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“Amazing!--but some predjudice involved...”

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Colonial Houses-Colonial Williamsburg
Ranked #10 of 73 Hotels in Williamsburg
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 12, 2008

An incredible lodging experience in this , one of Colonial Williamsburg's 88 Original Buildings. This Inn was built by my 4th Great Uncle in the 1760's. This was our first opportunity to stay here, and we flew from Texas to do so. Yes, that makes me predjudiced, but i will try to contain my euphoria for the truth about the room. We requested the room where a young T. Jefferson studied law while tutored by Geo. Wythe in the 1770's. It was amazing to look out of the windows Jefferson did--he had requested the front corner room looking out on the Square.(Same Uncle guarded the Magazine during the Revolution). Mr. J also rented at least one other room there during his stay. The Wmsburg Inn offered us superb room service, and the food was brought with a lovely pink rose ea time. we gave these to the maid who did an excellent job of keeping the room beautifully clean ea day. We found the bath to be roomy and totally 21st Century -- Kohler sink was lovely. elegant painted colors graced the walls as did a lovely queen 4 poster bed. Wood plantation blinds gave the windows(4 in all) total privacy. Flooring was wood plank in charming room furnished in period antiques. We were told a steward will light your fire (fire in the Great Room fireplace, that is) . Well, Enjoy! And thanks, Uncle Gabe--(Gabriel Maupin III)!

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank texasdubl-s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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346 - 352 of 374 reviews

Reviewed July 28, 2008

We stayed in the Colonial Houses June, 2007, because it seemed the best way to immerse ourselves in the period. My 7 year old is history obsessed, and her love of the American Girl Felicity makes her a sucker for all things colonial. The best thing about the Colonial House (we stayed in Orlando Jones' kitchen) was the location. We were able to walk out our door and be literally in the middle of the historic section/attraction. We were able to park our car right there (they have a little place right near where you stay where you park your car but it is hidden from onlookers so that it doesn't mar the experience for those looking for historical accuracy). This was perfect because at the time our kids were <1, 4, and 6 1/2. Another plus about the Colonial Houses is that staying in them gives the kids yet another tangible link to history. (This went for the adults, too, as Orlando Jones was a real person that we read about in the room, and, although the space we were in was no longer a kitchen, it was kind of neat to be staying in a piece of history. Also, the loft upstairs where the kids stayed was likely inhabited by the cooks back in the day, I think.) Yet another plus is that staying in the Colonial Williamsburg hotels gives you access to the historical sights for your entire stay. If you stay for one night, you get access to the historical area for the day you check in as well as the day you check out. This made the whole thing relatively affordable (we used our budget to stay at the Colonial Houses for one night instead of another hotel for two nights. We still got two days to see the Colonial Williamsburg attractions, and we didn't have to pay for tickets).

My three biggest complaints about the room were that 1) since there was either no a/c or no working a/c and it was summer, the staff or we opened the windows for air and the screen was so badly damaged that mosquitos got in the room and bit us all over while we slept 2) the room reeked of these really strong, cheap smelling air freshener things, the smell of which was nauseating 3) the bathroom was in bad need of repair which might have been okay if it looked like old-timey bathroom fixtures that were worn with age but was not okay as they were disgusting, dirty falling apart seventies fixtures. I know it sounds picky, but it was the most odd, out of place renovation, and the rooms were really expensive. To fit, it should either be new, neutral, or period.

I took my daughter to tea in the main inn, which had a harpist playing. They made my daughter feel special, and that was nice for her (and me).

We really enjoyed the attraction, particularly how they gave the kids specific tasks (a specific to-do list /letter thing, which might have come with the rental costume). The kids really enjoyed dressing up in the period rental costumes. You have to buy the hats with the rental, but you get a discount and they make great souvenirs.

The bottomless rootbeer cup was nice. We also liked lunch at the cafe (don't remember which one it was, but it was a nice, sitdown place with reasonably good food) when the character came and talked to us and the crowd. We also liked how the actors engaged the children and how there was something special at each spot for the kids to see or do. The kids enjoyed the carriage ride. We did not do any of the night activities not only because of the baby but also because the trip wore out our older ones.

All in all, this was probably the best place we could have stayed for our purpose of seeing the historic three block or so section of Colonial Williamsburg. It was super easy to rest in our room and go right back out and see the rooms. This worked out for us since this section of CW was all that we wanted to see on this weekend vaction.

  • Stayed: June 2007, traveled with family
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4  Thank vacationer1974
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 4, 2008

Stayed three nights at Chiswell-Bucktrout Kitchen. The room was comfortable, clean and nicely decorated. Not the most luxurious accomodations, but a very nice way to experience Williamsburg. Since this Chiswell-Bucktrout House is located on Francis Street there is some traffic noise and at abouit six a.m. trucks arrive accross the street to service the taverns. A minor anonoyance compared to the convenience and privacy.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank Jibb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 2, 2008

My husband and I decided to stay in a Colonial House during our visit to Williamsburg. The room was not a five star rating but it was clean, comfortable and decorated in period style. We had dinner at the Williamsburg Inn which was a short walk from our house. Some people my feel out of place because it is very upscale, but the staff is friendly and the food is phenomenal. We also had dinner at the Kings Arms Tavern. The food was great and the building was beautiful. We had a very relaxing stay in Williamsburg and we hope to do it again.

  • Stayed: September 2007, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank rholdridge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2008

We spent five great nights at one of the colonial houses, booked through the Williamsburg Inn directly. Pricey but very worth it. We are a family of four, kids age 8 and 10, and chose the Isham Goddin house, near the Capital, at the end of Duke of Gloucester Street and next door to C. Campbell's tavern. It was adorable. The kids had their own room, which included two twin beds. One bathroom, but that was fine. Stocked with LOTS of towels. Maid service was quick and efficient. Husband and I had a private downstairs bedroom with a lovely four poster canopy bed. Adorable living room area with fire place. Squeaky floors, so if you like things "NEW," dont stay here. Perfect if you like some character! there were some chilly nights, and we called for room service to light a fire (a real one!) in the fireplace. amenities were modern, heat worked great, small fridge included, adorable garden outside the property. the kids pretended we were really living in colonia times. As everyone says, the best thing about the Williamsburg Inn is simple -- the location! Revolutionary CIty literally was outside our door step.

We ate in every single tavern in colonial williamsburg and really enjoyed them all. Went to the evening programs, such as the Gun Powder incident, where it is interactive and you are part of the action. Again, kids ate it up! there is an additional fee for the evening programs (above your daily pass fee), but worth the price. if you stay at the Inn, or the colonial houses, four nights or more, which we did, the Rev. City pass is included in the cost.

On the historical front, they do it right in williamsburg. my husband is an early american history professor, and vouched for the historical accuracy. No disney-fication going on in the historical re-enactments.

Only dislikes -- the lunch at the Terrace in the Williamsburg Inn took forever (two hours, not good with kids!), over priced, and to make it worse, beer not even cold (on a hot day). I know, small complaint, but Terrace not worth the price. We love a nice long sit down lunch, to rest mid-day, but this was too much. Also, we did not care for the sea food buffet at the Lodge. But with these small exceptions, we LOVED the colonial houses...and williamsburg over all. So much to do! Five nights not enough!!

  • Stayed: March 2008, traveled with family
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7  Thank mgoblue1990
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 22, 2008

We had always said we wanted to stay in one of the Colonial Houses. This time we did. It was very nice. The location couldn't have been better. My husband was in Williamsburg for a workshop and it was great to be able to walk two blocks for his meetings. Our room was in the Brickhouse Tavern. Don't let the name fool you - there is no "tavern". Of course we were there in the off season, so it was quiet in the building. Our room was comfortable and clean, though the bath was in need of some updating. If you are expecting a room like you would find in a modern hotel, you will be dissappointed. The rooms are smallish, but we didn't mind that. After all, how much time do you spend there anyway. Room service for breakfast didn't work too well. I called the night before to arrange for a specific time since my husband had an appointment. Breakfast was 45 minutes late and less than adequate. Room service was advertised, but, a very limited menu is available making it almost unreasonable for breakfast. We would stay there again, but only for a short stays. It is not cost effective for long stays.

  • Stayed: January 2007, traveled on business
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2  Thank Milicent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 18, 2007

We travelled back in time to stay on site in Williamsburg. First time visit to one of the seats of revoluntary fanatics. We stayed in the Robert Critch kitchen. A small house to ourselves. It was great. Don't know if we'd have liked it in the middle of the summer but coming from -15 F weather in Alberta to +79F in Williamsburg can't be all bad. When we arrived at the house, no cups were available for coffee/tea. they were only a phone call away. Was it overprived? I don't think so as profits are returned to the site. It was worth what we paid.

  • Stayed: December 2007, traveled with family
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3  Thank Agforguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Colonial Houses-Colonial Williamsburg

Address: 136 E Francis St, Williamsburg, VA 23185-4271
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Virginia > Williamsburg
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #10 of 73 Hotels in Williamsburg
Price Range: $194 - $277 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Colonial Houses-Colonial Williamsburg 3*
Number of rooms: 84
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Authentic reproductions of colonial houses with 18th century antique furnishings, set in historic area. Authentic period reproductions such as a canopy bed and a crackling fire in the hearth. Stay in the heart of the Revolutionary City with all the comforts of home. Enjoy access to dining, recreation, and spa amenities in addition to admission ticket discounts and exclusive guest-only offerings. ... more   less 
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