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Colonial Houses, Williamsburg

Editor's Pick
136 E. Francis St.
Williamsburg , Virginia
Tel: 800 447 8679 (toll-free)
Tel: 757 229 1000, x8440's insider take:

The best way to get the full immersion experience is to rent one of the 26 best-selling Colonial Houses. Are they authentic? Not so much. Though the shells are absolutely 18th-century, modern bathrooms, TVs, and room service tend to ruin the illusion (but did you really want to star in your own PBS reality show anyway?). Booking online puts you in a lottery; call ahead to request a specific house, like Brick House Tavern, a replica of the house where American cavalry troops quartered during the War of 1812, or the Lightfoot Tenement, whose clustered outbuildings mirror the "miniature villages" of Colonial Virginia's plantations. Most houses are one- or two-bedrooms, with the notable exception of the 11-bedroom Market Square Tavern, where Thomas Jefferson used to stay while studying law under George Wythe. It's popular for family reunions, but if you fail to score the third president's lodging, you can always rent the Moody Kitchen and sulk.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.