J. Willard Marriott—the founder of the eponymous international hotel company—was a notorious hard worker, dedicating his life to helping others take a breather. One thing is certain: He knew what he was doing when it came to vacays. Learn from the best with a one-night Escape for two to Marriott's own personal getaway in the Virginia Piedmont—the sprawling 4,200-acre Marriott Ranch.
At the Inn at Fairfield Farm—the property's historic B&B and the only Marriott-branded inn in the world—guest accommodations consist of the stately James Marshall Manor House and the nearby Carriage Rooms, both surrounded by boxwoods and white ash trees. Unwind in the cozy Fiery Run or Rappahannock Room ($128) or opt for the spacious Fairfield Suite or Ranch Room ($189), available on Sundays through Thursdays from now to September 27, 2012, or any day of the week from January 1 to March 31, 2013.
The Carriage Rooms feature full baths, mini refrigerators, and TVs, and are a bit more modern than the traditional décor (think four-poster beds and elegant gilded mirrors) found in the Marshall Manor House. All rooms feature the same thick white linens and all guests have access to the amenities of the Marshall Manor House, including an early evening reception with cheese and beverages and a three-course country breakfast.
During the day, experience the ranch—a fantasyland for nature buffs, with flocks of Black Angus cattle and wild white-tailed deer—in all its glory. (Be sure to keep an eye out for the ranch's own family of bald eagles.) You'll have lots of time to explore the wonders of the Virginia countryside when you mount a horse and take a 90-minute guided Western-style horseback ride through the woods, among cattle, and over creeks and streams.
The warmer months are prime hiking time, either at the ranch or on the famed Appalachian Trail, which sits nearby. In winter, take advantage of the sledding-friendly hills.
The Virginia Piedmont is renowned for its food and wine, so after you've worked up your thirst, head out on a tour of three nearby wineries—three tasting passes are included—and find your favorite Viogniers and Cab Francs. When dinnertime rolls around, great restaurants abound, from the creative-American Flint Hill Public House to the more laidback pub Griffin Tavern.
You'll head home feeling well-versed in the fine art of vacationing.
PAID VALUE EXPIRES ON September 4, 2020
PROMOTIONAL VALUE EXPIRES ON March 31, 2013
A One-Night Stay for Two ($128 to $189), Guided 90-Minute Horseback Ride for Two, and Tasting Passes for Three Wineries
- from $128