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“Been going for 15 years” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Inn at Vaucluse Spring

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The Inn at Vaucluse Spring
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231 Vaucluse Spring Lane, Stephens City, VA 22655   |  
Hotel amenities
San Francisco
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Been going for 15 years”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

My wife and I first went to the Inn in 1996 when we were working in Washington D.C. and saw an article in the Washingtonian Magazine about "get aways". We went and loved it. We went at least once a year 'til 2000 when we move to the west coast. On trips back east to visit family, we have taken a couple of side trips to visit our old friends, Neil and Barry. Our son proposed to his wife there and was married there, too! Getting the drift. This is just the most beautiful, relaxing, and comfortable place to spend time. The hosts are wonderful and there are so many choices of accommodations that will suit all tastes. Thanks Barry and Neil!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VaucluseSpring, Owner at The Inn at Vaucluse Spring, responded to this review, January 10, 2013
Thanks so much. We have some wonderful memories with you and your family as well. It was great to see you again! Glad you could work us in to your East Coast trip.
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565 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    533
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (93)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
NC
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2012

After innumerable trips, you might think a place might get old. Instead, the Inn gets better with time. Barry and Neil always make you feel like you have returned home. Words are really inadequate to express a stay here, you must experience it. The view, the ambiance, the world class meals, there is no better value for the dollar. We will go back, likely again and again.

Room Tip: Any room, but the Jones is great.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oakland, California
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2012

While visiting our daughter in Washington DC, my husband and I wanted to explore the countryside with her. The 3 of us stayed at The Inn at Vaucluse Spring, booking the Gallery cottage for two nights, and enjoyed every moment. Neil and Barry, the proprietors, were charming, going out of their way to make us feel welcome. At their recommendation, we visited the Valerie Hill Winery, a short drive on the gravel roads surrounding the Inn, and our California wine snob palates were pleasantly surprised by quality of the wine, which we sipped while listening to wonderful live music in the back garden of the winery. The Chef's Dinner Saturday night was delightful, from the signature "Fall in a Glass" cocktail shared with other guests in the parlor to the 6 courses of the superb, locally sourced meal paired with wine. We stumbled down the hill to our two level cottage, where we took full advantage of both the wood-burning and gas fireplaces. The rural setting is perfect for exploring Shenandoah National Park, the Appalachian Trail and the many local apple orchard farmstands. It was well worth our frantic drive back to the District just in time to escape the wrath of Sandy!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MA
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
87 helpful votes 87 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2012

We stayed for one night in October; perfect place for a respite from a crazy summer. I was a little concerned when we drove past the 'old car junkyard' and the power lines, but don't let them scare you away. The inn and grounds are beautiful and serene All you see and hear are nature and grazing cattle. We stayed in the Jones Room; all of the rooms looked perfect. The place is tastefully decorated, the furniture is comfortable, and the bed divine! The private chef's dinner was delicous (many thanks to Adam, especially for the wine!), as was the breakfast. We loved being able to dine in the inn and then walk upstairs after dinner - no driving in the dark. Neil made us feel very much at home as she welcomed us. Everything about this inn is perfect! I was thrilled that I chose this inn, rather than one of the many others that are located on the main street of their small towns in the surrounding area. Perfect ambience!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VaucluseSpring, Owner at The Inn at Vaucluse Spring, responded to this review, November 2, 2012
Thank you, and thank you for posting the photos! We love seeing the Inn through our guests' eyes (and camera lenses). It's always another perspective we haven't thought of before.
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Alexandria, Virginia
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2012

We recently stayed at the Inn at Vaucluse Spring for a last getaway before the birth of our first child looking for a relaxing, friendly experience. It started out that way. Neil, one of the owners was perfectly lovely. She was very welcoming, informative, and friendly. She made us feel at home. Our room was terrific--clean, cozy, and traditionally decorated without being stuffy. We had had three experiences that made the stay however end on a poor and perplexing note. The elegant, six course dinner Saturday night was run well but the food was mediocre as was the simple breakfast the following morning. They did not do a good job accommodating vegetarian or pregnant needs. The vegetarian replacements were poorly prepared and repetitive (and completely non-existent for the breakfast, the sausages were not replaced with anything) and the meat for the pregnant requirements was medium rare Saturday night despite us being told it had been cooked well. At the time these were minor concerns because the overall experience thus far was great. The other owner, Barry, was what really made the overall experience unpleasant. For reasons we are still unaware of (we never mentioned the food issues) he was initially friendly and then became publicly cold and unfriendly towards us from Saturday evening onwards including publicly bypassing us in the small room where they seated four other couples. Then, as we were checking out he was outright cold, snappish, and dismissive. We were also charged for an extra glass of wine we did not drink. No idea why we were singled out or treated this way. Wish we had said something at the time. His rude behavior coupled with the mediocre (and expensive) meals made our stay with Vaucluse far less than it could have been. Given the expense of this Inn, we would recommend not taking the chance and choosing a different B&B in the area.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
VaucluseSpring, Owner at The Inn at Vaucluse Spring, responded to this review, November 2, 2012
We are so sorry that these guests had such a disappointing end to their visit. A last getaway before the birth of a child is an important time for a couple and we very much want it to be a perfect experience.

It is difficult to respond to a perception of our food as “mediocre” without knowing the basis. We believe our Saturday dinner menu is anything but mediocre. For example, the risotto starts with Arborio rice toasted in hazelnut oil for a nice fall flavor and is prepared with a 3-year aged cheddar in two forms: creamy stirred in as well as a finish of cheddar crisps sprinkled on top for a crispy counterpoint. The risotto is served with cider-infused local apple and toasted pumpkin seeds. We consider a flawlessly prepared risotto with these inventive seasonal touches hardly mediocre. As we prepare the dish here, it is completely vegetarian, so there was no variation required to accommodate a vegetarian diet.

Similarly, the fish course of Faroe Island salmon smoked tableside is a lovely presentation designed to impart a subtle applewood smokiness without the harshness on the palate that can result from charring. The brightness of the carrot purée (from carrots cooked in carrot juice) cuts through the richness of the salmon. The crispy shiitakes are sliced paper thin, dusted with potato starch and flash fried to create a crispy and earthy element that is not overly dominant. The vegetarian substitution of tofu crisped in butter and presented smoked in the same manner as the salmon continued the same progression for the vegetarian diner, lending a texture similar to that of the fish.

The Tempeh, the vegetarian substitution for the duck, was chosen as the anchor for the meal based on its dense protein, fiber richness, and contrast in texture from the preceding course’s tofu, so hardly seems repetitive. The duck breast we fully believed to be well done in that it had been specially prepared, but we would certainly have been happy to cook it further and replate completely if we had known at the time that the diner considered it not to be cooked to her wishes.

Regarding the omission of meat from the vegetarian entrée on Sunday morning, we could have used a soy sausage, but have found these “fake-meat” products to be unacceptable substitutes, so are at a bit of a loss as to how to handle this to the guest’s satisfaction. We do take these comments seriously and have contacted the guests directly to initiate a dialog about how we could have better met their needs and expectations regarding dietary issues (as well as to refund the overcharge for the glass of wine).

Regarding the “cold and unfriendly” treatment by the innkeeper on Saturday night, we truly regret this situation. We walk a fine line between engaging our guests and yet giving them enough space to engage personally and privately with each other. A lack of response from a guest can generally indicate that they prefer to be left alone together. Our job as innkeepers is to be able to “read” these reactions and respond appropriately. In this instance we clearly failed, and for that we offer our sincerest apologies.
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Flowood, Mississippi
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2012

My husband and I stayed for 3 nights in August 2012. We wanted a quiet place to unwind from our busy lives, and before a big family wedding in DC the following weekend. This was the perfect place for us to relax and "recharge". The inn is located in the city of Stephens City, which is an easy drive from DC. We were greeted in the main house by Neil, one of the owners. She is very friendly and accommodating. It felt like we were staying at a friend's house rather than an inn. We stayed in the Millhouse cottage, which is adorable and cozy. The furnishings are all truly "vintage" and reflect the character of the area. My husband and I got up early every morning to drink coffee and read by the pond. The rushing water from the mill provided the perfect background noise for sleeping and relaxing.

The highlight of our stay was our five course meal prepared by chef Adam. My husband and I have traveled to many diverse places in the world, and this is in our top 5 favorite meals ever! We made reservations for dinner, and got personal service by chef Adam himself. Each course was paired with a wine, and it was an amazing experience to have the chef himself explain the courses to us. He also prepared a three course breakfast for the guests everyday, which I was always very excited about.

The owners really think of everything to make your stay as smooth and comfortable as possible. We went swimming at the pool, which is connected to one of the other guesthouses. In the common area of that guesthouse, you can find towels and snacks. Also in the common kitchen, there are plates, utensils, and bottled water for guests to take. There is also an area that contains toiletries such as toothpaste, shaving cream, etc. I liked having all of these things readily available so that we didn't have to "bother" anyone to help us although they would have been more than happy to help.

The inn is located near several vineyards. The Valerie Hill Vineyard is just down the street and was recommended to us by Adam. Also, the area has many good unique restaurants (not surprising, given the number of food and wine enthusiasts). I would definitely recommend this inn to anyone looking to truly "get away."

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexandria, Virginia
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2012

I've been to the inn almost a dozen times, but after a hiatus of two years and some major life changes, I wondered if I would still find it to be the magical experience I remembered. Indeed it was in every way! Barry and Neil are the best innkeepers anywhere. They and their very thoughtful staff still make each guest feel so welcome and special. I reveled in the beautiful, peaceful scenery around the inn and the delicious gourmet meals prepared by Neil and Chef Adam. My room was charming and very comfortable, with many thoughtful touches. This delightful, relaxing weekend in the country once again restored my spirits, and I look forward to returning soon for more of the inn's magic.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about The Inn at Vaucluse Spring

Address: 231 Vaucluse Spring Lane, Stephens City, VA 22655
Location: United States > Virginia > Stephens City
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Stephens City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A charming and secluded B&B in the Virginia countryside. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Inn At Vaucluse Spring Hotel Stephens City

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