Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Airlie Center, Virginia

After my short stay in New York, it was time to head to Virginia for a workshop at the Airlie Center. It would be hard to imagine anywhere more different from the bright lights of the big city, with 1200 acres of beautiful countryside. Everything was trees and lakes. We saw plenty of deer and geese, and the staff assured us that there were bears, skunks and coyotes in the vicinity. I'm only sorry that my head was so full of tough research questions (and jetlag) that I didn't have that much chance to explore the area.

I did, however, make sure I had plenty of time to explore the food. Airlie grows a lot of its own vegetables, and you could really tell from how beautifully fresh it all was. The buffet format made it possible to try a little of everything at every meal, and there were at least a couple of veggie and vegan options each time.

As well as growing their own food, the Airlie Center uses environmentally friendly and recycled products, and has recycling bins all over the place. Although I didn't actually see any there, the beautiful butterfly garden is specially planted with butterfly-friendly plants.

I didn't even get around to going for a swim, although we did have a discussion meeting at the poolside one day. While the ten minute walk from my room to the main buildings was a nice stroll, it felt a bit far to walk back while dripping and in need of a shower!

The bar was a nice environment to continue chatting into the evening, with very generous measures of gin in their G&Ts, and loads of free snacks.

And can anyone shed any light on why you might want two double beds in your room? (At a conference centre...?)


Anonymous said...

When I worked at a hotel reception I once offered a "double or twin" room to a couple who were checking in for the night before their flight. "Double" said the wife "One sleeps so much better alone!" Being fairly innocent at the time I couldn't quite believe she had intended to share that with me!

Chef E said...

Actually, at times hubby and I sleep in separate beds, he snores and I need a fan. Sad, but I used to wonder why my grandparents or anyone would not sleep together as they get older, but our bodies change.

Also many people travel in groups and want to share rooms, so instead of adding a cot like Europe does, they just simplify and have all the rooms with kings and doubles, or queens and full size, or doubles here in the states.

When we go to Korea we are worried about traveling with my son and his girlfriend, if we can get less expensive rooms with space for us all, or have to stay in hostel's.

Love the place and sounds like you had a great time.

Dominic Delmolino said...

Rachel, which workshop were you attending?

Kel said...

Aw, once again u were in VA and we didn't get to meet up. One of these days. :)

Charlotte said...

Hope you had a great time and lovely pictures!

Depends... If I'm traveling with a friend I would go with the double bed. Unless I'm alone, then there's just no need for that extra bed in the room :)

Slamdunk said...

Looks like a great place Rachel.

I think the two large beds are just the big is good American mentality: we want to be able to flop around during sleep.

Jenny Woolf said...

Ah, I suppose it depends what kind of a conference it is.

Rabbit Hole Report said...


becky said...

The landscape has the beauty of Giverny.

Love sleeping alone in a hotel situation...seems like we purchase the luxury and need to make good use of it...lots of pillows, no sharing...just a little world all to yourself (for a change).

Fly Girl said...

What a lovely town! Double beds are pretty standard in the U.S., unless you opt for a queen or king sized-bed. Many people travel in pairs and groups.

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