If you’re looking for a truly memorable experience for an overnight stay, South Carolina’s creative accommodations can give you just that. From unusual exteriors, to eclectic décor, to scenic balcony views and beyond, the best lodgings offer plenty more than just a place to rest your head. And while there’s certainly no place like home, these 15 most unique hotels in South Carolina prove sometimes that’s a good thing.
Despite the standard rooms with standard beds and standard rates, South of the Border Motor Inn is anything but ordinary. It just so happens these accommodations reside on the property of one of the most oddball roadside attractions in the country. Lodging at Mexico-themed South of the Border puts you within walking distance of several on-site shops, the famed Sombrero Restaurant, and all the fun and whimsy of kid-friendly Pedroland. Some call it weird, others call it unique, but there’s one thing for sure—you’ve probably never stayed anywhere quite like it.
As one of South Carolina’s oldest hotels, Francis Marion Hotel reflects its rich history, both in location and décor. Take a step through the King Street entrance and find yourself immersed in the fineries of the 1920s with the conveniences of modern times. Marble bathrooms, custom granite sinks, and rich furnishings adorn every room and penthouse suite, and its position in the midst of Charleston’s famed historic district guarantees a memorable stay.
When you want to leave the world behind, a little peace of mind with your peace and quiet goes a long way. Beautiful, serene country lands provide the perfect backdrop for relaxation at this bed and breakfast, where the only sounds buzzing through the air are the birds overhead, horse hooves in the field, and the clinking of wine glasses on the terrace. Once you reach the pinnacle of relaxation and start to crave adventure, the inn has curated several add-on adventure excursions that provide a one-of-a-kind experience with every stay.
Set in the midst of luscious gardens, the Battery Carriage House is a staple of Charleston history. The inn traces its origins to the 1840s, but that’s not its most unique piece of trivia. It’s also considered one of Charleston’s most haunted places, with guests reporting eerie occurrences, especially in rooms three, eight, and 10. Most people would brush off these alleged ghost encounters as overactive imaginations at work, but the striking similarities between reports gives pause to even the most logical thinkers.
Perhaps Greenwood’s most unexpected find, the Inn on the Square adds character to the city’s downtown from the inside out. This spot carries an upscale image from the moment you walk under the awning and into the lobby, where its expansive ceiling opens up to reveal its many rooms aloft.
Is it a play on the word “venue?” Is it referring to “vending?” We’re not sure. All we know is when it comes to differentiation, this place takes the cake. There’s rooftop dining, live music, and short walking distances between guests and Charleston adventures. But what really sets this hotel apart is its dedication to all things art. Everywhere you turn, there’s a piece of art staring right back at you. They feature 2-3 unique exhibits throughout the year, and it plays home to Charleston’s only Artist in Residence Program.
If you thought you had to travel all the way to Florida to experience all that Disney has to offer, you’re only partially right. While the Magic Kingdom and its constituents are still rooted firmly in the Sunshine State, Disney has affixed a resort in one of South Carolina’s most prominent, luxurious vacation spots. This offshoot provides unique amenities paired with a sandy beach backdrop to provide an experience that can only come from Disney.
Boutique hotels flourish through offering unique accommodations through furnishings, decor, and scenery, and the Meeting Street Inn pulls them all together in one luxury package. Situated right in the heart of Charleston’s finest shops, restaurants, and historic district, this pretty pink building provides the charm of the 19th century with all the present-day enjoyments.
You can get the real-life opportunity to sleep like kings and queens in this very castle-esque structure. Saturated in post-Civil War history, the castle originally was built as a place of worship. One caveat if you want to stay here: There’s a 28-day minimum. But if the castle life is for you, then a month-long tenure should be no problem.
Whoever is responsible for designing and decorating the rooms here certainly did their homework prior. Guests marvel at how the ambiance aligns with Charleston’s heritage. You can’t miss the striking bright yellow buildings nestled in 300 years of history. And in addition to the scenery, they place a huge emphasis on guest experience. From rooftop breakfast dining to afternoon tea to welcome receptions and more, this inn knows how to make you feel like the most elite person in town.
Okay, so this isn’t exactly a hotel, per se, but it certainly does make for a memorable night away from home. Remote treetop accommodations are popular in far-away places like Belize and Costa Rica, but South Carolina offers one of the few places right here. Perched in a cabin high above the ground, you can look around and not see another treehouse in sight (although there are several in the vicinity) for a quiet, private experience. So, how exactly do you get to your resting place? One word: Canoe.
1804 was several lifetimes ago, but this quaint boutique hotel in Charleston, South Carolina, has managed to roll with the times. This inn features classic Charleston sophistication in every corner, along with some of the best culinary expertise in the city. But perhaps the most intriguing aspect is that its address is 0 George Street. We didn’t even know that was possible.
Tucked inside a KOA campground, you can feel what it’s like to sleep inside a train without traveling miles along rickety tracks. This shiny red caboose faces lakeside to offer unique lodging with a view. Best of all, you get access to all the campground amenities, like bike rentals and a swimming pool.
Beachfront? Lazy river? Ocean view rooms? Yes, to all, but what sets this resort apart is the rooftop pool. Way up high on the seventh floor, guests can enjoy some of the best ocean views in the city, right from their swimming pool. It’s the perfect spot for watching dolphins near the shoreline, a sight often missed from a ground level view.
Surround yourself with the opulence and personality of centuries past. This charming boutique hotel represents the No. 2 wedding destination in the country. Alongside its fineries comes a rich archive of history, both within and outside its walls. The owners have done a great job in maintaining its historical niceties while creating a truly unique experience for anyone who stays here.