The First Hello of Many?

Join 16.3k others in viewing TikToks tagged #RoundAmericaWithADuck

So I got wind that IHG (the greenest hotel company in the world — see this post) has a new wellness-focused brand named Even Hotels. It has two locations in Metro Atlanta (where I live) — one in Alpharetta near Avalon, and the other in Cobb County near the Galleria and Cobb Energy Center.

I discovered that its website does not really mention bikes in any significant way, yet both locations are in close proximity to some outstanding bike trails.

I additionally noticed that its website does not give public and active transportation options to either location, although both are reachable those ways (especially when combined). Sure, it may take awhile (although driving does, too). When I travel, I make awhile for active transportation so it may be helpful to give others those options as well. In fact, if you are promoting your brand as wellness-centered, I believe it is required.

I am in the process of creating two routes for you on the PeopleForBikes RideSpot app from the Atlanta airport to the two Even Hotel locations via train/bus/bike (Alpharetta) and train/bike (Cobb). (Note that I give you the rubber-hits-the-road truth because lives depend on it — thus, I call out greenwashing done by cities about bike lanes that don’t meet standards for access-for-all. I only create routes that are welcoming for all. See my other carefully-curated routes here.) Don’t get stuck in the gutter of failed imagination when you travel!

Yesterday, I put wind in my hair and rode my bike to the Cobb location. The route (which was recently part of my 24 miles to the newest city in the USA — Mableton, GA — for the pilot-test of my upcoming investigative sustainability immersion, Round America with a Duck) is extremely lovely along the river. (Join 15.3k others in viewing my TikToks tagged #RoundAmericaWithADuck.)

It then takes you alongside and under the deadliest highway in the USA, which is the only mile of multiuse path along the 63.98-mile Perimeter Highway (here’s the media release I’d like to see). There’s a magical world down there, folks:

I even stopped at a stunning coffee shop I know right on the Chattahoochee River on the way back.

At the hotel, Kecia at the front desk was super helpful (she’s my TodaysNiceStranger!):

She gave me a key to tour the Athletic Center and a room. She’s also gonna try to fix what we’ll call “the bike rack problem.” Here are my TikToks about my visit:


#RoundAmericaWithADuck cities in between #wwoof @wwoofusa farms. Will it be @IHG Hotels & Resorts #EvenHotels? #bike #wellness #fitness see link in bio for current route

♬ original sound – Disco and Me

#RoundAmericaWithADuck cities in between @wwoofusa #wwoof farms. Will it be @ihghotels #EvenHotels? #bike #wellness #fitness see link in bio for my books, blogs, #portfolio and more

♬ original sound – Disco and Me

I loved so many things. I also have questions about some things that seemed like wellness disconnects (the snacks, the smells). I’d be happy to share that insight if IHG or Even Hotels wants to contract with me as a Brand Ambassador (I’m already on Year 3 as a PeopleForBikes Ambassador). (Okay, I’ll give you this one for free: Bravo to the copywriter for the cute wellness phrases throughout the hotel, but maybe consider dropping the periods moving forward — from what I understand, Gen Z finds periods like that aggressive, and as a result of working closely with them, I tend to agree). I’d also be willing to negotiate rerouting my cross-country trip via bikes, buses and trains to hit some of the Even Hotel locations nationwide between my stays at the organic farms on which I’ll be WWOOFing (here’s my current route). #BikesMeanBusiness, even more so when ridden by women. Here’s why (and here**).

This is fun (and fun matters, now more than ever.) See TikTok below under that deadly highway. Note I’m rockin’ my Viva Magenta shirt in honor of Pantone’s announcement yesterday of that as Color of the Year 2023***, chosen for its positive optimism!


Riding my #bike under the deadliest highway in the USA. Rockin my #pantone #vivamagenta color-of-the-year 2023! #foryoupage #fyp #shuffledance

♬ Highway to Hell – AC/DC

Trust the journey, amirite?!

* Yep, Disco came with me yesterday (note to IHG/Even Hotels: signage saying all guests must park in the deck is easily fixable to be more inclusive)

** If you are a business owner, here’s why you may be leaving money on the table:

*** Pantone’s Color of the Year 2023: