Thomas Jefferson and Martin Van Buren once met here. In fact, Jefferson’s nephew built the inn, which originally served as a tavern and overnight lodging for farmers and travelers. Teddy Roosevelt frequented the inn when en route to his cabin retreat, and Franklin D. Roosevelt gave a speech on the porch before dedicating the George Washington National Forest.
Every stay at the inn, which has never lost its welcoming tavern feel, comes standard with 600-thread count Egyptian cotton sheets, plush cotton Turkish towels, and a hearty Virginia country breakfast each morning prepared with locally sourced meats and organically grown seasonal produce. If it’s not enough to take in the spectacular view of the Blue Ridge Mountains, guests can float above it all in a hot air balloon that lifts off from the upper grounds of the property. Prefer something more down to earth? Rent a classic convertible and take it for a spin to Monticello, vineyards, and pick-your-own orchards.
Several past presidents have stayed at Rosemont, which today offers suites named in their honor. The Kennedy Suite faces the East Lawn, where John F. Kennedy would land his helicopter, and the Johnson Suite has a floral motif to reflect Lady Bird’s love of gardening. All accommodations include a full Virginia breakfast, served in the Rosemont dining room or sunroom with views of the East Lawn and fountain. These rooms and views can be enjoyed when booking a private tea. For tee time of another sort, three nearby golf courses offer acres of more opportunities to take in the extraordinary Shenandoah Valley greenery.
This inn’s dining room is the very same where Woodrow Wilson enjoyed Thanksgiving dinner in 1914. Nowadays, guests are served a hearty breakfast inspired by Wilson’s first breakfast in the White House: steak, bacon, eggs, and hot cakes. Burn it all off with a hike to the summit of Mount Greylock – the highest point in Massachusetts – and then unwind in the parlor or in one of six spacious, airy rooms at this Victorian-era B&B in the Berkshires. In addition to standard comforts, owners Timothy and Donna offer spiritual health coaching, guided meditation and other modes of “power relaxation” and stress reduction.
Peeking out from a pine forest on the banks of the Rogue River, Weasku is a former fishing lodge which once welcomed President Herbert Hoover, who cast his line into the inn’s famed fishing hole. It’s easy to get hooked on this Pacific Northwest respite, which resembles camping in the woods but with far more creature comforts. Think river-rock fireplaces and pillow-top beds. Plus all accommodations include a full breakfast, afternoon hors d’oeuvres, and evening milk and cookies. Romance seekers will appreciate the private covered decks of the Jacuzzi Suite cabins, which overlook the river. Weasku is also destined to please art lovers (Oregon Shakespeare Festival, glass blowing at the Glass Forge), adventurers (whitewater rafting, ziplining), and families with young children (kids 12 and under stay free).
Built in 1887 by local physician Edward E. Hazlett, this vision of Victorian elegance holds many a treasured memory within its well-preserved walls. The doctor’s son, Swede, was a childhood pal of Dwight D. Eisenhower who encouraged “Ike” to attend West Point, which would ultimately lead to Eisenhower’s distinguished military career and election as U.S. president. This nostalgia has undeniably inspired the inn’s warm, welcoming nature. It’s as if the inn’s revered past was reborn in the aroma of freshly brewed coffee that fills the air as guests rock in the porch swing; in the serenade of songbirds, which can be marveled at most of the year; in Chef Adrian’s mouthwatering breakfasts, which have been called “the most incredible this side of the Mississippi.” Stay in a suite named for the 34th president, visit his childhood home, and vote for which commemorative tchotchkes guests can take home after touring the nearby Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum.
William H. Taft and Harry S. Truman (when he was vice president) were once guests at this historic mansion in the Maine Highlands, built in the 1930s for Governor (later Senator) Ralph Owen Brewster. Owner, innkeeper, and local insider Mark Stephens, pampers guests with his generous “touch of England” hospitality and can custom-tailor an itinerary, which might find some daytripping to Bangor and/or breathtaking Moosehead Lake. Choice of accommodations include the “Truman Room,” with its fanciful iron beds and a framed thank-you note from Truman gracing the walls (yep, he slept there). The Honeymoon Suite is big on romance – from the whirlpool tub for two to the gas log fireplace and the extra-spacious main room surrounded with honey-hued, natural wood paneling. When it’s warm out, guests can head to the patio for breakfast to savor the view of the Brewster gardens along with the stuffed orange French toast and sausage soufflé.