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Mike Jordan

Mike Jordan

Articles (8)

The 12 best museums in Atlanta

The 12 best museums in Atlanta

As one of the best cities in America to visit and to live, Atlanta is a beloved hub of culture and Southern charm. The city buzzes with excitement, bursting with a long list of things to do, restaurants to try, and bars to check out. Of course, the city is big on culture, too, and the best museums in Atlanta are essential for understanding its history, art, and people. To take your museum-going experience to another level, do your research and plan ahead to coordinate your visit so you can take a scheduled tour, hear a guest speaker, or check out a timed performance. Unlike in some other cities, you’re not likely to encounter much attitude as you browse—it’s just not this city’s style—so be sure to ask questions and engage with the staff (it’ll make your visit all the more memorable, no doubt).So whether it’s your first time—or your first time in a long time—here are the best museums in Atlanta that you should visit right now. RECOMMENDED: the best things to do in Atlanta

The best clubs in Atlanta

The best clubs in Atlanta

Atlanta is, and will always be, one of the best cities in the US for clubbing and nightlife. After all, entire songs have been dedicated to the city’s top party spots, and, if you play your cards right, you might end up at the kind of in-demand nightclub that brings out the big-name celebs and musicians that call the ATL home. While trends and tastes have changed over the years, the best clubs in Atlanta are pretty much always in-demand. The nightlife scene in the capital of Georgia is a true beast: from popular hookah bars to bars frequented by mostly locals, the city is varied – but it is the best clubs in Atlanta that provide the clearest picture of what life after dark in this town really looks like. Maybe you need to blow off some serious steam with your crew at an all-night dance party, or maybe you want to impress that special someone with a venue that’s a little more discreet and sophisticated. Either way, if you’re looking to drink and party the night away, check out one of the lively nightclubs, music venues, dance halls and raucous haunts that populate this list. So get out there and bust a move, and if you do it right, you can keep the party going by heading straight to one of the best brunch spots in Atlanta. RECOMMENDED: The best things to do in Atlanta

Chill out at the best hookah lounges in Atlanta

Chill out at the best hookah lounges in Atlanta

When looking for a hookah lounge in Atlanta, we know you want more than just shisha. The best hookah bars offer delicious food and engaging music for a full sensory experience, the kind that you can easily build a fun night around. Atlantans frequently seek out vices in liquid form, piling into neighborhood dives, rooftop bars and cocktail lounges once the weekend rolls around. But hanging at a hookah lounge won’t leave you with a raging hangover. They’re built for crowds, meant to be shared among groups of friends and encourage a deeply relaxed state. Atlanta is home to a large Arab population, so it’s no surprise that these welcoming hookah spots have taken root amidst the city’s Southern BBQ joints and down-home restaurants. You can find hookah spots all over the city, from fancy lounges to low-key spots where you can collapse into a comfy seat and puff, puff, pass the night away. RECOMMENDED: Full guide to the best bars in Atlanta

The 15 best hotels in Atlanta

The 15 best hotels in Atlanta

Hitting the capital of Georgia for business or pleasure? (For the latter, check out our list of the 20 best things to do in Atlanta). Our guide to the best hotels in Atlanta will put you smack-bang in the center of the neighborhood you need to be to take those meetings in the day, get your fingers dirty at the city's best BBQ restaurants at night, and ogle some of the best graffiti in America in between. These hotels combine grand ole Georgian charm and history with the best in contemporary amenities. 

The best cheap hotels in Atlanta

The best cheap hotels in Atlanta

If you’re headed to Atlanta but need to spend a night or two without spending too much money, you’re actually in luck. Contrary to what you might think without having spent much time in the city, Atlanta is famous for affordability, at least when compared to other major U.S. cities. That means the hotel you think will cost you upwards of $300 or more for its nearby location to your area of choice could actually cost you less than $100, and yes, it’s totally safe. So if you’re willing to sacrifice some of the ritz and glamour of higher end lodging, there are more than a few options for spending less money while getting the full ATL experience. Use this guide to affordable Atlanta hotels next time you need to remain within a small budget but want to do it big in the capital city of the South.

L.A.'s best barre workouts

L.A.'s best barre workouts

Barre class—a total-body barre and mat workout based on classic ballet movements—is one of the hottest fitness trends out there, and for good reason: It promises a long, lean, sculpted bod without the bulk, making barre super popular with Victoria’s Secret models and regular folk alike. And while it’s its own brand of tiny-movements torture—the classes' ubiquitous "one inch up, one inch down" refrain couldn’t be more deceptively simple—there’s probably no better workout for serious booty-lifting—it may even surpass the glute-busting of spinning classes and the toning of yoga. We gritted our teeth through a gazillion tucks, pliés and relevés to find the best barre classes in L.A.

A spin class guide to L.A.

A spin class guide to L.A.

We have no shortage of workout options here in L.A., from great yoga (even free yoga!) to only-in-L.A. fitness classes you won't find in any other city. But when you really want to work up a sweat and burn some serious calories, there's no better option than a spin class. So which of L.A.'s indoor cycling studios are legit workouts and which are just spinning your wheels? Two weeks, more than a dozen classes and countless commands to "back that ass up" later, here’s our list of the best spin studios in Los Angeles. (Oh and guys, chilled eucalyptus towels are a thing.)

The best boxing classes in L.A.

The best boxing classes in L.A.

Leave the yoga to the lightweights and work up a sweat inside the ring. Whether you like your boxing classes boutique or bruising, there’s bound to be a knockout gym for you somewhere in the city. But how to separate the champions? We jabbed our way through a gaggle of contenders to come up with this no-punches-pulled list of the Los Angeles gyms offering the best boxing classes—most even let you try your first class for free. Gloves up!

Listings and reviews (31)

Pop Physique

Pop Physique

Pop Physique is housed in a small warehouse-like space, with the prettiest wooden ceiling—good thing too, because you spend a lot of time on your back, cursing your glutes as you suffer through yet another round of hip bridges. But you’re in good company at these packed classes filled with women working hard to get that perfect balance of sleek and strong. Instructors makes sure the energy level stays high, even as your body is screaming "What the tuck?". Pricing: $25 for one class, $240 for 10-class pack; $150/month for unlimited classes with auto pay. 

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Atlanta North Druid Hills/Emory Area

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Atlanta North Druid Hills/Emory Area

4 out of 5 stars

With 209 rooms behind a curved façade that towers over an outdoor pool, this North Druid Hills hotel recently underwent a multi-million-dollar renovation for an updated appeal and modern look. It has small and large meeting spaces (including a 972-square-foot room for conferences), mini-fridges and microwaves in all rooms, king rooms with sofa beds and a restaurant that serves breakfast and dinner, although you’re close enough to Buford Highway that you can catch a ride to some of Atlanta’s best and most authentic multicultural cuisine.

Renaissance Atlanta Airport Gateway

Renaissance Atlanta Airport Gateway

5 out of 5 stars

The term “airport” wasn’t always a term an Atlanta hotel wanted in its name. Yet this Marriott-affiliated hotel, rated as “Exceptional” on Booking.com, is exactly that, having opened in May with a party deejayed by hip-hop impresario (and College Park native) Jermaine Dupri, and a performance from R&B/pop singer (and Vanessa L. Williams’ daughter) Lion Babe. The up-to-date interior design of the lobby has the modernized feel of an Midtown ATL lodging establishment but nods to its aviation surroundings, including meeting rooms named after radiotelephonic alphabet terms like “Alpha”, “Bravo” and “Foxtrot” and Echo. Eat and drink at Hickory & Hazel Southern Table and Bar, which serves New-Orleans-meets-Atlanta cuisine including fried green tomato eggs Benedict, shrimp and grits, and BBQ brisket sandwiches, and has a “Bar Ritual” event four nights a week where you can enjoy complimentary punch. There are 204 rooms, including eight suites, each of which has its own custom mural from Atlanta artist Ryan Coman.

La Quinta Inn & Suites Atlanta Ballpark at Cobb Galleria

La Quinta Inn & Suites Atlanta Ballpark at Cobb Galleria

4 out of 5 stars

Having breakfast thrown in with your stay, along with free parking and high-speed Wi-Fi, an outdoor pool, quick access to major highways and interstates (Cobb Parkway / Hwy 41, I-75, I-285), and lots of shopping nearby whether you’re buying clothes at Cumberland Mall or picking up groceries at Publix. Local calls are also free in case you wanna brag to your friends who’d normally stay further east on Paces Ferry that you paid about half what they did for a perfectly good king suite or double bed.

Motel 6 Atlanta Downtown

Motel 6 Atlanta Downtown

5 out of 5 stars

Sporting simple recent redecorations that put wood-like laminate floors against an aquatic paintjob in king bed rooms, along with a microwave and mini fridge, this Motel 6 puts you less than half a mile from two MARTA stations (Peachtree Center and Civic Center), the Peachtree Center mall (the food court’s decent enough), and the south-end beginning of Peachtree Street. Sure, there are much better neighborhoods for eating and drinking, but the free Wi-Fi and free parking are clutch for you to do a little research and personal investigation of places near the Courtland location. It’s definitely hard to be if you’ll be doing tourist stuff like World of Coca-Cola, Centennial Olympic Park, the College Football Hall of Fame and The Center for Civil and Human Rights.

Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham Atlanta/Buckhead Area

Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham Atlanta/Buckhead Area

4 out of 5 stars

Buckhead is a fancy part of town, so stay at this Microtel and save that extra money to spend on shopping, dining and club-hopping -- you’ll need it. Not only do you get a clean room with earthtones-meet-pastels color schemes on simple designs, but you’ll also get a free continental breakfast that includes waffles, Danishes, cereals and more. It’s pet-friendly and has free Wi-Fi, and is in walking distance of a lot of great restaurants on Buford Highway, an international strip of road that leads to Duluth and takes you through a variety of cultures along the way (Mexican, Korean, Indian -- pretty much the whole planet). It’s also very close to Pink Pony in case you want to investigate Atlanta’s infamously exotic dance club scene, which as long as you’re old enough is completely PC in this town.

The Bar Method

The Bar Method

The Bar Method is the other big fish in the barre class sea, with locations nationwide and a loyal following: Drew Barrymore, Jennifer Aniston and Kirsten Dunst are among the celebrity fans. And it’s easy to see how these ladies got their sculpted limbs, because a few minutes into class, Everything. Was. Shaking. Even body parts you didn’t know could shake were shaking. Cheery instructors encourage you to embrace the shake (because that’s where change happens, people!) and keep things moving so you don’t have time to think too hard between exercises.  Pricing: $28 for one class, $225 for 10-class pack; $250/month for unlimited classes. New clients can get one month of unlimited classes for $99.

Pure Barre

Pure Barre

With more than 400 studios in North America, Pure Barre is the biggest barre chain in the land, and it’s easy to see why: The studios are clean and spacious, the classes run smoothly and efficiently, and the sleek teachers and clientele speak volumes about the results. The moves aren’t easy—these classes are particularly thigh-burning—but smiley instructors keeps you engaged with attention to your form and shouts of encouragement. Pricing: $27 for one class, $230 for 10-class pack; $240/month for unlimited classes. New clients can get one week of unlimited classes free, or one month of unlimited classes for $125.

The Dailey Method

The Dailey Method

This class is about form, not cardio, and Dailey Method acolytes have the long, lean figures to show for it. Instructors here are equal parts calming and detail-oriented, adjusting students throughout the class—a sweat-free combination of ballet, yoga and Pilates—and making it clear that this method is about getting the form correct before you invest in all those reps. The studio is clean and bright, making it easy to relax into the tiny little pulses… who are we kidding, they still suck. But the studio is pretty nonetheless, and Intelligensia is right next door so you can reward yourself with a coffee treat post workout. Pricing: $28 for one class, $220 for 10-class pack; $185/month for unlimited classes with auto pay. New clients can get one month of unlimited classes for $79. Child care is available.

The Main Barre

The Main Barre

The most beautiful of the barre studios we visited is located in an airy sun-drenched space with great views of Downtown LA—the better to bathe their lithe, attractive students in flattering light. Owner/instructor Audra Skaates is an enthusiastic, super positive teacher, gently correcting students’ form while delivering encouraging mantras. Just leave extra time for parking and actually finding the place—it’s on the fourth floor of the Santa Fe building so you need to be buzzed in. Pricing: $25 for one class, $199 for 10-class pack; $159/month for unlimited classes. First class is $20; new clients can get one month of unlimited classes for $100.

Physique 57

Physique 57

Consider it the Tiffany’s of barre classes: Lululemon for sale in the lobby, a hushed, deliciously scented space, the lockers and showers often missing at other barre studios. (Other locations include the Hamptons and Dubai.) More importantly, helpful and engaging instructors who are attentive to newcomers, while still making sure the regulars—the most flexible and most, um, enhanced students we saw all week—are hitting their goals. The only downside? Carpeting on the studio floor, which may skeeve germaphobes out. Pricing: $31 for one class, $270 for 10-class pack; $250/month for unlimited classes. New clients can get one week of unlimited classes for $31.

Cardio Barre

Cardio Barre

Three words: It’s Britney, bitch. And the Backstreet Boys. Even the Spice Girls. Yes, music is but one component of the total barre experience, but in this case it was, as Scary Spice once sang, everything. This was the most dance-y of the barre classes, with more choreography than hard-core movements. That said, all of the instructors are upbeat and run the classes like a pointed-toe bootcamp, keeping the energy level high and the heart rate up. Pricing: $22 for one class, $199 for 10-class pack; $189/month for unlimited classes. New clients can get one week of unlimited classes for $45, or one month of unlimited classes for $99.

News (4)

Here’s how to plan a perfect summer weekend trip to Palm Springs

Here’s how to plan a perfect summer weekend trip to Palm Springs

We know, we know: A trip to Palm Springs in the summer seems like a terrible idea. But the desert playground (about a two-hour drive from L.A.) empties post–Memorial Day, which makes hotels super affordable, buzzy restaurants easy to book and the local attractions crowd-free. On the drive in, the canyon-hugging gondola ride on the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway has the benefit of stunning scenery and a 30° temperature drop. Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Don Graham   Seek relief from the sun at the Ace Hotel & Swim Club. It may be a hipster hot spot, but any insufferableness should be offset by June rates as low as $259. The gorgeous pool is the perfect place to while away a sweltering afternoon. Movie theaters are a welcome respite from the heat, so consider booking your trip during the Palm Springs International ShortFest (June 19–25). More than 100 short films presented at the annual bash have gone on to receive Oscar nominations or awards.   Photograph: Courtesy Palm Springs Art Museum   Museums are another air-conditioned oasis, including the Palm Springs Art Museum. While you’re there, check out a showcase of photos from road trips across the desert (through July 29). Finally, what better way to cool off than with an ice-cold horchata? Taqueria Tlaquepaque serves all the expected Mexican favorites, but we’re partial to the egg breakfasts.

Fitness instructor (and unicorn) Jake Dupree talks resolutions, burlesque and bringing the sparkle

Fitness instructor (and unicorn) Jake Dupree talks resolutions, burlesque and bringing the sparkle

Jake Dupree, 29, teaches at Barreworks in Brentwood, several Equinox locations and Booty Works in Sherman Oaks. At the latter location, you’ll find has signature class, a barre workout so intense he’s dubbed it “Jake That Body”: a nonstop combination of barre, HIIT and body-weight resistance training. Dupree’s banter and zingers are a standout of his classes, as well as outside of the fitness studio; he is also a host and fitness instructor on PopSugar Fitness, as well as cosmopolitan.com’s first-ever unicorn-inspired personality, Glitter Fantasy. We chatted with Dupree about New Year’s resolutions, burlesque shows and bringing fun into the world. What sets you apart from other fitness instructors? My sense of humor. I know that fitness changes lives and can help people live healthier, but we’re not curing cancer, we’re working out. My fitness philosophy is to always add an element of comedy because laughing is really great for your abs in general. And if I can make people get out of their heads and forget about their own insecurities for a second, then I’ve done a good job. How did you start doing what you do? I moved to L.A. in 2011 for a boy and it didn’t work out. I answered a Craigslist ad from a studio that was looking for a barre instructor and got the job. Through teaching I found my voice and owned my funny—I got to try out my material in my classes. Publications eventually started to write about me and I was rated one of the best barre instructors in L.A. I started

Here's how to plan a perfect weekend trip to Solvang

Here's how to plan a perfect weekend trip to Solvang

It’s been more than a decade since Sideways put Solvang—the Danish-style town where many of the 2004 film’s memorable scenes were shot—on every oenophile’s radar, but it’s a great place to explore this winter and spring whether or not you’re into vino: The weather is temperate, the Copenhagen-meets-California architecture is distinctive, and you won’t have to wait behind a crowd in the tasting rooms. Food and (the aforementioned) wine should factor into a visit to the area (about a three-hour drive from L.A.), and you might want to plan your trip around Santa Ynez Valley Restaurant Week (Jan 21–27), when dozens of restaurants offer three-course tasting menus for $20.18. For something less structured, Taste of Solvang (Mar 14–18) enables you to sample delectable creations from local chefs, bakers, winemakers and other culinary artisans. Photograph: Courtesy the Landsby   If you spend the night, the Landsby—a modern respite from the kitschy hotels in town—provides sleek yet hygge guest rooms, a delicious restaurant and a chic Scandinavian aesthetic that makes it popular with tourists and locals alike. It’s just steps away from the Hans Christian Andersen Museum, where you can discover the the author’s dark original tales— before they were Disneyfied. It’s also worth checking out nearby Los Olivos, Solvang’s less touristy sister. Sunstone Winery boasts gorgeous views and tasting rooms in a pretty Provençal-inspired villa, and the Los Olivos Wine Merchant & Cafe touts scrumpti

Here's how to plan a perfect weekend trip to Monterey

Here's how to plan a perfect weekend trip to Monterey

We may have all been obsessed with Big Little Lies this past spring, but fall is actually a great time to visit the coastal region where the addictive HBO series was shot: The summer crowds have dispersed, and while the air is definitely crisper than in July, you can enjoy the same stunning scenery for off-season prices. Drive in via the Bixby Creek Bridge, one of the most picturesque structures in the country—and the money shot in the BLL opening credits. (It’s actually about 18 miles south of Monterey, but let’s call that creative liberty.) You may want to time your trip around the nearby Carmel International Film Festival, which takes place October 18 through 22 and multiplies the tiny town’s population, with 24,000 attendees expected to take in more than 125 films. (A $50 day pass gets you access to all screenings before 5pm.) While you’re there, stop by local favorite the Cheese Shop and pick up some Brillat-Savarin and a baguette to smuggle into one of the fest flicks. If you go in search of the pretty waterfront coffeeshop where Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman have their gossip sessions on BLL, you’ll be disappointed: It was filmed at Fisherman’s Wharf, a crowded tourist trap where you’re as unlikely to find an A-lister as you are a decent latte. Instead visit Cafe Lumiere for freshly baked pastries and enough whimsical coffee art to satisfy moneyed moms and hipsters alike. Finally, stop by Monterey Bay Aquarium, ironically a former sardine cannery. Don’t miss the