Get Away: Chesapeake Bay Beach Club on the Eastern Shore

Plus, seasonal craft brews in Williamsburg




Photo courtesy of Inn at the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club

Play on the bay

Located just over the Chesapeake Bay Bridge on Maryland’s Kent Island, the 54-room Inn at the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club opened in October 2015 and has become a popular wedding venue for its rustic chic vibe. The Eastern Shore inn’s spa, set in a farmhouse-style building overlooking the property’s hops fields and gardens, was added last year and features a full-service salon and an indoor-outdoor relaxation room. Wine is served with treatments. Scotch and craft beer will be new additions this year to accompany the growing number of services tailored to men.

Guest rooms include pillow-top mattresses, Italian Frette linens and plush bathrobes. Some upgraded rooms offer views of the Chesapeake Bay, and some come with a soaking tub or fireplace. The inn’s restaurant, Knoxie’s Table, serves a seasonal menu and local favorites, including crabcakes, Maryland cream of crab soup and baked wild rockfish with oyster cream and spinach. While hotel guests don’t have beach access on-site, they can spend a sunny afternoon playing a game of oversize chess on the terrace, or reading in a rocking chair alongside the fire pit and fountain.

Inn at the Chesapeake Bay Beach Club rates start at $169 per night.

180 Pier One Road, Stevensville, Maryland; 410-604-5900,www.baybeachclub.com/the-inn



Find seasonal craft brews at Williamsburg’s Virginia Beer Co.  

Tasting Time

There’s more to Williamsburg, Virginia, than history and theme parks. The city’s Tasting Trail (www.visitwilliamsburg.com/trip-idea/williamsburg-tasting-trail) of award-winning wine, microbrewed beer, ancient mead and distilled spirits, has three new stops worth a sip, all opened in 2016. Copper Fox Distillery Williamsburg (www.copperfox.biz) is home to craft whiskies and gin made from locally grown barley. The Virginia Beer Co. (www.virginiabeerco.com) offers a seasonal rotation of craft beers served in a family-friendly taproom and pet-friendly beer garden. Or, explore the ancient beverage of mead, which is created by fermenting the sugars found in honey, at Silver Hand Meadery (silverhandmeadery.com).

After a day of tasting, stay at the Williamsburg Inn (www.colonialwilliamsburg.com/stay/williamsburg-inn), which reopens in late April after renovations. Since 1937, the inn in Colonial Williamsburg has been a place of respite for royalty, politicians and celebrities. In 2016, the inn completed the opening round of its most extensive renovation in 15 years, maintaining Colonial Williamsburg founding benefactor John D. Rockefeller Jr.’s standards of classic elegance (a doorman in top hat and tails greets you) while adding 21st century amenities to guest rooms: Bose radios, flat-screen TVs and custom-designed armoires with LED lighting. Additional renovations include a new terraced pool area.

Williamsburg Inn rates begin at $399 per night, and rooms offer views of the historic area, gardens and the Golden Horseshoe Golf Club, named one of Golf Digest’s “2016 Best Golf Resorts in the Mid-Atlantic.” A $2.5 million renovation of the club’s Gold Course is scheduled to be completed this spring.



The new Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center (above) is part of the 125-mile scenic drive in Maryland and Delaware. Photos courtesy of Dorchester County Tourism

Travel the Underground Railroad

Follow in the footsteps of American heroine Harriet Tubman and learn how she led people from slavery to freedom at the new Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center, opening March 11 in Maryland’s Dorchester County. A joint venture of the Maryland Park Service and the National Park Service, the visitor center will serve as a key stop on the 36-site Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway, a 125-mile scenic drive that runs through Dorchester and Caroline counties and extends into Delaware. The new visitor center is filled with interactive and multimedia exhibits that reveal how the Choptank River region shaped Tubman’s early years, her missions as an Underground Railroad conductor, and her later years as a suffragist and civil rights worker.


Photo courtesy of Dorchester County Tourism

Admission to the visitor center is free. Visit dnr2.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/eastern/tubman_visitorcenter.aspx for more information and scheduled events on opening weekend. A free byway audio guide, with commentary from Tubman’s relatives, is available for download at harriettubmanbyway.org or as a CD set at the visitor center. Nearby Blackwater Paddle & Pedal (www.blackwaterpaddleandpedal.com) offers kayak and bike tours of the Underground Railroad landscape.

 

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