Winter, in all of its quiet beauty, calls for moving just a little more slowly, to pause to take in the landscape and the people around us, to turn inward to a book, to think by a fire, or languish over a special meal. It’s the perfect season to carve room for a weekend getaway, to enjoy the short days and long nights somewhere new, whether an hour from home, or just a little bit farther. Here are five spots where you can escape this winter.
To be a guest at Goodstone — the hidden Middleburg gem that manages to feel very private in a town that is increasingly less so — feels more like staying at a well-appointed country estate than being a paying hotel guest. A former dairy farm and fox hunting estate, the inn’s 265-acre estate provides ample room for idyllic, wintry countryside rambles around the property. A walk around the grounds will introduce you to Goodstone’s resident llama and donkey, as well as a herd of black Angus cattle, Icelandic and Suffolk sheep, and a flock of hens. Come with a good book, cuddle up by a fire, and luxuriate in a long morning bath, coffee in hand. Don’t miss dinner at the restaurant which draws upon French influences and farm-to-table principles, thanks to its incorporation of vegetables and herbs grown on property. 36205 Snake Hill Rd., Middleburg
This Shenandoah Valley bed-and-breakfast offers elegant but approachable guest rooms, a restaurant with a nightly five-course prix fixe meal, and an onsite spa for individual or couples’ massages. The real gem of a stay at Glen Gordon Manor might just be the breakfasts. The multi-course gourmet morning meal is included in the price of an overnight stay and is the perfect treat to enjoy on a languorous winter morning or before heading out to enjoy outdoor activities in the Blue Ridge Mountains, at nearby historic sites, or great wineries. 1482 Zachary Taylor Hwy., Huntly
Built in 1799 as a home for Thomas Jefferson’s daughter Martha, The Clifton has weathered the last 200-plus years beautifully, and thanks to a recent renovation, is today a stylish and luxuriously comfortable country inn with 20 rooms on 100 acres. The charm is in The Clifton’s historical details. It features original staircases, fireplaces, and a stone porch. Its 1799 Restaurant offers prix fixe dinners in the inn’s book-lined library. Cap off dinner with a cocktail at the inn’s Copper Bar or with a cold-air sojourn on one of the front porch rocking chairs. 1296 Clifton Inn Dr., Charlottesville
The Ashby Inn, home to one of the restaurants on our Best Restaurants list, makes for a romantic and cozy weekend escape. You may know it solely from its restaurant, which derives its dishes from sustainable, seasonal, local ingredients. And while you certainly could come to the Ashby just for a special dinner, staying the night makes the deal all the sweeter. The intimate inn fills its guest rooms thoughtfully with a mix of antiques and modern pieces, and a handful of rooms are accented with wood-burning fireplaces. 692 Federal St., Paris
Virginia’s Washington might be famous for its eponymous inn, but the chic and modern Blue Rock is the area’s answer for a low-key luxury winter getaway. The inn, nestled within views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, underwent a remodel where design firm Lumber & Light transformed its five bedrooms. In addition to the guest rooms, it has a farmhouse rental, an on-site vineyard, and a restaurant helmed by executive chef Bin Lu, formerly of DC’s Pineapple and Pearls. Enjoy the inn’s hospitality, an intimate four-course dinner, and its bucolic views of Rappahannock County. 12567 Lee Hwy., Washington
Feature image of The Clifton by Cameron Wilder
For more weekend getaways, subscribe to Northern Virginia Magazine’s Travel newsletter.