For my Nashville-based clients whose international trips got derailed by recent COVID testing requirements, I wanted to explore local options for a cool “staycation.”
Last week, I had the pleasure of touring a brand-new hotel in downtown Nashville. The Joseph is a Luxury Collection hotel that is part of the Marriott brand. It opened in the SoBro section of downtown Nashville last August 2020 in the middle of a pandemic, so you may not have heard of it. It is a hotel honoring the very best things life has to offer. There are so many cool things about this hotel – where do I begin?
The first thing you’ll notice is the London cab greeting guests when you pull into the grand porte-cochere. A reception desk with custom hand-detailed brown leather paneling was commissioned by owner, Joe Pizzuti, and made by Texas-based boot company Lucchese. The paneling depicts state flowers from three significant areas: Texas (to indicate Lucchese’s roots), Ohio (Mr. Pizzuti’s home state) and Tennessee (the Joseph’s new and second home) and monarch butterflies that migrate from Ohio to TX. Attention to detail is exquisite and intentional.
Several art pieces from the Pizzuti family’s collection and exclusive art all with ties to Tennessee are on display throughout the property. Each room has two pieces of art by local artists (in honor of their location) for guests to enjoy, and suites are equipped with an old-fashioned record player and five records, an homage to the Music City. If guests are music junkies, they can have their travel advisor arrange for the hotel to personalize the selection for them.
The hotel contains 297 guest rooms, 32 suites-deluxe and executive, A Penthouse Suite, and a Presidential Suite. The owner’s dog is a French bulldog named Louis – homages are everywhere from coffee mugs in certain suites to a ceramic statue in presidential suite to the license plate on the London cab out front (see what I mean? Intentional). Each guest room has an iPad to book spa appointments, make dinner reservations, contact guest services
Deluxe King & Deluxe Queens, 390 Square Feet (Floors 7-15, Executives King & Queens are floors 16-20)
Deluxe Suite, 505 Square Feet (there are 10 of them)
Corner Suite,650 Square Feet (there are 10 of them), Connects to Queen-Queen rooms only
Luxury Suite, 670 Square Feet (there are 10 of them), Connects to Queen-Queen rooms only
Penthouse Suite, 1727 Square Feet (We have 1 of these – smaller of the two premier suites, more eccentric tub placement), Connects to a King, Connects to a smaller “boardroom.”
Presidential Suite, 2168 Square Feet (We have 1 of these – larger of the two premier suites, has piano and better/more panoramic views), Connects to a King, Connects to a larger meeting space
The expansive 1,500-square-foot fitness center includes hi-tech equipment (complete with Peloton bikes) and beautiful city views. The adjacent Spa Rose is named after owner’s daughter, Rose. Spa has 7 treatment rooms, couples area, maternity treatments.
The culinary offerings include The Joseph’s signature restaurant, Yolan, a rooftop bar called Denim (near the outdoor pool area). You can book the pool cabanas in 2-hour windows for a $250 minimum spend on food and beverage, for a private dinner with a view of the Cumberland River. A speakeasy called Four Walls (with a separate entrance, 2 booths and anintimate cocktail bar that serves small plates) which will open sometime this quarter.
Dana Lichtenberger, The Joseph’s Director of Leisure Sales, and I sat down for a nice breakfast in the lobby lounge, and our server started us off with fresh mini spice muffins and a small fresh squeezed grapefruit/ginger/dandelion beverage. Delish!
Pastry chef-Noelle Marchetti also stopped by to introduce herself. I’ve heard of her legendary sourdough, and I learned that her sourdough starter is 8 years old (affectionately named Margot) and came from Cayman Islands. She feeds “her” every 2 days (whole wheat flour and water) to keep her going. With this starter, Noelle makes pancakes, focaccia, bread and more, and they don’t give you a heavy feeling due to natural leavening. They’ll even share some of this versatile starter with guests. So, of course I had to try the avocado toast (on this legendary sourdough bread). It did NOT disappoint!
Speaking of food, I can’t go any further without mentioning the brains behind the culinary program at The Joseph. James Beard Award winner and Michelin-star chef Tony Mantuano is the former chef from Chicago’s renowned restaurant, Spiaggia. His wife, Cathy is a celebrated wine expert with a knack for pairing food and drink, and she is in charge of the wine program here.
Yolan, the hotel’s signature restaurant, is named after the owner’s grandmother. It is described as “a refined Italian love letter to Nashville that merges both the Pizzutis’ and the Mantuanos’ roots in Italy with the couple’s signature attention to hospitality.” My husband and I will have the pleasure of dining here on Valentine’s weekend, so I’ll follow up with a food and experience review! You can order a la carte or dine from the five and eight course tasting menus (complete with wine pairings)!
Every week, guests can experience “King of Cheese,” the ceremonial cutting of an 80-pound wheel of Parmigiano-Reggiano (aged 2 years in Italy), where they’ll share an aperitivo with the Mantuanos.
Adjacent to the restaurant is a private dining room where up to 10 guests can do one of the tasting menus. At times there are cooking classes like the sold-out Couples Pasta Making Class for Valentine’s Day. How fun would it be to make pasta with a Michelin star chef?
If this sounds like staycation experience you’d love, contact Premiere Luxury Travel to plan your getaway!
Our bespoke itineraries are uniquely designed to completely immerse you in your destination, with delightfully unexpected surprises along the way.
We have a special passion for all things culinary—and we would love to introduce you to your destination’s distinct (and delicious!) food and wine traditions through one-of-a-kind culinary experiences. The best part? You won’t have to do a thing except relax, recharge, and create memories that last a lifetime!
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