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“Nice setting and accommodations but food service was unbearable” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Inn at Vaucluse Spring

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The Inn at Vaucluse Spring
231 Vaucluse Spring Lane, Stephens City, VA 22655   |  
Hotel amenities
Arlington, Virginia
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Nice setting and accommodations but food service was unbearable”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2013

Every other review has written extensively on the grounds and the hospitality, all of which I agree with. I have yet to read a reveiw that remarks upon the unbearably slow food service. Someone called it leisurely -- I think it is much, much worse than that. First of all, my husband and I stayed for the Saturday dinner and were seated in a corner of the room which would have been fine except for the fact that we were at the end of the service rounds. Meaning everyone else who was seated at the same time as us was served ahead of us. I don't know what was going on in the kitchen but it took, no joke, 20 minutes more for our food to be served to us than it was for the first couple to be served. Which made us think if Barry seated my husband and I at that table for a reason -- did he think we were less worthy of getting fed on time? The whole time the dinner took place, which was almost two hours, my husband and I seethed which was not what we wanted to do on our romantic getaway. Certain couples seemed to get much better treatment than we did even though we all paid the same amount. The wait staff was pleasant -- I don't think it was their fault -- but it did seem to be a very conscious decision to serve the meal this way. Breakfast was even worse. Several couples were seated the same time as us but again, we were served last and so couples who were served first were done with their breakfast before we even got the crepes served to us. I just about wanted to explode. There is no excuse for it. It took us an hour to get fed. A serve yourself buffet might have been better. Again, the inn itself is gorgeous, beautifully landscaped and everyone was very hospitable. And in the grand scheme of things, food service may be an afterthought. But my husband and I felt slighted at each meal service which made everything else seem dingy and somehow less perfect. I would go back again but not for the dinner and I would bring a huge novel for the breakfast service for entertainment and find out the right place to sit.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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, July 11, 2013
We were so sorry to hear about these guests’ feelings about service of their dinner and breakfast, and appreciate their taking the time to share their feelings, both positive and negative. We consider that the timing of courses, even at breakfast, is an important component of the total dining experience, in addition to considerations such as the atmosphere of the dining room, the presentation of food on the plate, the colors, textures, and temperature of the food, and most of all the taste of each dish and its relation to the tastes of the other courses. Service is not an afterthought and we do take it very seriously.

That being said, it can happen occasionally that a series of events can conspire to slow things down, whether it is an accident in the kitchen or a long series of special accommodations for food allergies and restrictions for several tables. We do not know the date of this guest’s stay, so are unable to reconstruct the events of the morning and evening, but believe that the service as described is very unusual.

We have shared these comments with our waitstaff to encourage them to better tune into guests who may be feeling slighted or anxious to be served more quickly. At breakfast, we always try to respond to requests from guests who need to eat quickly and leave. We hope our guests will feel comfortable in letting us know if they need a quick breakfast. Bringing a copy of War and Peace to breakfast may send the wrong message, i.e., “I’m comfortable spending a lot of time in the dining room.” Direct, polite, communication with a server is always a good idea, and we strive to create an atmosphere where guests are at ease in doing so. We would welcome a return visit for an overnight stay by these guests or perhaps even another opportunity to serve them dinner.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    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 (85)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Brinklow, MD
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2013

We spent another wonderful weekend at the Inn at Vaucluse Spring, our favorite B&B. This time we stayed in the Cottage on the Hill, the only building on the property we hadn't stayed in yet. We loved the shady little terrace outside our back door, where we could sit and read on the adirondack chairs. The food was fabulous of course. And Neil & Barry Myers were as welcoming as ever. We've stayed at dozens of B&B's across the country, and the Inn at Vaucluse Spring is by far our overall favorite. Why else would we return 15 times?

  • Stayed June 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Princeton, NJ
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2013

Neil and Barry's eclectic group of buildings clustered around gardens, a spring-fed pond, a pool, and a restored manor house outshines any B&B we've ever visited. Our room--the Chumley Suite in an expanded log house near the pool--was roomy and country-comfortable. Breakfasts were superb, and the chef outdid himself for both the Friday supper and the more elaborate Saturday dinner. We thoroughly enjoyed every bite. Big eaters and type-A Northerners should note that portions on Saturday are small, the pace is leisurely, and the small dining room hushed, at least when peopled by couples at separate tables.

  • Stayed June 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2013

Over Memorial Day weekend, we returned to the Inn for our 15th Anniversary, and couldn't have made a better choice. Barry and Neil were tremendously accommodating hosts, and Barry's stories alone were worth the trip. Get him talking and you'll see what we mean. . .

The Saturday night dinner had 5 terrific courses, built around local fresh produce and matched with wine, and the chef accommodated my dietary restrictions without sacrificing a bit of taste.

Margaret's room was perfect - spacious, far enough from the Inn for privacy but close enough so that we could run over to the main house whenever we needed some tea or advice.

The grounds make for wonderful walking, and you can definitely spot wildlife without straying from from your room.

Each breakfast was delicious, and the staff were happy to send us on our way for the day with winery recommendations, coupons, maps, and anything else we needed. We even got a recommendation on room colors for our house renovation.

We'll. Be. Back.

Room Tip: Margaret's Room is a great choice if you want privacy without paying for a separate cottage. We...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
Harrisburg, PA
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

We want to join in the chorus of rave reviews for the The Inn at Vaucluse Spring. We were there for most of a weekend for a family wedding, and we can't recommend it more highly. The owners have obviously spent a lot of time and effort to make it comfortable. All the rooms are unique and the furnishings are well chosen for both quality and design. Great setting- we only wish we lived closer! The two breakfasts we were served were very tasty and original. Our wedding party had exclusive use of the entire facility and grounds, which made it seem like a private getaway. The staff there are helpful, friendly, and unobtrusive. I'm sorry that with the family gatherings I did not get a chance to personally meet the owners, whom I was told were warm and generous. Since the wedding was catered we did not get an opportunity for dinner there- but the menu looks very interesting. I believe it enhanced the wedding experience greatly, thanks so much!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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.
Elkton, Maryland
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2013

Our forth visit to Vaucluse Inn. We started with a beautiful horseback ride.....than a visit to Valerie Hill Winery. Great wines....music and complimentary hamburgers and hotdogs. Hiking the following day.....hiked up to Stoney Man....2nd highest point in the park.
Breakfast was enjoyable.....and a great way to start the day. Roma Greek/Italian Resturant is a must!
Can't wait to visit agin!!
Peter and Gwen Lantagne. MD

  • Stayed May 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
    • 4 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.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2013

Took my boyfriend here for a surprise birthday weekend getaway, and it couldn't have been more perfect. We stayed in the Thornton Room of the Winter Kitchen, in the main house, and it was beautifully appointed and extremely comfortable. We didn't leave the property while we were there, we were so relaxed and content. The food was amazing and the grounds and house beautiful. We happened to book our stay during the annual tomato dinner, a multi-course meal featuring tomatoes in every course. It was phenomenal. The breakfast the next morning was as delightful. The staff was so friendly and welcoming, from the refreshments and cookies upon our arrival, through the remainder of our stay. We will no doubt return. We liked being in the area as we were close enough to visit Luray Caverns the next day.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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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): $$
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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