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Behind the Scenes at The Peabody Hotel
Photo Credit: Krause & Johansen

Behind the Scenes at The Peabody Hotel

5 Surprising Facts About Memphis’ Legendary Hotel

You know The Peabody Memphis hotel. Whether you’ve stayed there yourself, seen the stunning red neon sign glowing over downtown Memphis or heard about those famous ducks who march from the roof to the lobby fountain and back every day, chances are you’re on a first-name basis with The Peabody.

Guests on the rooftop of The Peabody Memphis with a view of the skyline.

While the Peabody has certainly earned a spot in popular culture, there are a lot of things about this iconic hotel that you might not know. Go behind the scenes to discover some of the lesser-known facts and hidden gems The Peabody has to offer.

You've  probably never seen the same duck twice.

The Peabody Duckmaster guides ducks down a red carpet as children watch.
Photo Credit Peabody Hotel

The Peabody is most famous for the five North American mallard ducks who live on the roof and entertain guests twice a day with their regal march to and from the lobby fountain. But did you know a Peabody duck's career lasts only three months? The ducks are raised on a farm outside Memphis and live at the hotel for three months. After that, they go back to the farm, where they get to live in the wild. It’s a pretty sweet gig, but it makes you wonder if they miss the daily swooning from throngs of adoring fans.

The Peabody ducks' digs are almost as nice as the human ones.

Ducks in the Royal Duck Palace on the rooftop of The Peabody Memphis.

During their three-month stint at the hotel, the Peabody Ducks live in the lap of luxury in a $200,000 Royal Duck Palace on the roof. The palace is made of marble and glass and includes a fountain, a grassy “front yard” and a replica of the hotel where the ducks can nest. Despite the fancy housing, the hotel staff and the Peabody Duckmaster don’t domesticate the ducks or treat them as pets. After all, they may be famous and adorable, but they’re still wild animals. 

The Peabody is historic in all the right ways – and modern where it counts.

A dog stays in a pet-friendly room at The Peabody Memphis.

The Peabody Hotel celebrated its 150th anniversary in 2019. Of course, the sense of history here is palpable, from the ornate decor of the grand lobby to the tradition of service honored and carried on by every employee.

An historic photo of the Peabody Memphis’ lobby.
Krause & Johansen

But guests of The Peabody will find this historic property is also perfectly modern in all the best ways. A recent renovation of all 464 guest rooms includes bright, spacious bathrooms, local art and all the thoughtful touches you’d want from a luxury hotel from bath products to bedding. You’ll feel the same magic guests have felt since 1869 with the finest 21st-century upgrades.

Look no further for your spa day.

The relaxing lobby of Feathers Spa at The Peabody.
Photo Credit Trey Clark

Think you have to go elsewhere for a day of pampering and relaxation? Think again. Feathers Spa at The Peabody is one of the premiere destinations for indulgence and spa treatments in Memphis. Looking for a massage, body wrap or facial? No problem. They’ve got you covered. Plus, Feathers is the only spa in Memphis to offer Sawai Thai massage and an Ashiatsu barefoot massage service for couples, and the only location in Tennessee to have a Vichy Shower Bed with steam massage and chromo light therapy and aromatherapy that creates a multi-sensory hydrotherapy body treatment. It’s a day of relaxation you just have to book.

From ducks to Jack Daniels, themed packages can customize your experience

The details of The Peabody Memphis Duckmaster’s coat.

 

Any stay at The Peabody is going to be special, but an array of themed packages offer visitors ways to experience different sides of the hotel based on unique interests and Memphis experiences.

The "You Don't Know Jack" package, for example, gets you one night’s deluxe accommodations plus a Jack Daniel’s cocktail in the Peabody Corner Bar, and a bottle of special-edition "Peabody Select" Jack Daniel's Single Barrel Tennessee Whiskey to take home. 

Can’t get enough of the Peabody Ducks? Book yourself an unforgettable "Ducky Day" package, which includes, among a long list of duck-themed treats, the honor of serving as the Honorary Duckmaster for a day, assisting the Duckmaster with a march through the lobby. You’ll even get your own brass-head Duckmaster Cane to take home so you can reenact your experience whenever the mood strikes.