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The Inn at Little Washington
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Reviewed August 3, 2011

I won't revisit all the accolades already written re: the fabulous decor conceived by an English set designer, the unparalleled cuisine, the warm and welcoming service. Instead, I'll tell you about The Inn at Little Washington through a few little details that may help give you a sense of the greater whole.

A LOVELY GREETING:
Upon arrival, we were greeted by name and all four of us (my husband and two grown children) escorted into the garden room for the house drink: local sparkling wine enhanced with a puree of rhubarb and lemon from the Inn's gardens.

AN AVALANCHE OF WATER BOTTLES:
Environmental issues aside, the Inn shows its love through the nearly continuous offering of water bottles. Leaving the inn for a quick stroll? A bottle is pressed into the hand of each departing guest. Going out for a drive? Somehow, miraculously, the bottles are already in the car. Thirsty at night? Fear not, the water bottle is on the bedside table. Should you need ice, rest assured the ice chest has been filled for you.

CLEVER TREATS:
Awaiting us in our beautifully appointed rooms was a tray of nuts, dried fruits, and chocolate-covered blueberries. These were refreshed throughout our three-day stay.

DELIGHTFUL TURN-DOWN SERVICE:
Each night brought a special surprise: A charming illustrated story, titled "The Secret Ingredient" awaited us the first night. It was tied with a ribbon and a sprig of lavender from the garden. Another night we received a pack of playing cards. Our last night brought two sleeves of assorted cookies.

SPECIAL LITTLE TOUCHES ABOUND:
As if to prove it does not take itself too seriously, truffle popcorn comes in a miniature version of an old-fashioned popcorn box. Breakfast juices come in a flight of four of whatever happens to be freshest on that day. Our favorites: strawberry; raspberry; and green apple cider. The evening meal concludes NOT with a plate of petits fours, as is customary, but with the most charming 3-D paper replica of the inn, filled to bursting with all manner of cookies and chocolates.

These are just a few of the special touches that made our 3-day stay at the Inn so special. While we were all sad to leave, our 30th anniversary is only three years away--as good a reason as any to keep a marriage going!

I hope this review is helpful to you. And if you visit the Inn, I hope you have as charmed a time as my family and I had.

Room Tip: We were in adjoining rooms 5 and 7. Both had balconies overlooking the garden. Both rooms gorgeous and comfortable.
  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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2  Thank Sharon J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 1, 2011

We have stayed at the Inn at Little Washington for very special occasions..ie. Christmas, New Year's Eve, and birthdays. It is the most special way in the Washington, D.C. area to celebrate those occasions.

At our last visit we stayed in the Alice Waters Suite....with TWO balconies! The rooftop balcony has a view of the entire Washington, VA area all the way to the mountains...and the stars at night are unbelievable.

The suite has a living room with a bedroom loft and is very romantic. The other balcony is just off the living room.....the perfect spot for intimate drinks or coffee in the morning.

The Alice Waters Suite sports a very large bathroom with both shower and tub...it is the size of a bedroom.

And of course the main attraction....is the restaurant and Chef O'Connell's magical menus. During our last stay we did the Chef's Degustation Menu....it is hard to put into words all the different flavors and textures....it is off the charts!! I might add I now have a bigger perspective of Chef O'Connell's talents....and it is immeasurable!!!!

That along with their complimentary afternoon tea and continental breakfast...what else is there??

Pure Heaven......Pure Bliss!!

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank kakridge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 28, 2011

Recently celebrated my 60th birthday at the IALW instead of a trip to celebratory Amsterdam, and we're so glad that we did. From the first moment of arrival when greeted at our car (thanks, Cameron--you're the best!) to the last event of enjoying a scrumptious breakfast overlooking beautiful ponds and sundrenched gardens, with lovely afternoon tea, an audience with Chef O'Connell (yes, he's gorgeous, and yes, I swooned) and two to-die-for dinners complimented by perfect choices by the most knowledgeable sommelier while we lounged "in the best seat in the house," everything was blissful. Okay, I know you're heard about the Inn, so I'll say this once: Believe the hype because...well, it isn't hype. In its bucolic setting, The Inn at Little Washington, the warm and delightful Chef O'Connell and his dedicated, talented staff truly deserve and work hard to earn every single praiseworthy comment. We were treated like royalty, and in some touching ways, like cherished family. Every level of service is attentive, but not overbearing. The restaurant? Wow. Take it from a proclaimed "foodie," the Inn's cuisine and wine list are spectacular. The Inn's accommodations are unique and such a classy retreat; although the 2.5 block town has other B&B choices, why bother? Splurge and stay in one of the Inn's inspired rooms, or better yet, treat yourself like we did to the luxury of the awesome Gameskeeper's Cottage. Designed with Mr. O'Connell's exceptional taste and whimsical eye, it's cozy, romantic, elegant, and private--indulgent THEATRE. One more thing. To cover two glorious days and nights, tuck away 2 to 3K, a bit more if you want to splurge on gifts for you and yours from the wonderful Inn shops.

Yes, it's expensive for some, perhaps for most. But the memories you'll have for the rest of your life...Priceless. KUDOS AND MANY THANKS. We can't wait to return.

Room Tip: Reserve several months in advance and be specific about what you like.
  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank TwoPoets
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2011

I really enjoyed my dinner and one night here at Little Washington for our anniversary. We had a small tour of the town which was excellent and given by a member of the staff. There is not much of anything in this little town, so it got a little dull. But luckily they served us a wonderful afternoon tea which was included. The room was nothing special and quite small and it was pricey. Did not understand the high cost of the room.

Dinner was the main event. 10 course tasting menu was absolutely wonderful. A lot of attention to detail. We even had a tour of the kitchen at the end which was spectacular. I admire the chefs and their mission.

Only a small continental breakfast was included. Extra money for full breakfast which I think should be changed.

I do not think I would go again due to the high price, but if you live in the area, it can be a special occasion get away.

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank GeeksterAtlanta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 29, 2011

After a memorable experience three years ago, we decided to come back for another anniversary celebration...we also decided to upgrade to a larger room with a small sitting area. With taxes, the room was over $800, and ridiculously overpriced. We've stayed in lovely hotels all over the country, and this one, although the staff and service are impeccable, simply doesn't match the cost being charged. The room is nicely appointed. period. Our room did have a small balcony and we walked out to view our surroundings--the parking lot in front of the hotel! I've stayed at 5 star hotels all over the country for half the price here --with views of ocean, rolling hills, mountains, major monuments-- a parking lot view for $800?
Finally, a good night's sleep is top on my list of what's important-- The whirling of a vacuum cleaner going full blast at 6 AM on Sunday morning just beneath our room was quite a wake up call.
We'll definitely be back for dinner but not the lodging.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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10  Thank M H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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