Need B&B in VA for BF BDAY HALP
January 18, 2012 9:10 PM   Subscribe

Help me find a place within 4-5 hours driving distance from DC that I could book a swank-esque hotel/non elderly B&B room* and sweep my boyfriend off his feet for a combined Valentines/birthday funtimesfantastic weekend. *(under $400 for 2 nights)

I've been dating this guy (henceforth to be known as gingerbeard, I know, how can I resist) for a little bit and things are TEH AWESOME. I'd like to continue that momentum and his predominant paying for most things we do (despite my offering to go dutch) with a fantastic weekend away somewherewithin driving distance from where we live - Metro area DC. He likes: hardcore punk, foodie foods, craft beer, biking around places, and architecture. He is not very familiar with rural parts of VA and WVA, so ideally I'd like to introduce him to the magic of mountains and farms and scenery and all that fun stuff that central Virginia and possibly West Virginia has to offer, though am not opposed to setting up camp in Richmond for a weekend with a sweet hotel room.

My google-fu is failing me. I wanted to plan a trip to the Biltmore in North Carolina but between the ridiculously high cost of rooms at the Inn at Biltmore, and the long driving time from DC to Asheville, NC (7+ hours) it's just not feasible at this point in time.

I've already scoured LivingSocial, Gilt, Groupon etc. for deals in our area and all that I've found is, "EASTERN SHORE B&B DEAL WITH WINE TASTING AND NOTHING ELSE TO DO" type of results. I don't need a package deal, just wanna find a sweet room somewhere and somewhat offbeat surroundings with perhaps a record store we can peruse and try to reconcile our differing tastes in music :)

TL;DR: trying to find a non chain hotel room (under $400 for 2 nights) in a near-ish to DC place where I can take my boyfriend to have a fun weekend of sightseeing, used record store bin digging, offbeat antiquing weekend of fun times and banging. I've googled till my fingers fall off and I need to book something soon as boyfriend's birthday is in early April. HALP. The perfectionist in me is slightly freaking out at this point in time.
posted by Gonestarfishing to Travel & Transportation (15 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
As a Blacksburg resident and Virginia Tech graduate, it pains me to say this, but check B&Bs around Charlottesville, Virginia. Great architecture at the college (designed by Mr. Jefferson), a decent-ish local music scene due to the University of Virginia, and right against the Appalachians for fine hiking and biking. Virginia has generally lousy local brew (hee, Blacksburg's brewery is better than Charlottesville's!), but since it's a wealthy college town there will be a lot of choice.
posted by introp at 9:35 PM on January 18, 2012

Best answer: i'm going to second charlottesville - it sounds like it would fit all of your needs, really.

but also going to throw my hat in for lewisburg, west virginia. a little over 4 hours away, nestled in mountains. it was recently voted america's coolest small town, and it's pretty fun to go antiquing and exploring. plus there are caverns!
posted by kerning at 9:56 PM on January 18, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: I should have clarified that I have previously resided/toured the Charlottesville general area so many times before...main campus, Monticello, restaurants in the c-ville/Albermarle county/Wintergreen area. Looking for something non-college town/tourist-y. What I'm looking for is more along Kerning's latter suggestion. Something off the beaten path. Sorry to be so picky!
posted by Gonestarfishing at 10:07 PM on January 18, 2012

If you want something more offbeat, Lewisburg is awesome. But if you decide on Richmond, the Jefferson Hotel there is one of the nicest hotels I've ever stayed in. You can get a room for about $400 with tax for two days at the lowest rate, or spend some more on one of their packages. Richmond is great for antiquing and exploring as well, they have a fun downtown, and I really enjoyed strolling through the Botanical Garden.
posted by gemmy at 10:40 PM on January 18, 2012

It's been a (very) long time, but I used to really like the (then) funky little town of Occoquan. Something tells me it might have become too touristy to fit the bill in the intervening years, though.
posted by trip and a half at 10:48 PM on January 18, 2012

There's good microbrew in C'ville. Check out Starr Hill.
posted by Michael Pemulis at 11:13 PM on January 18, 2012

Best answer: I recommend Roanoke (this DC expat's adopted home). You could stay at the Hotel Roanoke (part of a chain but you'd never know it, it's been part of this old railroad town for a long time), meander around downtown in the daytime (farmers market, shops, etc.) and in the nighttime (live music). No guarantees on February weather in the Virginia mountains, but Roanoke is very bike-friendly and there's always stuff going on outside. The surrounding mountains offer hiking, biking, traditional music, and just plain weirdness. Plus wineries if that's your thing. Used record stores are hard to come by these days but the Bazaar may fit the bill.
posted by headnsouth at 3:16 AM on January 19, 2012

Best answer: How about Falling Water? You mentioned he likes architecture, so if he hasn't seen it, that's definitely worth a trip, and only about 2.5 hours from DC. Frank Lloyd Wright's Kentuck Knob is nearby and I liked it better than Falling Water. I stayed at a great b&b out there with an amazing breakfast; I can dig up the name if you're interested. It's pretty out there, too, and near-ish to Pittsburgh, which I hear is fun. I think there is hiking in the area although it was cold when I went so we didn't explore that much.
posted by min at 3:56 AM on January 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

Fredericksburg VA? There are two brewpubs, one Capital Ale House, plus Kybecca, a funky wine bar with a good beer selection. There are plenty of good restaurants, and the entire town reeks of Civil War history, with 4 battlefields and plenty of hiking trails through them. Many of the buildings downtown date back to the Civil War or Revolutionary period, some still showing the damage sustained during the Civil War. I'm not personally familiar with the B&B's downtown, but there are a couple.
posted by COD at 5:09 AM on January 19, 2012

Best answer: It sounds like what you're really looking for is a boutique hotel. When I was really on a budget, we would do private rooms in hostels...

Nevertheless, two b&bs that I can't recommend enough are 1) the White Pig outside Charlottesville (young, hep, vegan, free sherry and baked goods for lounging.) 2) The Laurel Lodge in Harpers Ferry (amazing view!!, older clientele but the owners are awesome and super accomodating, the house has a great quirky history that you will learn all about).
posted by Skwirl at 7:00 AM on January 19, 2012

Best answer: If you take min's suggestion and head toward Pittsburgh, you should check out Church Brew Works and check off the beer/food/architecture boxes all at once.
posted by BlooPen at 7:18 AM on January 19, 2012

Best answer: I just spent a long weekend over in Cape May, NJ. You drive due east on Rt. 50 for about 3 hours, and then get on a ferry. You could even park your car on the Maryland side and ride your bikes over on the ferry (which is a little more than an hour across). Cape May is quaint and a victorian era playground, and there are plenty really good restaurants. I went with my extended family, so we rented a big house (definitely not within your budget), but we also paid for a room in a swank hotel on the beach for my brother and his wife at the Congress Hall. (There's supposed to be a nice restaurant and bar in the hotel, but it's only open to guests of the hotel.) The land is flat, and obviously right on the ocean, and you could ride your bikes for hours.
posted by crunchland at 7:42 AM on January 19, 2012

Two hours outside DC is Antrim 1844, a civil war era B&B about 15 minutes away from Gettysburg.
posted by anti social order at 9:12 AM on January 19, 2012

You mention that he likes craft beer -- but what about a distillery? Copper Fox distillery is in Sperryville, Virginia. I've stayed at the B&B at Sharprock Vineyards -- it's very nice and people are super. It has a farmhouse vibe. The Thorton River Grille is an excellent restaurant.
posted by OrangeDisk at 9:23 AM on January 19, 2012

To follow up--the b&b was Hartzell House. (warning, site plays music) Highly recommended if you're visiting Falling Water/Kentuck Knob. They had the best breakfasts I've ever had.
posted by min at 5:06 PM on January 19, 2012

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