Downtown: Beth Haley’s Neighborhood Guide

Music and history intermingle as locals and visitors discover the diverse selection of arts and culture Nashville’s downtown neighborhood holds. With arresting architecture, inspiring art, and delicious eats, what more could you want? Beth embraces the energetic pace of downtown but welcomes a reprieve from the crowds provided by the downtown honky tonks. Continue below to see her top picks for places to visit on a trip to the city’s core.

21C Museum Hotel

Downtown: Beth Haley's Neighborhood Guide
Image: 21c Museum Hotel Nashville

Doubling as a contemporary art museum and boutique hotel, 21c Museum Hotel falls at the top of Beth’s list of favorites in Nashville. “Downtown introduces a unique perspective on hotels and the 21c personifies that with its treatment of the hotel’s common space. Adding contemporary art to a hotel is an interesting and unexpected way to bring people into the hotel and gives the hotel guest an easy way to see creative art,” Beth says. Stroll through the galleries to see the rotating exhibits, dine at the hotel’s Gray & Dudley restaurant, or book a night in one of the stylish rooms.

Noelle, Nashville, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel

Visit this stylish spot in the heart of Nashville.
Image: Noelle

The Noelle, thanks to a handful of Nashville’s top creative minds who brought new life into the historic building, has received recognition for its well-designed spaces and cool atmosphere. Three bars (one on the rooftop), a coffee shop, and an all-day restaurant, as well as Keep Shop, a store curated by Nashville’s Libby Callaway, are reasons to visit. While you are there, admire the original art deco design, which was thoughtfully preserved.

Bobby Hotel

Downtown: Beth Haley's Neighborhood Guide
Image: Bobby Hotel

Another boutique hotel with stylish interiors, Bobby Hotel, boasts an edgy-yet-refined design style consisting of an European cafe, a glamorous lobby and a gritty garage bar. One of the more interesting design elements sits atop the roof: a repurposed 1956 Scenicruiser bus. The bus is part of the lively outdoor venue that draws crowds each night of the week.

Dream Nashville Hotel

Good design and great sushi make this a go-to.
Image: Dream Nashville Hotel

Arguably the trendiest of Downtown’s new hotels, Dream Nashville opened earlier this year with six food and beverage concepts, as well as 168 rooms. Each dining and drinking destination within the hotel has something special to offer, but we are partial to sushi under the skylight at Stateside Kitchen (pictured above). See you there?

The Hermitage Hotel

Downtown: Beth Haley's Neighborhood Guide
Image: The Hermitage Hotel

The Hermitage Hotel, which opened in 1910 with its notable Italian Renaissance and beaux-arts design, continues to reign supreme as a go-to hotel in Downtown. After admiring the grand lobby, head to the men’s restroom to see the famed art-deco design, the much-talked-about color scheme of lime green and black, terrazzo flooring, and shoeshine station. Snap a photo while you are there.

Downtown Presbyterian Church

Stunning architecture and design leave us mesmerized
Image: Steven Hyatt via Downtown Presbyterian Church

An often-overlooked architectural beauty in Downtown, the Presbyterian Church is one of Beth’s most-loved sights in the city. Egyptian Revival architecture defines the structure, which was built rebuilt twice following two separate fires (the last in 1848). The interior is just as striking with wooden pews, a spectacular pipe organ, trey ceilings, and painted columns. The church is also supportive of local contemporary art, giving artists a place to create and displaying their art throughout the historic building.

Fifth Avenue of the Arts

Downtown: Beth Haley's Neighborhood Guide
Image: The Arts Company

Celebrated for introducing local and world-renowned artists and artwork to Nashville, the galleries that make up 5th Avenue of the Arts attracts art lovers each month during the First Saturday Art Crawl. The monthly event offers the opportunity to see the city’s dedication to art. Rymer Gallery, The Arts Company and Tinney Contemporary are three of the city’s biggest champions of contemporary art. Mark your calendar for next month.

Explore these stops in the heart of the city, and let us know any Downtown spots that inspire you!


Discover more of our blog posts here. We cover everything from color to coffee table books to functional design, and we can even help you discover your design style.

By |August 8th, 2019|Art, Community Events, Inspiration, Nashville, Neighborhood Guide, New Destinations, Traveling|Comments Off on Downtown: Beth Haley’s Neighborhood Guide|

February Newsletter – Love It Or List It

What a pleasure this year’s Nashville Antique & Garden Show show was! The flowers! The art! The antiques! Every year, we feel such pride to call Nashville home as we see the Antique & Garden Show bless our little city with magic. The show always captures our imagination and gives us a big healthy dose of inspiration. This year, it was all about the quality of antiques on display. The variety was incredible and we really fell in love with the contemporary vintage. No shocker there.

All the vintage got us thinking though…Why does some vintage feel so good yet other vintage feel so…wrong? What makes a piece intriguing and another piece stale? We find ourselves asking the questions, “How do you know what to keep or what to look for?” and “How do you know when it’s time to let something go?” 

Keep reading for answers to your questions! 

Featured Topic: Love it or List It?

Clients ask us this question all the time: “Can I keep this piece from my parents? Will it go in the new house?” Let’s dive into the archives and try to pinpoint why we sometimes can love it but sometimes have 

A contemporary living room that is architecturally interesting. The fireplace is chic and the decor is on point. The vintage sideboard feels at home with the modern decor and adds a layer of curiosity to the space.

Vintage doesn’t just apply to furniture. Display what you have and display what you love. The bright antique bowl is perfectly at home with a nice little vanity vignette. It’s sure to intrigue guests.

Talk about a perfect pairing! The secret to this inspiring space is the contrasts. Contemporary architecture paired with heirloom antiques. Often clients worry their collection won’t match the space and in some cases, it’s true. But in this case the unusual mix works because the space is grand enough to hold the furniture and give it space to breathe. The composition feels like it’s a curated corner of a museum, displaying fine works of art and fine examples of period antiques.

Another fine example of unusual pairings – A modern kitchen mixed with what could be called a “decor console” and it WORKS! The ingenious pairing feels fresh, unexpected, and the juxtaposition makes both the kitchen and the vintage piece that much more interesting.

Featured Event: Exciting show at the Frist

Have an afternoon to spare? Indulge in a world class show downtown and enjoy time with some of the best French painters of all time. Van Gogh, Monet, Degas, and Their Times: The Mellon Collection of French Art runs now through May 5 but we have a hunch you might just want to go back for seconds!

When: February 2 – May 5
Where: Frist Art Museum

  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday: 10:00 a.m.–5:30 p.m.
  • Thursday and Friday: 10:00 a.m.–9:00 p.m. 
  • Saturday: 10:00 a.m.–5:30 p.m.
  • Sunday: 1:00–5:30 p.m. (Café opens at noon on Sunday) 

For more info click here

Hot Topic: Netflix & Chill

After you watch all the episodes of Tidying Up With Marie Kondoand feel a void fill it up with the delightful Netflix design show Stay Here. Follow along as a talented designer and real estate guru transform lackluster properties into hot Airbnb rentals. Each episode takes place in a new city and tackles a new design challenge. What’s more, each episode is packed with  insightful design & business tips. Marie Kondo inspired us to Tidy up but Stay Here is inspiring us to rent it out!

We’ve watched the first and second episode (Seattle houseboat and Malibu beach house) and we are already hooked! Nothing like an awesome design show to watch during one of the coldest months of the year!

Click here for more info

By |February 1st, 2019|BHD Projects, Color, Community Events, Decorating, Design Elements, Design Musings, Design Trends, Nashville, Newsletter|Comments Off on February Newsletter – Love It Or List It|

January Newsletter- Marie Kondo Style

New Year, new you?

We love the energy and excitement of a new year. To-do lists are sharpened, resolutions are in full force, everyone is trying to do their best. This year, we’ve noticed an increase is type of atmosphere thanks to the wonderful Netflix series Tidying Up With Marie Kondo, based on the widely popular book “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up”. In the series, viewers get to follow along as homes (and families) are restored and transformed to happy, organized chaos. Each episode is the perfect mix of practical tidying tips and feel good drama.

With the spirit of Marie Kondo, lets visit some homes we have worked our magic on!

Featured Topic: Lovely Living Rooms, Marie Kondo Style

Let’s look at a sweet collection of livings rooms. Each space we design is centered around the idea of creating a gathering spot and casual encounters where family and friends can come together and enjoy one each others company. The idea that if you build it, they will come, is very Marie Kondo as she believes every object should spark joy, we believe every room should spark joy!

This living room is the perfect mix of pattern, color and layered visual interest. The wall of built-ins helps center the space and gives a really nice backdrop for the entire space. We love how the different textures – shiplap, cabinet doors, and mantle – are subtle yet detailed. 

This tidy corner is the perfect balance of color, scale, and visual interest. The organic textures from the ceramic pot to the rattan blinds provides an earthy, grounded atmosphere that gives the space its serene feel. Doesn’t hurt the art is spectacular too! 

We love the lines of this sectional sofa. It is elegant and refined yet adds so much functional seating to the space. The round coffee table is the perfect accent piece and practically beckons people to come sit and gather around. Coffee tables are the perfect place to highlight objects that give you joy. By placing them front and center, and within arms reach, you invite the objects to be part of your everyday life. 

Serving as the second seating area in the same living room as the sectional photo we just saw, this balanced, well composed arrangement seems like the perfect spot to gather and enjoy. Symmetry is an easy design tool that creates a sense of comfort and serenity because it is easy for our brains to understand.

Featured Event: Antique & Garden Show

It is almost time for one of the best events of the year! The Antique & Garden show is full of inspired displays, great vendors, and is always a pleasure to attend. This year, the focus of the show is A Passion for Home, and couldn’t be more fitting!

When: February 1-3, 2019
Time: Friday & Saturday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sunday 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
General Admission Tickets:
$20 before midnight Jan. 27, 2019 (CST)
$25 beginning Jan. 28, 2019
Seniors (65 or older), Active Military & Students:
$15 at the door or in advance.
Children 12 and under are free.

For more info click here!  https://antiquesandgardenshow.com/schedule/

Taking Marie Kondo a step further (and darker) is another tidying trend of the moment “dostadning” . Translated from Swedish, it roughly means death cleaning. The idea is that people can live simpler, cleaner, less messy lives in the present if they imagine what would happen when they die and who would take care of cleaning up after their messy, unorganized life. The idea is dark but unlike Marie Kondo, is a bit more concrete. If you can’t feel joy from objects, can you imagine your loved ones sorting through your mixed-matched sock collection in 30, 40, 50 years or whenever you pass, and thinking you were a hoarder. One tip if dostadning is too dark for you – imagine death in a less literal sense. Replace the word death with moving (Swedish moving cleaning) or In- Law (Swedish In-Law cleaning.)

Still not convinced? Checkout Margareta Magnusson’s “The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Make Your Loved Ones’ Lives Easier and Your On Life More Pleasant