A Magical 4th of July with Good Friends

Thanks so much for all the wonderful comments yesterday.  I’m so looking forward to another 200 Tablescape Thursdays!

Lately I’ve been sticking near home a lot.  I’m determined to get all the posts at BNOTP categorized, tagged and labeled so I can make the switch to the new system to alleviate the issue some readers are having accessing posts via the category links.   So every free second when I’m not working on a new post, I’m categorizing, categorizing, categorizing.  I can only do so many each day, though.  It reminds me of looking through wallpaper books…after a while the mind just can’t absorb or process anymore.

Thank goodness for good friends who lure me away for some fun.  For the 4th of July we did something new this year.  Instead of cooking out, we got reservations for the evening at the Sun Dial Restaurant atop the The Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel.  The Sundial is a unique experience because it’s always rotating slowly, so your view is always changing.  Pssst:  Hit Ctrl + a couple of times to get the most from this post.  Then hit Ctrl zero when you’re done to return the pics to normal size.


The picture above and below are from their website.  I’m kicking myself today because if I’m reading their website correctly, there may be an observatory located above the restaurant.   Not sure about that but if there is, that would lure me back again for some additional pics.


I snapped this pic with my cell phone inside the elevator…maybe the restaurant is as high as you can go.   Ummm…


We arrived well before dark…our reservations were for 8:00.  Here’s the view as we rode up the elevator.


The picture below is from Wikipedia. I drew an arrow above the Sundial so you can see where it’s located in the Atlanta skyline.  The Westin Peachtree building is the 5th tallest building in Atlanta.  If you go to the Wikipedia website, you can run your cursor over the actual photo and it will identify all the buildings for you.


The Menu…


Since there were 5 of us, we weren’t seated in a table right up against the windows.  Instead, we were just across the aisle in an oval shaped booth facing toward the windows.  Every table has a great view, no matter where you’re seated.

(From left: Liz, Jan, Me, Janet and Jeannine.  Jan is the sweet friend who made the mosaic planter I blogged about recently here: A Beautiful Mosaic Planter for the Front Porch)


The Sundial makes a full rotation each hour so the view is always changing.  This photo was taken from my seat.  Photography can be a challenge because you’re inside a moving building!  I was told you can see Stone Mountain from up here.  Ummm, wonder if that’s it off to the extreme right?

View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


It’s beginning to get dark.  This photo was also taken from my seat, but the view has changed once again.

View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


Notice the couple below.  I missed it…was down the way snapping fireworks pics,  but I was told he dropped down on his knee and proposed.  The waiter said that happens about five times a week at the Sundial.  So if you go some evening, keep a look out for nervous acting gents.  A proposal could take place right in front of you.

View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


I zoomed in and snapped this pic of the Georgia Dome as it passed by, or I should say, as WE passed by.

View of The Dome from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


I couldn’t figure out what these things were once they were lit up at night.  Now I realize they are outside of The Dome.

View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel

The “blue hour” is almost upon us.  The building that’s coming into view now is the 191 Peachtree Tower building and it’s 50 stories tall.  It was completed in 1990.  and is the 4th tallest building in Atlanta.

View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


The “Blue Hour” has arrived!

A Blue Hour View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


Later in the evening fireworks began exploding everywhere.  They were coming off the roof tops…just everywhere you looked.  It was pretty amazing!

View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel

View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


This must be what it would feel like to be in the middle of a fireworks explosion, minus the danger/burns, of course. 😉


View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


View of Atlanta from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


4th of July Fireworks View from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


4th of July Fireworks View from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


4th of July Fireworks View from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


Later in the evening, after most of the diners had left, I was able to get closer to the windows.  I snapped a few more photos just before we left for the night.

191 Peachtree Tower Building from the SunDial Restaurant atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel


The moon was so pretty shining down on the one-ninety-one Peachtree Tower Building.

View From Sun Dial Restaurant, Atlanta


Such a fun, fun night!  Did you go anywhere to see fireworks on the 4th?  Or, was the fireworks show in your backyard?


Sun Dial Restaurant View

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  1. Dee Stephens says

    I’ve been to the Sundial several times! Love it! Great pictures!

  2. Looks like a wonderful place to spend the 4th. Love those Blue Hour shots!!

  3. Hi Susan, I visited a dear friend in Atlanta in April. I wonder if it’s like in NY. So many great things that we have at out disposal but rarely take advantage of. We did not go the Sundial and I wonder if she knows of it. We did, however visit the Margaret Mitchell Museum. Have you ever gone? It’s a short tour and so worth the hour or so you’d spend there. The firework photographs here are good; not so easy to photograph them. Was glad to see a post on a Friday. Thanks. Ann

    • Thanks, Ann. Fireworks are really hard to capture…by the time you see them it’s too late to press the button on the camera. I took a lot of pics to get a few worth sharing. I had more but I know looking at fireworks online is not quite the same as being there.

  4. I’ve never been to the Sundial, had kind of forgotten about it. I worked in downtown Atlanta one summer in college, so I remember walking past it many times. Would love to go sometime.
    We hiked up Pine Mtn in Cartersville to watch fireworks. I loved watching the fireworks from up there, but the hike was kind of miserable in the heat and humidity.

  5. What an awesome place to watch fireworks! Looks like you and your friends had a great time – are any of them bloggers? Hugs ~ Mary

    • Hi Mary, No, no one blogs but me. The friend on my right side (left as you look at the photo) in the green shirt is Jan, the friend who made the beautiful mosaic planter for me. I blogged about it a few weeks ago. These are the same friends I traveled with to see the Biltmore a few years back.

  6. Linsey @ The Farmhouse Porch says

    I want to do this! What a cool experience!!!


  7. Hi Susan,
    Great photos and great views of Atlanta.

  8. You are so blessed being able to visit so many places. Thank you for sharing them with us. BLESSINGS

  9. Oh my goodness! This looks/sounds like the most amazing way to spend the 4th with friends! 🙂

  10. Rita May says

    That looks like the place to be on the 4th!

  11. Wow, what spectacular views. I love the dazzling blue hour shots and the full moon! Fireworks had to be great. Glad you had a fun night with friends. Thanks for sharing with us. Atlanta is beautiful and what a great way to celebrate the fourth!

  12. What a terrific idea. I think I want to spend the 4th of July in Atlanta and be a copy cat. ;-
    ~ Sarah

  13. Great pictures and what a fun way to celebrate. I love the picture with the full moon and the 191 building.

  14. Susan, I like your fireworks photos, but I love the photo of you and your friends. You can tell you are all enjoying each other. When you have time, take a look at butteryum.blogspot.com. She also has some great photos and I believe she is somewhere close to your location. She makes great cakes and other yummy stuff. No, I am not related to her, but it would be nice if I were. She just has a nice site.

  15. I forgot to mention while I was looking at your first posting – you have transferred Sept 19, 2009, twice. Once of the post has a problem with a photo. You did mention that if we found a problem to let you know. You can just delete this after you review. I promise I mean no criticism.

    • Madonna, thanks for letting me know. When I was going through posts today and categorizing some more, I found the office renovation post was posted twice and deleted one. Not sure if that was the same one you found. I’ll go check that date. Yes, if you see any others, please let me know. I think when the developer who moved my blog transferred the blog, a few posts were duplicated. Glad you spotted that one and let me know! 🙂

  16. Beautiful blue hour pictures! There is an observatory, and it is just above the restaurant. It’s not outside the building, but really like a second story to the Sundial, and if you can look down on the diners below. I can’t remember if there is another elevator you take once you reach the Sundial or if there are stairs you take-but it’s there.

  17. Fabulous pictures!

  18. Oh what a wonderful way to spend the 4th. I have heard about the Sundial but we have never been there. Maybe we can get there when we go to the Mart in a few weeks. I should probably call to get a reservation NOW. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing the great pics. 🙂 Happy Weekend.

  19. Wonderful photos. What a great idea to eat dinner there on the 4th and see the fireworks! My Dad was in charge of the wiring of the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel. I remember there was a problem in the middle of the night and my mom went with him. They had to ride a “construction elevator” that was on the outside to the top floor, there were no walls and the wind was incredible! I always thought that was so cool! Mom said it was the scariest thing she’d ever done!

  20. Love the pictures Susan. Really pretty. Is cool they way your seeing the fire works being shot off above them instead of below them.

    • Erika, it’s funny you mention that. At the time I didn’t really think about that but when I sat down to go through pics, that’s when I thought about it. Definitely a different perspective!

  21. I am soooo planning on dinner on a not-t–distant 4th of July at The Sundial!!! My husband and I stayed in this hotel many years ago, but I sure don’t remember the restaurant (?!). Wow!!! What a view with the fireworks! Your pictures are amazing. I hope you can join us when we’re there for a 4th! 🙂 ~Zuni

  22. What a view Susan, although I must admit my stomach flipped when I read 72nd floor!! You captured the view and fireworks splendidly. How nice to share it with such good friends.

  23. -Brenda- (aka mrsben) says

    Susan, so glad you had a wonderful July 4th and envy you that you could go to a rotating restaurant and enjoy the view from so high up. ( I have an inner ear disorder that certain environments will trigger a Vertigo attack so such a place is a no, no for me. Tried it once and had to leave.)
    For our Canada Day Celebration (July 1st) I spent the day with my Grandchildren in a Park that had a carnival atmosphere for the wee ones followed by a spectacular display of fireworks in the evening ….. with my feet firmly planted on the ground, may I add. 🙂
    Thanks for sharing your evening and your amazing photograhpy. Hugs -Brenda-

  24. I always love your blue hour photos!
    102 in Philly today – keep cool.

  25. Susan, what a great post. I can’t think of a better way to spend the Fourth: sharing the “blue hour” with dear friends on top of the world. Magical, indeed! –Lucinda

  26. Wow…next time we are in Atlanta this will be a “must go” for us!…What a spectacular view you had of the fireworks! What an amazing night you had!…Beautiful pictures!!…and how was the food?

  27. Love the fireworks from that angle…we have a burning ban due to 105 degree temps and no rain for the last 20+ days…no fireworks around here. We could have gone downtown, but as I said 105 degrees and this ol’ girl stays in the AC. Around Indy here we are turning into a dust bowl. The farmers have been cutting down the corn…alot of it anyway, to make silage for the cattle this winter. I have no idea how they are going to run the Grand Am race…they keep watching the track temperature…I would REALLY hate being one of those drivers, Lordy!

  28. WHAT A BLAST!!! Hmmm, I wonder how far in advance one has to get reservations to dine the Fourth….I’m DEFINITELY placing that in my “bucket!!” I’ve never visited Atlanta…but those photos…OH MY!!! franki

    • I’m not sure since I wasn’t the one who planned this event, but definitely call to find out just in case you have to do it pretty far in advance. I don’t think she made the reservations more than a few weeks in advance, but not totally sure about that. It was so much fun, Franki. I kept saying…we have to do this again next year, we have to do this again next year! lol

  29. Hi, Susan! There is a restaurant in downtown Indianapolis that is similar this. My hubby surprised me a few years ago and took me there for our anniversary. It was pretty cool. You can see so far, even though it’s not as tall as the Sundial, it is up there. It also did a total rotation in an hour. They also had live music, as we listened to a pianist play on a grand piano. No fireworks, though! That sounds like it would be amazing, though! Thanks for sharing your fun evening!
    “Better joy in a cottage than sorrow in a palace” Spanish Proverb

    • Ann, one of the ladies who went said a lot of cities have a restaurant that rotates…I never knew that. Wonder if they were a trend at one time. I’m glad the Sundial is still here and still works. It was a lot of fun. Wonder if your restaurant has a view of fireworks on the 4th. You may want to check for next year. 🙂

  30. Enjoyed seeing that! I haven’t been to that restaurant since the 80’s but the whole experience was fun. Thanks for the memories.

  31. Great pics. Looks like a fun night. I spent mine like I have always done for the past 10 years. I stay home with the tv blaring and try to comfort 7 scared to death, shivering and shaking dogs who believe their world is ending.

  32. Beautiful photos – thank you for sharing! I’m going to put that on my list- haven’t visited the Sundial in years. We shared a view of fireworks at Lake Avondale in Avondale Estates with thousands of other folks. The fireworks began around 9:30pm and lasted for 1/2hour. The city knows how to celebrate “happy”. A country band played through-out the evening. Residents know to stake out a small spot early in the day with seating and true to small towns…no one touches the chairs or moves your things around. It was a lot of fun with friends.

  33. OK, this is really going to “date” me, but I took my mother to the Sundial in the 1970s just so she could experience it. We did our fireworks here at the Crossroads this year, but I’m thinking that this would be a really special way to view them next year.

  34. Edith Bice says

    Love these pictures although they made me homesick!! I grew up in Atlanta and moved away 12 years ago. My husband and I went to the Sundial a few times while living there. This brought back so many good memories of my family and friends.

  35. Hi Susan. Wow..beautiful views. Looked like fun. When I got married in 1971 our rehearsal dinner was in a revolving restaurant high atop beautiful Trenton, NJ ( wink, wink). I didn’t think they made them anymore. It was very exciting at the time. Never been to Atlanta..gotta get down there sometime. Stay cool. It’s been brutal here in Pennsylvania.

  36. Holy Cow, wow Susan!
    What a great evening, what a fabulous place!
    Lovely pics, so fun to go along with you virtually anyway!

  37. What a beautiful post that brings back memories for me. It reminds me so much of when in my 20’s , I got the opportunity to have dinner at the restaurant on the top floor of one of the World Trade Center towers, The Top of the World. It also rotated and view was amazing as the NYC skyline went from dusk to night time. I consider myself very lucky to have experienced this because we all know that it is no longer there…..


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