Stay in Midtown
I'm a little confused - previously you asked about hotels between Atlanta and Gatlinburg, so seemed you were driving. Have your plans changed? If you want the best overall advice it's usually better to give more details about your itinerary and plans (especially if it contradicts previous info that you have already shared).
There was big thread (in the Atlanta forum, which might have been a better place to post your question) about hotels near the Amtrak station just a few months ago:
My son and I will be arriving by AMTRAK and meeting my husband who will be coming into Atlanta airport, we are renting a car and driving to Great Smokey Mountains where we will be staying 6 nights.. Our arrival into Atlanta is fairly late so we are planning to stay one night on the road going to the GSM and our departure train leaving Atlanta for home is early so we need to be close to the Amtrak station. So, no my plans have not changed just finishing up my planning ,and this was the last piece.
Thanks One, you have been extremely helpful in helping with my whole trip!
Thank you Steve!
"My son and I will be arriving by AMTRAK and meeting my husband who will be coming into Atlanta airport,"
Amtrak is notoriously late. You can't count on arrival times. It's an easy drive to the north GA mountains (and on to GSMNP) but if you have an afternoon train scheduled to arrive, I'd still stay in Midtown. Take an Uber, Lyft or taxi to a Midtown hotel and have your husband pick up a rental car at the airport and meet you. Whomever gets there first can explore in Midtown a bit while waiting for the other.
I assume you're coming in from the south. The train is scheduled to arrive in Atlanta at 7:35 PM but never does. Average is 1 to 1.5 hours late, sometimes much later. You can thank Norfolk Southern Railroad.
Your departure to return south may actually be close to on time, but this morning, for instance, will be about 3 hours late. Again, thank NS.
One and Steve, URGH! The last train trip we took, the train was 12 hours late leaving! I was led to believe that it was a fluke, we went Houston to El Paso. The return train was pretty much on time so I was tempted to believe them. Oh well, just more time to see the area. Luckily my son and I are flexible on time so it wont affect us too much either way, we will be coming and going from New Orleans via the train and driving to and from Houston.
I don't fly so the train is our best option, other than driving the whole way, helps that we enjoy it. I will count on closer to 9pm per your information. My husband's flight will arrive earlier so I will have him get the rental and explore the area, figure he will get lost at least a few times (no sense of direction) so the extra time should go quickly.
Even leaving that late is the drive fairly easy? Keeping in mind we are use to driving in Houston or at most the hill country of Texas which has very low elevations and fairly straight roads. Would really like to stay that first night halfway to the GSM.
Will for sure stay the night in Atlanta on the return, I am not a morning person so need to make sure I am close. The Artmore looks like a great option. Husbands flight is later so he needs to get to the airport and will have time to make his way there after dropping us off.