Monday, November 13, 2017

Carriage Rides and Bike Rides at Greenbrier

On our first day at Greenbrier, we had breakfast in the main dining room, such a beautiful way to start our day.

I ordered hot chocolate and got my own tea pot full of chocolate and bowl of marshmallows

I ordered tiramisu french toast,
coffee soaked, mascarpone, chocolate shavings
served with Pure West Virginia Maple Syrup and apple wood smoked bacon.

After breakfast, we headed down to the back of the hotel to catch a horse drawn carriage for a ride around the property. 

We passed by the Greenbrier Chapel as well as the iconic white columned spring house that has been the symbol of the Greenbrier for generations.

After our wonderful carriage ride, we took a stroll around the grounds and gardens. The blooming trees and flowers seemed to be at their peak of blooming, we could not of asked for a better weekend.

We snuck a peek inside the Greenbrier Chapel. While they do hold non denominal services every Sunday with special services on Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas, it's primary function is as a wedding venue.

As we were leaving the chapel, there was a special, Easter petting zoo being set up on the lawn. I never pass up an opportunity to pet some animals, and there were so many animals available to pet!

These were the softest, fluffy bun buns I have ever pet.

I could have spent the entire afternoon with the rest of the little kids, playing with the animals. But my parents pulled me away so we could go check out the Art Colony Shops.

The Art Colony Shops are a unique experience that includes skilled artisans working with metals, leather, brass, wood, glass and pottery. Located in the historic Alabama Row Cottages overlooking the Springhouse.

We wandered in and out of all the fun little shops, chatting with the artists and learning about their crafts. One of our favorites stores was this gorgeous rock shop. As mentioned in one of my earlier posts, my family is very into geology, my grandfather was a geologist so the interest has been passed down through the generations.

a fine specimen of Crazy Lace Agate 

The Art Colony shops are also home to the President's Cottage Museum. Greenbrier has hosted 26 US presidents, the museum has exhibits about their stays and as well as some history about the Greenbrier.

After shoping at the Art Colony, we headed back to the main building of the resort to continue shopping at the designer boutiques.

The jewelry store was having a special trunk show of an extremely talented artist that makes these beautiful flower basket masterpieces out of antique jewelry he acquires from estate sales

We got to meet and chat with the artist about his designs and techniques. He was very sweet and loved talking about his artwork. My mom and I may have each walked away with one... they are just so unique and we hadn't ever seen anything like them before, it was hard to not take them all home.

After shopping, mom headed back to the room for some relaxation while dad and I set out to find the rental bikes.

The bike rental shop is all the way across the grounds from the main building, so we got to explore another part of the resort. We found the golf course, the tennis courts and the outdoor pool (which hadn't opened for the season yet, but it looked really pretty!)

We eventually found the itty bitty adventure shop, we discovered bikes aren't the only rentals they offer. Guests can do anything from biking to zip lining to falconry to glass blowing to fishing, if only we had had more time ... 

We biked around the golf course and the residential area that is part of the resort's property.

We eventually found ourselves at the front of the hotel, which made for the perfect photo opportunity.

We biked through the Art Colony Shops on our way to return our bikes.

After our ride, we headed back to our rooms to get cleaned up for dinner. My contacts decided they didn't want to be worn anymore, and since I packed in such a hurry (I only had a few days in between trips) I forgot to pack extras. So, I was forced to wear my glasses for our entire trip ... It's not the worst thing in the world, but when I am so used to contacts, wearing glasses is kinda uncomfortable.

There are 19 resturants and lounges at the Greenbrier, choosing only four was difficult for us, but we all knew we had to have at least one dinner in the main dining room. Having dinner in the main dining room is a completely different experience than having breakfast. Dining for dinner requires a very formal dress code, 

"No denim. Ladies and gentlemen in their finest. Jacket and tie required for men and dresses or evening suits for women. Men’s hats and baseball caps are not permitted, but bonnets are always in style for the ladies. Children ages 10 and older are required to wear attire similar to that of adults."

All three of us had come prepared with dresses, jackets and ties, however there was a gentleman checking in before us who had a jacket but no tie, he was presented a box of ties by the hostess and was asked to pick one before entering the dining room. I'm not sure if I have ever dined anywhere as fancy or as strict with their dress code.

After ordering, we were each presented with a small dish of water with essential oil with which to wash our hands before dining.

Roast chicken with cheesy grits for my main course

Chocolate souffle for dessert with vanilla chantilly and creme anglaise.

After dinner, we all felt the need to go for a little walk to help our food digest, so we took a stroll outside to see what the hotel looks like lit up at night. 

Then we headed back to our rooms to go to bed. They had these adorable "Quite Please, It's Sleepy Time Down South" by all the elevators. I sure do love a touch of southern charm.

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