Where to check out the retro vibe in metro Atlanta


It's hard to beat retro for coolness and a unique experience. If you're in or around Atlanta, we have some pretty awesome spots for you to enjoy a vintage vibe. From pinball machines to the revolving blue ball, you can engage in some fancy retracing of Baby Boomer footprints. Have you been dreaming about hopping down memory lane? What about a front row seat to your parents' generation? Go on this retro treasure hunt in Atlanta; it will be quite the adventure.

Polaris at The Hyatt Regency
Flickr/Valerie

The blue dome designed by John Portman and appropriately named the Polaris opened in 1967 perched atop the Hyatt Regency in downtown Atlanta. At the time the tallest landmark in Atlanta hovered above the city like a futuristic spaceship. Newly restored - after a 10-year hiatus - the rotating restaurant is now cuddled between Atlanta's tallest skyscrapers. Enjoy panoramic views of the city along with some great Southern fare and perhaps a retro-peach daiquiri.

Fox Theater
The "Save the Fox" campaign in 1974 funded the restoration of the fabulous theater, which opened on Christmas Day in 1929. One of the most outstanding features of the venue is the domed cobalt ceiling with layers of twinkling stars. The opulent powder rooms are indicative of another era. The venue hosts over 250 events a year ranging from musicals – to stand-up comedy – to just regular movies.

Varsity Drive-In
The original Varsity on North Avenue in downtown Atlanta has been around since the '30s. None of their other locations share the distinction of the esteemed downtown Atlanta spot. You never know who you might meet there. There are dozens of photographs of celebrities and politicians dining at this classic eatery. Learn the lingo in advance; are you looking for a naked dog or do you want to go sideways?

Starlight Six Drive-In Theater
Drive-in MovieJewelsy via Getty Images

Drive-in theaters provided terrific entertainment from the '50s through the '70s. Although most have shut-down, the Starlight Six still proudly graces our fair city. The theater opened in 1949 with one colossal screen showing classic films from the '50s. Today the venue graces moviegoers with six jumbo screens and first-run movies. Buy snacks at the concession stand or pack a tasty picnic for your family and sit back and enjoy a film in the privacy of your vehicle.

Joystick Gamebar
Remember Donkey Kong, Ms. Pac Man and Galaga? All of the original game cabinets and pinball machines at the Joystick Gamebar are from the '70s, '80s, or '90s. They call their kitchen a long-term indoor food truck. They have teamed up with other restaurants to offer you some delicious food while you rack up the points on your favorite game.

Food, movies, shows and games are all available here in Atlanta for the retro-seeker. Check event calendars and go on a 48-hour retro spin around the city. If you're looking for a vintage style loft to keep you in the spirit, check out Atlanta lofts on Airbnb for a plethora of choices.



Meeka Anne is revisiting her childhood stomping grounds in Atlanta where she grew up. She writes for several lifestyle magazines and has authored two books.