CRUIS­ING CHARLES­TON

Men's Journal - - TRAVEL -

There’s no bet­ter base camp from which to ex­plore Charles­ton, South Carolina, a penin­sula port city founded in 1670, than the Dew­berry. Lo­cated on Mar­ion Square, a 10-acre down­town park, the ho­tel is a mid-cen­tury mod­ern jewel in a city best known for colo­nial man­sions. It oc­cu­pies a con­verted Jfk-era gov­ern­ment build­ing with a hand­somely re­stored brick fa­cade, and its spa­cious, wood­pan­eled lobby looks straight out of Mad Men. Be sure to snag a piña co­lada at the Cit­rus Club, on the rooftop ter­race, the high­est com­mer­cial perch in town. And for city cruis­ing, make use of the ho­tel’s French-style tour­ing bikes to nav­i­gate the live-oak and pal­metto–laden his­toric core.

But first, break­fast. Charles­ton rises early, and Daps, on Ash­ley Av­enue, is a wel­come new­comer to the morn­ing-din­ing lineup—and not just be­cause it’s in the emerg­ing cul­tural hub north of the Crosstown; Daps serves up one of the best stacks of pan­cakes in the South.

For shop­ping, you can’t beat Oobe Brand, a menswear sta­ple on lower King Street that spe­cial­izes in clas­sic Amer­i­can cuts (field coats, fish­er­man sweaters, trim chi­nos, sel­vage denim) and is run by a pair of for­mer Clem­son Univer­sity room­mates. From there, it’s on to lunch at 167 Raw, a luxe seafood joint whose Nan­tucket roots mix per­fectly with the fresh catch from lo­cal waters. The restau­rant’s sig­na­ture lob­ster roll is one New Eng­land im­port that lo­cals have near unan­i­mously em­braced.

Off­set the in­dul­gence with an oblig­a­tory spin through White Point Gar­den—at the end of the Bat­tery, a Civil War de­fen­sive sea­wall—which boasts views of Charles­ton Har­bor. Wan­der the sur­round­ing neigh­bor­hoods, to marvel at the 17th-cen­tury man­sions and old-school row houses, be­fore round­ing out the day at Melfi’s, the pizze­ria just opened by restau­ra­teurs Brooks Reitz and Tim Mink of Leon’s and Lit­tle Jack’s fame. Head a few blocks down to Up­town So­cial for a night­cap. Along with ro­tat­ing cock­tail spe­cials and lo­cal beers, the two-story New York City off­shoot fea­tures live mu­sic and a rooftop bar—a rar­ity down­town.

Clock­wise from above left: The crew downs oys­ters at luxe seafood spot 167 Raw; a stack at Daps; menswear sta­ple Oobe Brand; drinks at the Dew­berry; the live oaks of White Point Gar­den.

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