As a New Englander, the discovery of Bath County, VA gives a whole new meaning to Spring. We discovered Warm/Hot Springs several years ago, and return every April. The trees are dripping with flowers and the tiny, new green leaves which fill me of hope.
This time we stayed at Anderson Cottage with our old Golden Retriever for 2 nights. Anderson Cottage was at one time a tavern, a girls' school and now an inn. The main building was full of interesting objects: beautiful, old oil paintings by Porte Crayon, Jean's fathers collection of birds' eggs, antique furniture, books and more. Due to the dog, we stayed in the Kitchen Cottage which is an older outbuilding. It was a charming brick structure with a deep fireplace, small upstairs deck and kitchen which was equipped with coffee, tea and real cream (I despise fake creamer), among other dry goods. There are 3 bedrooms and 2 baths. Since we were a party of 2, we stayed in the upstairs room which by far was the most comfortable. The antique bed was made with mismatched cotton sheets and warm blankets. A warm spring runs behind the property. We left the window opened a crack at night to enjoy the gurgling of the stream. In the morning the mist drifts off of the water into the cool air. There is a picnic table in the yard for al fresco lunches. Walking around the village takes only a few minutes but I enjoyed it every morning. You can walk to the Jefferson Pools for a 1 hour soak in the "waters" for $15.
Our hostess, Jean Bruns was a font of local history and lore. She made a fantastic breakfast both mornings. It was served in the dining room with the table set with gorgeous old family silver before a roaring fire. Breakfast was served at 9 AM so the coffee in the cottage was much appreciated. Nearby there are a few restaurants for dinner: Inn at Gristmill Square (order smoked trout and duck), Elliot's in Hot Springs, take out gourmet at the Homestead Market, and the Varsity if you have kids. Gristmill is 3 doors away and they have a small pub attached to the restaurant.
We thoroughly enjoyed our stay and visit with Jean. She provided privacy as well as good company; not an easy balance to strike.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- One of Bath County's oldest buildings, Anderson Cottage has been in the present owner's family since the 1870s. The 1820 brick kitchen is now a separate guest cottage. Kitchen Cottage: Three bedrooms and two baths. Two with queen-size beds, and one with two singles. Full kitchen/dining/sitting room with working fireplace; living room with sleep sofa. Available year-round. Maid service and breakfast supplies provided. Anderson Cottage is a short walk from the famous Warm Springs pools. Fine restaurants are nearby. Sports facilities nearby include riding lessons; fishing in local streams; and lake sports at Douthat Park and Lake Moomaw. The area abounds in natural beauty and there are miles of walking trails and scenic drives. Shopping is available at craft, antique, and specialty shops in Warm Springs, Hot Springs, and Monterey. In the summer months and on special occasions during the year chamber music of high quality is offered at Garth Newel Music Center. Warm Springs is a a good base for day trips to Lexington and Staunton, home of the Museum of American Frontier Culture, to Pocahontas County, West Virginia, to the west, and Highland County, to the north. ... more less