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For the First Time in a Decade, Charleston Does Not Top Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards

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For the first time in ten years, Charleston was NOT named the best small city in the U.S. by Condé Nast Traveler magazine. However, the Holy City didn’t fall far as it placed second (behind Aspen, Colorado) in the periodical’s 34th Annual Readers’ Choice Awards. Nearby Greenville, SC checked in at No. 5 on this year’s Best Small Cities list.

The Best Small Cities list broke down as follows:

  1. Aspen, CO
  2. Charleston
  3. Alexandria, Virginia
  4. Santa Fe, NM
  5. Greenville, SC
  6. Carmel-by-the-Sea, California
  7. Key West, FL
  8. Savannah
  9. Jackson Hole, WY
  10. Newport, RI

Chicago was once again voted as the country’s Best Big City.

In addition to Charleston’s No. 2 Small City in the U.S. ranking, Kiawah Island placed second on the Top Islands in the U.S. list, while nearby Hilton Head once again took home the top honors.

Meanwhile, the following were named among the top 20 resorts in the South: Montage Palmetto Bluff in Bluffton (1), The Beach Club at Charleston Harbor Resort & Marina (3), The Sanctuary Hotel at Kiawah Island (6), Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort in Hilton Head Island (14), Omni Hilton Head Oceanfront Resort in Hilton Head Island (15), and The Inn & Club at Harbour Town in Hilton Head Island (19).

Condé Nast Traveler also published a list of their readers’ favorite hotel choices in Charleston:

  1. French Quarter Inn
  2. The Spectator Hotel
  3. Belmond Charleston Place
  4. Zero George
  5. Emeline
  6. The Vendue
  7. The Restoration
  8. The Dewberry
  9. Grand Bohemian Hotel Charleston, Autograph Collection
  10. HarbourView Inn

For the complete list of 2021 Awards, visit www.cntraveler.com/RCA

In September, Charleston was named No. 1 City in the U.S. by Travel+Leisure readers. The award marked Charleston’s ninth consecutive year atop that list.

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