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“Lovely Retreat” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Black Horse Inn

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Black Horse Inn
3.5 of 5 Inn   |   8393 Meetze Road, Warrenton, VA 20187   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Warrenton B&B and Inns
Cleveland, Ohio
1 review
“Lovely Retreat”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2013

If you're looking for a relaxing, romantic and historic environment, look no further -- this is the place! My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the Black Horse Inn. Our room was just perfect -- we had a corner room in one of the oldest sections of the inn. It was cozy and the working stone fireplace was just an added plus. Stephanie (the inn keeper) was so helpful and accommodating throughout our stay. The breakfasts were delicious and served at the time we requested in the gorgeous dining room. Later in the evening, it was just so relaxing to either retreat to the Library or our room by the fire and pick up a book and read about all the history the Inn and the area has to offer. We will definitely head back to the Black Horse Inn -- it's a keeper!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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76 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Ashland, Virginia
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2013

This was our first stay at The Black Horse Inn and it was superb! The room and decor was beautiful, the bed the most cozy I've ever slept on and the breakfast was delicious. There are so many sitting rooms with fire places, wine and cheese and gorgeous views. The staff were wonderful, especially Stephanie, and hopefully we will be able to take our horses the next time we go. The barn has nice big stalls and the paddocks had nice clean run-in sheds. We will definitely be back!!

  • Stayed March 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.
Washington DC
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2013

My husband and I visited the Inn for Valentine's weekend. Our hostess was so pleasant and thoughtful.She arranged dinner reservations and a taxi. We enjoyed wine and cheese by the fire. Our room was delightful and very clean. Breakfast was served w
Hot and on time. We even got invited to the ballroom for a lunch with one of their wedding caters! The cat even gave us a special escort around the estate. It was special Valentine's with fresh made chocolate covered strawberries! Thank you Black Horse Inn we will be back!

Room Tip: All were nice we got a tour of them all
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  • 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
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Cape May, New Jersey
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2013

I have recently stayed at the Black Horse Inn it's a beautiful Civil War Inn. The room I was staying in was something I would say perfect. In the morning we came down for breakfast and sat down at the table and waited for our food to be served, we ate a very nice breakfast. The eggs, sausage, and fruit were very good. The innkeeper was very kind and generous to all the guest. The staff was very polite and helpful. When we went out to town the housekeepers cleaned our room we came back and it was spot less it looked as The first time we entered the room. I really recommend this Inn to all that want a nice relaxing hotel in Virginia.

  • Stayed December 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
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Bethesda, Maryland
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 20, 2013

The Black Horse Inn

I recently visited the Black Horse Inn for a long weekend in Virginia Wine Country with another couple. Overall the Inn was very charming, and we had an enjoyable visit. Would I come back again? Maybe, but definitely not for the price they are currently charging.

Quick Pros:
• Friendly/caring staff
• Charming room and beautiful historic building
• Great location and proximity to local vineyards

Quick Cons:
• Breakfast offers no selection in what is served
• Food/wine at cocktail hour is just so-so
• Innkeeper was scattered, and at times too comfortable/personal with guests
• Overall they need to refine their process and incorporate “extra little touches” to accomplish the high-end feel they are advertising

Rooms
We arrived in the early evening and were delighted by the charm of the old Civil War building. We were greeted by the innkeeper who while very nice and welcoming, was quite frazzled and seemed a bit overwhelmed. She showed us the first couple’s room and gave them their key, which was on the dresser. Next we all went to our room, which was the Jeffersonian. It was a lovely room with a very comfortable queen size four-poster bed, a claw foot tub and a great view of the stables and front yard where we often saw the horses grazing. The problem however, was that the innkeeper neglected to mention that the thermostat (which controlled all four rooms in our wing) was in the hallway. Someone had turned it off so we had no heat that night and we thought were going to freeze to death! The other issue was that unlike the other couple, we had no room key on our dresser. I didn’t ask for it right away because we were being given a tour of the building and the innkeeper seemed so frantic I almost felt bad asking her for anything. I forgot about it until the next morning when we were about to leave for the day. When I mentioned it at breakfast I was a little surprised when she inferred I had lost it but I said nothing and she gave me the spare key. Also, for an inn that claims to be high-end, there were not a lot of amenities, or really even the basics you find in other hotel/inns. We had no water bottles in the room, and the soaps, which to me were not very luxurious, were not replaced after use and there were no water glasses in the bathroom. I also did not care for the “tip” envelope left out for the maid, especially given that I do not believe they changed our sheets/towels but rather just refolded them. That being said, I really did like our room and thought it was very comfortable and would enjoy staying in that room again, especially now that I know where the temperature control is!


Breakfast
Breakfast here was really not enjoyable. The inn claimed several times to have gourmet food, and we read dozens of excellent reviews online. However, we did not agree with what we read – while there was certainly an abundance of food, it was not appetizing to us, or what we consider to be fine dining. The first issue was that breakfast isn’t served until 9am. For those of us who are early risers, it was a bit annoying. It would have been nice if coffee and bread/pastries/fruit were set up early for those who wanted to eat before 9am. There was a Keurig (but often the water was empty), as well as some cold cereal, but no milk set out.

The other problem was that you do not have a choice in what you are served. It is not a continental/buffet breakfast where you have a selection of several items set out on the table (such as fruit, cereal, eggs, meats etc.). Instead, you are served whatever the kitchen is preparing that day and if you don’t care for it, there are no other options (and there is no menu so you have no idea what that will be until its served). The first day we were served a plate of store bought pastries and muffins. This was fine, but again not gourmet nor what you expect from a charming B&B. Home made muffins or scones would have added a level of sophistication to the meal, for not much extra effort. The second course was a baked apple stuffed with cinnamon and sugar. Unfortunately, it was very undercooked and hard to eat. The next course was an egg casserole with peppers and spinach. Two of ours were completely cold and another in our group detests peppers so most of us went hungry that day. The next day we had warm grapefruit, which was nice, (although really did not need the brown sugar loaded on top!) followed by French toast and sausage. The French toast was made of two slices of bread stuck together to make it look thicker. Unfortunately, this meant that the eggs in between the slices did not cook and were raw and unappetizing. Mine was also cold again. It was upsetting to see how much food was unnecessarily wasted because we didn’t’ t like it.

We were also taken aback when one of our party members requested a couple of scrambled eggs as he did not care for the option being served, and the response was “we can’t do custom orders that’s why we asked you the night before if you have food allergies.” Well, they never did ask us that, and while we don’t have allergies, we didn’t think it was an unreasonable request given that there were only 4 other guests and they had already been served.

I think a better option would be to serve a buffet so that guests can help themselves to what they prefer. Having an egg/protein and pancake/waffle option in addition to some cold cereal, fruit, hard boiled eggs and meat/cheeses would likely appeal to most people.

Cocktail Hour
In the evening, there was a simple cocktail hour, which was nice. It was your basic cheddar cheese and crackers, some Valentine’s Day sweets, inexpensive wine and a fridge with waters and sodas. We enjoyed sitting with a glass of wine in the porch and talking with one another, however the food was lack luster and the wine served was lower end from a large bottle (as the innkeeper implied she did not have time to open so many regular size bottles). The fridge was almost never stocked either, I twice went for a diet coke only to find none. Again, if they are touting themselves as gourmet, homemade cookies and a gourmet cheese selection would add ever so much more to the presentation. I also think real plates versus paper would give a higher-end feel. Another suggestion would be to invite local winery representatives to come in at cocktail hour to serve their wines (thus negating the innkeepers need to open so many bottles), and have bottles available for purchase. We saw this done in Napa and it was very well received and provided great exposure for local wineries. We are wine enthusiasts and were there to visit several local wineries so enjoying wine from a local vineyard would have been much more appealing than the average quality wine served. We also ran out of wine glasses at one cocktail hour and they couldn’t seem to find any more. Because the innkeeper was so frantic looking for glasses, we were asked to open the bottle of wine ourselves. Also, while she was sitting with us during the cocktail hour (which if she was so busy I don’t know how she had time to do) we felt that she was a little too personal with us and actually badmouthed another guest, which we found distasteful.

Throughout the day there was always music playing in the background that was nice at first, however the playlist was too short and rather eclectic (everything from Adele to classical Mozart) so by the end of the weekend we had heard each song a dozen times.

Overall
Overall we had a nice time at the inn, but found it to be lacking in the little touches that separate high-end from average (and again, they were claiming to be high-end). While they did seem to genuinely care about their guests, they just weren’t quite getting it right and really did not seem open to any of the suggestions.

I think that the Black Horse Inn has the potential to be a really great B&B, but they need to fine-tune their process, amp up their professionalism, research standard practices of other hotels and inns and be open to suggestions from guests. As it stands now, I would only stay here again if the prices were about half of what they are charging.

Room Tip: Do not stay in "A room with a view." It was an attic so the ceilings are slanted and you h...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
pennsylvania
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2013

We spent a very pleasant weekend wine tasting in Virginia and stayed at the Black Horse inn. It is a charming historic inn with well appointed, authentic furnishings and lovely grounds complete with grazing horses and rolling pastures. Our attic room, touted to be recently renovated, was simple and clean. Howevert I think the renovation should have included new carpet, replacement cabinets for the peeling laminate bathroom ones and a new countertop which was cracked.Replacing the old fashioned TV with a small flat screen as we saw in the other rooms should be done as well. We didn’t have robes as some of the other rooms did, and replacing the used toiletries and bath salts daily would have been a nice touch too. If you are tall, it is a tad hard to dry your hair or put on makeup, as the sloped attic walls make using the bathroom mirror without stooping down very difficult. Having two extra pillows in the closet instead of one, and more than one bath towel per guest are also small touches that make big differences. We would have liked both of those things. I’m sure the staff would have easily accommodated these items, but it’s nice to have them when you need them late at night and an easy thing to have them in the closet and bathroom. Also beware that the stairwell entrance is narrow and steep and the railings on the bedroom level are very shaky and not to be used for any support.

Breakfast is served each morning in the dining room or sun porch. The large crystal glasses filled with orange juice at each place setting make a lovely presentation, but I couldn’t help notice how many go untouched and are wasted. I would prefer a choice of juices, poured to order in smaller glasses. Trays of average store bought mini muffins, and little pastries are scattered about on the tables. Looks pretty, but homemade breads and muffins would be much nicer, and more along the lines of the authentic bed and breakfast experience. There was cereal out on the sideboard, but no milk. A keurig is available for those early morning risers who need a cup of coffee before breakfast is served. Being that several of the guests we met came to hike, and many people are early risers, some flexibility with the breakfast start time ( 9 AM) should be easy to handle and provide guests with some flexibility. Putting out a toaster and a tray of bagels and breads on the sideboard or sunroom would be nice touch as well and great for those who need a little something but don’t want to wait for the sit down breakfast or need to get on the road early.
We were told that guests are asked each night if they have any dietary preferences for breakfast. We were never asked either night and you only have the option that is served. It is a small inn, with only 10 rooms, and I would think it would be easy to serve a more customized breakfast with a choice of two items for that amount of guests. I never saw more than 6 or 8 guests eating at a time.

Our first morning breakfast started with baked apples stuffed with cinnamon and nuts. The presentation was pretty, but the apples were undercooked and served in a bowl. Not easy to eat or cut. An egg strata came next. It looked wonderful, and the inn has the presentation part of the dish down pat. I would have enjoyed it more had it been served at the proper hot temperature. It was just shy of warm, and more towards the cold side. The mandoline sliced potatoes that were layered with the eggs were not cooked and hard. It made the dish watery. The next morning was French toast. Again it came out beautifully presented and appearing as thick slices, dusted with sugar and accompanied by some fruit and sausage. It was actually not thick sliced bread, but sandwich style bread. Two slices were dipped together in the egg and then cooked . However when this is done, the bread although appearing as one thick slice will come apart as you eat it, revealing the shortcut of using the pre-sliced bread . The two inside surfaces were uncooked and mushy. Having been to bed and breakfasts that serve homemade granola, homemade breads and muffin, and expertly prepared gourmet breakfasts, I felt more attention to the details of the ingredients and their preparation should have been given. I felt the same way about the tray of cookies put out in the sunroom daily. I would rather one or two homemade treats as opposed to a tray of arranged store bought mini cupcakes and cookies that I can buy in my local supermarket at home. During happy hour some wedges of really good cheese artfully presented with some fresh fruit and crackers would have been nicer than the dried up cut cheese slices and port wine cheese ball that was put out. Something this simple could be made so much better without much effort or extra cost. Putting some bottled water, sodas and juices in the sunroom fridge is another suggestion and I have seen this done in the B&B's that I have visited in the past.

Overall our experience was pleasant and the inn is warm and comforting. I am a detail oriented person and for the price of the rooms, I think those little things could be addressed to take the experience up a notch, and more along the lines of the "upscale inn with gourmet food" image that is suggested .

Room Tip: Don't pick a room with a view if you are tall or require head room in the bathroom.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
New York City, New York
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 17, 2013

A fellow kind innkeeper, who was closed for the winter, suggested the Black Horse Inn, while I was driving 130 miles away in a blinding rainstorm. What a surprise and delight to drive up to this magnificent property, beautifully decorated with elegance and taste...one felt immediately t home.

Stephanie Mellott, the innkeeper, welcomed me with tea, sherry or wine along with perfect hours d'oevres for someone who had driven for several hours. Everything was perfect and every detail from the furnishings, the books, the music, delicious breakfast, and most of all the warm hospitality shared, , clearly mattered to the staff of the Black Horse Inn...After a wonderful breakfast, i was able to work in comfort and peace in the beautiful rooms, though outside it was dreary and wet! i will certainly return with my Executive team to enjoy a retreat or celebration here. Worth the few extra miles off the highway. MMD

Room Tip: Al the rooms are charming, totally dependent on which size, but the Bridal suite and all 4 of the co...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • 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.

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Additional Information about Black Horse Inn

Also Known As:
Black Horse Hotel Warrenton
Black Horse Hotel
Address: 8393 Meetze Road, Warrenton, VA 20187
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Virginia > Warrenton
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Warrenton
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Black Horse Inn 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Black Horse Inn, Warrenton, Virginia is the ideal escape for business meetings, brainstorming sessions or revitalizing retreats. The natural solitude of this historic, hunt-country estate encourages effective meetings and creative thought. Just 45 minutes from Washington, D.C., this spectacular setting will lead to creative ideas and a clear mind to tackle even the most difficult tasks and problem-solving sessions. Ten rooms with private baths, corporate center for 200. Lunches and dinners upon request. Team-building activities, WiFi & televisions. ... more   less 
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