We’ve already talked about preparing for Blissdom. It’s finally the week of the conference (I’ll be in Nashville on Wednesday!), and I thought I’d share some specific things I’ve learned about the hotel to guide the newcomers. So here we go.
First of all, I’ve never had more amazing customer service than I’ve experienced at the Gaylord Opryland Resort. It’s AMAZING. From the moment you check in, you will be treated with grace and kindness. If something is wrong in your room they will fix it, immediately (I checked in once sharing a room with someone in a wheel chair and even though the room was supposedly accessible the beds were placed blocking full access to the room, and they came in and rearranged EVERYTHING in ten minutes). So don’t be embarrassed to call down and order more hangers because you’re sharing a room with three other women and y’all have a lot of outfits to hang up.
Now let’s talk FOOD. Now, Blissdom is great about offering up enough edibles to keep you sustained during the conference, but sometimes you want to sneak off with friends for dinner. Also, it’s a really good idea to make sure you eat a full dinner if you plan to drink at the cocktail parties (you do NOT want to be that drunk girl, I promise). So, here are my recommendations for eating at the hotel itself. Solario is one of the better deals $ wise at the hotel, and offers up standard Mexican fare. It’s good, too, but I won’t say it’s my favorite Mexican ever (I’m fussy about eating good Mexican food). Wasabi’s, on the other hand, offers up some of the VERY best sushi I’ve ever had (but BOY is that place expensive). The good news about Wasabi’s is that their menu is actually quite expansive so for those that don’t like eating raw fish there is usually something good on the menu that they can dig into as well. Findley’s Irish Pub is a popular place for conference attendees (partially because it’s one of the places closest to the conference area) and they offer up some really great hardy fare; their food is on the heavier side, but the prices are better than in the main restaurant area. Physical space there is small, though, so go early if you want a table. During the day if you want to grab a burger, Stax is really great. If you can find it; it’s located on Delta Island (yes, the hotel has an indoor river and there is an island), and I always have a hell of a time getting there. Room service, by the way, is fast and excellent and will cost about half your monthly mortgage payment.
Let me say this again: I cannot emphasize enough the ENORMITY of this hotel. You will be walking a great deal to go from your room to the conference halls to the restaurant or to the coffee shop. Plan to wear stuff, including shoes, that make this comfortable for you. It makes for a far lovelier experience, I assure you.
Lastly, if you get lost, two things to bear in mind: each wing has a unique carpet on the floors in the hallways. MEMORIZE YOUR HALLWAY CARPET and it will go a LONG way in helping you when you lose your way. Cause you will lose your way. I promise. I’ll get lost and I’ve been there several times now. When you get lost, be sure to flag down a staff member. They will go WAY beyond giving you directions and will often actually walk you to where you need to go. Don’t be shy!
I cannot WAIT to see you in Nashville! Please say hello. I’m easy to spot.