Earlier this year, the restaurant at downtown Memphis’ Madison Hotel was reinvented as eighty3, a concept cultivated in part by Chef Frank Fronda. Fronda’s career spans California to New York, where he worked in the kitchens of the Metropolitan Opera House and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Photo by Andrea Zucker. Copyright © Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau 2011 All Rights Reserved.
back

Your Guide to New Year’s Eve in Memphis and West Tennessee

There was a time when the approach of December 31 sent me into a tizzy planning giddy, glittery nights out.

These days, I’m content celebrating in broken-in pajamas; surrounded by my man, my five-year-old and my dog; counting down beneath a silent, starry sky.

So for every style – from laidback to luxe – I suggest my favorite New Year’s Eve possibilities throughout West Tennessee:

Laidback by the Lake

While our RV is in hibernation, how fun would it be to reminisce about our camping adventures of 2012 – and make a bucket list for 2013 – inside a Tennessee state park? In West Tennessee, Paris Landing or Pickwick Landing would be just right: Both parks invite you to hike, fish, golf or do nothing but watch the water, and each operates an inn and restaurant. At Paris Landing (in the northwest Tennessee town of Buchanan), the New Year’s Eve package includes a dinner buffet, one night at the inn –  where all rooms feature balconies with a view to Kentucky Lake – and a breakfast buffet (purchase tickets for the New Year’s Eve dance with entertainment by Syndicate of Soul separately).

Now that’s something to celebrate: the view of Kentucky Lake inside Paris Landing State Park. Photo courtesy of Tennessee State Parks.

At Pickwick Landing (about two hours east of Memphis), the New Year’s Eve package includes dinner and two drinks followed by a cash bar, live music by Magi, a midnight toast, one night at the inn – here, with a view of Pickwick Lake – and a morning-after breakfast. Contact each park for details and ticketing information: 731-689-3129 for Pickwick; 731-641-4465 for Paris Landing.

Lights along Pickwick Landing. Looks like a natural New Year’s Eve party spot, no? Photo courtesy of Tennessee State Parks.

Legendary

Memphis’ Beale Street, in all of its neon glory, embraces New Year’s Eve like an old friend. Warm up for the midnight guitar drop by hopping between the street’s restaurants and clubs and catching any of the 13 bands lined up to play at the base of the guitar drop (where Rufus Thomas meets Beale). The concerts and guitar drop are free and open to the public, but plan accordingly: The Beale Street Merchants Association expects crowds of up to 50,000 people, and ID checks will begin at an unspecified time during the night, at which point entrants to Beale Street must be 21 or up. For $10, make the street’s Hard Rock Café your New Year’s Eve headquarters – you’ll get the best view of the bands and guitar drop, plus a champagne toast to accompany it. Details here.

The neon, the energy, the music…any night can feel like New Year’s Eve on Beale Street. Just plan accordingly. Photo by Troy Glasgow. Copyright © Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau 2011 All Rights Reserved.

Luxe…and Luscious

For an upscale take on downtown Memphis, reserve one of these haute tickets:

New Year’s Eve exaggerates The Peabody’s see-and-be-seen swagger, culminating in a party with entertainment by Lord T & Eloise and a VIP Lounge option. Make a night of it by starting with a three-course dinner at The Peabody’s Capriccio Grill (901-529-4199 for reservations) or the hotel’s signature Chez Philippe, a classical French dining room where the New Year’s Eve menu includes golden champagne raspberry sorbet and a milk chocolate tower called the “Sweet Chocolate New Year” (901-529-4188 for reservations). Dinner guests are invited to the hotel’s New Year’s Eve party at a special rate. Purchase party tickets through the hotel website or call 901-529-4000 for more information.

The Mississippi Delta, and your fabulous New Year’s Eve, begin inside the lobby of The Peabody Memphis. Photo courtesy of The Peabody Memphis.

The Madison Hotel nearby is a boutique-luxe property that’s piqued the attention of Condé Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure. I love how the property asserts a contemporary style inside its 1905 shell, and spoils guests with goodies like Italian linens and restaurant eighty3, where global influences are interpreted via local ingredients onto artful small and large plates. The Madison’s New Year’s Eve packages includes an overnight stay (two-night minimum) and dinner at eighty3. As cosmopolitan as the menu promises to be, eighty3 hasn’t forgotten its Southern roots: New Year’s Eve guests may select butter-poached sea bass, served on a white chocolate and champagne buerre blanc, and accompanied by black-eyed pea succotash. (My mama’s going to like reading that. It wasn’t New Year’s Day growing up in our house unless we were shoveling in black-eyed peas – each bite full of promise for prosperity in the year to come.) What’s your plan for welcoming 2013 in Tennessee?

Earlier this year, the restaurant at downtown Memphis’ Madison Hotel was reinvented as eighty3, a concept cultivated in part by Chef Frank Fronda. Fronda’s career spans from California to New York, where he worked in the kitchens of the Metropolitan Opera House and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Photo by Andrea Zucker. Copyright © Memphis Convention & Visitors Bureau 2011 All Rights Reserved.

Hi! I’m Samantha Crespo, and I am Floridian by birth, Tennessean by heart. Growing up, I vacationed in East Tennessee, so I...Read on

1

    avatar

    Michael Lanthier

    Hello, Im looking for a place to spend New Year eve. Michael

Leave a Reply

This conversation is missing your voice! We can´t wait to hear what you have to say. All we ask is that you keep the conversation positive and spam free. All comments are moderated and innapropriate comments will be removed. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to chat with us!

Required fields are marked *