Travel Guide: Atlanta, Georgia - A Weekend In and Around the City

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Last weekend I ventured to Atlanta with Jermaine to visit some of his family that lives there and to celebrate his brother's birthday. It was so nice to be in the south again and relax and catch up on much needed sleep! I always find when I am away from LA, especially somewhere with a slower pace of life, I am able to better relax and just unwind from life. If you don't already know, I went to school in the south... in Greensboro, North Carolina. When I was in college, Greensboro was the middle point between driving home (to Maryland) or venturing out to see friends in Atlanta, and for my girlfriends and I, Atlanta was always a no brainer!

So whenever I am in the south, it's a bit nostalgic for me and I love getting to revisit old places and eat all of the good southern food that can only be found there! It's also beautiful during this time of the year getting to see fall really unfold with the leaves falling off of the trees and changing colors, but let me just say - I did not miss the cold weather and I was not at all prepared! lol Some of the places we went were a bit outside of the city but I find that some of the best gems usually are! I put together a little guide to what we did over our weekend and hope you put it to good use on your next trip down south.

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Bangkok Station- We grabbed lunch at this amazing Thai restaurant on Friday afternoon and it was YUMMM! We ordered a combination of dishes to share among the table and everything was tasty. The waitress recommended the Snapper, which is one of their signature dishes and she didn't steer us wrong! We also shared the Thai chicken wings, pad Thai, papaya salad and drunken noodles which were plenty for the 4 of us. The spot is huge, has an outdoor patio and an extensive cocktail list! My favorite thing is that everything was made with fresh ingredients and came out so quickly!

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Treat Your Feet Buckhead - After lunch, we treated ourselves to foot massages and let me just say these were TO DIE FOR! We were taken into a dim lit room, sat in huge, comfortable love seats and treated like Queens and Kings! They not only scrub, polish and massage your feet, but also use special techniques through reflexology to get your blood flowing in your feet and legs. It was so relaxing, we were all knocked out half way through! Zzzzzz! 

Sage Bar and Grill Alpharetta - We dined here Friday night and this place was so freaking GOOD! The guys both ordered the 16-oz ribeye and the ladies ordered seafood dishes - all of which were more than plenty of food and cooked to perfection! (psst. the seafood broil is fire!) The vibe of this place was so warm and cozy and there was also a really cool guy singing live music around the bar. Apparently they also have a bomb happy hour!

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Velvet Note - This was absolutely my favorite thing we did all weekend! I am a sucker for live music and this spot takes the cake! It's an intimate, romantic, relaxing and GROWN AND SEXY way to spend a Friday or Saturday evening in the city. Each weekend features new musicians that take the stage and serenade you with soothing jazz music. They have food that can be served to you at your table and a wine and cocktail list as well! You have to buy tickets online ahead of time and entry into the spot ranges, but seems to stay under $30 per person. It is WELL worth it, trust me!

Cafe Instanbul- We came here after Velvet Note for a little night cap aka drinks, hookah and to my surprise... BELLY DANCING! When we walked in I was amazed and impressed at the vibe between the decor, the blend of hip hop and Arabic music and the women belly dancing around the place. You can sit on the floor on pillows or at a table and the atmosphere is so cute and fun. This place is a bit outside of the city but we will definitely be returning here!

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Cookout - I NEVER VISIT THE SOUTH WITHOUT EATING HERE! Okay look, this was my favorite drunken post-party spot in college. But sober, it's JUST as good! lol Imagine an array of food at a fast food joint that actually tastes like REAL backyard grilled food! They chargrill burgers and chicken, offer you not 1, but 2 side options and have 30+ milkshakes. Please go here and when you do, ship some my way in LA! :D

Silvas Hookah Bar- Jermaine and I never venture to another city without trying out a hookah bar so we ended up at 2 this weekend. We went to Silvas on Saturday night and it was PACKED! We had a bit of a wait outside, which sucked since it was freezing but once we got inside, it was well worth it! The place plays all the ratchet music you would want to shake your ass to, serves food and drinks and their hookahs are great! PS. Order the lamb kabob plate and the Sidecar martini! 

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Little Five Points - I love a cute little shopping area and this place has stolen my heart! I've been frequenting this area since college and it's so refreshing from the cliché Lennox Mall, where you can see stores you probably already have at home. This neighborhood has the best little vintage and boutique shops and some cool little bars to walk around and pop into. I've found some amazing gems at Rag-O-Rama and The Clothing Warehouse! If you have some time, definitely drop by this area!

Greens and Gravy - DISCLAIMER! Technically we didn't get to go here, but Jermaine and I have been following the owner (@DariusCooks) of this joint for years now! We went to one of his 7-course dinners that he held here in LA and it was wonderful! So when we heard he opened up his own spot in Atlanta, we put it on our list. Apparently, it's really small (like 11 tables small) so reservations are definitely required and we heard they're working out some of the "we're a new restaurant" kinks but I still vouch! Everything on their soul food menu looks mouth watering and they serve KOOL AID as a drink option, I MEAN COME ONNNNN!

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I hope if you live in or venture down to Atlanta, you get to check some of these gems out! You know I would never steer you wrong!

xo, Ashley