Discover Charleston's Historic Charm: Francis Marion Hotel

Introduction Explore the heart of Charleston, South Carolina, and indulge in the city's incredible history at the Francis Marion Hotel. Steeped in Southern charm and named after the American Revolution hero, Francis Marion, this historic hotel has been an iconic landmark since 1924. Experience the blend of old-world grandeur and modern amenities at this renowned Charleston destination. The hotel is huge and stands out almost wherever you are standing in Charleston.

Historical Significance

Immerse yourself in nearly a century of Charleston's history at the Francis Marion Hotel. As a witness to World War II and host to celebrities and dignitaries, this hotel has a storied past that echoes through its corridors. Discover the tales of the past in every corner of this historic gem. The namesake of the hotel, Francis Marion, is also interesting to read about if you get the chance. Known as the “Swamp Fox,” he was a military officer and leader in the American Revolutionary War. He served as a Continental Army officer from South Carolina and played a significant role in the Southern theater of the war. Marion was known for his guerrilla warfare tactics, leading small bands of militia fighters in hit-and-run attacks against British forces. His tactics disrupted British supply lines and communications, earning him a reputation as a skilled and elusive commander. Marion's tactics and leadership were instrumental in weakening British control in the South during the Revolutionary War. The movie “The Patriot” starring Mel Gibson was loosely based on Francis Marion.

Architectural Splendor And Some Haunted History

Marvel at the architectural magnificence of the Francis Marion Hotel, reflecting the glamour of the 1920s. There is ornate detailing, marble floors, and crystal chandeliers; the hotel exudes opulence. Step into the past as you enter the lobby, where the Jazz Age comes alive in every detail.

Some people say that the hotel is haunted. The tragic tale of Ned Cohen at the Francis Marion Hotel revolves around a lovesick young man from New York who visited Charleston to pursue a romantic relationship with a local woman. Distraught after she left him with a note expressing her family's disapproval, he jumped from his tenth-floor hotel room, ending his life. Legend has it that Ned's spirit haunts room 1010, with guests on various floors reporting sightings of a falling body, mysterious window rattling, and unexplained sensations like someone stroking their cheek.

The author reports that he saw nothing unusual during his stay but can see with the building being 100 years old, it does seem to feel odd from time to time when walking alone in the long corridors leading to the rooms. The Hotel Desk receptionist remarked to us that he hated to walk alone in the hallways and often felt like he was being watched or followed.


Allow started to be “luxurious”; the author supposes this is somewhat accurate but at the same time not so much. It felt very much like a hotel, which more or less to the author these days is a negative. Due to the hotel being old, and its infrastructure as such, expect the bathrooms to have an odd layout and feel tiny and cavelike. In our room as well, there was a piece of cardboard placed under the TV stand, which was a bummer for one would imagine for the price of the hotel one pays for such a hotel, things like this would be rectified before a guest stayed there. The rooms, bathroom, and bed were very clean though. The room also had an extremely loud heating and cooling system that would cycle on or off at random intervals, which is always very disturbing when sleeping. This is not unlike many other hotels though and for some reason is the standard. The author is generally anti-hotel and thinks in the future the only way hotels will truly continue to thrive is if people stay is completely immaculate and ultra comfortable.

However, the hotel holds a high prestige in the area. The Francis Marion Hotel offers elegant event spaces, making it an ideal choice for weddings, conferences, and special occasions. During our stay, there was a huge conference for physicians, another one for judges, and a ball for the Citadel military college. It was very safe and the staff seemed proud to work there. There are incredible views of Charleston likely from all the rooms in the hotel though. If you don’t want to deal with some of the intricacies of dealing with an Air BNB, a hotel can step in and this might be a good place to check out.

Dining and Amenities

The hotel restaurant called the “Swamp Fox” explains their restaurant as being Southern cuisine with a modern twist, prepared by our skilled chefs. We did not eat this restaurant for the only reason that there are so many incredible restaurants in the area it did not seem right to eat there. The food and menu looked solid, and I suppose that if you wanted something ultra easy to step into after a long day of travel without a decision point and wait times, this might be a good option. There is a Starbucks in the lobby but again with excellent local coffee shops a stone's throw away, why would you want to spend your money at a massive coffee conglomerate and not at a local shop? I highly recommend Kudu Coffee, which is a local haunt for college students and has a beautiful outdoor seating area with a fountain. I also recommend Mudhouse, which offers incredible pour-over coffee.

Prime Location

Conveniently located in the heart of Charleston's historic district, the Francis Marion Hotel offers easy access to the city's cobblestone streets, historic landmarks, museums, and theaters. Immerse yourself in Charleston's vibrant culture, all within walking distance from our hotel. Its prime location right on King Street is perfect for those who may not be sure what they want to do, as its central location allows for those to stay there to easily walk to almost all points of significance. It also is perfect for using public transit for pedicabs, taxis, or access to the water taxi with a short walk or ride. There is a parking garage next door which charges a reasonable fee to park there. It’s nice to just park and leave your vehicle in a spot and just walk or take public transit everywhere.


Discover the allure of Charleston's historic district at the Francis Marion Hotel. Whether you're exploring the city's attractions or attending a special event, the hotel offers a blend of Southern hospitality and modern comfort, and the simplicity of staying in a hotel. I recommend it if you are staying for a short period of time in the city (if an Airbnb is not available or cost-effective) or if you are looking for an ultra-convenient location that you can just park your car and walk or use public transit for the duration of your stay.

Back to blog