Shop Smart: Tips for Your Trip to Hickory Furniture Mart

Located at roughly the midpoint between the bustling metros of Charlotte and Asheville is Hickory, a city that continues to grow as both a visitor destination and desirable place to relocate. And it's managed to grow in appeal while maintaining much of the city’s charm and rich heritage, which many across the country know as an area that’s been home to iconic furniture makers and brands for more than a century. 

More than half a million people visit the Count On Me NC-certified Hickory Furniture Mart each year, thanks to its reputation as a furniture shopping destination where you could spend several hours or several days furnishing your primary, secondary or vacation rental homes. There's a lot to explore across the four levels of indoor and outdoor furnishings, lighting, rugs and accessories, plus thousands of fabrics to custom design any piece of furniture, bedding ensemble or window treatment you desire. The 1,000-plus manufacturers represented here are spread across different showrooms, outlets, factory direct outlets and private galleries.

Local North Carolina manufacturer Hancock & Moore, known for its premium leathers and finishes (photo: Hickory Furniture Mart)

You'll find the full furniture spectrum from country to contemporary styles and a combination of high-end custom showrooms along with high-end factory outlets not found anywhere else. Browse through displays of deeply discounted samples, floor models and clearance items, or customize your furniture to your exact specifications. With so many exceptional deals under one roof, you may need to spend more time inside each showroom than what you had originally planned.

Tips for Your Trip

There are several different ways to shop inside Hickory Furniture Mart. You might choose to shop completely on your own, working directly with the different showrooms that carry the specific brands or styles you’re looking for, or request a personal shopper to help guide you throughout the Mart. Many customers also decide it is best for them to hire a professional interior designer in order to benefit from their knowledge and expertise while also saving valuable time and money. Designing Women’s office is located on-site, making it convenient with so many furniture and design resources available inside the Mart. They have been working with customers for more than 30 years and have designed some of the finest homes around the world. 

If you’re a professional interior designer, Hickory Furniture Mart added a new Partners in Design program in 2021 that allows you to shop throughout the entire Mart and receive additional discounts and benefits for your clients and your design business all year long. For more information and help on deciding which service is best for your unique needs, contact Tracey Trimble at ttrimble@hickoryfurniture.com or (828) 322-4825, ext. 8307. 

Showrooms have the ability to customize pieces in your favorite wood, stain, finish, upholstery, trim or color, or even build a piece to match your specific dimensions from the ground up. Resource Design, a fabric, drapery and hardware workroom, also has the ability to customize pillows, window treatments and bedding ensembles from thousands of available fabrics on-site. The showroom also partners with local upholstery experts to reupholster your favorite piece of furniture that has withstood the test of time but needs a fresh look. 

Local North Carolina manufacturer Sherrill Furniture, known for its expert upholstery craftmanship (photo: Hickory Furniture Mart)

Once you've crossed everything off your shopping list, showrooms will consolidate your purchases and ship them directly to your home. Floor items may be taken home with you the same day or shipped later.

Stop by for a quick snack at Taste Full Beans coffeehouse, or sit down and enjoy a leisurely lunch at The Grater Griddle. Both are located inside the Mart.

Hickory Furniture Mart is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. And whether you need more than one day to explore the Mart, or you want to make this furniture shopping trip part of a multiday getaway, you should consider its Shop & Stay Packages. Choose from special rates at participating hotels, including two that offer pet-friendly rooms and others that offer discount cards for additional furniture savings. While all hotels are nearby, the Holiday Inn Express Hickory is on-site at Hickory Furniture Mart. A restful night is also the perfect start for discovering more of the city’s unique restaurants and attractions. 

Nearby Hickory Attractions

Several great dining options are within a few minutes’ drive from the Mart or your hotel.

Pick up dinner from Café Rule, a restaurant where southern dishes are paired with an award-winning wine list. Or delve into Tex-Mex cuisine with a North Carolina flair at Mas Amor Cantina, a brand-new restaurant with an Instagram-worthy aesthetic. And it's located at the Crossing at Hollar Mill, a restored former cotton mill that hosts special events such as a biweekly concert series. Fourk and Boca are also two local farm-to-table favorites that offer visitors wonderful culinary experiences. 

Downtown Hickory shops and restaurants

Take a stroll through historic downtown Hickory for a quaint and charming experience. Here you'll find the Count On Me NC-certified Olde Hickory Station – housed in a former train station – that's both a restaurant and market that sells goods made in North Carolina, along with other shops and boutiques. There's also the Hickory Museum of ArtCatawba Science Center (both certified) and Hickory Community Theatre. Plus, downtown is full of seasonal activities, including the Downtown Hickory Farmers Market, open Saturdays and Wednesdays; Sails Original Music Series; and annual celebrations such as holiday events in December, and the twice-yearly Downtown Hickory Art Crawl in the spring and fall. 

In nearby Conover, Rock Barn Country Club & Spa offers a great his-and-hers experience (or a fun outing for you and your best friends). Treat yourself to a full spa package, a couples massage or a relaxing mani/pedi. And golf enthusiasts will look forward to booking a tee time at the Jackson Course, Rock Barn’s public course. 

This article was produced in partnership with Hickory Furniture Mart. Please check Hickory Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau for the most up-to-date visitor information. Additionally, please visit Count On Me NC to find additional participating businesses that are making a concerted effort to help keep everyone healthy, and for tips on how to stay safe when visiting. 

Updated September 9, 2021
About the Author
Pete M. Anderson

Pete M. Anderson

Pete M. Anderson is a Gastonia-based writer whose work also has appeared in Business North Carolina, Carolina Sportsman and Thousand Islands Life. He enjoys exploring North Carolina, especially its diverse fishing holes, local race tracks and world-renowned barbecue joints.

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