His encyclopedic knowledge of people and places will have you feeling like a Memphis insider. He also offers a “Juke Joint” tour that makes for an unforgettable evening that is pure, blues-soaked delight.

Arcade Restaurant, Memphis TN
couple taking a selfie at Graceland memphis
Horse Carriage Ride in Memphis
couple at A Schwab memphis
Brides Magazine named Memphis the Best Honeymoon Destinations for Music Lovers

VICTORIAN VILLAGE

Surprise your love with luxury accommodations in the heart of Victorian Village, a neighborhood lined with historic mansions that were known as “Millionaire's Row” in the Gilded Age. The James Lee House Bed and Breakfast, a national historic landmark, features five exquisitely decorated suites and serves a delicious gourmet breakfast.

Soak up some Southern charm with a tour of the nearby Woodruff-Fontaine House Museum, with its French Victorian architecture and splendid collection of antiques, and the Mallory-Neely House, which retains its original, furniture and artifacts.

Then get cozy and enjoy conversation over tapas and drinks at Mollie Fontaine Lounge, a bar and restaurant owned by an award-winning Memphis chef and housed in a beautifully decorated historic home.

MIDTOWN 

Head to the Overton Square theater district to catch a show at Playhouse on the Square, Hattiloo Theater or Ballet Memphis. Afterward, catch live music at Lafayette’s Music Room or sing a duet together at the Zebra Lounge piano bar.

Choose from more than a dozen restaurants, including Iris, a cozy fine-dining space in an elegant bungalow. Its creative Creole-French cuisine has garnered accolades for "Best Restaurant," "Best Service" and "Best Chef,” so reservations are recommended.

For a more casual evening, start early with a free taproom tour at Memphis Made Taproom, then stay to sample tasty local beers from this craft brewery in the historically hip Cooper-Young District. The adjacent “I Love Memphis” mural -- one of the city’s most Instagrammed spots -- is the perfect backdrop for a selfie with your sweetie. Another you-can-only-get-it-in-Memphis souvenir awaits you at Phillip Ashley Chocolates, a luxury chocolate boutique, where each chocolate is hand-crafted in small batches.

CROSSTOWN

For something completely different, spend the weekend together exploring the Crosstown Concourse, a mixed-use vertical urban village featuring art galleries, shops, restaurants, and a bustle of vibrant, artsy activity.

Layover at Concourse offers overnight accommodation in unique short-term stay apartments. Enjoy breakfast at French Truck Coffee in the Concourse. Explore the changing exhibitions in the galleries at Crosstown Arts, catch live music in the atrium, and do a little shopping with your sweetheart.

Share a delicious, casual dinner at Next Door American Eatery, then head across the way to Area 51 to satisfy your sweet tooth with small-batch, hand-made ice cream and sorbet. End the day with a craft cocktail at the Art Bar, then head to one of the Concourse’s upper floors to watch the sunset over the heart of the city.

EAST MEMPHIS

 

Take in fine art and nature in East Memphis’ galleries and gardens. The permanent French Impressionist collection at The Dixon is the picture of romance, and be sure to stroll the grounds to enjoy the beautifully manicured formal gardens, reminiscent of European parks.

Nearby is the Memphis Botanic Garden, home to 29 specialty gardens, like the Japanese Garden of Tranquility, featuring its traditional red bridge and peaceful koi pond. Beautiful in all seasons, the trails are walkable during the day.

After a busy weekend, sleep in on Sunday before heading to feast on the award-winning, Cajun-inspired Sunday brunch buffet with cocktails and live jazz at Owen Brennan’s. Their Bananas Foster would make anybody swoon.