“The Peabody in Memphis is a classic American historic hotel. Founded in 1869, it moved to its present site in 1925, and is massive. Like many grand hotels in the American tradition, it has a home from home feel, with a high proportion of repeat business.
It also has an unusual historical twist. In 1933 the general manager of the time, Frank Schutt, returned from a shooting expedition in Arkansas with 3 live decoy ducks and let them overnight in the large fountain in the main reception area. They’ve stayed ever since (or at least a succession of privileged ducks especially selected and trained for the honour). They now live in a specially built duck house on the roof, and twice a day are paraded down through the lobby (via the elevators) and along a red carpet to the fountain, coralled by a specially employed red-coated duck master (one of just three worldwide). Many celebrities have taken the position in a guest role including Paula Deen, Molly Ringwald and Kevin Bacon. It’s a spectacle, and both guests and tourists love it. Though one thing you will not find on the menu is … duck.
The hotel itself is as you would expect – super comfortable, with all the mod cons, with views over the Mississippi from many of the rooms, and ideally located for downtown Memphis – twenty minutes’ drive to Graceland, and just 10 to the Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel, where Martin Luther King was murdered. The reception area follows the pattern of a shared public space, part drawing room, part city centre meeting point, which gives the hotel its tenor and its style. Furnishings are plush, with antique style furnishings and fittings and plush luxury extras. There’s a pool, and a small but pampering spa.
For visiting celebrities, this is THE place to stay in Memphis.”