4Bags Boutique - Fairhope

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    In 1894, on the eastern shore of Mobile Bay, a group of people set out to create a utopian single-tax colony. Their goal was to create a “fair hope of success.” From that phrase came the name of the small town of Fairhope, Ala.


Fairhope Municipal Pier

Known locally as the Big Pier, the quarter-mile Fairhope Municipal Pier is one of the small town’s most well-known landmarks. Swimming, fishing, hiking and picnicking are just a few things visitors can do when visiting the pier. Tourists and residents alike gather at the pier to watch the sun set over the bay. 1 Beach Drive (off U.S. 98 Alt.). 251-928-2136, www.cofairhope.com.


Opportunities for shopping

After spending a day lounging by the bay, many Fairhope visitors take advantage of browsing the town’s boutiques and shops. Art galleries, bookstores and jewelry shops are among the downtown’s many merchants. In the heart of it all is home town Sharon Davis and Leslie Fram’s 4Bags Boutique.  This little gem of a boutique is a favorite of visitors from the four corners of the country as well as local Fairhopeans.


Fairhope Museum of History

One of the town’s newest additions, the museum opened in 2008 and welcomes people with an interest in Fairhope’s past. Visitors can view exhibits and displays of the old town jail, railroads, former mayors and Native Americans, among other topics of interest. 24 N. Section St. (off U.S. 98 Alt.); 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesdays-Saturdays. 251-929-1474, www.cofairhope.com.


Getting there

Fairhope is 360 miles from Atlanta. Take I-85 south for 161 miles, then I-65 south for 139 miles. Take Ala. 225 South, then Ala. 42 East, then U.S. 98 Alt. East.


Where to eat

● Panini Pete’s. This casual restaurant was featured on the Food Network and is mostly known for its breakfasts, sandwiches, hot dogs, soups and burgers. $8-$10. 8 a.m.-
2:30 p.m., Mondays to Saturdays. 251-929-0122. 421/2 S. Section St. No. 2, www.paninipetes.com.


● Fairhope Inn and Restaurant. Pork tenderloin, lamb shank and filet mignon are just three fine-dining menu items at the Fairhope Inn and Restaurant. Entrees $22-$36. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Tuesdays to Sundays (lunch) and 5-10 p.m. Tuesdays to Sundays (dinner). 251-928-6226. 63 S. Church St., www.thefairhopeinn.com.


Where to stay

● Bay Breeze Guest House. Only a few minutes from downtown, the bed-and-breakfast sits on 3 acres and has five suites and a Garden Room directly on Mobile Bay. Guests can kayak, canoe, take a bike ride to downtown Fairhope or lounge on the private 462-foot pier. 742 S. Mobile St. (off U.S. 98 Alt. East). $149-$179. 251-928-8976, www.baybreeze.us.

● Baron’s “By the Bay” Inn. This inn overlooks Mobile Bay and is within walking distance to shops and restaurants. Rates $79.88-$99.88. 701 S. Mobile St. 251-928-8000, www.baronsinn.com.


Visitor information

Alabama Tourism Department. 251-928-6387, www.alabama.travel.


   

 

FAIRHOPE, AL

Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce Fairhope, Ala., is home to a quarter-mile municipal pier. Known locally as the Big Pier, visitors can fish, swim or picnic there. It is also a popular spot to watch the sun set over the bay.

Garland Sims The fountain at Fairhope Municipal Park, where the Big Pier is located. The park is also home to a landscaped rose garden.

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