Some say that if you visit Virginia, you may never want to leave! It has some of the most beautiful, breathtaking scenery in America, historical sites, quaint shops, colonial style architecture, wonderful outdoor activities and is the perfect destination for romance. Here are 3 award-winning places to stay in Virginia, where luxury, romance and history go hand-in-hand.
The enchanting, historic, romantic Keswick Hall
Chosen as one of the country’s most romantic getaways by Good Morning America, Keswick Hall is gently framed in a palette of golden hues, as it sits magnificently in the luscious grounds of the Keswick Estate.
The architecture of this impressive mansion is Italian inspired. The north wing, Villa Crawford, was built in 1912 as a stunning Italian style estate and in 1948 was converted to a country club. However due to the death of the then owner in 1971, the country club slipped and fell into decline for a couple of decades. At this time it was known as the ‘mansion of senile ruin’, until the husband of the late Laura Asheley, Sir Bernard Ashley, came along and had the vision to see how it could be, in all its glory that visitors love today.
Keswick Hall is Conde Nast’s “#1 Small Resort in Mainland U.S. It has its own 18-hole Arnold Palmer signature golf course, 7 tennis courts, 3 pools, a spa and fitness centre, a vineyard, croquet, fly-fishing, nature trails and many of activities. One of the pools has an infinity edge with amazing views over the countryside.
The estate is 600 acres, with formal and informal gardens, in the truly spectacular landscapes of Monticello, where Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains meet Thomas Jefferson country.
The interior is exquisite, featuring wood burning fireplaces, hand-painted armoires, antiques placed artfully here and there; it has retained its grace whilst enjoying some modernisation. Each of the 48 rooms and suites have rich fabrics and furnishings, so that guests feel pampered, relaxed and renewed.
2004-2011 Travel + Leisure 500 “The World’s Best Hotels”
1998, 2000-2011 Condé Nast Traveler Gold List
2011 Condé Nast Traveler Gold List #1 Hotel in North America for Food
2011 Condé Nast Traveler Gold List #1 Hotel in North America for Design
2011 Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards – #1 US Mainland Small Resort
2011 Andrew Harper’s Hideaway Report Top Food & Wine Resorts #9 Worldwide
The exquisite, delightful, welcoming Chestnut Hill B&B
Don’t be fooled by the fact that Chestnut Hill is classed as a B&B, it has won awards and is extremely highly rated by guests. One couple who have stayed at amazing hotels all over the world, rate it as the best place they have stayed, with the exception of the 7 star Emirates Palace, in Abu Dhabi.
Originally built in 1860, the name reflects the abundance of chestnut trees that were then on the land, which were sadly destroyed in 1910′s blight. Current owners Kathleen and Troy Ayers bought it in 2003 by absolute auction, with the terms that the house would be moved to an adjoining piece of land, in order to allow an access road to be built to ease congestion. After the renovations were completed Chestnut Hill was placed on Virginia’s Register of Historic Places.
Today this historic home lovingly retains the master craftsmanship qualities is was renowned for, so that guests can enjoy the past, alongside present day comforts. There are only 2 guest rooms on each floor, which are beautifully decorated, marrying together warm, welcoming hues with utter elegance and history.
It is well known for its southern charm and hospitality; enjoy a glass of wine from local vineyards during wine and cheese tasting, the Full Gourmet Fusion breakfast that guests love and choose from packages, including the Romance Package, Babymoon or Birthday Packages.
Best of Mid Atlantic – Select Registry
Best of BedandBreakfast.com award winner
Decorated By Rockefeller – the opulent, colonial Williamsburg Inn
Built by John D. Rockefeller Junior in 1937, with the intention of providing only the finest European style, world-class hotel for the guests; today it is the jewel in the Williamsburg Hotels’ crown. In 2001 after intensive restoration, which enhanced the Inn even beyond Rockefeller’s initial intentions, the Williamsburg Inn became even more remarkable and is considered a rare property.
Today the Inn’s visitor can move easily from the 19th to 21st century; from the Regency decor of the 19th century, to the original 20th century heritage of the building whilst enjoying the amenities of the 21st century.
The 62 rooms and suites are spacious, opulent and decadent with elaborate marble bathrooms, luxurious deep tubs and separate showers. The room sizes are from 500 square feet and are equipped with 26″ flat screen TVs, Bose wave radios, data ports, WiFi and dual phone lines.
Soak in the romance, fall in love with the European inspired cuisine, unwind in the spa amenities and cosy robes, take a horse drawn carriage ride and feel renewed at the Williamsburg Inn.
There are 2 outdoor pools, one for familes and the other which is a spring-fed adult only pool, 2 award winning golf courses and the award winning spa.
Travelers Choice Family Award: Williamsburg Inn named the best hotel for family travel by TripAdvisor in the inaugural “Top 10 Places in the U.S. for Families to Discover” category; 2011
Platinum Plate Award: Williamsburg Inn Regency Room; Hampton Roads magazine, Platinum Level; 2011
National Trust Historic Hotels of America: The Williamsburg Inn selected as a National Trust Historic Hotel of America for 19 consecutive years
Jackie de Burca is Co-owner of Holiday Home Advice.