Nashville now falls second only to Las Vegas in terms of bachelorette parties and since it’s been two years since I’ve written a girls’ weekend itinerary, I figured it high time for a reboot.
Where to Stay
First thing’s first: Where do you sleep? If it were me, I’d rent a HomeAway house or an Airbnb simply as you can’t really cram 6 to 16 girls into a single hotel room, and it’s hardly a bachelorette weekend if you aren’t all in one space, am I right? If that’s not your bag, then my favorite hotels in town are Loew’s Vanderbilt, the Hutton and Omni Nashville. Don’t think going “budget” will save you any money either as even the Hampton Inn, Sheraton and Holiday Inn properties top $400 a night in high season.
Second, how much time do you need? I’d give yourself three nights—longer is ideal if you can swing it—flying in on a Thursday morning and out on a Sunday afternoon as many things are closed in Nashville on Sundays and Mondays anyway. If you can allow for more time for an extended weekend away, then fly in on Tuesday or Wednesday instead of extending through to a Monday.
Check into your accommodation. Then stock up on booze at Frugal MacDoogal, the cheapest place to find liquor in the area, and snacks from the Kroger’s on Franklin Pike or the Turnip Truck, which has a location in the Gulch and also one in East Nashville. Sadly, there aren’t a ton of great, central grocery stores now that the Midtown Harris Teeter’s is no more.
Drinks at Sinema. Set the tone for your weekend with a theatrical happy hour at the Hollywood-themed, Art Deco bar and restaurant, Sinema. If you’d rather move this portion of your itinerary to Sunday, Sinema has an awesome brunch complete with bubble service.
Dinner at the Sutler Saloon. Right next door to Sinema, the Sutler has a casual upstairs atmosphere with delicious Southern food, great live music and a swanky downstairs Cellar to retreat to when you’re done eating. Call it a night early—so, you know, by midnight—as you have a busy day of eating and shopping ahead of you tomorrow!
Breakfast at Biscuit Love. Dreamy Biscuit Love is, without a doubt, one of my favorite places is in town. You’ll want to go during the week as it’s counter service and the line winds around the block in the Gulch on weekends. You’ll also want to start with bonuts, then move onto something a little more filling like the East Nasty. On the rare occasion I don’t get bonuts, it’s because I ordered the Lily biscuit French toast instead. And for the more limited diner, the Lindstrom shaved Brussels sprouts salad is both delicious and healthy.
Early afternoon in East Nashville. If you have a car, you’d be doing yourself a disservice not to venture into East Nashville—as long as you know where to go. Start at Hey Rooster General Store, then hop on over to the Idea Hatchery (home to Goodbuy Girls‘ vintage cowboy boots and Haulin’ Oats‘ delicious oatmeal) followed by a visit to the Shoppes on Fatherland, which houses a number of artisans such as Chocolate F/X. Speaking of chocolate, you’re not far from Olive & Sinclair if you want to take a bean-to-bar tour (or simply stock up on plenty Duck Fat Caramels, Bourbon Nib Brittle and bars of Mexican-Style Cinnamon Chili Chocolate for the weekend…I won’t judge). If you need a nature break, the 960-acre Shelby Bottoms Greenway is very close by.
Late afternoon at Bar Luca. By this point, after shopping or hiking (or both), you’ll likely be hungry again, but you don’t want to eat before a big dinner—I get it. Instead, head for cocktails and crostini at the new East Nashville hang, Bar Luca, a wine bar that serves excellent cocktails and light nibbles, too (it opens at 4pm daily).
Dinner at Josephine. Lively 12South restaurant Josephine has become a neighborhood mainstay in the two-and-a-half years it’s been open, and for good reason: Chef Andy Little whips up some of the best elevated farmhouse food around. If you have 10 girls, why not book out the entire community table for X|X Josephine? You’ll get 10 courses for $85 (and 10 pairings for an additional $45). Note: Though the experience is only offered on weekends, Josephine will put on a private dinner mid-week if you have a full group of 10 on your own.
Nightcap at Bastion. Nashville’s newest bar, Bastion, pays homage to The NeverEnding Story—with both its name and the Falcor quote that marks the entrance—and has a menu full of fun punches, frozen drinks and traditional cocktails—not to mention, plenty of space to lounge around (couch seating, bar seating, bleacher seating, you name it).
Bike ‘n brunch. For my sister’s bachelorette party last summer, we had grand intentions to rent Bcycles, which have 40+ stations around town, and bike from one destination to the next. Only—this didn’t happen as there were too many hungover ladies (*cough, Kari, cough*). I had planned for us to start with coffee at Edgehill Cafe, then poke around the shops there like Castilleja, KORE, Beija-Flor Jeans and Warby Parker, then bike onto our next stop, Saint Añejo, for brunch and 2-4-1 cocktails.
Dessert at the Goo Goo Shop. Just opened this weekend, Goo Goo’s new dessert bar features shakes, pies, cheesecakes and more—all made with the ingredients. Verdict? I want that Salty Southerner shake all day, every day.
Dinner at Le Sel. The trendiest new restaurant in town, Le Sel combines splashy style—poke around and check out the various levels and all that artwork—with a killer cocktail program and fine French bistro fare for the hottest new spot in town.
Late night in East Nashville. Five Points, home to Bar No. 308, the Basement East and the Crying Wolf, is one of my favorite areas for a more low-key weekend night. If you feel like you can’t come to Nashville without venturing downtown to Broadway (don’t do it!), then you can easily hop from Five Points over to The Stage, Paradise Park Trailer Resort, The Stillery and Robert’s Western World late, late night from there. Steer clear of Tootsie’s and Honky Tonk Central—just trust me on this.
Late, late, late night at Acme Feed & Seed. OK, so I lied: There’s one reason I’d go down to Broadway on the weekend and that’s after the crowds have subsided at Acme (so 1am or later). This riverfront spot is my favorite of all the honky tonks with its roomy four levels, rooftop views and kick-ass cocktails to boot.
Brunch at Chauhan Ale & Masala House. Hungover, are you? Chauhan has the cure to what ails you with its “eye-opening apps” (that monkey bread, y’all! YUM), the chicken and waffles, and the libations list.
Shopping in 12South. Some of my staple shopping spots like Moda, Judith Bright, Cadeau and Hero are located in 12South, but there’s also the buzzy Draper James, brainchild of Reese Witherspoon (if Lilly Pulitzer and Kate Spade had a baby, it would be Draper James). Be sure and grab a scoop or three of Jeni’s Ice Cream for your flight home and maybe even a Sprinkle’s Cupcake from the ATM while you’re at it.
That about covers it. Did I leave anything off?
Looking for other Nashville-planning tools? Check out these previous posts I’ve written:
- Planning a Bachelorette Weekend in Nashville
- Eat + Drink Nashville: The Best Restaurants & Bars
- The Ultimate Nashville Vacation
- Nashville Neighborhoods: SoBro + Rutledge Hill
- Nashville Neighborhoods: The Best of the Gulch
- Our Nashville Urban Adventure