You may be in the South – the land of good manners and God-fearin’ souls – but Hotel Clermont is no place for pearl clutching. This rock ’n’ roll hotel in Atlanta’s Poncey (that’s really its name) neighbourhood, has an anything-goes attitude and some, um, interesting tenants in the basement. You see, the hotel lives above the Clermont Lounge, Atlanta’s seediest and best-loved strip club. The thrills are slightly more PG above ground: skyline views from the astro-turfed rooftop bar, brasserie favourites at Tiny Lou’s and crisp sheets in the spacious bedrooms.
Get this when you book through us:
Two drink tickets per booking, to use in either the lobby or rooftop bar
Check-in is from 3pm and latest check-out is 11am. The hotel is happy to hold luggage if you need to hang around.
Double rooms from £130.47 ($141), including tax at 16.5 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional local city tax of $5.00 per room per night on check-out and an additional room tax of 8.5% per room per night on check-out.
Rates exclude breakfast; Cafe Clermont, the adorable coffee shop in the lobby, sells breakfast sandwiches, fresh pastries, parfaits, fruit, juices and strong coffee.
The hotel’s gym is open all hours and has weights, treadmills, medicine balls and Peloton bikes.
At the hotel
Library, 24-hour gym, valet parking, free WiFi. In rooms: free WiFi, free bottled water, Keurig coffee machine, air-conditioning, alarm clock, La Bottega bath amenities.
Our favourite rooms
If you’re a travelling band, the Bunk Rooms give the best bang for your buck – the crash pads sleep up to four and pay homage to the hotel’s history as a stop for musicians and artists. If your budget is more leading man than lowly roadie, have a fling with the Flossie Suite – it has a free-standing bath tub, a marble-topped bar and views for days.
There's no spa, but you will find a 24-hour fitness centre on site, complete with two Peloton bikes, treadmills, weights and yoga mats. There's free Gatorade to keep your electrolytes in check, too.
It’s all about that Seventies look at Hotel Clermont – we’d rock terry cloth playsuits, primary colours and Farrah Fawcett hair.
Hotel Clermont is wheelchair accessible and has a lift. All public spaces are wheelchair accessible and five bedrooms (four King Standard rooms and one Bunk room) are fully ADA accessible.
Hotel Clermont is a dog-friendly pad – not so much for cats, birds or reptiles, though. There’s a charge of $75 a pet per room which includes up to two dogs. See more pet-friendly hotels in Atlanta.
It’s definitely an adults-only kind of joint, owing to that whole strip-club thing we talked about.
We’re partial to the Adirondack chairs on the rooftop (cold beer in hand, naturally).
Kooky is cool at Hotel Clermont, so don your vintage frocks, your grooviest shirt and your chunkiest platforms. Or whatever floats your boat.
A neon sign will direct you downstairs to Tiny Lou’s, Hotel Clermont’s swinging brasserie where chef Jon Novak cooks up French-American comfort food using local and seasonal ingredients. Rattan chairs, pink velvet banquettes and blingy gold accents set the glamourous, Seventies-inspired scene. If you’re feeling classic and continental, opt for beef tartare, foie gas, duck confit or steak frites - ask Paige the sommelier for a perfectly paired Bordeaux or Burgundy. You’ll find plenty of homages to the south here, too, like heirloom tomato salad, Vidalia onion soup and Blue Ridge trout. Big night on the Beltline? Tiny Lou’s weekend brunch menu – chicken and biscuits, waffles and croque madames washed down with a few cocktails – will make short work of your Hotlanta hangover.
When it’s warm out, we can’t imagine a better place to be than the astro-turfed, neon-signed rooftop bar of Hotel Clermont with its rum-centric cocktail menu and skyline views for miles. On cooler evenings, or for a more illicit kind of rendezvous, the lobby bar is low-lit, draped in blue velvet and specialises in bourbon cocktails.
Tiny Lou’s winds down at 10pm Sunday to Thursday and 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays; the lobby bar stays open until 10pm on Sundays, 11pm Monday to Thursday and midnight on Fridays and Saturdays; the rooftop bar is closed Monday to Wednesday.
Hotel Clermont is on the colourful Ponce de Leon Avenue, at the intersection of Little Five Points, Virginia Highlands and Midtown in the heart of the city.
Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson is the world’s busiest airport, which means you can fly here directly from just about anywhere; Hotel Clermont is a 20-minute drive away.
Sadly, there’s no actual midnight train to Georgia. But a good way to skip some of the famous Atlanta traffic is to take Marta (the underground) from the airport. The North Avenue stop is five minutes’ drive from the hotel.
Just like in LA, nobody walks in Atlanta: we suggest renting a car from the airport. There’s valet parking at the hotel for $20 a day and $45 for overnight. Or you could just use Uber.
Worth getting out of bed for
Walk, scoot or ride a bike down the Beltline – Atlanta’s answer to the Highline in NYC – to see whole swathes of old and new neighbourhoods, plus street art, galleries, restaurants, bars and independent shops. Check out Ponce City Market, a shopping, eating and drinking mecca in an old factory building that used to be the regional headquarters of Sears-Roebuck. The Georgia Aquarium, the second largest in the world, is home to whale sharks, beluga whales, sea lions and dolphins. Did you know Coca Cola was invented in Atlanta? (You’ll find out soon enough if you try to order a Pepsi around here.) Learn all about the history of the world’s most popular drink and sample 60 different varieties at the World of Coke. Afterwards, take your sugar high for a soothing walk around the Botanical Gardens. To find Atlanta’s home-town spirit, go to a Falcons (football), Braves (baseball) or Hawks (basketball) game and wave your foam finger in the air. Not into the jock thing? There’s always something on at the gorgeous, art-deco Fox Theatre, be it ballet, comedy, or travelling Broadway shows.
Locals love Superica at Krog Street Market for Tex-Mex and margaritas on the patio. Oenophiles can follow their nose to Barcelona in Inman Park and Ecco in Midtown (there’s also an Ecco in the international terminal of the airport if you need a fix before your flight). For sushi, it has to be Umiin Buckhead, but you’ll need to book ahead. Tacos? Taqueria del Sol on Howell Mill has some of the best Mexican food this side of the border. For a blowout meal (seven courses, wine pairings, the whole enchilada), flex your credit card at Bacchanalia. Cape Dutch is a modern South-African steakhouse with breezy, beachy decor that’ll make you forget you’re land-locked and the burgers over at Holeman and Finch gastropub are legendary. Improve your outlook on life over seafood platters and cocktails at the Optimist and, when the mercury rises, head to Jeni’s for ice-cream flavours like brown butter almond brittle or fluffernutter pie.
Spend sunny afternoons at Ladybird on the Beltline, their picnic tables and patios have a summer-camp vibe, so you’ll feel outdoorsy even though you’re sitting down. Wine and music meet at City Winery inside Ponce City Market, a restaurant and event space which hosts concerts and tastings. In Virginia Highlands, 8Arm serves cocktails ‘til late, but Johnny’s Hideaway, the legendary dance bar and the oldest nightclub in Atlanta, stays open even later.
Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this retro hotel in Georgia and unpacked their vintage finds from Little Five Points, a full account of their Atlanta city break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside Hotel Clermont…
The quirky Hotel Clermont straddles Atlanta’s three coolest neighbourhoods: Virginia Highlands, Midtown and Little Five Points. The locals need no introduction to the building – the basement is home to the seedy but lovable Clermont Lounge strip club, an Atlanta institution – but the hotel above it brings something totally new to the city: the neon-lit, kitschy-cool boutique hotel Atlanta has always deserved. Though the hotel definitely spruced up the place, it isn’t trying to gloss over the less salubrious side of the ‘hood: you’ll find numerous nods to the luscious ladies downstairs and homages aplenty to its past as a place of ill repute. Yep, Hotel Clermont is unapologetically transmitting its devil-may-care attitude and the decor will make you smile, too: splashy prints, full-on florals and vampy velvet everywhere, like Betty Draper and Keith Richards shacked up. The hotel is home to a cute-as-pie coffee shop, a banging French-American brasserie called Tiny Lou’s and a trailer-happy rooftop bar with skyline views. So, kick back and open up a cold one, you’ve definitely arrived in the dirty South.