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“Remodeled but with fewer amenities” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Founders Inn and Spa

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The Founders Inn and Spa
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   5641 Indian River Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23464   |  
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Ranked #25 of 115 hotels in Virginia Beach
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Remodeled but with fewer amenities”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2013

The Founders Inn and Spa is located on the edge of the Regent University campus. As such, it is the most convenient for visiting students. It has the least amount of dining options available.

The rooms have been remodeled and the quality of furnishings upgraded. There is now a mini-fridge in each room and a microwave in the snack machine room. One could wish for an in-room microwave, as the one in the hall had heavy use and was very dirty.

The pool and exercise rooms were immaculate, as was put hotel room. The in-room dining was expensive. Next time ill walk to a 7-11 and buy my breakfast. It will be cheaper and the coffee will be hot. The other option is to walk over to the Student Center and but breakfast there.

The Inn has a shuttle to the airport ($10) and a university shuttle (VERY infrequent but free).

It's clear that the Inn has suffered from the economy, but they made wise choices, for the most part, in curtailing services. A better choice for dining options would be a big improvement.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
FoundersInn, General Manager at The Founders Inn and Spa, responded to this review, March 9, 2013
Dear Guest,

We are pleased that you find our location convenient for visiting your student at Regent University.

Thank you for bringing to my attention the condition of the microwave. I will communicate this with our Executive Housekeeper to ensure that more frequent visits are made to these areas each day.

We look forward to your next visit.

Best regards,
Sascha Hemmann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (90)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2013

Purchased this one night stay using Living Social, go the beach often although had not heard of this Inn. Lovely grounds, staff was superb, room was spacious and relaxing. Will go back.
I purchased a pedicure from the spa on site, wonderful.

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
FoundersInn, General Manager at The Founders Inn and Spa, responded to this review, March 2, 2013
Dear Valued Guest,

I am happy to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us. We are glad that our luscious grounds, guest rooms, and relaxing spa served you well during your stay. On your next visit, we encourage you to dine at our wonderful restaurants, The Swan Terrace and the Hunt Room. We can't wait to have you back!

Best regards,
Sascha Hemmann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newport News, Virginia
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2013

The hotel has a very comfortable feeling. There is a sitting parlor with fireplaces and even crocheting pieces near by. There is also a beautiful view of a fountain from this area with complementary apple cider near. The staff are friendly and the hotel is close to restaurants if you chose not to eat at the hotel.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
FoundersInn, General Manager at The Founders Inn and Spa, responded to this review, February 27, 2013
Dear guest,

Thank you for taking the time to write a review of your visit to The Founders Inn. I am pleased that you found our hotel comfortable and that you had time to relax and enjoy the hot cider in the lobby. We look forward to hosting you on your next visit to Virginia Beach.

Best regards,
Sascha Hemmann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ravenna
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 24, 2013

Positives:

The colonial style rooms lend a b+b feel. Single queen rooms (stayed in 2) were clean, pretty, and had the promised spa quality soaps/lotion mini bottles. Flat panel tv with cable better than "basic". Fridge hidden under tv stand - all furnishings quality items: brands like Bauhaus wood craft. Quilt was reallly a quilt, not a printed-on fake.

Breakfast at the Swan Terrace was excellent, but NOT Kosher, and would be somewhat limited for a vegetarian too. Cost is about $14, plus gratuity 20%.

All items seemed fresh (buffet served in steel/lidded tureen type dishes for choosing own portions. Omlette station was excellent quality but again, not as complete as I'd have liked. Sheraton and Mariott (other states) were lots better. What is it with pig in almost every dish imaginable, in Virginia? Disgusting. Suggestions to improve are at the end of this review.

Sunday's $30 brunch is impossible for Kosher, macro diet, vegan, or naturopathic minded guests. I'm sure, probably wonderful for the non-observant. Crab cakes, oysters, cheese-meat combinations, pork items, and usual hot breakfast foods, all you can eat.

Room was very quiet. Mattress like a plush marshmallow. Climate control was great and discreet.

Lobby is gorgeous: glass multi tiered chandeliers, antiques and items imported from Ireland (rustic wood items), fireplaces in all the sitting rooms, gas flame, not wood burners nor fake "lighted" replicas. Very soothing when there is not a big event going on. ample room during such times, even so. Window views of the grounds are plentiful and serene.

Gardens in february were dreary as expected, though omnipresent topiaries and white gravel paths kept it nice. Patio has rockers.

Meeting rooms are impressively nice - beats Holiday Inn and Mariott. (at least by Midwest standards)

Late check in was smooth.

Doors lock at 6pm - card grants access to buildings doubling as the room key.

Staff is eminently polite, courteous and helpful - and well groomed, many in uniform. Security was very thorough trying to recover/locate lost jewelry (my fault being disorganized because of something requiring a different room assignment, just prior to a big interview within the hour (!) - not a room theft on purpose.).

BONUS: easy access to Regent U. Their library is public access (not children, please - COLLEGE level library) with public computers.

Negatives:

Muffin Pan cafe had short hours when I was there (4 days, thurs-monday)

Swan Terrace is fancy - prices are not "affordable" to me, they are "splurge" level indulgences - tho for a resort this isn't exactly unexpected. Students and budget conscious types need to look across the street to Shoney's, Waffle House, chinese, or 7-11. Hardees and Food Lion (grocery) are 5 minutes away.

Hunt Room is also cost prohibitive (to me or those with families)

Buildings have covered walkways open to the elements. Stylish, but not pleasant if you swim or get a massage at the spa and have to get back to your room! Brrrr!!!! Jolts the body. Ditto if you want a meal - outside you go again.

NO MICROWAVES in rooms. James Lodge had one in the vending area, first floor. Not convenient.

Both my rooms were on the dark side: no reading lamp by the cushioned chair, no overhead lights above the beds or on the walls - tho abundant brass sconces line the halls. Made for unsatisfactory reading/work time (realizing most people are here for romance and relaxation).

Founders Inn aspires to be the go-to hotel in the area, according to the card pushed under my door inviting VIP membership.

I probably would opt for a hotel that provides complementary continental breakfast, if I return to Norfolk. It's inconvenient having to run out and find a place to eat - if budget is a concern. Especially in the rain or winter weather. If other hotels at this price point do this, I'd think Founder's could be competitive. They ARE a 3 1/2 star lodging. I think those into the resort aspect would opt for the upscale dining regardless. They would be well satisfied (apart from kosher and vegetarian)

Electrical outlets are not optimal. I had surge strips (1) in each room. If you want to work anywhere but the wood desk, unplug something. You could also scoot the chair by a window to see better.

The only business center is main building, again - outside you go, on a trek.

If these things were remedied, I'd be much happier.

ALSO: floor space is great in the bathroom and carpeted spaces - bringing a pet would be easy. I wish I had - I'd have slept better!

SPA - prices are reasonable for what is offered. Wide hours each day for appointments.

Room Tip: Corners by the spa are near less crowded parking but farther from elevators and all else. Parking is...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
FoundersInn, General Manager at The Founders Inn and Spa, responded to this review, March 13, 2013
Dear Valued Guest,

Thank you for your comments. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed our colonial style decor and the quality spa products provided in your room. We aim to provide you with a comfortable stay and know that a fluffy mattress and warm fireplaces contribute to that. During your next visit, we encourage you to bring your pet, as we are a pet friendly hotel. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Best Regards,
Sascha Hemmann
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charleston, South Carolina
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 23, 2013

Most people come to Virginia Beach for the beach, walking the boardwalk, playing in the waves or to visit the historical sites of Jamestown and Williamsburg and that is great, but then many of us want a bit of peace, calm and luxury afterwards which the well located Founders Inn and Spa is quick to provide to its guests. We stayed here years ago when it was under a different management concept but now that the Capella Group has taken over you'll be amazed at the transformation.

The Georgian architectural style of the brick buildings on spacious grounds, the wonderful formal gardens are perfect for a first or second wedding or just strolling. We sat on our balcony and watched the sunset over the plantings and fountains with Abigail, a beautiful white swan and long time resident, slowly paddling around the pond. Even in the starkness of February it was beautiful.

The choices for dining cover quite a range with Executive Chef Scott Simpson adding international flavors to his creative menus. We had a sumptuous Sunday brunch in the Swan Terrace at $29.95 pp (with a crowd of locals and other hotel guests), outstanding room service and a light meal from the Hunt Room's pub-like menu - all of which we would recommend highly.

Whether you choose the Presidents suite or a standard room, and we experienced both, you'll enjoy the colonial furnishings, soft color palette and general quietness of the hotel. The beds are very high and may require little step stools to get in and out of. So if you are of somewhat short stature watch yourself in the middle of the night!

The staff, from doorman to management, was always obliging with the smallest request and this stay was part of a very long road trip for us so I may have been a bit more impatient than usual.

They have an outstanding indoor pool and health club adjacent to the Flowering Almond Spa. Our visit to the spa was a wonderful experience that we won't forget for quite sometime (Our first "couples massage".) Both of us in the "Fireplace" Suite where we found a platter of fruit and pastries with juices and two outstanding masseuses provided soothing relaxing treatments that put the whole experience at a ten on the "wow" factor.

Many of my favorite hotels stays have been in Europe and the Founders Inn and Spa reminded me of a fine hotel in Baden Baden, the gardens of historic properties in France and the food equal to the best of American cuisine with worldwide influences. So you can stay here and it will be like a European break without the thousands of dollars for airfare.
We'll be back every time we pass this way or even if we have to make a detour!

  • Stayed February 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FoundersInn, General Manager at The Founders Inn and Spa, responded to this review, February 27, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to write of your wonderful experience with The Founders Inn and Spa. I am pleased to know that our staff continues to be attentive and that you enjoyed all of our facilities. Our staff takes great pride in pampering our guests. We look forward to welcoming you back on your next visit.

Best Regards,
Sascha Hemmann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Preston, Maryland
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2013

I spent a weekend here with my wife and while we were there we found the staff to be excellent, very courteous and informative. The rooms are clean with plenty of amenities, the main lodge is full of features including a grand convention room. The grounds are pretty and well kept. There is in house dining, a fine dining room and a pub.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
FoundersInn, General Manager at The Founders Inn and Spa, responded to this review, February 21, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for taking the time to commend our staff on their service. I know that our staff does all they can to exceed our guests expectations and I am pleased that they were able to make your visit at The Founders Inn memorable. We look forward to your next visit.

Best regards,
Sascha Hemmann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norfolk, Virginia
Top Contributor
153 reviews 153 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
73 helpful votes 73 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2013

We live 15 minutes away and used a Living Social coupon for a Valentine's Day get-away. I grew up just down the street from this complex.

Felt like I was in a bedroom at my mother's house - which is a compliment if staying here didn't cost so much; she lives in Williamsburg, VA in a lovely home/neighborhood and she loves all things colonial. Our room was well appointed with granite counters in bathroom, comfortable beds, fluffy towels and a larger than needed flat screen TV. The room was 'cozy' with lots and lots of colonial blue. The bathroom with it's updated sink area, had a mediocre dated white tub/shower that wasn't 'sparkling'. Heater is loud, we could hear doors closing and people walking down the hall. Public rooms are lovely but my initial reaction to the stairwell leading to second floors (elevators are in the middle of the building and not convenient) in the 'lodge' - an outdoor walk from the reception area, was " ugh, this is way too busy wall paper, dated and worn."

The Inn has a nice indoor pool and hot tub area and the spa is lovely, though I thought the facial wasn't worth the price.

Swan Terrace is only a handful of 4 star restaurants in this area and is worth trying. See my review.

All in all, I would not pay full price to stay here. Looks to be a big conference destination, which would explain how it's been in business for 20+ years.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
FoundersInn, General Manager at The Founders Inn and Spa, responded to this review, February 23, 2013
Dear Guest,

Thank you for the comments on your recent visit to The Founders Inn. I am pleased that you found our beds comfortable. We always appreciate to hear our guest’s observations, and we will address the maintenance issues you noted immediately. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

We look forward to your next visit to The Founders Inn.

Best regards,
Sascha Hemmann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about The Founders Inn and Spa

Address: 5641 Indian River Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23464
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Virginia > Virginia Beach
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Best Value Hotel in Virginia Beach
#9 Business Hotel in Virginia Beach
#15 Family Hotel in Virginia Beach
#26 Romantic Hotel in Virginia Beach
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Founders Inn and Spa 3.5*
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
The Founders Hotel Virginia Beach
Founders Hotel Virginia Beach

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