By Guest Blogger Tara Pitts
By mid-January of this year, I had hit a wall. Between my spouse working from home for the last 10 months, and my teens’ virtual learning schedule, I rarely had any time without someone asking for food, advice, or technical assistance with a device or printer. I called my sister, who lives in New Bern, and told her I needed a Mom’s Time Out. As a homeschooling mom to three kids, she was all in.
We wanted to meet somewhere midway between our two homes, and decided on the Southpoint area of Durham. There are lots of nice and affordable hotels in this area, but since I had recently become a World of Hyatt member, I decided to look for a Hyatt so I could accrue additional points. I booked us in a room at the Hyatt Place Durham/Southpoint with two queen beds, and a nice corner sofa area that faced a large TV. There was even a mini-fridge, and all for a very affordable price. It sounded perfect and checked all our boxes.
The Southpoint area of Durham has a lot to offer. First, you have the Streets at Southpoint, which is located just off of I-40 on Fayetteville Road. It is a large indoor/outdoor mall area with lots of attractive sidewalks, benches and fountains. It is anchored by a large movie theatre and a few department stores, including Nordstrom, Belk, Macy’s and JC Penney’s. In addition, there are over 150 stores, plus restaurants like Maggiano’s, California Pizza Kitchen and Firebirds Wood Fired Grill.
Across the road is another shopping and dining area with stores like Old Navy, Nordstrom Rack and REI. The restaurants are another big draw with a Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, PF Chang’s and Buffalo Wild Wings. Down the road along Renaissance Parkway you can find a Home Goods, Michael’s, and Target. There are also a number of fantastic local restaurants.
Our Mom’s Time Out agenda was simple: to not have to cook or clean, make decisions, or attend to anyone’s needs besides our own! We arrived in Durham around 4 pm, and after a quick shopping trip in Nordstrom Rack, we decided we needed food as we both had skipped lunch. We had some great drinks and appetizers at The Cheesecake Factory and picked up some dessert to take back to the hotel. Staff at the Hyatt Place were super nice and there were copies of menus from the restaurants nearby at check-in. We relaxed a bit, and then went to Target to pick up some snacks and a few other things, including foot masks, face masks and a little bubbly. Our evening consisted mostly of talking and talking some more, watching Netflix (Hyatt Place has a Chromecast channel that allows you to cast your phone and stream directly to the TV), and eating dessert.
The next morning, we took a brisk walk and then ordered breakfast and coffee from Rise Southern Biscuits and Righteous Chicken. This popular local restaurant offered curbside pickup and it was absolutely delicious. As a member of World of Hyatt, I received a complimentary extended check-out time of 2 pm, which gave us the great luxury of taking our time getting ready. We talked about books we were reading, podcasts we loved and of course, our families. It was wonderful to have that extra time to catch up!
We didn’t venture far in Durham, choosing instead to stick to the Streets at Southpoint for shopping and a late afternoon meal. Then, it was time to say our goodbyes and return to our real life. While I hated leaving my sister/best friend, I felt so rejuvenated and relaxed from a simple one-night getaway. It was exactly what we both needed and I highly recommend a Mom’s Time Out for any and all moms at this point in the pandemic!
*All of the stores and restaurants we visited went out of their way to enforce Covid-guidelines, including our hotel. We wore masks and practiced social distancing, and felt completely comfortable with our safety on this trip.
**The author of this blog said she was having too much fun with her girlfriends to remember to take any photos! All photos included with this blog are courtesy of Discover Durham.