Late Spring at The Homestead A review of The Homestead

05/11/04 My wife and I just returned from a three day trip to The Homestead that included a business meeting. If you are into golf, this place is absolutely FABULOUS ! The Spa and pools are well worth it as well. The hotel staff is most accomidating and friendly. The room that we stayed in was located on the North Wing of the hotel. It felt like staying at Grandmas house when I was a child. King bed, large balcony with two cushioned wicker chaise lounges, a loveseat, ceiling fan and french doors opening into our rather smallish room. Nice bath (although some wallpaper was peeling and a bit of peeling paint), mini bar, and nicely decorated, this hotel has been "restored", not renovated to maintain the original feel of a hundred plus year old builting. Decent sized closet with safe. If you can get a balcony room or a patio room, grab it ! It makes the place ! Gorgeous spring nights falling asleep to the candle lit background of the cool Virginia mountains is one of the most relaxing experiences you will ever have. The public areas are beautiful. The grounds perfect ! We were not so impressed with the food however. Breakfast was absolutely wonderful though. Fresh and sweet berries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, mangos, sugar sweet pineapple, melons that melt in your mouth. Freshly squeezed orange juice, and lots of my favorite, grits, prepared just perfectly. Lunch at the Casino was acceptabable but predictable. Sandwiches, and bar food. The wait staff was most attentative. Dinner, however, could use a little help. The staff is great, but the food is very "hotelish", not what I expected from this resort. Although there were less than 25 people in the dining room on Sunday night, our food arrived cold. I had an appetizer of mussels that was luke warm and very fishy tasting. We both ordered tenderloin of beef. Mine was ordered medium rare and arrived medium well. My wifes was ordered medium and came out well done. Both cold. The vegatables were also cold. Salads were very good, crisp and delicious dressings. My dessert was nondescript although it sounded excellent on the menu. A frozen strawberry, bannana's foster cake. It tasted like it just came out of a box in the freezer, which I am certain it did. The ice cream with chocolate "crust" that my wife had was much better. On Monday night, the menu had an asain infulence. We both had shrimp cocktail which was quite fresh and tasty. The salad was again very good with a ginger or lemon dressing. Both excellent. Again, the main course arrived cold and rather nondescript, with rather strong sauces masking the flavor of the meats. A bright orange (looked like sweet and sour sauce) sauce was overpowering the chicken breast that was nesting in the sauce. I ordered the prime sirloin steak (medium rare) which arrived cold, medium, and in a very rich dark reduction sauce that again overpowered the flavor of the meat. The vegatables were baby green beans, baby carrots, and pastry bagged whipped potatos, all of which were cold and bland. The zuccini was also cold, but quite tasty. I skipped dessert Monday night and just had coffee, which was served with plenty of cream and piping hot. The wine list is quite good, and offers many excellent selections by the glass if you do not want an entire bottle. Overall, the experience was superb, but the dinner left a bit to be desired. Afternoon tea on the front porch and great hall is a welcome and refreshing treat. Even though The Homestead went through a major renovation just several years ago, I feel that attention to small details such as peeling paint and wallpaper detract somewhat from my expectations of a world class resort. I would certainly return to the Homestead, but hope they improve their evening dining venue

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The Homestead
1583 reviews