This past weekend I had a staycation with my husband at the Ritz Carlton in Tyson’s Corner in Virginia. Every expectation was surpassed from attentive staff, incredible food, a room with modern amenities, complete relaxation in the spa, and an overall beautiful hotel.
So why a staycation? I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, especially when it comes to the people I know. Every year a large number of people throw their vacation time away. They hit a spot where they either use or lose their time. Why are we throwing away our hard earned time? I know its not practical for a lot of people to venture abroad for weeks at a time, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take time off away from work to wind down. I have become a big advocate of staycations because they take minimal planning and it can be as adventurous or as relaxing as you would like them to be.
About my stay:
When we arrived the hotel staff and concierge greeted us with the biggest smiles and welcomed us into the hotel as if it was their home. That made me feel very secure about staying there. I knew right then that the staff was going to be top notch.
Since it was the day after Christmas the holiday decor was still up. Good thing, because we were still in the holiday spirit!
Once we got to our room, we walked in to find a gorgeous marble bathroom, a down comforter and the most comfortable bed, a large LCD TV, a refreshment bar with coffee and tea – overlooking the city skyline, luxurious bath amenities, and a minibar to suit all needs. We both looked at each other and agreed we could live there.
One thing we both really loved about the hotel was the advancement in technology. They utilize an app to check in, they have charging bars in the rooms with plugs or USB outlets, cordless phones, and wireless internet.
I went to afternoon tea by myself because it is something I have been wanting to do for quite sometime and my husband isn’t really a tea drinker. I was able to get a seat by the fireplace and wind down. I received a menu of teas to choose from, and ultimately decided on the Darjeeling tea. I like that they use loose leaf tea and not bags. The tea package I picked came with tea sandwiches, a lot of desserts and a glass of champagne. Everything was so delicious. I ended up only eating two of the little desserts there because I needed to save room for dinner. If you have never had afternoon tea, I encourage you try it at least once. It is very relaxing. I went alone but I would definitely go back and take friends or family with me.
We enjoyed dinner at Entyse, which is in the hotel. We dressed up and went out for our staycation ‘night on the town.’ From the hostess to the server, the customer service is superb. The way they are able to anticipate needs before you have even asked or come to it yourself is excellent. We ended up doing a three course meal that I would give 5 out of 5 stars to. We started with artisanal cheeses and country charcuterie. We both happen to be very big fans of cheese and loved the selections we were provided with. We ended up getting three cheeses:
Firm, Raw Cow Milk
Jasper Hill, Vermont
Soft, Goat’s Milk
Semi Soft, Cow’s Milk
Meadow Creek, Virginia
And three meats:
Manakin Sabot, Virginia
Manakin Sabot, Virginia
Manakin Sabot, Virginia
They were all very good. My favorite was the Alpha Tolman cheese paired with the coppa.
For dinner we ended up getting 2 lb Lobster Thermidor that had Dijon and Gruyere on it. The lobster is probably one of the top 5 best dishes I have ever had. This should be on your list of places to dine for this dish alone.
For dessert our waiter brought us a chocolate cake that was oozing with a warm chocolate inside, paired with salted caramel ice cream and Vanilla Crème Brulée. I wasn’t even hungry when dessert came but I agreed to at least try it – and then there was nothing left, because we ate every last delicious bite. I’m not sure we have eaten that well in the last 6 months, but it was unbelievable.
Overall the restaurant was sensational. The ambiance, low lighting, the musical guest, and the service.
We retired to our room for the evening where we watched a movie and I enjoyed a hot glass of tea from our beverage bar in the room. When you lay in the bed at this hotel, you truly feel like you are laying on a cloud. I fought to stay awake as long as I could but the bed was telling me to have a wonderful night of sleep.
I woke up feeling very refreshed. We decided on breakfast in bed. We were feeling lazy and didn’t want to leave our room to go to one of the restaurants downstairs so we opted for room service. This is the nice thing about a staycation – you do what you want to do. At this point in time we were relaxing and just wanted to continue enjoying the comfort of bed and hot coffee from the drink bar. I ended up getting oatmeal, yogurt parfait and some fruit. It was a perfect start to give me energy for the day.
After breakfast I took a nice hot bubble bath. The bathroom is done in Italian marble, so it was quite beautiful to admire.
Continuing in relaxation mode, I headed down to the spa to get pampered. I received two treatments, a peppermint mocha massage and a keeping spirits bright facial. I am not a stranger to the spa, but was pleasantly surprised by the services I received. The massage was like nothing I have ever done before. She put a peppermint peal on my back that was soothing and massaged me with a chocolate scent. I will admit, it was hard to leave the room when she was done because I was so relaxed but also because I smelled so good I thought my husband might mistake me for dessert.
In between treatments I was able to relax in the lounge and had another Darjeeling tea.
My second treatment was a facial. Because my skin is extremely sensitive I was not able to get the original mask that they put on, but the esthetician was very knowledgeable and was quick to get me a mask suitable for my skin. I don’t think I realized how great receiving a facial is until now. My skin is still softer than a baby’s bottom. I may become a regular to getting facials. It doesn’t take much time, it’s relaxing, and what it does for my skin is amazing. I love the way it feels hydrated and almost brand new.
The hotel was very accommodating in allowing us a late check out due to my spa treatments. My husband was very grateful that he could nap a little and watch the news while he waited for me to finish.
When we went to check out, the front desk staff remembered my name, which to me is a level of service above my expectations and it was greatly appreciated. It streamlined the checkout process and made me feel important to them.
Overall I would give this hotel a 9 out of 10. What I liked most about our staycation here is that we never wanted to leave. We were able to stay in the hotel for all of our needs and left feeling relaxed, which was much needed after the holiday.
If you have vacation time that you want to use, I would recommend a staycation at the Ritz Carlton in Tyson’s Corner. You can wine, dine and relax. A plethora of movies are available right at your TV and a minibar to give you the feel of going out while being in the privacy of your room. The 24 hour room service is a bonus!
Disclaimer: I was hosted by the Ritz Carlton as a blogger for Stay, Play & Write. I was not paid for my opinions, they are all my own.