A pink champagne lounge, intimate spa and King’s Club await at the Bennett Hotel in Charleston
While Charleston is full of remarkable accommodations, there is one that particularly stands out for its winning combination of convenient location, stunning design, and unforgettable amenities that go beyond even the most reputable hotels and Charleston’s most luxurious.
Opened in early 2019 by local hospitality veteran Michael Bennett, Bennett Hotel – which is managed in collaboration with Salamander Hotels and Resorts – boasts a prime address overlooking Marion Square on bustling King Street. And while the stately nine-story Italian palazzo-style property with 179 rooms and suites fits right into the historic downtown core, it took years of preparation and plenty of litigation along the way — namely, over the proposed height of the hotel. Fortunately, the issues were eventually resolved and business continued as usual.
Although only open for a few years, including two during the pandemic, the Bennett Hotel has become one of the best places to stay in town. For starters: The design is simply stunning, thanks to the efforts of Atlanta-based Design Continuum, Inc (DCI). Just stepping into the entry rotunda – adorned with hand-painted murals of Charles Towne’s 18th-century colonial harbor, gleaming white marble, and a grand double-sided staircase – sets the tone for what guests can experience at the Bennett Hotel.
Marrying old-world European design with contemporary comfort, the 179 guest rooms and suites are thoughtfully appointed with spacious bathrooms with marble vanities and deep freestanding tubs, plush beds dressed in crisp linens, bookcases stocked and window coverings with crewelwork, a type of woolen embroidery. Plus, many accommodations offer panoramic views of King Street and Marion Square. While the rooms are no slouch, it’s the Bennett’s food and beverage outlets and other amenities that make it so memorable.
Located on the ground floor, by Gabriella is the all-day dining restaurant led by Executive Chef Robert McGrattan, serving fine fare with a Lowcountry flair. (Even humble items like cast-iron cornbread shine.) Next door to Gabrielle’s is Charleston’s liveliest and most photogenic bar, Camellias. The pretty champagne bar dripping in pink marble, an oversized crystal chandelier, and a mirrored bar is a dreamy setting for a flute or two of bubbly goodness. Also on the ground floor is La Pâtisserie, a cheerful café by French pastry chef Rémy Fünfrock with fresh pastries, coffee and sandwiches. To cool off from the Charleston sun and enjoy stunning views, head to the rooftop pool and its lively Fiat Lux lounge.
Despite its location in the bustling city center, The Bennett Hotel Spa feels like a quiet, hidden oasis with five treatment rooms and a small, well-equipped gym. The treatment menu is concise with just massages, facials, and nail treatments, but everything is done with care and precision.
But arguably, the best benefit of staying at the Bennett Hotel is The King’s Club. The price alone – $175 per room, per night for two people on weekdays; $225 per room, per night for two over the weekend – is an absolute bargain when you factor in everything you’ll have access to, from a mouth-watering breakfast to evening snacks and nighttime drinks, all with stunning views of Charleston from the patio. You will also receive a free spa supplement with a booked treatment, but most importantly, the genuinely friendly staff will make sure you feel like your home away from home.