Featured Press Releases

Use this library of press releases written by the Charleston Area CVB media relations department to mine for story ideas, stay abreast of what is new in the destination and learn about the special events that take place throughout the year.

For additional story ideas, we invite you to visit our blog at www.charlestonly.com.

What's New in the Charleston Area Winter 2016

For Immediate Release, January 2016

With its vibrant culture, rich history, exquisitely-preserved architecture, idyllic coastal location, celebrated dining scene, and friendly locals, Charleston, South Carolina, is one of America’s best loved travel destinations. Over the past five years, readers of leading travel magazines have consistently voted for Charleston as their favorite domestic travel destination, resulting in the No. 1 City in the U.S. and Canada ranking by the Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards (2015, 2014, 2013) and No. 1 Top U.S. City ranking by Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards (2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011).

The Charleston area is a bustling epicenter of hospitality as illustrated by the following news.

I. Accolades
II. New Restaurants
III. Restaurant News
IV. Accommodations
V. Venues
VI. Retail + Specialty Products
VII. Tours + Exhibits
VIII. Air Service
IX. Highlighted Special Events


#1 Small City in the U.S. and Canada
Travel + Leisure 2015 World’s Best Awards

#1 Small U.S. City
Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards

Kiawah Island & Isle of Palms, Best US Islands for Family Vacations
Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards

Travelers’ Choice #3 Best Destination

#8 2016 US Best Ranked Cities for Hotels


32B North Market Street, Charleston | 5churchcharleston.com

Charlotte-based restaurant 5Church has opened a second location in the heart of Charleston. Incorporating local flavors, highlights from Chef Jamie Lynch include Seared Sea Scallops, Chilled Crab Ramen, and Roasted Beet Salad among a variety of other dishes. Opened November 2015.

1035 Johnnie Dodds Boulevard, Mount Pleasant | facebook.com/gatheratcongress

The menu at this casual American restaurant will consist mainly of small plates, where guests are encouraged to taste and share. The space will feature a large community table and full bar, complete with an extensive cocktail menu and wine list. Opening January 2016.

Fill Restaurant & Piano Bar
1150 Hungryneck Boulevard, Mount Pleasant | fillrestaurantpianobar.com

This eclectic restaurant will soon become the Charleston area’s first piano bar. Featuring dueling pianos on the weekend, Fill Restaurant & Piano Bar will spotlight both local and national pianists. Opening February 2016.

Gnome Café
109 President Street, Charleston | gnomecafe.com

This vegan café has meat-eaters and vegetarians alike lining up for healthy eats. Promoting plant-based cuisine, Gnome Café serves breakfast and lunch items including bagel sandwiches with tofu scramble, pad thai salads, and bulgogi Korean bowls. Opened November 2015.

Lewis Barbecue
464 North Nassau Street, Charleston | lewisbarbecue.com

Former pitmaster at La Barbecue, the award-winning barbecue restaurant in Austin, Texas, John Lewis brings his signature barbecue to Charleston with the opening of Lewis Barbecue. Named “The Brisket Evangelist” by Garden & Gun, Lewis welds his own custom-designed smokers to create expertly smoked beef brisket, pork spareribs, and beef ribs. Opening Winter 2016.

MOD Pizza
145 Calhoun Street, Charleston | modpizza.com/location/charleston-king-calhoun

Seattle-based MOD Pizza is bringing handcrafted pies to downtown Charleston. Committed to providing “simple food for complex times,” MOD Pizza offers a wide selection of specialty pies, along with the option to add or subtract any number of ingredients at no additional cost. Opening Winter 2016.

Parlor Deluxe
207A St. Philip Street, Charleston | parlordeluxe.com

Jive back to the ‘50s and enjoy a hot dog and root beer float at Charleston’s throwback soda shop, Parlor Deluxe. Following the success of their first restaurant, Warehouse, co-owners James B. Groetzinger and Joey Rinaldi have partnered with Chef Emily Hahn and Pastry Chef David Schnell to make all your sweet and salty dreams come true. Opened August 2015.

Poogan’s Smokehouse
188 East Bay Street, Charleston | pooganssmokehouse.com

Sister property to Poogan’s Porch, Poogan’s Smokehouse is now serving slow-cooked barbecue favorites, including pulled pork sandwiches alongside Black-Eyed Pea Salad and Carolina Gold Rice. With a commitment to supporting Southern farms and purveyors, Poogan’s Smokehouse sources the freshest and highest quality ingredients. Opened November 2015.

The Darling Oyster Bar
513 King Street, Charleston | thedarling.com

Executive Chef Joe DiMaio, former chef at the Old Village Post House and Stars Rooftop & Grill Room, will helm The Darling Oyster Bar. The new space will feature a 14-seat bar, seafood inspired menu, and a vast cocktail program. Opening Winter 2016.

Vintage Coffee & Cafe
219 Simmons Street, Mount Pleasant | vintagecoffeecafe.com

Mobile pizza kitchen Coastal Crust Owner Brian Piesner has opened the doors to Vintage Coffee & Café. This eclectic coffee shop serves a multitude of healthy breakfast and lunch options including acai bowls, couscous salad, and farm egg sandwiches. Opt for the toast bar and select from a wide array of toppings, from avocado and sea salt to butternut squash and goat cheese to peanut butter and green apple! Opened September 2015.


Artisan Meat Share
33 Spring Street, Charleston | artisanmeatshare.com

Artisan Meat Share is now offering boxed lunches, perfect for picnics at the park, corporate meetings, or lunchtime at the office. Sandwich options include the Tuna Nicoise and Nutty Knuckle (comprised of smoke ham, pimiento cheese, mustard, and roasted peanuts on a buttermilk roll).

Butcher & Bee
654 King Street, Charleston | butcherandbee.com

Inventive Charleston sandwich shop Butcher & Bee has introduced the B&B Night Bazaar, a farmers/flea market merger featuring street food, art, and music. The market is scheduled to occur one evening each month from 9 PM to 2 AM.

442 King Street, Charleston | fishrestaurantcharleston.com

Say “Bonjour” to brunch at Fish. Chef Nico Romo has introduced an all-new, French-inspired Sunday brunch menu including highlights such as Foie Gras Monte Cristo, Duck Merguez Hash, and Pork Belly Steam Bun Benedict.

High Cotton
199 East Bay Street, Charleston | highcottoncharleston.com

Sway to the sounds of live gospel music over Crab Cakes Benedict or Carolina Shrimp & Grits during Saturday brunch at High Cotton. The renowned a cappella singing group Plantation Singers, who have performed locally, nationally, and internationally, will sing from 10 AM until 2 PM every Saturday.

Home Team BBQ
1205 Ashley River Road, Charleston | hometeambbq.com

Home Team BBQ has launched a new menu format and cocktail program in anticipation of their new downtown Charleston location opening in early 2016. Highlights include specialty spirits incorporating local products and a “specials” menu featuring unique, seasonal dishes.

MAC DADDY Food Truck
1968 Riviera Drive, Mount Pleasant | cravekitchenandcocktails.com

Chef Landen Ganstrom’s signature mac & cheese, named “The Most Life Changing Mac & Cheese in America” by Esquire, is hitting the road! In addition to mac & cheese, Crave Kitchen and Cocktails’ MAC DADDY Food Truck will offer a variety of sandwich and salad specials, and is available for on-site catering and private event booking.

Mercantile and Mash
701 East Bay Street, Charleston | mercandmash.com

In addition to Mercantile and Mash’s grab-and-go food menu and baked goods, the gourmet foods emporium now offers a chef’s counter lunch. Menu items include local Acorn Squash Soup, Bahn Mi, and Croque Monsieur.

WildFlour Pastry
1750 Savannah Highway, Charleston | wildflourpastrycharleston.com

Sticky bun lovers, rejoice! Pastry Chef Lauren Mitterer is bringing her baked goods to a second location, West of the Ashley. Opening February 2016.


The Dewberry
334 Meeting Street, Charleston | thedewberrycharleston.com

The Dewberry brings a world-class hotel experience to downtown Charleston. In addition to unparalleled views from one of the city's tallest buildings, The Dewberry boasts a stunning ballroom, lush walled gardens, and 7,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting and event space. Opening Spring 2016.

The Restoration
75 Wentworth Street, Charleston | restorationonking.com

This beautifully restored boutique property combines exemplary service with comfort and luxury. Guests may find themselves dining on fresh, farm-to-table cuisine at the rooftop restaurant The Watch, sipping specialty Charlestonian tea blends at The Rise Coffee Bar, or unwinding with a soothing massage at The Amethyst Spa. Opening February 2016.


329 East Bay Street
329 East Bay Street, Charleston | luxurysimplifiedgroup.com

Charleston’s newest event space was originally built circa 1800. The tall single home features carved marble details, restored wrought iron gates originally forged by Philip Simmons, and 16-foot ceilings - some of the highest in a Charleston home. Opened January 2016.


Beckett Boutique
409 King Street, Charleston | beckettboutique.com

Charleston’s newest boutique for women is located in the vibrant Upper King Design District. Beckett Boutique offers a curated selection of new and emerging lines for both casual and professional wear. Opened October 2015.

Bulls Bay Saltworks
P.O. Box 656, McClellanville | bullsbaysaltworks.com

Red Mash Sea Salt is the newest Bulls Bay Saltworks product, providing the perfect complement to roasted corn, skewered shrimp, macaroni and cheese, and more.

FortyEight – A Wine Bar
547 Freshfields Drive, Kiawah Island | fortyeightwinebar.com

The newest addition to Freshfields Village, FortyEight – A Wine Bar, features 48 exceptional wines by the glass and 840 hand-selected wines by the bottle every day, in addition to 48 local and regional craft beers. Pop in between 4 and 9 PM for a tasting paired with light fare and sweets. Opened November 2015.

Napa Valley Education Center & Tasting Room
68 ½ Queen Street, Charleston | miranapa.com/napa-valley-education-center-tasting-room

Mira Winery Napa Valley Education Center & Tasting Room links the wine-growing region of Napa Valley to the traditions of the South through educational and tasting programs, interactive displays, and EduTastings.


South Carolina Aquarium: Why Do Zoos and Aquariums Matter?
100 Aquarium Wharf, Charleston | scaquarium.org

As part of the Holland Lifelong Learning series, the South Carolina Aquarium will host “Why Do Zoos and Aquariums Matter?”. The lecture, held February 9, will provide attendees the opportunity to learn more about the world’s oceans and the animals that live within.

3664 Leeds Avenue, Charleston | ridecarta.com

The Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority (CARTA) has installed both WiFi and MiFi on buses that cover Express Routes and main lines, with availability on neighborhood shuttles planned for the future. With WiFi access on the NASH Express, which provides airport shuttle service, those flying in to Charleston will have access from the moment they arrive.


Southwest Airlines
Southwest Airlines will launch weekly, nonstop Saturday service between Charleston International Airport (CHS) and Denver International Airport (DEN) beginning June 11, 2016.


39th Annual Cooper River Bridge Run, April 2

From professional athletes to goofballs dressed in gorilla costumes, people of all ages and fitness levels participate in this run/walk, which is one of the world’s largest 10,000-meter runs.

29th Annual Blessing of the Fleet & Seafood Festival, April 24

The seafood industry is woven into the Lowcountry’s identity, and the community turns out to show support for local shrimpers during this daylong blessing of the boats.

North Charleston Arts Festival, April 29 – May 7

Nine days of performances, exhibitions and activities geared for family fun culminate with an outdoor concert and fireworks display over the Cooper River.

Upper King Design District Walks, TBD

The décor emporiums and specialty boutiques in the upper King Street neighborhood remain open for extended evening hours during this twice-a-year [spring & fall] stroll that includes special exhibits and events.

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Published annually, the official Charleston Area Visitors Guide is full of gorgeous photography, insider tips, maps, and resources to help you plan your Charleston vacation.

Published annually, the official Charleston Area Visitors Guide is full of gorgeous photography, insider tips, maps, and resources to help you plan your Charleston vacation.