Urban Cowboy B&B
1603 Woodland St., Lockeland Springs
Owner Lyon Porter opened Urban Cowboy in Nashville after his original Brooklyn location proved to be a big success. And the concept works just as well here: wildly original design at fair prices, which attracts a younger, hip crowd. It’s a big, historic Victorian mansion in East Nashville with eight guest suites—all are variations on a kind of threadbare, rustic mashup of the South and the Wild West (wood-plank floors, distressed leather club chairs, vintage Oriental rugs). One thing they all have in common: stand-alone clawfoot tubs. It’s a fun perk, even if you aren’t a bath person. And if you aren’t staying at the hotel, it’s still worth a visit to the Public House, Urban Cowboy’s bar, for the outstanding craft cocktails and just as outstanding small bites before heading into the rest of your night.
200 4th Ave. N, Downtown
Noelle is a 1930 Art Deco gem of a building. Located steps from Printers Alley, it’s a few minutes’ walk from places like the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and the Frist Art Museum. Stellar location aside, it’s great for those who like their hotels beautifully designed but without a lot of fussiness. A night in one of the sparse guest rooms feels like staying at the apartment of your most stylish Danish friend—hardwood floors, marble side tables, and custom-made fabric headboards. There aren’t a ton of bells and whistles, but none are needed when the place looks this good. And come morning, you don’t have to go far for an excellent cold brew—the in-house café, Drug Store Coffee, is one of Nashville’s best, which is saying something.
401 Union St., Downtown
In the middle of downtown Nashville’s arts district, the polished, mid-century-inspired Fairlane Hotel fits perfectly amid the area’s urban charm. The overall design is striking—original travertine columns, terrazzo floors, and plenty of brass finishes. And guest rooms are pleasantly pared back and uncluttered, with marble bathrooms and floor-to-ceiling windows that look over the cityscape. Stop by Mile End, an offshoot of the Brooklyn-based deli that serves some of the best bagels and lox in town. Union Teller, meanwhile, is great for a grab-and-go cup of Stumptown coffee and almond croissant.
1218 6th Ave. N, Germantown
This 1865 Federal-style brick townhouse (formerly the home of H.H. Wallman, who was a shoemaker to the city’s nineteenth-century elite) was reborn as a ten-suite boutique hotel. It’s a welcome option if your tastes run toward the intimate, historical, and quirky, rather than the modern high-rises that dominate the city’s hotel scene. While the redbrick exterior gives off a sense of quaint formality, inside, it’s a whimsical mix of hot-pink fabrics, abstract-floral drapes, and contemporary art. Although there’s no on-site restaurant, the Germantown location is a big plus: Some of the city’s best restaurants (Henrietta Red, City House) are within walking distance.
21c Museum Hotel
221 2nd Ave. N, Downtown
Part hotel, part contemporary art gallery, 21c Museum Hotel occupies a massive warehouse from 1900 (formerly the headquarters of a wholesale hardware company). The whole art aspect hits you immediately: There’s over 10,500 square feet of exhibition space, filled with rotating shows and installations. Guest rooms are spare but comfortable, each featuring prints from local photographers. Spring for a terrace suite and you get your own (huge) outdoor space, complete with sofas and dining table for alfresco meals. Three of the suites were designed with artists: one by actor Adrian Grenier, another a collaboration between painter Sebastiaan Bremer and musician-composer Josephine Wiggs, and a third by Yung Jake.
401 11th Ave. S, The Gulch
Nashville’s hip factor reaches new heights at this hotel in the Gulch. The city’s relentlessly cool neighborhood is adjacent to both Music Row and Downtown, and the Thompson’s central location means there’s easy access to landmarks like the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and the Frist Art Museum. Inside, guest rooms epitomize rustic chic—hardwood floors, repurposed sliding barn doors, and subway-tiled bathrooms give off a Brooklyn-meets-Dixie vibe. And Marsh House draws in the locals with a menu of fried oysters, gumbo, and snapper crudo.
1808 W. End Ave., Midtown
GP stayed at the Hutton Hotel for three weeks and truly enjoyed the whole experience. It's really well kept and has an eco-friendly bent, which means no bathtubs in order to conserve water, LED lighting, and a hybrid courtesy vehicle when in need. If you’re staying for an extended period and need a night in, the dining room is nice for a bite and a cocktail. There’s also the Analog Music Venue for live performances (check the website for a full schedule).
231 Sixth Ave. N, Downtown
This is the swankiest hotel in town and drips in old-world charm. The food at Capitol Grille (not to be confused with the the Capital Grille chain) is pretty traditional, but it’s fun just for the atmosphere. Be sure to check out the gorgeous Art Deco men’s bathroom that women are allowed to peek into, and the Oak Bar, which features an extensive whiskey collection.
Omni Hotel Nashville
250 5th Ave. S, Downtown
Though this Downtown property is part of the massive Omni Hotel family (great if you’re traveling with kids and need all the comforts of a corporate-y resort, such as a pool, on-site restaurants, and a spa), it goes to great lengths to embrace the rich history of the city. For one, the hotel is within shouting distance of the Music City Center and attached to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.
404 12th Ave. S, The Gulch
In a former mechanic’s garage in the Gulch neighborhood, this five-room gem revolves around Southern hospitality. The vibe—super comfortable but not overbearing as there’s no formal concierge or room service—is more like a well-appointed guest house rather than a traditional hotel. The rooms (some have spiral staircases leading to additional loft spaces) are decked out in Sferra linens, Malin + Goetz toiletries, and Turkish towels; the communal lounge area features vintage furniture and work from local artists. Sister restaurant the 404 Kitchen is just across the street.