The historic district of Charleston is so postcard-pretty perfect, the restored homes so gorgeous, that it almost feels like a movie set. Fake, almost; I expected to see ladies in hoop skirts step out of the horse-drawn carriages that ply the streets, or Rhett Butler to come strolling around the corner.
On our trip to the Carolinas, our location could not have been better than the Jacobson Building at 19 Broad Street. On the main street of downtown Charleston in the midst of the Historic District, 19 Broad is a block from the Old Exchange and Provost Dungeon (dating from the 17th Century, where many Revolutionary War patriots were imprisoned) and just around the corner from Rainbow Row (a series of thirteen colorful, photo-worthy houses reminiscent of the Caribbean).
We stayed in one of the Jacobson Building’s six self-serviced studios and suites; it offered space and comfort with amenities like coffee maker, a small fridge and plates/glasses/silverware so we could keep breakfast, snacks and wine for ourselves. Being self-serviced it also was without daily maid service, but more like having your own personal apartment in the heart of Charleston. The sanctioned historic inn offers spacious, serene, and up-to-date guest rooms. With ceiling heights of 16 feet, original dental moulding, brick hearth fireplaces and heart pine floors, 19 Broad is also outfitted with all the modern comforts: complimentary wireless internet, cable television, gas fireplaces, tile bathrooms and kitchen supplies. The contrast of living from not having our house cleaning nashville maids do the house work was actually more chanllenging than I thought it would be.
The best thing was being able to walk almost everywhere we went, including the French Quarter, South of Broad mansions, Charleston City Market, historic homes open to the public such as the Nathanial Russell and Aiken-Rhett houses, and old atmospheric cemeteries where some of the city’s most prominent citizens are buried. On the ground floor of the building is the delightful Normandy Farm Artisan Bakery, a perfect place to get a delicious breakfast.
19 Broad was designed by architect Nathaniel F. Potter, famous for his work on the original Charleston Hotel. The building served as the Bank of the State of South Carolina from 1817 to 1838 and the South Western Railroad Bank from 1840 to 1861. The building’s original granite facade, weighing several tons, crashed famously through Broad Street’s underground water mains in the Charleston Earthquake of 1886. At that time, 19 Broad operated as the News & Courier, a beacon of the New South Industrialism movement. In the 1950’s, the building became the Law Offices of I.H. Jacobson, thereby giving rise to the letters affixed to its facade today: Jacobson Building.
For us, the charm and history of Charleston was the major draw in visiting this beautiful city; and being in the midst of and a part of all that at 19 Broad really made our trip.
19 Broad Street, Charleston SC 29401
Jan and Mike Jacobson
Rates: $190-$950, depending on room and season.
Based on occupancy, 19 Broad can be subdivided and configured to accommodate parties of 2 to 12. Weekly and monthly rates are available. The hotel is also available for events such as weddings and parties.