I don’t remember how we discovered this hotel on our first visit to Charleston together years ago. I probably found it by looking for specials on hotels in one of our favorite cities.
But I do know several reasons we keep returning to The Vendue. The top reason is the location in historic Charleston, perfect for exploring the city by foot. We can walk to just about any place we want to go in the city, including top restaurants, shops on King Street, Waterfront Park and Marion Square.
One night we took an especially long walk to the top-rated Rodney Scott’s BBQ, but admit we did Uber home after feasting on delicious pulled-pork barbecue.
Here are four more reasons we love Vendue Inn.
The rooftop bar
Frequently voted best rooftop bar in Charleston, this expansive rooftop has amazing views of Waterfront Park, Charleston Harbor and surrounding historic properties. There are indoor and outdoor sections on several levels so weather doesn’t have to keep you from enjoying lunch, dinner or drinks here.
Menu items include flatbreads, sandwiches, nachos and specialty cocktails like the Red Moon Margarita.
For another dining option, try the hotel’s restaurant, Revival, serving modern southern food at dinner. Menu items include options like duck confit, shrimp and grits, and poached lobster.
The free amenities
If you want to get in good with me, a cookie goes a long way. The Vendue serves complimentary milk and cookies at night and coffee and pastries every morning.
My favorite amenity is the Art Hour. We made sure to be back at the hotel to catch at least part of the wine tasting that started at 4 followed by an optional art tour of the hotel at 5. This hotel, which bills itself as the first and only hotel dedicated to the arts, has more than 400 ever-evolving works of art on display in the main building where we were staying and its second building across the street.
We opted to get a glass of wine, poured by art director Barbara Montgomery, and go on a self-guided tour of the art. We started down the hallway then crossed the street to wander through the second building. One of the rooms had a giant conference table and dozens of works of art displayed on the walls.
The Vendue is also the first hotel to have an artist-in-residence program, with the space open during daily tours and artists who sometimes visit the daily Art Hours.
Other amenities include free bicycles, free wifi, dog-friendly rooms and free parking at Folly Beach, located about 30 minutes away.
Charleston was founded in 1670 as a settlement on the Ashley River and originally named Charles Town in honor of Charles II. The Vendue is housed in former warehouses that stored indigo, rice and cotton that date back to 1780. The Vendue Inn opened with 18 rooms in 1978 and now has 66 rooms across five warehouses.
It’s in the historic district of Charleston, just steps away from Waterfront Park and an easy walk to The Battery.
Variety of rooms
Decorated with antiques, comfortable and stylish chairs and beautiful artwork, the rooms at Vendue Inn vary. Because it’s a historic property, no two rooms are alike or furnished in the same way.
They range from the two suites that include separate sitting areas, to the most affordable option, the Compact Queen, interior rooms across the street from the main building.
The Vendue has the perfect combination of location, charm and history that won it a permanent place in my heart.
– Jan Schroder, Editor-in-chief