Thanks to Ally May for hosting our Athens getaway!
I spent my college years in Athens, Georgia — and I’ve said many times since then that if the town had had a TV station (I majored in Broadcast News), I would have happily lived there forever. Athens really does have it all. It’s small enough that you’re constantly running into people you know at the coffeeshop, the grocery, and on the sidewalks, but the University of Georgia’s presence- and the town’s proximity to Atlanta- means it also has sophisticated restaurants, fantastic shopping, vibrant arts and music communities, and a very progressive vibe in the heart of what’s otherwise ultra-conservative territory.
I love Athens because you can be anyone there and have any interest and still find your tribe. I also love it because it’s incredibly affordable — After all, they’re catering to college budgets! And now that my high school friend, Ally May, has a VRBO rental in Athens, I have yet another reason to visit.
We spent a good portion of our Spring Break introducing my kids to Athens and we stayed in Ally’s townhouse, which she has dubbed the Tudor Terrace Yacht Club. Outside of beach condos, it was the first time we’ve stayed in a VRBO rental instead of a hotel — and now, I’m TOTALLY HOOKED on the concept in general and on Tudor Terrace in particular. Let me tell you why.
Athens has several centrally-located hotels, but they tend to be pretty noisy — That’s no great surprise, considering the constant activity on and around campus, from football games, conferences, and major sporting events to concerts, Greek formals, and parents’ weekends. Athens is also a very popular spot for weddings, and all those guests need somewhere to stay.
I’ve stayed in most of Athens’ best hotels over the years and really haven’t been 100% satisfied with any of them, either because of noise or safety concerns or both. Ally’s townhouse, on the other hand — Well, it was perfect. Located just off Milledge Avenue, which is lined with stately fraternity and sorority houses, it’s just a quick walk or drive to everything Athens has to offer. It’s also in a very safe area. Surrounded by Greek residences, there are just enough students coming and going along the side streets and sidewalks to make it feel very safe but not noisy or congested.
Inside, Tudor Terrace is an immaculate and peaceful oasis. Ally is a real estate agent with Sotheby’s in Atlanta and she’s always stood out to me for her style, attention to detail and gift for hostessing and bringing people together — All of these talents really come to fruition in this townhouse.
Typically, when we visit Athens, we spend as little time in our hotel room as possible. At Tudor Terrace, we found ourselves making time each day to relax here — A favorite ritual for the kids was going to Avid Bookshop in the Five Points neighborhood just down the road, choosing a book, and bringing it back to read for an hour or two in the afternoon. In addition to the flat screen TV (with cable) and fast private wi-fi, there’s also an Amazon Echo in the living area, which we used for background music during our stay. Heaven!
The kitchen is spacious and stocked with coffee and creamer and instant oatmeal for breakfast, and the bar seats four. Dobson, the butler, is on hand to hold things on his tray. Other than that, he’s pretty much useless. (Don’t tell Ally I said that.) I suspect he worked for her family for many years and she now keeps him around as a kindness.
Just outside the kitchen is this charming and very private patio, complete with grill and fire pit. Ally has helpfully left logs at the townhouse so that guests can put one on in the evening and enjoy the outdoors.
There’s also a laundry room downstairs and half bathroom.
Upstairs are two airy bedrooms and two full baths. The bedrooms are the same size and both have king-sized beds, making this an ideal rental for two couples — No drawing straws over who gets the ‘nice’ bedroom!
Of course, Ally has gone the extra mile and given the townhouse a hilarious backstory. Guests receive Tudor Terrace Yacht Club caps, and the place is decorated with framed and captioned photos of the bygone jet setters who were members of this fabled yacht club. It makes the whole experience even more entertaining and fun.
The Tudor Terrace Yacht Club is the kind of place that will quickly become a tradition for your Athens getaways. For two couples, the cost is generally going to be cheaper than booking two hotel rooms in Athens, and you get so much more for your money. This rental is absolutely my first choice now when we’re visiting Athens with family or friends. You can find more information about Tudor Terrace on VRBO.
For ideas on what to do during your stay, check out my post for StyleBlueprint: Why Athens, Georgia Deserves a Spot on Your Getaway Bucket List.
I’m also working on a post on things to do with kids in Athens — It’ll be up soon and I’ll link to it here when it’s done.
Have fun in Athens, y’all!