As the road winds its way through Middleburg, Virginia to the Salamander Resort & Spa, the trees give way to grassy fields that have long attracted equestrians, wine connoisseurs, and avid golfers to the area. The resort, however, offers something new. Here plush sofas, cozy fireplaces and a carefully curated art collection send the message of freshly added luxury. It can be hard to imagine that a few years ago the property was a quaint farm. Yet when Sheila Johnson first set eyes on the site, she conceived of an alternative use for the space. “I immediately saw the opportunity to build something different—a luxury retreat for the Washington, D.C. area,” she says.Read More
When Patrick O’Connell was growing up in Washington, D.C., his parents would take the family on excursions through central Virginia to the Shenandoah Valley. These were the days before interstate highways, when small towns littered with gas stations and restaurants served as important stopping points for travelers traversing the country. Though Patrick had no way of knowing it at the time, he would later make a tire shop in the small, drive-through town of Washington, Virginia, into his own special corner of the world.Read More
Warmth pours from a larger-than-life fireplace as guests at the Grove Park Inn seek respite from the Asheville, North Carolina, chilly winter. A step inside the Grand Hall offers not only ample heat but also a sense of walking into timeless luxury. There are carefully crafted wood furnishings, classic cocktails at the nearby bar, and, of course, views of the surrounding Appalachian peaks.
Since Edwin Wiley Grove opened the doors in 1913, the Grove Park Inn has beckoned the weary to drink deeply of the restorative relaxation that made this corner of the Blue Ridge Mountains famous. Like so many new arrivals to Asheville in the early 20th century, Grove came to western North Carolina for health reasons, hoping to find a reprieve from chronic bronchitis and persistent hiccups. His recovery was so profound that he set about making his experience available for others. Grove created a place at home in its woodland setting, building the inn from the area’s stone and crafting an experience inside that likewise emphasized the natural and holistic.Read More