Settle into your own Birmingham crash pad at a one-bedroom, hacienda-style cottage ($115 per night on Airbnb) in the Homewood neighborhood. Stylist Elizabeth Beeler’s 1931 pale peach home brims with worldly touches, like a tiny stone elephant table, artfully weathered driftwood branches, and plenty of chic patterned pillows. Relax on the low-slung front porch, the floor of which Beeler stenciled to look like pink Moroccan tiles. Get inspired in the sitting room, stacked with hundreds of books and magazines, a French bakery cupboard, and travel-inspired paintings Beeler collected throughout her globe-trotting.
Stay close to the action at the Hotel Highlands at Five Points South (from $129), near a cluster of solid venues and bars. The Art Deco building was built on the site of the Pickwick Club, a popular Prohibition-era dance hall that burned down in the '50s. The stone exterior bears Deco detailing, but the furnishings within the 63 rooms today are more contemporary funk, with boxy geometric shapes, jewel tones, and swirl-patterned bedding. Kick back on the striped sofa in the hotel’s H Bar for a dirty Martini at the end of the day, then doze off in the ultracomfy SertaPerfect Sleeper beds (the staff irons all the sheets by hand).
Make like a traveling rock star at the Redmont Hotel (from $90), whose iconic red rooftop sign has served as backdrop to many an indie show and after-party. The ornate stone and brick exterior and lacy awning belie the unfussy interior, with Spartan, comfortable rooms artists on tour love (the location in the newly hip Loft District also makes the Redmont a great hub for bopping around to shows). Choose room 907 to commune with Hank Williams’s ghost—the country legend spent his last night there before he died in 1953. This August, take advantage of the hotel’s collaboration with Secret Stages, an annual two-day indie music festival: Rates will dip down to $75 per night.