I would like to receive the following free email newsletters:

Newsletter Signup
  1. Bridal Party
  2. Dining Out
  3. Kliman Online
  4. Photo Ops
  5. Shop Around
  6. Where & When
  7. Well+Being
  8. Learn more
Cool Travel Bargains
Comments () | Published December 1, 2009

Winter Romance

Down comforters, feather beds, and bedside fireplaces make the Suites at 249, a contemporary boutique hotel, particularly welcoming in winter. Some suites, such as the loft-like Acqua, have steam showers. The hotel, in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, is a good launching pad for nearby winery visits. Readers who book one night at full price—winter rates begin at $150—get a second at half off in January.

Suites at 249, Culpeper; 540-827-1100;

Faunbrook Bed and Breakfast, in scenic Brandywine Valley, makes a romantic retreat effortless. The inn will provide a room, a bottle of wine, roses, and gourmet chocolates made by a local European-style chocolatier, Éclat, through February for $350—$75 off the regular package price.

Faunbrook Bed and Breakfast, West Chester, Pennsylvania; 800-505-3233;

Stone walls edging the long drive to Gramercy Mansion in rural Baltimore County set the stage for romance at this 1902 Tudor. Book the Fireside and Candlelight package to get a room, fresh-baked cookies and cider on arrival, rose petals and votive candles throughout the room, flowers, chocolate truffles at turndown, and a candlelight breakfast by the fire, starting at $375—a savings of $50. Plus, get 20 percent off extra nights.

Gramercy Mansion, Baltimore; 800-553-3404;

Shadow Mountain Escape’s cabins in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley are an iconic winter scene. Four handcrafted timber structures include the Butterfly, a cozy couples retreat atop a saltbox barn, and Bear Dance Lodge, which has a great view of the ridgeline from its observatory tower and is ideal for families since it sleeps eight. Readers can get two nights, two tickets to Luray Caverns, and a basket of baked goods, starting at $375 for a two-night weekend or $475 for three nights—a savings of more than $50—December 1 through March 31.

Shadow Mountain Escape, Luray; 540-843-0584;

Nautical-themed waterfront cottage rentals on North Point Peninsula in Baltimore County make for a secluded getaway about an hour from Washington. Readers who book the Happy Arrival package will get a chocolate-and-fruit tray, two Champagne flutes with sparkling wine or cider, a sweetheart cake for two, flowers, and a coupon book good for $500 off local shopping, starting at $129 a night through March 15.

San Cameron’s Residences at Dockside Landing, Sparrows Point; 443-717-3186;

Spa Weekend

If you overindulge during the holidays, you might head to Inn at Peralynna Manor, a soothing small hotel in Howard County. Book the Get Fit at the Phat Farm for a Washingtonian rate of $699 for two nights—the normal rate is $1,250. Get three days of fitness classes, nutrition counseling, pampering, and all meals, led by model Shelissa Kearney and TV fitness personality Brenda von Rautenkranz. This retreat is held one weekend a month through March.

Inn at Peralynna Manor, Columbia; 877-737-2596;

Historic Stays

Fredericksburg, Virginia, is steeped in American history. And Homewood Suites, which features a free grocery-shopping service to help stock the kitchenette, is offering the Washingtonian Winter family deal. The package, $129 a night through March 15, includes a room and breakfast for a family of four as well as passes for nine museums and sites, including Civil War battlefields and George Washington’s boyhood farm.

Homewood Suites, Fredericksburg; 540-786-9700;

Enjoy a cozy getaway in Virginia’s horse country at Middleburg Country Inn. Some rooms in the historic inn feature four-poster beds and fireplaces; the Sully also has a Jacuzzi. Rates include a full breakfast in a pretty dining room. The inn has created a package for Washingtonian readers: Book a room, starting at $150 a night, during December, January, or February (except Valentine’s Day weekend) and get a $75 gift certificate to the Hidden Horse restaurant, a local favorite recently revamped by the inn’s owners.

Middleburg Country Inn, Middleburg; 800-262-6082;

Blooming Bargain

Winter is prime time to visit one of America’s horticultural masterpieces, Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania. January 23 through March 31, the Orchid Extravaganza takes over the four-acre conservatory. The nearby Hotel du Pont, which has retained the old-world glamour from the days when it hosted John F. Kennedy and Katharine Hepburn, has created the Washingtonian Reader Orchid Package. This deal includes accommodations, admission to Longwood Gardens and the Orchid Extravaganza, valet parking, breakfast, and an orchid-themed chocolate treat, starting at $199.

Hotel du Pont, Wilmington, Delaware; 800-441-9019;

Family Wonderlands

Amish country offers many festive experiences, from the National Christmas Center to $6 all-you-can-skate days at the ice park and buggies across Amish farms at Aaron & Jessica’s Buggy Rides. The new Marriott in Lancaster, with its indoor pool and spa, is offering readers a rate starting at $109 a night with parking. This is 35 percent off regular rates and is good December through February, with a few blackout dates.

Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square, Pennsylvania; call 888-850-6146 to ask for the Washingtonian rate or go to and enter “PX3” in the corporate/promotional-code option under the “special rates and awards” button.

Tap into affordable luxury at the Four Seasons in Philadelphia. The hotel, in the heart of the city, is a good base for family trips to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the newly expanded Please Touch interactive children’s museum, and the Liberty Bell. When you book the Family Value package and mention The Washingtonian, you’ll receive half off an adjoining room, a savings of more than $150; a behind-the-scenes tour of the hotel; $100 credit toward the spa, restaurant, or room; a personalized child’s amenity such as a handcrafted chocolate or a toy; milk and cookies at turndown; and a “Welcome to Philadelphia” book. The deal is good through February; rates start at $315 a night.

Four Seasons Hotel, Philadelphia; 215-963-1500;

This article first appeared in the December 2009 issue of The Washingtonian. For more articles from that issue, click here.


Subscribe to Washingtonian
Posted at 04:00 PM/ET, 12/01/2009 RSS | Print | Permalink | Articles