Dan and I have spent a couple nights at the newish Virginian Hotel in downtown Lynchburg, Virginia while visiting my mother and her adorable beagle, Dublin! This is my review of our stays in Fall 2023. In sum highly recommend for a hotel in Lynchburg, VA.
For those not from Lynchburg, Virginia, The Virginian Hotel is a longtime fixture of Lynchburg, having first opened in 1913. The Virginian Hotel was known for years as an upscale, elegant hotel hosting the most esteemed guests in Lynchburg, including Eleanor Roosevelt and Ronald Regan (who knew these types of people visited Lynchburg!). One of The Virginia’s most famous attributes is its famous “Virginian” light up sign that remains iconic downtown.
Unfortunately, the hotel was sold in the 1960s as a result of a depression in Lynchburg’s economy at the time, and it was rebranded under a different name. This hotel was not too successful and ended up serving as dorms for Liberty Baptist College… Lucky for Lynchburg history buffs, Hilton invested in the property in 2015 and The Virginian re-opened as a luxury property in 2017 as a Curio Collection property. And, we are big fans!
The Virginian Hotel
The hotel itself is located in its original building. The interior has, obviously, been totally redone with modern classy decor and touches of Virginia throughout, including neon-lit Dogwood flowers (the Virginia state flower) decorating the checkin area. Very nice. Apart from the main checkin area, there are a few seating areas on the first floor, including a library that doubles as a business center. Dan and I have spent quite a bit of time in this room, LOL. It includes computers, a large screen playing CNN and even a DMX autograph from when we stayed here (RIP!). The main floor is also home to the gift shop and the Magnolia restaurant. Rooms comprise most of the upper floors, and conference space occupies the basement levels and a couple rooms on the main floor.
The Rooms at The Virginian.
We have stayed on both the fifth and sixth floors of The Virginian, which are the top to floors for guests (nope, Lynchburg does not have a lot of high high rises!) Despite being on the top floor, our views were just of the building across the street…nothing to get excited about there….
In any case, our rooms have been nearly identical every stay and consisted of a large, comfortable King bed decked out in sharp white linens, a work desk, a flat screen TV, a small fridge, a coffeemaker, two complimentary waters with ice bucket, a closet with robes and slippers and a bathroom with a nice shower, double sinks and a toilet.
While not huge, the rooms are certainly spacious and provided more than enough room for us, especially for 1 night. Wifi is also excellent and certainly good enough for us to WFH at our NYC jobs. No worries there!
The bathroom also had lots of towels, which is a HUGE perk in my opinion, and lovely Ghilchrist & Soames branded products. Big fan of that! My only issue is that the shower has full sized bottles…we hate that!
Dining at The Virginian
In terms of dining, The Virginian has three options: the Marigold, a breakfast/lunch/coffee spot, the Skyline, a roof top bar and restaurant, and Willam & Henry’s, an alleged upscale steakhouse.
Due to our Hilton Diamond status, Dan and I each received $15 per day to use on site, and we used the credit for breakfast and coffee each day at the Marigold Cafe. And to be clear, the Hilton Diamond status benefit is $15 per person per room for Diamond members, up to 2 people per room, for a total of $30 dollars per day. If this benefit is not used each day, it’s lost, never to be reclaimed again. So, be sure to use it!
Marigold Cafe – the most casual eatery.
Marigold Cafe is The Virginian’s most casual eatery, and its open early morning until about 3 PM daily. Marigold is on the first floor and also has street access, making it open and easily accessible to the public. Marigold serves Starbucks branded coffee, as well as breakfast biscuits (!!), other breakfast foods, and a breakfast small buffet daily. Each time we have used our Hilton Diamond member credit for 2 bacon, egg and cheese biscuits and Venti Starbucks coffees (cappuccino for me and iced latte for Dan). This pretty much took up the entire $15 per person. While busy every time I have visited, Marigold is pretty fast on the service front.
In the afternoon, Marigold switches to lunch, and serves sandwiches, chips and a good selection of Virginia wine! While it closes at 3, be sure to stop in for some Virginia wine if you are interested! Also, this tuna sandwich was incredible.
The Skyline bar is The Virginian’s rooftop bar that is branded as an upscale cocktail bar. So of course, I had to go for a bevy! In any case, the bar is suuuuuper cute with adorable decor and a big screen often playing sports (the US Open the first time I visited!).
In any case, I of course enjoyed a cocktail outside, specifically the Boonsboro Basil Grapefruit. While it looked cute, it was unfortunately too sweet for my liking. I was also not a fan of the non-Virginia wines on the menu. The beer/cider selection was Virginia-heavy, which I appreciated. Moral of the story, go for the Virginia beer/cider and the outdoor seating, which offers fire pits when it gets cool. Skip for great cocktails and the CA, over priced wine options. All that being said, Diamond members can use their food and beverage credit here if it fits within your stay window!
William & Henry Steakhouse.
I cannot comment on The Virginian’s nicest restaurant, William & Henry Steakhouse, because we did not eat here. It looks very nice from the outside, but its all inside and we have a dog in VA that we like to take to dinner (so we didn’t visit!). I would return on another visit. Only open for dinner.
Other Amenities at The Virginian.
Besides rooms and restaurants, The Virginian doesn’t have any exception amenities. For example, there is no lounge or anything like that. I highlight the amenities I saw here.
The Virginian Hotel Gym.
While small, the gym at The Virginian was servicable; equipment included four treadmills, an eliptical, a regular spin bike, a Peloton, and a variety of weights and that type of equipment. The gym also offered a water fountain and unlimited Virginian-branded bottled water, as well as ear phones, lysol wipes and towels. The gym is located on the second floor and requires an active keycard to access. I have been the only person each time I visited.
The Virginian has a really lovely gift shop that really made me want to spend some money, LOL. Stocking leather bags made in the nearby area, Virginia snacks, beer, wine, and things guests may need for the stay, Diamond guests can also use their daily food and beverage credit at the gift shop (although I think only for food and drinks). Bottled water is freely available in the gift shop for Diamond members, and I think everyone else. Be sure to ask about free bottled water!
Wifi at The Virginian.
As I mentioned, fast wifi was available throughout the hotel at all hours. Speed tests were averaging 47.1 mbps downloading and 91.2 mbps uploading. We easily WFH’ed.
Parking at The Virginian.
Parking is directly across the street from the hotel. Covered valet parking was $17/night in September 2023 and uncovered self-park was $12/night. There is a reserved spot for Diamond Members. We have used this by simply pulling in after the Valet service closed. Not sure how it works when Valet is staffed.
The Area Around The Virginian.
The Virginian is located in “Downtown” Lynchburg. The area has had a bit of a shady past, but has really transformed over the last decade or so with shops, restaurants and apartment buildings. The area right around the hotel is not that happening, but you will be fine walking around during the day and can find bars and restaurants a few blocks away, particularly down on near the train tracks (The Waterdog and Waterstone Pizza Kitchen are my favorites!). After dark, and especially late at night, I wouldn’t walk too far alone. The Virginian locks its main doors at night, but guests can access via their room key. Be sure to call in advance if you plan to checkin after hours.
STEAL OUR HOTEL
The Virginian Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton: 712 Church St, Lynchburg, VA 24504.
Waterstone Pizza Kitchen: 1309 Jefferson St, Lynchburg, VA 24504. Open daily 11:30 – 9:00, until 10:00 on weekends. Patio is dog friendly.
The Waterdog: 1016 Jefferson St, Lynchburg, VA 24504. Closed Monday. Open Tuesday – Sunday for dinner, lunch Wednesday – Sunday.
ON A BUDGET
There are certainly less expensive accommodations in Lynchburg; but for a luxury property, rates are normally reasonable at The Virginian.