New accommodation options are on offer in Alabama, while the state is also proving a hit with foodies.
The Elyton Hotel in Birmingham recently opened after a $45 million redevelopment of the iconic Empire building at 1928 1st Ave. as a luxury Marriott hotel.
The property has a restaurant, 117 bedrooms, a gym, lounge, meeting space and rooftop bar called Moonshine.
The adjoining former Alagasco headquarters at 1918 1st Ave. N. will become a limited-service Marriott hotel with 120 rooms.
The Lodge at Gulf State Park, a Hilton Hotel opens in November and is located on the white sands of Gulf Shores inside the naturally beautiful 6,150-acre Gulf State Park.
The Lodge will offer guests access to 28 miles of educational hiking and biking trails, nature centre, outdoor classrooms, interpretive center, tennis, kayaking, guided nature walks, butterfly garden, forest and beach pavilions.
Two on-site restaurants will offer locally sourced, freshly prepared cuisine and feature gulf views from indoor and outdoor seating or a private dining room option.
The Lodge will offer 40,000 sq ft of indoor and outdoor event space including the largest ballroom on the Gulf Coast with a beach view.
On the subject of food, Orange Beach, Alabama will host the World Food Championships immediately after WTM London finishes, where culinary stars and home cooks will show off their skills.
It takes place from November 7-11.
Meanwhile, the Highlands Bar and Grill, in Birmingham’s historic Five Points South District, has won the 2018 James Beard Foundation Award as the most outstanding restaurant in America.