The city of Atlanta was founded in 1837 as a transportation hub, originally known as “Terminus,” due to its crucial location at the intersection of multiple railroads. During the American Civil War, it played a significant role as a supply center for the Confederacy and was burned by General William T. Sherman in 1864.
In the 20th century, Atlanta became a major center for civil rights activism and has since then become famous as the birthplace of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., an important figure in the Civil Rights Movement. Today, Atlanta is a bustling, culturally diverse metropolis known for its vibrant arts scene, thriving business district, and unique blend of history and modernity.
It is a great place for teens to meet different types of animals, including giant pandas, and learn about the conservation efforts of the Civil Rights Movement. Teens can also experience a melting pot of cultures through its diverse neighborhoods and cuisines.
Atlanta’s fame among teens stems from its dynamic blend of history, culture, and entertainment. From exploring the Civil Rights Movement’s legacy at the Martin Luther King Jr. Site to diving into the immersive exhibits at the World of Coca-Cola, teens can delve into educational and engaging experiences.
The city’s vibrant arts scene, trendy shopping districts like Ponce City Market, and diverse culinary options make it a hub for youthful exploration.
With world-class attractions such as the Georgia Aquarium and Zoo Atlanta, as well as the excitement of professional sports teams, Atlanta ensures that teenagers are captivated by both its storied past and contemporary allure.
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1) Georgia Aquarium
The Georgia Aquarium, located in Atlanta, opened its doors on November 23, 2005, as a collaborative effort between various organizations and benefactors, including The Home Depot co-founder Bernie Marcus, who provided a significant donation. This expansive aquarium was built to be one of the largest in the world and is home to a diverse range of marine life.
The aquarium’s main tank, known as the Ocean Voyager exhibit, holds 6.3 million gallons of saltwater and features the iconic whale sharks, the largest fish species in the world. The facility also houses thousands of other marine animals, including dolphins, sea otters, penguins, and a variety of fish and invertebrates.
Over the years, the Georgia Aquarium has been involved in research, conservation, and education initiatives, aiming to raise awareness about marine life and its conservation.
It’s accredited and managed by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and has played a crucial role in marine research and the rescue and rehabilitation of sea creatures.
Throughout the aquarium, there are many fun things for teens to do in Atlanta, including interactive exhibits, touch pools, and informative displays that can educate and engage them.
The Georgia Aquarium hosts various shows and presentations, including dolphin shows and sea lion demonstrations. For an even more immersive experience, teens can embark on behind-the-scenes tours to see how the aquarium cares for its animals and operates its systems.
The aquarium also often hosts special events, making it a fantastic place for celebrations and group visits to contribute to marine conservation efforts actively.
We must say it is a place that promises an educational and entertaining adventure, offering a glimpse into the wonders of the ocean and the importance of preserving our underwater world.
225 Baker St NW, Atlanta, GA 30313, United States
2) World of Coca-Cola
The World of Coca-Cola is a museum and tourist attraction dedicated to the history and culture of the Coca-Cola Company, opened in 2007. The museum showcases the story of Coca-Cola, from its humble beginnings in 1886 when John S. Pemberton created the secret formula to its status as one of the world’s most iconic brands.
Visitors can explore various exhibits that highlight the brand’s advertising, memorabilia, and impact on pop culture. One of the museum’s highlights is the Vault of the Secret Formula, where an interactive experience reveals the closely guarded recipe.
The museum is housed in a modern, state-of-the-art building, easily accessible in downtown Atlanta. Inside, you’ll find engaging exhibits that showcase the history, culture, and global impact of Coca-Cola and fun things for teens to do in Atlanta.
Teens can also explore vintage advertisements, memorabilia, and the Tasting Room, where they can taste over 100 different Coca-Cola beverages from around the world.
There’s a food court where you can enjoy a variety of snacks and meals, including options like Coke floats and classic American fare. And if you’re a photographic teen, there are plenty of spots for memorable photos, including the famous Coca-Cola Polar Bear character for meet-and-greets.
It’s a family-friendly attraction, and the combination of history, tasting opportunities, and interactive displays make it a fun and informative destination for teens of different ages.
121 Baker St NW, Atlanta, GA 30313, United States
3) Atlanta Botanical Garden
The Atlanta Botanical Garden, established in 1976, has blossomed into a renowned 30-acre oasis nestled within Piedmont Park. It was originally conceived by a group of garden enthusiasts who sought to cultivate a botanical haven within the bustling city.
The Garden’s highlights include the Fuqua Orchid Center, a stunning collection of rare orchids, and the Canopy Walk, which offers a bird’s-eye view of the lush, 12-acre Storza Woods.
In 2010, the Atlanta Botanical Garden expanded further with the opening of the Gainesville location, which features a diverse range of plants and a tropical conservatory.
One of its most iconic features is the Earth Goddess, a giant topiary sculpture welcoming visitors. Throughout its history, the Atlanta Botanical Garden has actively engaged in horticultural research, conservation, and education, hosting numerous events and exhibitions.
Fun activities are abundant here, with many top things for teens to do in Atlanta. The Canopy Walk, a sky-high adventure, provides scenic views of Storza Woods. The Garden Lights Holiday Nights display transforms the garden into a dazzling wonderland during the holiday season. The Fuqua Conservatory is a fascinating tropical paradise with rare plant species.
Numerous events take place year-round, from concerts and art exhibitions to educational programs. Families can enjoy special events like the “Garden Playtime” program.
Dining options like the Longleaf Restaurant and Quick Café offer a variety of culinary experiences that make it a multifaceted destination blending botanical wonder, education, and entertainment.
1345 Piedmont Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30309, United States
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4) Atlanta BeltLine
The Atlanta BeltLine is a transformative urban redevelopment project. Originated from a 1999 master’s thesis by Ryan Gravel, envisioning a network of parks, trails, and transit along a 22-mile loop of disused railway corridors encircling the city.
In 2005, Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin embraced the idea, and it gained widespread support. The BeltLine was conceived as a means to address urban sprawl, improve transportation, and foster economic development.
It has attracted billions in public and private investment, with new housing and businesses springing up along its path. The Eastside Trail, one of the first segments to be completed, became a popular destination.
However, the BeltLine has faced challenges, including funding gaps and concerns about equitable development, as some worry about the displacement of low-income residents.
Nonetheless, it remains a symbol of Atlanta’s commitment to sustainability and urban revitalization, demonstrating how innovative urban planning can redefine a city’s future.
This Beltline showcases many fun things for teens to do in Atlanta, including an extensive network of multi-use trails ideal for walking, jogging, cycling, and rollerblading. Along the trails, you’ll find numerous parks with green spaces, playgrounds, and picnic areas for relaxation and recreation.
For fitness enthusiasts and teens, the BeltLine features fitness stations and hosts group fitness classes, fostering a healthy and active community. Birdwatching is another popular activity, as the BeltLine’s green spaces attract diverse bird species.
Throughout the year, the BeltLine hosts a variety of events, including festivals, music performances, and cultural celebrations, creating a vibrant and engaging atmosphere.
Additionally, the proximity to restaurants, bars, and shops means that you can easily grab a bite to eat or enjoy some retail therapy, making it a dynamic and enjoyable destination for all.
619 Edgewood Ave SE, Atlanta, GA 30312, United States
5) Ponce City Market
Ponce City Market, located in Atlanta, Georgia, has a rich history dating back to the late 19th century. Originally known as the Sears, Roebuck & Co. building, it was constructed in 1926 as a distribution center for the retail giant Sears.
The massive brick building, designed by architect George C. Nimmons, served as a hub for catalog orders and merchandise storage.
Ponce City Market’s transformation into a mixed-use development began in 2012 under the guidance of Jamestown Properties. It was reimagined as a vibrant, urban destination featuring offices, retail spaces, restaurants, and residential units.
Today, Ponce City Market stands as a testament to the power of urban redevelopment, combining the city’s history with contemporary urban living and entertainment, making it a significant landmark in Atlanta’s ongoing transformation.
The facility houses an array of retail shops, from boutique stores to national brands, providing a shopping experience with a wide range of products. A food hall on the lower level offers different types of culinary options, including international cuisine, artisanal foods, and sweet treats, especially for teens.
For entertainment and fun things for teens to do in Atlanta, the rooftop amusement park and bowling alley provide hours of fun. There are also regular art installations, and fitness enthusiasts can find yoga and fitness classes with a blend of shopping, dining, and entertainment.
675 Ponce De Leon Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30308, United States
6) Atlanta History Center
The Atlanta History Center, founded in 1926, is a prominent institution dedicated to preserving and educating about the history of Atlanta, Georgia, and the American South. In 2001, it moved to a 33-acre campus in the Buckhead district, featuring historic homes, gardens, and a museum.
The center’s main attraction is the Atlanta History Museum, offering a comprehensive overview of the city’s history. It houses a vast collection of artifacts, photographs, and documents, showcasing Atlanta’s growth from a railroad terminus to a major Southern city.
The Swan House and the Tullie Smith Farm, both located on the campus, also provide a glimpse into 1920s high society and 19th-century farm life.
Visitors can explore diverse exhibitions and galleries that cover Atlanta’s history, from the Civil War to Civil Rights, or step back in time and tour the elegant 1928 mansion, showcasing the lifestyle of Atlanta’s elite during the Jazz Age.
For history enthusiasts and researchers, the center houses an extensive collection of archives, photographs, and documents. You can also visit the home of the “Gone with the Wind” author and learn about her life and literary legacy.
For added fun things for teens to do in Atlanta, the center hosts numerous events, lectures, workshops, and educational programs that cater to a variety of interests and age groups.
Overall, visitors to the Atlanta History Center can explore the rich history of the city and the South while also enjoying a range of engaging activities, beautiful surroundings, and educational opportunities.
130 W Paces Ferry Rd NW, Atlanta, GA 30305, United States
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7) Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site
The Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site is a significant historical landmark in Atlanta, Georgia, dedicated to the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Born in Atlanta in 1929; King became a prominent leader in the American civil rights movement.
The site includes King’s childhood home, where he spent the formative years of his life. Visitors can tour the house and gain insight into his early experiences and influences.
Adjacent to the home is the Ebenezer Baptist Church, where King served as a pastor, and it was from this pulpit that he delivered many of his powerful sermons advocating for civil rights and social justice.
Overall, the Martin Luther King Jr. The National Historic Site serves as a tribute to one of the most influential figures in American history, offering a deeper understanding of his struggle for civil rights and the enduring impact of his work on the world.
At the Visitor Center, you can start your journey with informative exhibits and ranger-guided tours, gaining insight into Dr. King’s life and the civil rights movement. The site features a bookstore where you can purchase books and memorabilia related to civil rights.
The adjacent Ebenezer Baptist Church, a hub for civil rights activism, welcomes visitors and offers a glimpse into King’s preaching legacy.
For a serene experience and more fun things for teens to do in Atlanta, the International World Peace Rose Garden is a beautiful spot for reflection and contemplation.
The Historic Site’s central point is Freedom Hall, where you’ll find the King Center for Nonviolent Social Change, housing a museum, a library, and King’s final resting place.
Moreover, the surrounding Old Fourth Ward neighborhood has charming streets, parks, and local eateries to explore, making it a well-rounded experience for history enthusiasts and curious-minded teenagers.
450 Auburn Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30312, United States
8) Piedmont Park
Piedmont Park, located in Atlanta, Georgia, has a rich history dating back to the 19th century when it was purchased in 1834 and was used as a fairground race track during the Civil War.
In 1887, the city of Atlanta purchased the land, transforming it into a park designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, known for his work on Central Park in New York City.
Throughout the years, Piedmont Park served as a site for various events, including the 1895 Cotton States and International Exposition and the 1996 Summer Olympics.
In the 20th century, the park went through periods of decline but was revitalized in the 1990s with extensive renovations and improvements. Today, Piedmont Park is a vibrant urban oasis featuring walking paths, a lake, the Atlanta Botanical Garden, and the legacy of its historical significance.
The park boasts miles of scenic walking and jogging paths, perfect for outdoor enthusiasts, that feature a picturesque 11-acre lake where you can rent paddle boats and take strolls along its shores.
For nature lovers, the park is home to the Atlanta Botanical Garden, featuring stunning gardens and lush greenhouses with exotic plants. Picnic areas with tables and grills are available, and the Noguchi Playscape offers a unique play experience for kids.
Various festivals and events, such as concerts and food festivals, are frequently hosted at the park’s open-air venues for added fun things for teens to do in Atlanta.
Its sprawling grounds also make it a favorite spot for bird watching and leisurely picnics, offering a diverse array of recreational opportunities and cultural experiences, making it a beloved destination, especially for teens.
Atlanta, GA 30309, United States
9) High Museum of Art
The High Museum of Art, located in Atlanta, Georgia, has a rich history dating back to 1905. Originally established as the Atlanta Art Association, it began as a small collection of art in a local library.
In 1926, the museum received a major boost when the city of Atlanta granted it land to construct a dedicated facility, and it officially became the High Museum of Art.
In 1983, a significant expansion designed by architect Richard Meier added modernist architecture to the institution. The High Museum is renowned for its diverse collection, featuring art from various cultures and periods, with a particular emphasis on American and European art.
Its modern architecture, including the iconic white facade designed by Richard Meier and the sleek expansion by Renzo Piano, is an attraction in itself, where you’ll find an impressive collection of art from various cultures, from European masterpieces to contemporary art.
The museum’s educational programs engage visitors of all ages through workshops, tours, and interactive displays. If you’re a teen, you can discover unique gifts and art-related merchandise in the museum store to bring back home.
For added fun things for teens to do in Atlanta, discussions on art and culture with lectures are also very interesting. While on the other side, the outdoor piazza is a great spot for a picnic on a sunny day.
So whether you’re an art enthusiast or just looking for an enjoyable outing, the High Museum of Art has something to offer everyone in a vibrant and culturally enriching environment.
1280 Peachtree St NE, Atlanta, GA 30309, United States
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10) Fernbank Museum of Natural History
The Fernbank Museum of Natural History was founded in 1939 by Emily Harrison and operated as a small nature center, emphasizing educational programs and exhibitions related to the natural world. Over the years, the museum expanded significantly, moving to its current location in 1992.
In its modern incarnation, Fernbank is renowned for its unique combination of natural history and cultural exhibits. The focal point of the museum is the Great Hall, featuring the world’s largest dinosaur skeleton, a 123-foot-long Argentinosaurus.
Fernbank also boasts a lush 75-acre forest known as Fernbank Forest, an urban old-growth forest offering educational trails and research opportunities.
The institution continues to evolve, adding interactive displays, IMAX theaters, and special exhibits that explore topics ranging from the prehistoric world to cultural anthropology.
The museum’s 75-acre Fernbank Forest is a unique amenity, providing nature enthusiasts with hiking trails and opportunities for birdwatching within an urban old-growth forest.
Visitors can explore several permanent exhibits, like “A Walk Through Time in Georgia,” which delves into the state’s geological and cultural history. The “World of Shells” exhibit showcases an extensive collection of seashells from around the globe.
Kids can enjoy the interactive “NatureQuest” exhibit, which is both educational and entertaining. Special events and temporary exhibitions keep the museum’s offerings fresh, with many fun things for teens to do in Atlanta.
Fernbank hosts events like “Martinis & IMAX” for an adult night out and “Fernbank After Dark” for evening exploration. The outdoor WildWoods area features a nature-inspired playground and outdoor exhibits.
Overall, it offers an array of engaging activities, making it an excellent destination for individuals, families, and nature enthusiasts interested in exploring the wonders of our natural world and human history.
767 Clifton Rd, Atlanta, GA 30307, United States
11) SkyView Atlanta (Ferris wheel)
SkyView Atlanta is a prominent Ferris wheel located in the heart of downtown Atlanta, Georgia, which opened to the public in 2013. This giant observation wheel offers visitors stunning panoramic views of the city’s skyline.
The concept of the Ferris wheel dates back to 1893 when George Washington Gale Ferris Jr. presented a design of the the first Ferris wheel for the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago.
His invention marked a significant moment in the history of amusement rides, and the term “Ferris wheel” has since become synonymous with large, rotating observation wheels.
SkyView Atlanta, with its 20-story height, represents a modern interpretation of this classic amusement park attraction. It provides a unique opportunity for locals and tourists to experience the city from a new perspective.
The Ferris wheel’s 42 climate-controlled gondolas allow visitors to enjoy the view year-round. The main attraction is the 20-story Ferris wheel itself, which provides breathtaking views of downtown Atlanta and its iconic landmarks.
In addition to the ride, SkyView Atlanta features several amenities and fun things for teens to do in Atlanta. The base of the Ferris wheel is home to The Hub, a vibrant area with concessions, including snacks and beverages, making it a perfect place to grab a quick bite.
The Hub also hosts special events and live music on occasion, adding to the overall atmosphere. Visitors can enhance their experience by choosing VIP gondolas with glass floors and leather seating.
Whether you’re a local looking for a unique view of your city or a teen seeking an unforgettable experience, SkyView Atlanta offers a mix of relaxation, entertainment, and spectacular sightseeing.
168 Luckie St NW, Atlanta, GA 30303, United States
12) College Football Hall of Fame
The College Football Hall of Fame, located in Atlanta, Georgia, is a shrine to the history of American college football that was established in 1951 and originally resided in Kings Mills, Ohio, before moving to South Bend, Indiana, in 1995.
In 2014, the Hall of Fame found its current home in Atlanta. This institution honors exceptional players, coaches, and contributors to college football. To be inducted, individuals must have made significant and enduring contributions to the sport.
The Hall of Fame features interactive exhibits, memorabilia, and a vast collection of artifacts, providing visitors with an immersive experience that celebrates the sport’s heritage. College football enthusiasts from around the country visit to pay homage to their heroes and the traditions that define the game.
The modern facility in Atlanta spans 94,256 square feet and features interactive displays, historic memorabilia, and cutting-edge technology. Upon entering, guests receive a personalized All-Access Pass, which stores information throughout their visit, allowing for a customized experience.
A highlight is the Indoor Football Field, where visitors can kick field goals and test their quarterback skills. Whereas the Game Day Theater provides an immersive 4K experience, the Hall of Fame also boasts a 45-yard replica football field with augmented reality elements.
Whether you’re a die-hard football fan or just looking for an entertaining day out, the College Football Hall of Fame offers an engaging and memorable experience to everyone entering here.
250 Marietta St NW, Atlanta, GA 30313, United States
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13) Zoo Atlanta
Zoo Atlanta has been famous since its founding in 1889, making it one of the oldest continually operating zoos in the United States. Initially known as the Grant Park Zoo, it started with a small collection of animals, including bears and monkeys.
The zoo’s transformation began in the 1980s when it underwent significant expansions and renovations, focusing on conservation and education. In the late 1990s, it gained global recognition for its giant panda program, hosting the famous pandas Lun Lun and Yang Yang. They successfully bred, contributing to the conservation of this endangered species.
It expanded habitats and acquired more species, including Sumatran tigers and western lowland gorillas. The zoo’s efforts in conservation, research, and education have solidified its reputation as a leading institution dedicated to animal welfare and conservation.
In 2021, its history was marked by the opening of a new African Savanna exhibit, further enhancing its mission to connect people to animals and inspire them to protect the natural world.
The zoo covers 40 acres and is home to over 1,000 animals from around the world, where visitors can explore diverse habitats, including the African Savanna, the Ford African RainForest, and the Asian Forest.
Suppose you feel hungry no need to go here or there! The Wild Planet Café located inside the zoo serves a range of delicious meals, while snack stands offer quick bites.
For fun activities and things for teens to do in Atlanta, the zoo hosts engaging experiences. There are animal encounters and behind-the-scenes tours for a more in-depth look at the animals and their care.
Teens can also engage in conservation efforts by supporting the zoo’s mission to protect wildlife and their habitats. Overall, Zoo Atlanta provides a memorable and educational outing for individuals, with a wide range of amenities and activities to enjoy while learning about the diverse species it houses.
800 Cherokee Ave SE, Atlanta, GA 30315, United States
14) Stone Mountain Park
Stone Mountain Park, located in Georgia, has a rich history dating back millions of years when it was formed by volcanic activity. The park gained historical significance due to the massive bas-relief sculpture on the mountain’s face.
Being carved like a granite cliff, the sculpture depicts Confederate leaders Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, and Stonewall Jackson. It was initiated in the early 20th century and completed in 1972, becoming a controversial symbol of the Confederacy.
The park itself was officially established in 1965 and has since evolved into a major tourist attraction. It offers a wide range of activities, from hiking and picnicking to a scenic railroad and a cable car that provides stunning views of the surrounding area.
The park’s centerpiece is the massive granite mountain with a bas-relief sculpture, but there’s much more to explore, with many fun things for teens to do in Atlanta. They can enjoy a 363-acre lake, perfect for fishing and pedal boating, and a lush natural environment for picnics and hiking.
Adventure seekers can tackle SkyHike, one of the nation’s largest adventure ropes courses, while kids can have fun at Geyser Towers and Camp Highland Outpost. The LaserShow Spectacular is a popular evening event featuring laser lights and fireworks set to music.
The on-site campground and Marriott hotel provide accommodations for extended visits, and there are numerous dining options for a variety of tastes. Seasonal events like the Pumpkin Festival and Christmas activities also offer a blend of natural beauty, historical significance, and family-friendly fun.
1000 Robert E Lee Blvd, Stone Mountain, GA 30083, United States
15) Krog Street Market
Krog Street Market, located in Atlanta, Georgia, has a rich history dating back to the late 1800s. The site originally housed the Atlanta Stove Works, a prominent cast-iron stove manufacturing company.
The revitalized Krog Street Market opened its doors in 2014, featuring a diverse array of food stalls, restaurants, specialty shops, and artisanal vendors. The market’s design retained many of the original industrial elements, preserving its historical character while offering a modern, eclectic dining and shopping experience.
Visitors can enjoy an eclectic mix of dining options, from gourmet burgers and fresh seafood to international cuisine. The market provides indoor and outdoor seating, creating a welcoming environment for social gatherings and relaxation.
In addition to dining with fun things for teens to do in Atlanta, the market hosts various artisanal shops where they can find unique gifts, jewelry, clothing, and home decor. Krog Street Market often also hosts events, including live music performances, seasonal festivals, and pop-up markets.
These events add vibrancy and entertainment to the space, adding vibrancy and an ever-changing atmosphere, combined with its diverse offerings, making it a must-visit spot for those seeking culinary delights, unique shopping, and a sense of community in Atlanta.
99 Krog St NE, Atlanta, GA 30307, United States
16) Andretti Indoor Karting & Games
Andretti Indoor Karting & Games, founded by racing legend Mario Andretti’s family, is a chain of entertainment centers offering high-speed karting and a wide range of games and activities. The first location opened in Roswell, Georgia, in 2001, marking the beginning of a successful venture.
The Andretti family’s racing heritage played a significant role in shaping the establishment, with a focus on providing an authentic racing experience. The centers feature state-of-the-art electric go-karts, which offer a safe yet thrilling racing experience for visitors of all ages.
Over the years, Andretti Indoor Karting & Games expanded, opening multiple locations across the United States. In addition to karting, the centers feature an expansive arcade with a variety of games, from classic pinball to modern video games.
Laser tag enthusiasts can engage in thrilling battles in themed arenas, while bowling lanes provide a classic recreational option. For those seeking adventure, there’s a ropes course with challenging obstacles and a zipline to test agility and courage.
Virtual reality simulators bring an immersive experience, allowing guests to explore different worlds or drive virtual race cars. It also boasts a bar and restaurant serving a variety of food and beverages, making it a convenient spot for dining and socializing with fun things for teens to do in Atlanta.
With its blend of adrenaline-pumping activities, family-friendly entertainment, and a range of amenities, Andretti Indoor Karting & Games ensures that visitors of all ages can have an action-packed and memorable experience.
1255 Roswell Rd, Marietta, GA 30062, United States
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Best Hotels To Stay In Atlanta
- The St. Regis Atlanta
- The Ritz-Carlton, Atlanta
- Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta
- Mandarin Oriental, Atlanta
- The Westin Peachtree Plaza
- Loews Atlanta Hotel