Traveled to Aiken for the first time on business, and took a gamble on staying at the Willcox. It was a very good experience, and I wouldn't hesitate to stay here again.
I stayed in their basic standard room, which was great. Lots of space and light, with a sitting area by the fireplace and a deep bathtub with separate shower. The selection of books on the mantle was amusing - Gore Vidal next to Charlton Heston, etc. The room was clean, the bed very comfortable, and everything worked as it should.
The common areas of the hotel are beautiful. Live music in the hotel lobby, with comfortable furniture by a wood fire and dark paneled walls. It is a lovely old building, with an atmosphere of relaxed affluence.
I ate dinner twice in the hotel, once in the restaurant and once from room service. Both were good, but not exceptional. The calamari was overcooked, and the poutine over salted. Though both the romaine salad and the lobster pasta were balanced, and quite tasty. Breakfast was very nice in the mornings. Good, healthy selection of fresh items.
If I had one complaint about my stay, it would be the front desk staff. Several of them were fairly snobbish, giving the impression that they weren't certain that I was a suitable candidate to stay in the hotel. However, the bartenders and housekeeping staff were all friendly and gracious.