Restored Victorian Inn with Antique Furnishings
In 1902, Dr. Mackall R. Bruin built a private hospital in the little town of Strasburg, Virginia, to treat patients in the northern Shenandoah Valley. The building was turned into an inn in 1915, but you can still find Dr. Bruin’s nameplate on a marble washstand at the Hotel Strasburg, the building’s current incarnation. The inn is a bit like a living museum: the doors to all unoccupied rooms are left open so that curious guests can wander the hallways and admire the authentic Victorian furnishings.
Each of the quaint standard rooms is decorated differently and accessorized with antiques from the Queen Anne, Eastlake, and Renaissance Revival periods. There are lacy curtains, ruffled chair covers, handmade quilts, flowered wallpapers, and Victorian-lady ghosts swooning on fainting couches. In the morning, a continental breakfast buffet with coffee and pastries is included. Afterward, you can head out to the hotel’s two expansive wooden decks to get some fresh air.
The hotel has two dining areas. There’s The Depot Lounge, where staff serve light lunches amid railroad memorabilia, and the main fine-dining room, where guests dig into classic Southern dishes amid flickering candlelight and gilded Victorian mirrors. Local wines and craft beers complement petite Italian pasta dishes, housemade crab cakes, and other comfort fare.
Strasburg, Virginia: Quaint Civil War Town in the Shenandoah Valley
Located in the Shenandoah Valley and shadowed by the Massanutten and Allegheny Mountains, Strasburg, Virginia, was once a thriving center for pottery making. The 19th-century building that housed the Strasburg Stone and Earthenware Manufacturing Company has now been turned into The Strasburg Museum, where you can learn about the town’s history and see preserved pottery pieces. Strasburg is also well known to Civil War buffs—the Battle of Cedar Creek took place just outside town. Today you can visit the battleground and tour a museum at Hupp’s Hill Civil War Park.
For a day in the great outdoors, it’s a short drive to the 200,000-acre Shenandoah National Park, where you’ll find thundering waterfalls, quiet meadows, and flocks of sparrows chirping “America the Beautiful.” Hike along a portion of the Appalachian Trail, which stretches from Maine to Georgia, or fish for eastern brook trout in one of the park’s many mountainside rivers.
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