Although pop-culture icon Elvis Presley has been gone from Graceland and the world for more than 25 years, the King of RocknRoll lives on for millions of fans of all ages. At the 14-acre Graceland estate he built in Memphis, Tennessee, visitors get a taste of the superstar's life and times.
Elvis life was a classic American success story. Thanks to his seductive, versatile singing voice and incredible charisma, Elvis climbed from poverty to untold riches, from the Depression-era shack where he was born to Graceland Mansion.
Graceland opened to fans and tourists in 1982 and the spirit and taste of Elvis Presley infuse every part of Graceland. Ticket prices for adults are $25, entitling visitors to enter the mansion and see Elvis' living room, music room, Elvis' parents' bedroom, the dining room, kitchen, TV room, pool room, and jungle den in the main house. Also open are Elvis racquetball court and original business office behind Graceland Mansion.
Part of the excitement of the Graceland tour is viewing the extensive collection of Elvis Presley's leather and lamé stage costumes and Elvis trophy building, which houses his collection of gold records and awards. Career mementos, jewelry, photographs, and other Elvis memorabilia are on exhibit. The tour lets out in the Meditation Garden, where Elvis and members of his family are buried.
To help visitors appreciate the history of the house and Elvis' life at Graceland in Memphis, a digital audio tour features the voices of daughter Lisa Marie and Elvis himself.
Inspired by one of Elvis Presley's chart-topping songs, Heartbreak Hotel is a 128-room boutique hotel adjacent to Graceland. Retro-kitsch in style, Heartbreak Hotel guest rooms feature circa-1950s blond wood furnishings and bedspreads in a blue-and-gold harlequin print. Each guest room includes a kitchenette with refrigerator and microwave.
Heartbreak Hotel also contains four theme suites:
- The Graceland Suite - a scaled-down version of Graceland Mansion
- Hollywood Suite - Art-Deco furnishings evoke the golden age of Hollywood and honor Elvis' film career
- The Gold & Platinum Suite - celebrates the recording career of the single best-selling musician in history
- The Burning Love Suite - over-the-top romance, with a preponderance of crimson velvet upholstery
Chapel in the Woods
Graceland estate grounds also include Chapel in the Woods, a sylvan setting where couples can be married. Chapel in the Woods features antique church pews, a stained glass replica of a Graceland Mansion window, and a reception area with a painted backdrop of Graceland.
For information on planning a destination wedding at Chapel in the Woods, contact Graceland's special events department at 800-238-2010. They can arrange for wedding photography, floral arrangements, a wedding cake, limousine, and other amenities. The basic package costs $550, and there are some little luxuries a couple can add to that.