A Visit to the Homestead

One of my professional organizations announced that our annual conference would be at The Homestead in Hot Springs, Virginia this year. A friend and colleague has been on the conference planning committee for years and I'm on a sub-committee, so we were definitely going. We decided to check in early and explore on the Saturday before the conference, which started on a Sunday.

Our drive took just 90 minutes, but we felt like we were hours away from Charlottesville. Our room was charming and beautiful. It was the perfect place to relax.





This alcove was probably my favorite part of the room. I became sick a day into our stay and I wound up spending a little time on that pretty chaise.


Our view was beautiful and we often saw people walking up the drive to take a picture of the hotel from the top of the hill.



Our bathroom was pretty, though there wasn't much counter space. The walls were painted, but it was obvious that they had been wallpapered. The wallpaper glue was still on the walls (you can see it in the picture below if you look at the upper-right corner.



One of the most lovely traditions at the Homestead is tea time in the lobby, each day at 3 PM. The staff puts out platters of finger sandwiches, biscotti, and scones to go with hot and iced tea.


The event spaces were beautiful, some with impressive draperies, light fixtures, and art. The conference spaces were a big change from the chain hotels at which our conference is usually held.




Though our schedule was a bit too packed to take advantage of the spa during the day, we did take a look at that section of the resort and we used the indoor pool at night.






On our first night, we saw a wedding in the main ballroom, but we go to see the space up close later in our stay, as our conference social was held there.





A few more pictures of pretty spaces...





There were a few things that puzzled us. First, that the floor numbers skip floors 2-9 and 11. Our 14th floor room was actually just two stories above the ground.
 

There are massive doors that look original all over the hotel. We figured they must be fire doors.


Sadly, there is a lot of deferred maintenance evident on the property. There's a lot of wood rot, peeling paint, and wallpaper falling off the walls. The main public spaces are beautiful, but some of what we saw in hallways and stairways made us worry that Omni (which currently operates The Homestead) could use some more help with maintaining this historic property.




We were told that if we liked The Homestead, we have to get to The Greenbriar next. I would love that see the interiors and the famous bunker under that property. Maybe next year...

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