Georgia has been on my travel list for some time now, ever since my love for the Atlanta Braves back in 1990.  So when I was invited to attend a press trip in Alpharetta, Georgia, I was excited to finally visit and see what the state had to offer.

Before the hustle and bustle of the holidays, a small group of journalist headed to Alpharetta to shop and savor the city.  And shop and savor is what we did!

Upon arrival at the airport, I was briefed on Atlanta and taken for a personal tour around town, on the way to our destination.  I was able to get a quick glance at the Georgia Aquarium, Turner Field, the World of Coca-Cola and Chick-fil-A’s corporate offices, to name a few.  There is beauty all around, and I was trying to soak in as much as possible… before we even arrived in Alpharetta!

Alpharetta is a cozy city, located north of Atlanta, in Fulton County, Georgia.  The first thing I noticed?  It was FALL!  There were trees of every color and gorgeous leaves on the ground.  Beautiful is an understatement compared to the Fall we have here in Texas.  My first recommendation: visit in Fall!

I put the scenery aside as I checked into my American Girl inspired room, which was located at the Atlanta Marriott Alpharetta.  This hotel is a premier choice among hotels in Alpharetta, offering world class accommodations for corporate, leisure and under-age travelers alike.  From the guests rooms to the fitness center to the pools, you can tell there is pride all around the property, providing guests of all ages with an unforgettable experience.  With 316 guest rooms and 2 suites, there is something for everyone.

press tripWith the American Girl package, guests can enjoy pink towels, bedding and room accessories – including an American Girl doll bed and robe!  Young ladies will enjoy this package from the moment they walk into the hotel until the very moment they go to sleep!

american girl bistroBut there was no sleep for me just yet, because the room only set the mood as we made our way to North Point Mall for a VIP tour in the American Girl Boutique and Bistro.  This store holds a variety of American Girl Dolls that will make any child fall in love!  From Bitty Babies to Bitty Twins to the line of BeForever Characters, this is the store of any girl’s dreams! I sat down for an afternoon tea with my favorite doll, and can not tell you enough about my time in the Bistro: From scrumptious starters to delectable desserts, the American Girl menu features girls’ favorites that they will ask for over and over! 

travelThis “tea” was soon followed by an late night “tee” at Top Golf Alpharetta.  Top Golf is the perfect Date Night, Guy’s Night or Girl’s Night Out.  Imagine if bowling and golf were to get married… you’d get a fun night at Top Golf!  With amazing food, drinks and games that are perfect for all ages and skill levels, it’s not the average driving range you are thinking of. 

travelHaving never played more than putt-putt, I was surely up for a challenge, and a challenge I did take!  This is serious fun!  And the best part? (besides the food)  It is outside but climate controlled!  We were out on a night where the temperature was in the 40’s and I had no jacket press tripThe second day of our trip began with a trip to Avalon, starting off the cold morning with Exhale yoga before breakfast at Goldbergs.  Goldbergs has some of the best coffee and bagels I’ve tasted!  I had an omelet and an “everything” bagel, which were both fresh and delightful!  Goldbergs offers a full menu and is in the perfect location… there’s a reason it’s breaking records in Avalon!

travel press tripWe then went for a full tour of Avalon.  One word: Amazing. Avalon is a mecca of housing, shopping, entertainment and more.  It’s a cozy center that includes 75 retailers, 15 restaurants and 1000 miles of fiber optic cable.  There is a 60 ft fountain, a children’s play area, a dog park and a seasonal ice skating rink, among other things. 

avalonOne amenity I appreciated?  The night life.  The fountain is beautiful and the fire pits and couches are a welcomed addition!  Avalon reminded me of a community, whether you knew the next person or not.  There’s a high respect for the center, which will only increase with the addition of Phase II. 

whole foodsAnother benefit to Avalon?  Whole Foods Market!  We were led around the store on a special VIP tour, hearing a plethora of information on each department and the store’s standards for quality.  I learned that Whole Foods evaluates each and every product sold. They feature only foods that are free of artificial preservatives, colors, flavors, sweeteners, and hydrogenated fats, and are passionate about great tasting food and the pleasure of sharing it with others.  It’s a commitment that shows from the moment you walk in the store to the moment you get the items on your table.

travelOur day also included a visit the color bar at Kendra Scott, where we designed our own piece of jewelry before heading across the street to the Dry Bar for a little pampering!  Both of these stores would be a great combination for a Girl’s Night Out!  Kendra Scott Jewelry is a global, multimillion-dollar brand sold at renowned retailers like Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdales and 1,000+ specialty boutiques worldwide. Once you see one Kendra Scott piece, you’ll recognize it everywhere you go! Wear it with a new style from the Dry Bar, and you will stop traffic… trust me!  The Dry Bar doesn’t “do” cuts or colors.  They only offer blowouts, and possibly the best blow out ever! With 9 blowouts to choose from, there’s a gorgeous style for everyone!  I went with the Cosmo-Tai and loved it! 

In fact, I loved it so much, I slept with it and enjoyed the style for our tour of downtown Alpharetta the next day!  Make sure you check back for a re-cap of the restaurants and stores we visited!  There’s much history in Alpharetta, and I can’t wait to tell you all about it!


My visit to Georgia was through a press trip, coordinated by the Convention and Visitors Bureau.  All experiences mentioned here were arranged by the CBV, though all opinions are my own.


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