It’s a one-bedroom cottage near Emory and CDC

You’ve been there, the hotel lobby that looks exactly like the one you visited three months and 600 miles ago. The sterile unimaginative room that feels like a flashback to the ones you slept in last week, last month, last year. No need to turn on the lights; you know the way with your eyes closed. It’s the spend-the-night version of a strip mall.

Are you ready for something close to Emory, the CDC, Mercer University Atlanta yet far from the boring same-old, same-old? A place where you’ll want to keep your eyes happily open?

The Decatur Alpaca Cottage offers a truly unique haven that will spark your creativity, help you recover from the rush and crush of a harried day, and get the good night’s sleep vital to tackling the next day refreshed and renewed.

“A great stay in a very relaxing atmosphere. I enjoyed being in downtown Atlanta for work and then enjoying a conveniently located quiet setting in the evenings. My favorite part – being able to visit the alpacas! I’ll definitely stay here again, hopefully with my family next time!”

Don, February 2017

Imagine actually enjoying your business travel

Driving the lane to the cottage, the flight and traffic hustle start to fade as the clearing on this legacy farmlet unfolds before you. Open the cottage door and step into more than a room, more than a suite: step into a place of unique character and comfort.

Relax into the oversized chair and ottoman as you prepare for your presentation. Or the couch. Or the expandable workspace table. Or the porch. In the morning, you awaken energized and, a cup of gourmet coffee in hand, are drawn outside as the peaceful alpacas welcome you to a new day

After your work day, you unwind with an especially happy after-work hour surrounded by nature and in complete comfort. Visit with a colleague or friend – not in a loud bar with bad service, but amongst the trees where you can plan your next day and plot your course.

Leaving Decatur Alpaca Cottage after the work week, you promise yourself you’ll be back … and next time, it’ll be for fun.

The Best Hotels and Airbnb Near Emory University And The Centers For Disease Control In Atlanta Ga

If you can’t stay at the Decatur Alpaca Cottage we still want to help you out!  That’s why we’ve published this informational page about affordable accommodations near Emory University.

According to TripAdvisor these are the best hotels in the area, but fair warning, we do not necessarily agree on many of them.

Courtyard Atlanta Executive Park/Emory

Emory Conference Center Hotel

The Highland Inn

Courtyard Atlanta Executive Park/Emory

Doubletree Hotel Atlanta/North Druid Hills

La Quinta Inn Atlanta Midtown/Buckhead

Atlanta Marriott Century Center/Emory Area

Cheshire Motor Inn

Atlanta – Midtown Hotel

W Atlanta Midtown

Budgetel Savannah

The Georgian Terrace Hotel

Hotel Indigo Atlanta Midtown

TownePlace Suites Atlanta Buckhead

Motel 6 Atlanta Downtown


A 360 Degree View of Emory University

Located near downtown Atlanta, Emory University is one of the country’s leading private education institutions. Founded in 1836, it is known as one of the world’s top research facilities, too. It was named in honor of John Emory, a Methodist bishop, and the school maintains its religious affiliation to this day.

Emory is made up of eleven schools and colleges, with four of them dedicated to undergrad work. From arts and sciences to law to medicine and nursing, students are guaranteed a comprehensive education.

Student Body

With a total enrollment of 14,000, Emory’s student body is pretty diverse. While it is a co-ed school, the scales tip slightly in favor of women (close to 60% on average). With such a small campus, they have a great faculty to student ratio of 9:1. Most classes are maxed at 20 students, too. But it’s not easy to get into Emory: they only accept about 25% of their total applicants each year.

Activities & Sports

Emory has 18 NCAA Division III varsity sports teams. The Emory Eagles (whose mascot is named Swoop, how fun is that?) have twenty national championship titles to their credit. Another popular organization on campus is Volunteer Emory. They promote student leadership and social justice.

The Largest Healthcare System

Emory Healthcare, which is the second largest employer in the Atlanta metro area, is also Georgia’s largest healthcare system. Four of the eleven schools in the university system are dedicated to medicine and nursing, both undergrad and graduate. As part of the Woodruff Health Sciences Centers, patients have access to some of the world’s leading researchers, as well as an extensive network of hospitals and clinics.

Things to See Near Campus

Once you’re done checking out the campus, there are plenty of interesting choices in the local area. From hiking to local brews, there’s enough to keep you busy.

Stone Mountain

The Stone Mountain Memorial Association maintains 15 miles of trails in the Atlanta area. A mix of easy take-your-dog hikes to literally going to the top of Stone Mountain (1600 feet above sea level), there’s a hike for most every skill level. It’s a 30 minute drive from Emory and I think it’s a great way to spend a day.

Atlanta Botanical Garden

Just four miles from campus, the botanical gardens are a tranquil, green oasis in the city. And it’s not your usual garden: make sure you check out the fanciful Green Goddess while you’re there. It’s a lovely way to spend a day! I’m the planning-ahead type, so checking their “what’s in bloom?” page is a great way to know what I can expect to see when I visit.


Originally built by the eldest son of the founder of Coca-Cola, Callanwolde is now a 12-acre arts conservatory. With their motto, “Home is where the Art lives”, the Fine Arts Center offers classes and other events throughout the year. If you’d like to catch a local play or concert while you’re in Atlanta, make sure to check their calendar of events.

The Jimmy Carter Presidential Library and Museum

Established by the former President, this library and museum houses more than 40 million pages, a million photos, over 2 million feet of film and 2,500 hours of video. In the museum, there’s even a replica of the Oval Office! There are two lakes on the thirty acre site, so there’s plenty of lovely scenery to go with a bit of education.

Things To Do While You’re Visiting Emory University, Its Hospital or The CDC

If you’re in for an adult adventure (count me in!), go on a Pop the Cork wine tour. Rated in the top 5 things to do in Atlanta on Trip Advisor, you can expand your wine knowledge on this full day tour. And of course, they won’t take you around town without feeding you, so a gourmet lunch is included. A chauffeured limo, lunch, and wine? Are we there yet?

Wine Isn’t the Only Adult Beverage in Town

Atlanta wasn’t left behind during the rush to strike craft beer gold. Sweetwater Brewing has called Atlanta home for twenty years, also making them one of the earliest craft brewers anywhere. With easy-drinking styles like Georgia Brown and their extra pale ale 420, I think it’s a fun way to spend an evening. (Or afternoon, I won’t judge). Their motto is, “we’re not here for a long time, we’re here for a good time” but I think they’ve accomplished both.

Food Halls?

One of the more interesting (and delicious) trends in recent years is food halls. If you’re a child of the ‘80s (I may or may not know about that), you’re well-familiar with food courts. Home to slices of pizza that were only slightly tastier than the plate it was served on, your social cred could rise or fall based on your appearance at the food court. Fast forward a few decades and we have food halls. Originally a British term, we’ve done a bit of Americanizing. Think post-industrial warehouse spaces where you can watch your taco being made to order and shop for its ingredients to make at home, too. It’s an open space, awash with people and tons of interesting choices. If that’s up your alley, and you’re staying at any of the hotels in atlanta near emory university, check out the Krog St. Market. Showcasing nearly 25 different vendors, there’s a little bit for everyone. And if you really want to upgrade then head over to Ponce City Market.

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control)

While Atlanta’s early claim to fame was as a hub of transportation, that fame brought more than railcars. Specifically, it brought malaria. With a concentration of soldiers in the area who fought in wars overseas, malaria was an issue in the southeastern US in the 1940s. In an effort to contain and eliminate the disease, scientists and doctors from across the country came to Atlanta. The Office of Malaria Control in War Areas (MCWA) was established in 1946.

By 1951, malaria was eliminated from the US. Yay! Interestingly, if you enjoy a tasty gin and tonic, you’re actually still imbibing the treatment for malaria. Tonic contains quinine, which is used to treat and prevent malaria. Gin made the bitter tonic more palatable and voila! Even though we don’t need it to treat malaria, a gin and tonic is still a tasty cocktail. But, I digress. The folks in DC realized that it might be smart to keep those scientist types in one place and morphed the MCWA in the Centers for Diseases Control (CDC). It was originally the Communicable Disease Center (and a couple of other things), but perhaps after a “malaria treatment” or two, someone decided it needed a name that was less of a mouthful.

Located on the Emory University campus, the story of choosing the CDC’s new home is all about the dimes (hey, it was 1947, “all about the benjamins” wasn’t a thing yet). According to the the tale, the head of Coca-Cola organized a deal with Emory to purchase fifteen acres of their campus for $10. Seems all the employees of the newly-minted CDC were asked to kick in a dime toward the asking price and that’s where the CDC headquarters sit more than fifty years later. If you’ve previously stayed in accommodations near the CDC you know it grew just a bit (which probably cost more than ten bucks) and now takes up 45 acres. Diseases might be microscopic, but the humans who fight them take up tons of space. There are more than 15,000 employees of the CDC today.

What’s the CDC Do Now?

Part of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, the CDC is responsible for monitoring public health. And not just in the U.S., but around the globe. Malaria isn’t the only thing that’s been brought home from overseas. So for the CDC to only watch the US is a little like pretending it’s ok that only one room of your house is on fire. Part of their mission reads, “..are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease..”. Sounds like they have the bases pretty well covered for diseases.

If you’ve stayed at hotels near the centers for disease before for meetings you probably know it doesn’t do just disease prevention. Their Work@Health program gives employers the tools and education to help reduce workplace injuries and chronic illnesses. For help in the workplace, let’s get crackin’ on the common cold, so I can touch doorknobs in the winter again, shall we?

Who’s WHO?

While the CDC is the US version, there are many other similar groups throughout the world. The World Health Organization (WHO) is the international governing body for all things health-related. Think of it like the UN for diseases. There are members, a governing body, and other bureaucratic things. Through Collaborating Centers (the CDC has one) and other programs, WHO keeps an eye on the world’s health. Here’s why you care who WHO is. Though a disease can be eradicated (meaning it’s gone from the world, not just a single country), samples are kept for research. Ever heard of smallpox? It was finally eradicated in 1980 after literally thousands of years of killing people. But there are samples (WHO oversees the program) of smallpox for research. One in Atlanta and one in Russia. Trust me, you don’t want any of the places to stay near the Centers For Disease Control to have a sample of that in your welcome packet.

Other Interesting Facts

Proving that in fact scientists might have a sense of humor, the CDC jumped on the popularity of the zombie craze. You might’ve heard of that show, The Walking Dead? It’s centered around Atlanta and (is it still possible to need a spoiler alert?) one season sees the gang headed to the CDC. The CDC created a zombie preparedness plan (complete with posters!) that became the most-downloaded piece of info from the CDC ever.

Sounds Like Fun, Can I Visit?

That’s the first question people have when they’re looking for places to stay near the CDC. But unfortunately, while they watch the public’s health, we can’t just go wandering around their campus. The only part that’s actually open to the public is the David J. Sencer CDC Museum. While they have the usual museum type stuff, they also have the Disease Detective Camp. Sadly, it’s not for adults (that’s why we can have gin and tonics). But for young adults who are at least 16 by the first day of camp and might be thinking about a CDC-related career, it gives them an interesting look into how it all works.

One Bedroom, Minutes from Atlanta & Decatur