A Black Girl’s Guide to Atlanta

Atlanta is the cultural heartbeat of the South with its diversity, vibrant energy, and rich history. As someone born and raised in Atlanta, I have had the pleasure of seeing this city thrive in so many ways; however, nothing compares to its history of being an anchor for Black businesses. Whether it was your hair salon, neighborhood eatery, church cake lady, or street corner fruit market, Black businesses have been around us forever. And what I love about current-day Atlanta is that it offers a black business option for anything your heart could desire: tea rooms, restaurants, banks, spas, or even art galleries. The offerings are vast, varied, and unapologetic, and we love it! I mean, it’s easy to see why people love visiting the A!

I enjoy hosting my friends in Atlanta and creating fun itineraries for their visits. My goal is to make sure I connect them to the city by giving them my perspective as a local Black woman. When venturing into this dynamic city for the first time, the array of experiences awaiting can be both exciting and overwhelming. To ensure an unforgettable experience, here’s a curated itinerary I’d use to show off Atlanta’s finest offerings in dining, shopping, wellness, unique experiences, and nightlife! 

Visitor profile: My home girl, 30-45, professional, traveler and foodie; visiting Atlanta and looking for things to do. 

So Fresh and So Clean: Face Foundriè

Owned by a mother & daughter duo, Face Foundriè is a facial bar in West Midtown. It is the only Black-owned franchise in the US. They offer the latest non-invasive techniques to tone your skin and amplify your melanin. This facial bar offers more than just skincare; it’s a sanctuary for self-care and pampering. Treat your friend to a luxurious facial tailored to their unique needs, and they’ll emerge feeling refreshed, revitalized, and ready to conquer the city! 

Tea for Two: The Dirty Tea

For a truly one-of-a-kind afternoon, I recommend The Dirty Tea in Virginia-Highland. This unconventional tea house redefines the traditional tea experience, inviting guests to sip, savor, and “spill the tea” with their girls in style. In addition, their tea selection, savories, and sweets are just as divine as the space. I love that they are intentional about their food and beverage as anything that is not made in-house is sourced from another Black or woman-owned business. And did I mention it’s the only Black-owned business in this historic neighborhood? Believe me, you are sure to impress your guests with a visit to The Dirty Tea.

Just put it in the Bag: Bridge Boutique in Inman Park

Indulge your inner fashionista with a visit to Bridge Boutique, a hidden gem nestled in the trendy neighborhood of Inman Park. Here, fashion meets artistry as curated collections showcase emerging designers and timeless staples alike. When you enter this store, you honestly can’t tell if you’re in Savannah or Charleston with its frilly dresses and accessories. But then you see the walls adorned with Black art and jewelry by Black designers and you’re instantly teleported back to Atlanta. Whether you’re seeking statement pieces or wardrobe essentials, Bridge Boutique promises an unparalleled shopping experience.

Get Crafty: Lot 23 Chandler Co.

I always believe the best way to explore a city’s local scene is through arts & crafts. Visitors can unleash their creativity with a hands-on eau de parfum making class at Lot 23 Chandler Co. This boutique studio invites you to explore the art of fragrance from selecting raw essences to crafting your own signature scent. Guests get to immerse themselves in a sensory journey unlike any other and leave with a personalized perfume. This experience does not disappoint!

Sips & Small Plates: Southern National

Kickstart your Atlanta culinary adventure by dining out at Southern National, a restaurant known for its soulful cocktails and delectable small plates. Located in the historic Summer Hill neighborhood, this gem effortlessly pairs Southern tradition with international flair. This place embodies southern hospitality from their pan biscuit & hoe cake bread basket to their red fish and greens. This is one of my favorite places to sit at the bar and get a “Punch Royale” cocktail with fried oysters. Also, this establishment was a James Beard semi-finalist. Shoutout to Executive Chef Duane Nutter! How amazing is that?!

Where my Heels at? Buckhead Art & Company Events

When the sun goes down the heels come out! Atlanta has a vibrant nightlife with an array of cultural delights. For me, I tend to lean towards more cultural, music, or art focused events when it comes to Atlanta nightlife. A place that really stands out to me with their events is Buckhead Art Events. It’s where creativity takes center stage. They normally have an array of events from art exhibits and networking events to tastings and live music. It’s normally a great crowd where guests get to mingle with other professionals and creatives against a backdrop of eclectic art & soulful tunes. It’s so much better than your typical club scene and is a great way to see locals in action. 

In the end, there’s no better city to be intentional with your spending and support. Whether you’re indulging in soulful cuisine, pampering your senses, or immersing yourself in artistic expression, you’re bound to have an unforgettable time!

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