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Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

Slinger, Wisconsin
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Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

Hi everyone! We are traveling through Nashville on our way to the Gulf Coast next April and would like to spend one night in Nashville. We're thinking of going to the Bluebird Cafe that night, but we'll be with our kids, 8&11, and wondering if they would enjoy it or if we should try it when they're older. We'd also like to stay at a nice hotel in that general area. Thank you!

Music City, USA
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1. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

The Bluebird is not downtown. It's in a strip mall in an upscale shopping area known as Green Hills. The only hotel that comes to mind over there is a Hampton Inn. It's a good one. The Bluebird is less rowdy band and more listening room. That means the musicians play and everyone else is quiet. More like a symphony concert atmosphere but less stuffy. That can vary by who's playing, but by and large, it's a subdued atmosphere.

<<the following depends greatly on what your kids are like>>

Unless there's some specific reason for wanting to go to the Bluebird, you may be better served by finding a place downtown. Most of the honky tonks are all ages until 10pm. They provide a much more energetic environment than the Bluebird. Several have dance floors. When I was 8 or 11, I don't think I could sit still for 5 minutes, let alone 2+ hours.

All of the hotels downtown are good (no rat holes) as long as you're east of I-40, south of the Capitol, west of the river, and north of Korean Vets parkway. The newest hotel is the Omni. The most luxurious hotel in the city (indeed the only 5-diamond hotel in the state) is The Hermitage Hotel. Some find the Hampton Inn downtown to be a great balance of location and price.

A nice alternative is to stay at a hotel in the WestEnd/Vanderbilt area. Many offer free shuttles to/from downtown and some have free parking. The rates are almost always lower than downtown rates. With a few exceptions, the hotels in this area are all good.

As always, check recent TA traveler reviews for your hotels.

Slinger, Wisconsin
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2. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

Wow, thank you for your informative post! To be honest, the Bluebird is more of an appeal to me as a music lover, than the kids, and I certainly don't want to make their night, or anyone else's, miserable by dragging them there. I think I'm looking for more of the "Nashville experience", and it doesn't sound like a venue connected to a strip mall is what I'm after. We will have a car, but would like to find a hotel within walking distance of some good restaurants and places to listen to music that would be kid friendly. The Omni sounds good, but is anything within walking distance that would appeal to us? Thank you!

US
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3. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

The thing is ... The Bluebird IS about as authentic a "Nashville experience" as it gets. It's just not located in the tourist district. The Bluebird is the real Nashville, the Nashville that those of us who live here are more likely to participate in. The honky-tonks downtown are great, and locals do go there, but to say that's somehow more "real" than The Bluebird is a mistake.

Having said that, I wouldn't take small kids. It is a very small venue where talking is strongly discouraged. Kids that age just don't have it in them to sit still and be quiet for the length of a show.

As far as hotels downtown, monkeylizard gave you the particulars. Just pull up the map on the Hotel page for Nashville here on TA and go from there.

Music City, USA
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4. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

What TFerrell said x 10.

As for the Omni, or any other true downtown hotel, it's walking distance to tons of stuff. Honky tonks on Broadway, restaurants on Broadway and 2nd Ave, a great laser tag place on 2nd Ave, Boot shops, music stores, and t-shirt shops on Broadway, Mike's ice cream on Broadway at 2nd Ave. The Peanut Shop in the Arcade, etc.

Edited: 17 December 2013, 22:27
Music City, USA
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5. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

"Kid friendly" varies by mom's opinion of what's "kid friendly" and by the personality of the kids. Like I said above, most 'tonks allow all ages until 10pm. The musicians don't have a gag order or anything, but for the most part it's pretty clean stuff in the evenings and they know when they have kids in the room. You're still effectivley taking your kids to a bar with loads of neon beer signs, imbibing adults, dancing, and country music about all the things country music contains (drinkin', carousin', and tellin the boss where to stick it, for example). My strait-laced parents would have never taken me to such a "den of iniquity" as a kid. :)

I see lots of kids in the tonks these days having a ball out on the dance floors. Just don't expect Chuck-E-Cheese and a ball pit.The nice thing about downtown is that there are more things to do than just the honky tonks. If you check one or two out and decide it's not for you and your family, there are restaurants, gift shops, ice cream, music stores, and did I mention the laser tag place on 2nd Ave? <hint hint>.

Slinger, Wisconsin
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6. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

Thanks everyone, for the great suggestions! I would whole heartedly agree that, from what I'm hearing, the Bluebird is NOT a place my kids would enjoy. Not at this age anyway! I will take the advice and perhaps stick to the laser tag as monkeylizard suggested. :)

Music City, USA
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7. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

Good idea. Plan on playing the honky-tonks by ear, no pun intended. You'll be walking by them to go to the git shops, restaurants, etc. You can decide at that time if it's something your kids would like and something you'd take them in to. None have cover charges (excpet on rare occasions). Bring some singles to tip the bands.

Kentucky
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8. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

Bluebird is in green hills. There is one hotel in green hills it's the Hampton Inn. Bluebird is not for kids. Grand Ole Opry would be more kid friendly. Opry Mills has lots to offer for kids & downtown would probably interest them as well!

9. Re: Bluebird Cafe w/kids (8&11) and need hotel recommendation

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