Lily Aldridge’s Nashville knowhow

A legendary music scene on her doorstep, hot new culinary spots on every corner and best friend Taylor Swift among her gang of cool A-list neighbors – it’s not hard to see why California-born model LILY ALDRIDGE now calls the city synonymous with Dolly Parton and Johnny Cash home. Whether she and her husband, Kings of Leon frontman Caleb Followill, are hanging out at soul-food stop-offs like Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint with five-year-old daughter Dixie, or listening to live bluegrass until the early hours, the Victoria’s Secret Angel knows how to do America’s Music City in style. Here, she shares her Nashville secrets…


For a chic escape

The Hermitage Hotel is a venerable institution that offers the ultimate in old-world Southern style. Whenever I walk into this beautiful Beaux-Arts building, I feel like I have stepped into a bygone era – its painted ceilings, marble bathrooms and gilded interiors will blow you away. It’s the perfect place to get dressed up in your Sunday finest and have brunch with your family.”

The historic Hermitage Hotel has enjoyed several notable visitors such as presidents Wilson, Roosevelt and Kennedy

For dinner à deux

The Catbird Seat is a special restaurant – it only seats 20 and is headed up by chef Ryan Poli who trained at cult Scandi eatery NOMA. It serves 15 dishes that change daily, and as you can imagine, it’s a hot reservation. Look out for interesting entrées like thinly sliced portobello mushrooms filled with a delicious parmesan cream that looks more like an Oreo cookie than an appetizer.”

Acclaimed restaurant The Catbird Seat is open for dinner Wednesday-Saturday from 5.30pm
Aldridge pictured with fellow Nashville local Karen Elson

For cocktails

“I love going for cocktails with my friend, musician Karen Elson, at The Patterson House, a cool speakeasy bar hidden below The Catbird Seat. It’s a clandestine spot in the middle of downtown Nashville that doesn’t have a sign outside and is very dark and moody inside. There is a real art to how they make their cocktails; they even make circular ice that fills your entire glass like a sculpture.”

For a night out

“Nashville is the best place for live music. Robert’s Western World is a honky-tonk bar in the middle of town where you’ll dance to country music all night – we even rented it for my husband’s birthday. And for pure nostalgia, head to Station Inn to watch old-school bands like The Time Jumpers play bluegrass. It’s an authentic Nashville experience – they only serve beer and popcorn, but it’s great for people watching.”

For a hot ticket

“My husband Caleb started a music and food festival called Music City Eats in downtown Nashville, which is back again this September 14-16. It’s a fun weekend that celebrates the city’s best musicians and chefs. He and his friends play at the festival and we have celebrity chefs cooking up a storm.”

Aldridge and Followill have been married since 2011
City House is among Aldridge’s favorite Nashville restaurants

For some Southern comfort

“For a more low-key evening, head to City House – I love its casual charm so much that we once went there every night for one week straight. It serves comfort food that’s still fresh and light, especially the pizzas, corn salad and the phenomenal roast chicken. After, check out Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream; the Buckeye State (chocolate and salted peanut butter) is a must.”

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