On a recent weekend visit to Manchester, VT we had the pleasure of staying at the Wilburton Inn. This is not a place for people looking for a Marriott experience, but if what you want is a beautifully decorated, clean room in an antique-filled mansion, check out this inn. Manchester itself is a fun town full of friendly people, with lots to see and do. Everybody here treats you like you're a long lost cousin or the friend of somebody they know, so it's no surprise that the innkeepers were curious about us and wanted to share some of their own stories. But they also did a good job of figuring out when we wanted our privacy, and were respectful of that. They were happy to give us insider scoop on some things to do that we were of special interest to us, and I overheard them giving other guests pointers suited to their particular plans.
We visited in early spring, so all the trees were still bare. I imagine the grounds here are spectacular when everything's in full bloom. But even in the cold it was fun to walk around and see the rather esoteric sculpture collection. Some of the pieces seemed a bit odd o me until Albert, a retired psychiatrist and the husband of the innkeeper pair, explained how everything fit into the story of his view of finding your own creativity. Georgette, his wife, was a hoot, and had some great stories of her own.
It's too bad that another guest had an unpleasant breakfast experience. The chef who was cooking the two days of our stay made some of the best morning meals I've had anywhere. On the first day I got made-to-order French toast, made from Georgette and Albert's son's fresh challah (he's a renowned local baker), farm fresh eggs, and caramelized bananas. On my second morning I ordered eggs over easy with bacon and got two perfectly cooked eggs and a generous portion of the best bacon I've had outside of the home-smoked stuff the Amish make. My husband had the special vegetable omelet the first day, and the special, eggs benedict made with pulled pork, on the second day. He's a gourmet cook himself, and coudn't stop raving about the freshly made Hollandaise sauce. Albert serves the breakfast himself mainly, it seems, as this gives him a chance to joke around with his guests. The chef did come out of the kitchen for a few minutes to say hi, and he really is French. But perhaps the best part of the breakfast is the amazing view of the mountains right outside the huge windows. The people sitting next to us said they would come back for that view alone, and we agree.
The house is so large that we weren't even aware there were other guests staying there except when we ran into them at breakfast or in the common rooms. Guests are welcome to make themselves at home in the living room that's furnished with the elegance of a grand hotel, except without the formality. You're encouraged to walk around, touch the antiques, get up close and personal with the artwork, and generally make yourself at home. This was one of the best B&B experiences we've had yet, and I'd encourage anyone looking for something out of the ordinary to check this inn out.
- Also Known As:
- Wilburton Hotel Manchester
- Wilburton Hotel
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Grand historic mansion and separate villas on 20-acre hilltop estate, the Wilburton Inn has exceptional mountain views, tennis court, pool, sculpture gardens. Restaurant on premises. ... more less
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