My husband and I stayed here for 2 nights and really couldn't find anything to complain about. The staff was very personable and accommodating, starting at check-in and continuing throughout our stay. Since we arrived early, our room wasn't ready but we were given a nice tour of both the hotel and the spa. While we waited for the room, we went down the road and had lunch at Wild Thyme, which was excellent. Then I tooled around the quaint downtown while my husband sat at Bucks Coffee shop (great cappuccino) and read.
Our room was definitely worth waiting for. It was a luxury spa suite (2 rooms) and was gorgeous...very tastefully decorated with a sitting room which had a beautiful fireplace and 2 large comfy chairs and ottoman. The master bedroom was very large and had an enormous marble bathroom with a rainfall shower and separate tub. The covered stone balcony was very spacious as it spanned both rooms. It overlooked the lovely church next door. Honestly, this was probably one of the nicest (if not the nicest) room in which we have ever stayed. After we got settled, we went to the library and got our complimentary glass of champagne. We didn't have any of the complimentary dove bars but they were tempting. The Inn itself is very old world and charming.
We had a lovely dinner at Madison's. Although it was very expensive, we were not disappointed with anything we had (Scallops over risotto and also the Halibut special). They also had some nice wines, which the wine guy (sorry I forget what his title is and no, its not sommelier). The wafer-like flatbread and pimento spread were mouth-watering. I'm still thinking about them. Also, the service was great. At the restaurant and throughout the hotel, they really try to make you feel special.
Our first night was an adventure as the fire alarm went off at 4:30 in the morning. We grabbed a jacket and then walked downstairs to exit the building. Someone from the hotel came immediately and checked it out, and told us it was okay to go back - false alarm. The next day when we came back from our spa appointments, there was a hand-written apology and a bottle of champagne for the inconvenience of the previous night. Although we were not expecting anything, this will stand out in my mind as one of those little things a top-notch hotel does to distinguish itself from the rest.
We had spa treatments the morning after the fire alarm and the couples massage relieved any stress caused by lack of sleep. Next time, I would book for 80 minutes since 50 minutes goes by very quickly. A hot cup of tea in the beautiful relaxation room afterwards capped off the experience. This was our first spa weekend, so I don't know how others compare, but I can't imagine they are much better than Old Edwards. The nice thing about going in the off-season is that it's not overly crowded.
The outdoor pool at Old Edwards is very pretty with a soothing water feature, nice lounge chairs and some gazebos which overlook the pool. It had just opened the weekend prior to our arrival. Even on a cooler day, it was great to sit and read a book by the pool.
Our second night we had dinner at Paolettis. We had reservations at 8:30 but were never seated until 9:00 (and this is the off-season). The vodka penne was pretty good. However, it was definitely overpriced (for the food, wine and the experience)...nothing overly special here.
As I mentioned, downtown Highland (couple of blocks) has some shopping. It seems, however, that a lot of the clothing shops are geared toward older women (as in senior citizens). I'm not saying it was cheap stuff, just kind of fuddy duddy...not much I would consider fashionable. However, I really liked Dutchmans, which has some neat home accessories and gifts.
The Mountain Fresh grocery store down the road from the hotel was great. We had lunch there one day and breakfast another. It's a nice offset to some of the more expensive meals we had and the food was very good.
The best thing about our 48 hours in Highlands was being able to park the car and never need it again until we left. Upon checkout, they gave us a bag with waters and fruit for the road...another nice touch. We will definitely come back.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Old Edwards Inn and Spa sits atop the beautiful southwest plateau of North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains. The acclaimed European style resort fills several blocks filled with amenities, music, dining venues and individually appointed guestrooms, suites and cottages. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Old Edwards Hotel Highlands
- Old Edwards Inn