insider guide charleston

Fine shopping in King Street Charleston (Photo: Paul Arps via Flickr)

Antiquing … There are so many great places to shop for antiques—Golden & Associates, David Skinner Antiques, AIM on King, and Fritz Porter are some of my favorites. There’s such a large inventory here so you can find just about any style or period you are looking for.

Favorite flower (and flower shop) … Camellias! They are abundant in the South and the first flower my mother taught me how to draw. I like to arrange simple cuttings in a variety of containers. Lotus Flower is my favorite flower shop for their artistic designs and willingness to let me participate. (32 Laurens Street, lotusflowercharleston.com)

Folly Beach, SC

Folly Beach, SC (Photo: Tim Parkinson via Flickr)

Close-to-home getaway … Folly Beach. I love Folly for its wide beach and the empty, natural open spaces at each end of the island. The houses are simple and unassuming. There’s a diverse group of people, offbeat bars, and hipsters, but it still remains safe and family friendly.

insider guide charleston Peninsula Grill

Peninsula Grill, Charleston, SC (Photo: jspatchwork via Flickr)

Dinner out … Peninsula Grill. It’s located in a restored 1844 building (Planters Inn) in the historic district. I may be partial because I designed the interior, but I can’t resist sitting down for their selection of Champagne and oysters, not to mention the baby crab cakes. (Planters Inn, 112 North Market Street, peninsulagrill.com)

Favorite local hotels … Book a room at Planters Inn or Zero George Street. Both offer a taste of living in a historic Charleston home—with all the luxuries and great service.

Drayton Hall

Drayton Hall viewed from the rear, along the Ashley River, Charleston, SC (Photo: m_gollon1 via Flickr)

Most inspiring house on public tour … Drayton Hall. The 1738 home is an architectural masterpiece. There is so much history surrounding the property and family. Everyone who visits Charleston needs to put it on their must-see list. (3380 Ashley River Road, draytonhall.org)

Amelia Handegan. Photo: Gately Williams

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