After enjoying Charleston bay & its surroundings, today the Fabulous Four are walking around the city & its beautiful streets.
If you remember the north & the south of Broad St. have divine houses & mansions, in the southern end we find the Dock Street Theatre, in the street that bears the same name.
It is a very special theatre as it was the first one in the country to open exclusively for artistic performances in 1736. It’s believed it got destroyed by the Great Fire of 1740.
In 1809 the Hotel Planters was built there, becoming one of the most exclusive ones in the city. It went into despair until 1935, when it was rebuilt again & reopened as a theatre.
The access to the theatre is free, we visited not only the stage but the areas where people would meet between acts, & still does as it is still active.
It also has a pub where Jamaican rum & Planters punch used to be served.
There are a few homes which used to belong to prominent citizens that can be visite.
In Charmers St. there is a small museum where we weren’t allowed to take pictures. It used to be an Old Slave Mart. There we read & learnt a lot about slavery, how much a person could cost, what in today’s money would be $31.000… no words.
A few meters away, in Bay St., there is the Old Exchange & Provost Dungeon, another small museum we saved for next time & that I also recommend. You can buy the tickets for both together, it works out cheaper.
We were thirsty but couldn’t see anywhere to have a drink, in fact there was one! a hidden & nice place in the corner opposite the Old Exchange, the One Broad Street, we couldn’t tell from outside but a little bird had told me it existed.
Us girls went in for a drink to cool down before continuing exploring, it was a God-sent.
If you like posh restaurants with nice local food, stay on Bay St towards Market & you’ll find Magnolias.
In the corner of Bay St. & Market St. there’s the beautiful hotel Market Pavillion, we went to check it out. It’s lovely, has a very cool rooftop, also quite expensive, with awesome views of the city, the bay, the bridge & the impressive Custom House.
Another place with a great rooftop & more relaxing is Henry’s Rooftop Bar, where we had a very nice time.
A few meters away there is a church, it’s not estrange in this city, is it?, this one has one particularity, the 5 Five Church is a very cool bar-restaurant, you have to go in at least to see it, besides the girl at reception is lovely, like everyone in Charleston.
One day when we’re going for something to eat, we saw a car in front of 5 Church, you could draw or on with chalk, we thought it was very funny, it was similar to La Bodeguita del Medio but mobile.
My friend Frank from NY suggested us a bar to go for a drink & a bite to eat, so off we went to the Cane Rhum Bar. As we got closer we heard some Caribbean music & started dancing in the street. They had happy hour & treated us so well, we had a great laugh, a drink & food. It became our favourite place.
The Historical Market of the City of Charleston is very long, crosses the whole of Market St., there we found all kinds of local craftwork & many more other nice things.
Amongst them very nice hand made Zulu wire baskets, made with skills inherited from the slaves, they’re fabulous. It takes them days to make them & therefore the price goes accordingly.
Its main entrance is in Meeting St. & right above there’s the small Museum of the Daughters of the Confederacy, we saw lots of memorabilia given by many families of the area.
I had a mission, find a patch & a t-shirt from a fire station. I was in luck, the Central one was in the same street.
After many fires, hurricanes, earthquakes & many volunteers to fight them, the city decided to create a permanent fire station. In 1877, after a great fire, they placed fire boxes in every corner. After the 1886´s earthquake when the rubble obstructed the existing stations, the major decided to build three in strategic locations, being one this one I today present you.
The fire fighters were ever so kind to me, they explained how nowadays the station is maintained the same as it was, they showed me the rails the fire cart would use, the modified new trucks, so they can go through the arches & the back door where the horse would come in.
There was a point when the four of us realised there were no shops around us, which was quite refreshing for a change in US city. They do exist, they are in King St. where many of the buildings are very nice & we can find some other place to eat like Verde, where they make yummy salads.
Today’s book “La Pintora de Estrellas” by Amelia Noguera has another female protagonist. Violeta has an abusive husband, she runs away to Asturias to live with her grandad Diego. Together they’ll help each other, her finding herself & her art, him collecting strength to tell her a big family secret that involves his great love Elisa, an artist who helped save loads of art from the Nazis during the war. Two parallel stories which will hook you up from minute one & make you enjoy the whole book.