Posted by: amyedwards | March 10, 2010

The Homestead Resort – Hot Springs, Virginia

In celebration of our 15th wedding anniversary, Chanch and I were blessed to get to spend some time together at a resort in Hot Springs, Virginia.  The Homestead was established in 1766 and is known for it’s beautiful, old architecture.  I must admit, we were both a little uneasy about what we might be getting into.  We are self-admittedly a bit spoiled.  As un-often as the two of us spend the night away from home, we tend to “do it up” right when we get the chance.  But, hey, if it is good enough to be visited by many different United States presidents ranging from George Washington to Bill Clinton, it’s definitely good enough for the Edwards!  The thing that attracted us the most to The Homestead was the numerous activities they offer on resort property.  We both like to stay busy going and doing but won’t refuse a day at the spa if it’s available.  This place had it all!

We arrived on Wednesday afternoon around 3:30 after a six hour drive from Atlanta.  The place was huge and absolutely beautiful.  I’ve always been a fan of big columns and the lobby (Grand Hall) here had it’s fair share.

To our surprise, the resort had graciously upgraded us to a Junior Suite.  We were so impressed at the time. but soon realized we were just about the only people staying at the resort until the weekend, so I guess they figured “Why not?”.  We unpacked our things, rested for a short bit, took a quick self-guided tour of the main building, then headed to the bowling alley so Chanch could show off!  After bowling, we got dressed and headed to dinner at the Tavern for some great river trout.

Thursday was our actual anniversary date.  We took this day to enjoy some relaxation in the spa.  The corridor leading to the spa was beautiful and set the tone for what was to come.  We enjoyed the total body package starting with an herb infused bath with natural hot spring water and ending with a pedicure.  Of course, a body massage was somewhere in between.  After our treatments and lunch, we went for a relaxing dip in the heated indoor pool.  What a pool it was and a bit intimidating when you are the only people in it!

We took a quick nap and got ready for a nice, romantic dinner together at the Dining Hall.  A live band played romantic music and the food was great!  Chanch had a surprise  waiting for me there, but that story is reserved for a whole other post to come.

Friday morning was our day outside.  We headed to the ski slopes and spent numerous hours going up and down the slopes.  Some downs were more graceful than others, but we had a fabulous time.  There were maybe 15 other people there, so I wasn’t a danger to anyone else.  Chanch even got me to go all the way up one time – but only once!  I much preferred the mid-station drop off!  We finished skiing and headed to the snow-mobiles for an hour’s worth of fantastic fun!  We each got our own snowmobile and had a blast racing each other, doing donuts, and jumping hills.  I told our guide that I might be a girl, but I don’t drive like one!  We headed back to the room and got dressed for a late dinner.  This time we ate at the 1766 Grille.  Wow!  The food was unforgettable.  Seriously, it was that good!

Saturday morning, after breakfast, we headed to the shooting range for our first round of  skeet shooting.  I say our first round because we ended up shooting on three different occasions because I enjoyed it so much.  It was quite the challenge, and I was determined to beat it!  Even after three times, I came nowhere close.  In fact, the instructor told me to stick to raising kids!  Oh well, I still had a blast shooting – even if I didn’t hit the targets.

After that first round of skeet, we headed back to the ski slopes but this time for some snow tubing.  We started out on two separate tubes, but before it was over we were on one together which made for some great laughs and wonderful memories.  For some reason, when I was on a tube by myself I kept slowing down and sometimes even stopping before I was down the lane.  The workers there said I needed to evenly distribute my weight on the tube.  I wanted to ask them if they had taken a good look at my body – no even distribution there!  Once we weighted down the tube with me and Chanch, it was smooth sailing and so much fun!

We met a couple from Virginia while we were snow tubing.  There names were Jay and Stacy and we enjoyed talking with them.  Turned out they were in the room right next to us, and they had dinner reservations at the 1766 Grille that night at 8:30 too.  Ironically, we were seated right next to each other so we spent the evening chatting across tables and enjoying their company.  We invited them to join us at our table for dessert, but we weren’t sure the timing would work out.  It didn’t.  They were finished with their meal before we even got our salads.  I’m sure that was a relief for Jay, because little did we know, he had it worked out with the staff to bring Stacy an engagement ring with her dessert!  Such a sweet moment to witness!  He told us later that he was squirming to figure out how he was going to tell her they couldn’t sit with us for dessert!  They stuck around for us to finish, and then we headed out for the guys to play a few games of pool while Stacy and I chatted it up.  I love meeting people, and it is so rare that you meet people you just click with immediately.  She wasn’t prepared with a camera for their big engagement night, so I took plenty with mine and we’ve exchanged e-mail addresses.  We’re looking forward to keeping in touch.

So it’s Sunday, and we’re heading home now.  I’m so excited to see my kids.  This has been the longest I’ve been away from them.  I missed them like crazy, but can’t even explain how much fun we had.  There is no one I would rather spend time with than my best friend, my husband.  I’ll save more of that for my other post!

I can’t say enough good things about The Homestead!  It was such a beautiful place nestled in the mountain and a great place to create some wonderful memories.  Among the activities we enjoyed, there is also ice skating, fishing, horseback riding, hiking, rifle range, carriage rides, golf, tennis, and a movie theater with two movies showing nightly.  We never left the resort and had no reason to have our car while we were there.  A complimentary shuttle takes you anywhere you want to go.  And we heard rumor that they are in the process of purchasing dune buggies now for fun when the snow isn’t around and putting in some water slides to the outdoor pool.

We definitely plan on returning in the future and look forward to taking our kids there!


  1. Colby thinks you were in California 🙂 Hurry up with the next post.

  2. That looks and sounds like so much fun! I love the picture with you two snowtubing together! How sweet! What a great way to spend 15 wonderful years together.
    P.S. I love that red dress too!!! You look great in it!

  3. You guys are great together! 🙂

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