Southern comfort, British style
4-star * * * *
I enjoyed a pleasant three-night stay in mid-May 2014 at The English Inn, which is conveniently located in the heart of Charlottesville just off Route 29, a major north-south highway. It is close to the impressive historic campus of the University of Virginia as well as to restaurants, shops, and the local airport. And it is within reasonable driving distance of several major tourist attractions, including the well-maintained 18th and 19th century estates of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe -- respectively, America's third, fourth, and fifth presidents.
With its Tudor architecture and modern facilities, The English Inn is old-fashioned in best sense of that term, featuring a friendly, efficient reception staff, excellent housekeeping service, and large, comfortable rooms. Afternoon tea (mislabeled as "high tea" for some reason) is served every day in the spacious lobby area, complete with home-made cookies. The hotel features a large indoor swimming pool, an exercise room, good conference facilities for small and medium-sized groups, and plentiful free parking
My room offered a large desk with an adjustable desk chair, ample drawer space, an upholstered easy chair with matching footrest, an alarm clock, a fridge, a microwave oven, a flat panel TV, and free wireless Internet with a strong signal distributed on several hotel networks -- you may have to experiment to determine which of the wi-fi networks works best for your room location. The only missing item I would have liked to have was an in-room safe, although a safe deposit box was available for hotel guests at the front desk.
Lighting in my room was more than adequate, with lamps on each of the end-tables surrounding the king-sized bed, another lamp at the desk, and an overhead light at the entranceway. An easy-to-adjust programmable climate control unit allowed for setting a precise temperature target for the heat or air-conditioning.
Bathroom amenities included a hair dryer, shower cap, and facial tissue dispenser. The shower in the bathtub was simple and easy to use, with a good anti-slip surface. The bathroom faucet brought forth quick hot water, and there was ample work space around the sink.
The breakfast buffet was nothing special. but there was nothing wrong. It essentially consisted of standard motel fare with a few choices, including juice, tea, coffee, scrambled eggs, sausage, and cereal.
All in all, my stay at the English Inn was a pleasant experience, and I will be happy to choose it again for my next visit to Charlottesville.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- 106 well-appointed rooms and suites. Enjoy all the pleasures of a fine Charlottesville hotel blended with the charm of a country inn. You’ll find the heart of the English Inn is our dedication to uncompromising quality and exemplary personal service. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The English Hotel Charlottesville
- English Hotel Charlottesville