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The Veranda: 'A Place to Dream' in Historic Senoia

By Pamela Sosnowski

With its white columns, wraparound porch, and surrounding flowers, The Veranda looks like a throwback to another era - and it is, considering it was built over a century ago. For the past 11 years, Rick and Laura Reynolds have been managing the bed and breakfast and giving guests a good dose of Southern hospitality. The inn has proved so popular with tourists that it was named one of the top ten places to stay in Georgia by Better Homes and Gardens in 2013.

"It's doing what it should be doing- it's right in the heart of this little town," says Laura Reynolds. "And people from all over the world come here."

Built in 1906, The Veranda originally operated as the Holberg Hotel. Several original features are still intact in the 8.000 square foot mansion including tin ceilings, George heart pine floors, early 20th century light fixtures, and eleven fireplaces. The inn's nine rooms are spacious, comfy, and full of period charm. The sweeping porch provides the perfect spot to savor a cup of coffee or tea in rocking chairs while enjoying the beauty of the inn's flower gardens.

One of the highlights of a stay at The Veranda is being treated to the hotel's famous four-course Southern breakfast. "Rick's baked tomato recipe, people just can't believe," says Reynolds. "Our peach cobbler is pretty famous, too."

Reynolds and her husband love getting to know their guests. "You never know what you're going to hear when you sit down at the breakfast table," she says. "When people start telling their stories, it's just an amazing thing. I really enjoy it and so does my husband. And to give people a place of respite, and a place to dream."

Business has been booming ever since the cast and crew of the enormously popular AMC series The Walking Dead came to town - Senoia stands in for the town of Woodbury on the screen - but the hotel itself is no stranger to celebrity. Margaret Mitchell, author of Gone With the Wind, interviewed Confederate veterans at the Veranda when composing her famous novel, William Jennings Bryan stayed at the hotel when running for president in 1908, and the film Broken Bridges was filmed on the property in 2006.

Besides scoping for zombies, The Veranda's guests are just a short walk away from downtown Senoia's shops, restaurants, and historical sites. "The town has gone through phenomenal transformation," says Reynolds. "And it's just progressed in a beautiful way. It was put on the historical registry back in the 80s, and everything that is within the city limits goes through historical preservation and has to fall in that genre if you're going to build an add on or improvement or anything. It's just stayed beautifully intact - the way it should be."

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