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Where to Stay in Nashville
Downtown Nashville is the center of both politics and finance in the state of Tennessee, and the upscale hotels in this area typically cater to government and business travelers throughout the week. But there are also several notable tourist attractions in the neighborhood’s historic district, including the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the Frist Center for the Visual Arts and Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, one of Nashville’s favorite late-night spots for live country music. More accommodations can be found to the southwest in the Music Row neighborhood, where Nashville’s prominent recording studios are located, and the West End, home to Vanderbilt University, boutique shopping and fine dining destinations.
If you’re seeking cheap hotel deals in Nashville, look on the city’s east side near the airport. The drive from this area to any of Nashville’s top destinations is usually a breeze if you avoid rush hour, and the range of accommodations you’ll find there is more diverse than in any other part of the city.
Nashville Hotel Tips
Exclusive luxury hotels in Downtown Nashville and the West End cater to recording artists, visiting politicians, business executives and travelers seeking to splurge. Most other hotels in these areas are operated by upscale national hoteliers, with a few smaller independent hotel options.
A wider variety of chain hotels including budget and mid-range brands can be found in most of the surrounding suburbs, with the greatest concentration near the airport. Another important hotel district in the outlying areas is Music Valley, on the northeast side, where the Grand Ole Opry, the Gaylord Opryland Resort and the Willie Nelson and Friends Showcase Museum are among the main attractions. The Opryland Resort is a must-see destination even if you’re not staying there, and the surrounding lodging options include several resort-style hotels with expanded suites suitable for families traveling together.
Nashville Hotel Recommendations
If you want to stay in trendy Downtown Nashville, you’ll find a great combination of luxury, affordability and character in the Union Station Hotel. Now a Wyndham property, the 125-room hotel is housed inside the Gothic-styled former train station. Alternatively, you can book one of the most exclusive rooms in the neighborhood at The Hermitage, a classically elegant and historic hotel with ornate furnishings and famously attentive concierge service.
In the liveliest section of the West End, the Loews Vanderbilt Plaza Hotel is another comfortable and sophisticated option with amenities that include a day spa, two fine dining restaurants and a casual cocktail lounge. The Kraus Art Gallery, itself a Nashville attraction, is also in the hotel.
The Nashville Airport Marriott offers some of the most competitive room rates for resort accommodations, but for the ultimate Nashville resort experience, try the Gaylord Opryland Resort. It’s located in the heart of Music Valley and features an enormous indoor atrium filled with restaurants, upscale shops, entertainment venues and nightlife destinations.
Nashville is a large city without a dedicated metro rail system, so it’s important to have a rental car in order to get around efficiently. Fortunately, ample parking is available throughout Nashville, even in the heart of the city, though you should plan to leave for your destination early on days with major events like concert festivals and Tennessee Titans games. All major car rental companies have lots at Nashville International Airport, but if you’ll be making other transportation arrangements after your flight to Nashville, you can also take a hotel shuttle or taxi from the airport to your hotel.
Downtown Nashville is relatively pedestrian-friendly, adding some incentive to stay there during your trip. But if you want to go honky-tonkin’ across town and don’t plan on driving, call any of Nashville’s taxi services, which all charge the same rates. Keep the number with you for the return trip home; while it’s possible to hail a cab outside many bars and clubs, they don’t patrol all nightlife districts with the same frequency.