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Archive for the ‘New Jersey’ Category

I opened my eyes and looked at my surroundings. I had gone to sleep as a weary road traveler, but I was clearly starting the new day as a princess. Sunlight flooded the room, casting a fairytale spell that melted right into the pastoral, hand-painted mural on the wall. Soothing tones of ivory, apricot and sage surrounded me. The faint sound of birdsong played in the background and the aroma of freshly baked goods hovered in the air.

It wasn’t easy prying myself out of the luxurious queen featherbed in The Primrose’s Room of The Woolverton Inn, but I managed to do so in order to get a glimpse of the world outside. Looking down from my second-floor window, I was met by a peaceful scene of sheep grazing. It was tempting to fall right back into bed, but I gathered my senses and settled on a more practical goal: coffee.

I’d been lucky to catch a vacancy at this enchanting bed and breakfast, without a reservation. But impulse has its benefits and a quick call from Connecticut landed me a place for the night. It was perfect, as I was westbound for Pennsylvania. The Woolverton Inn, located in Stockton, New Jersey, would put me within hopping distance of my next destination.

Dinner had been my only stop the evening before. A table on the outdoor terrace at The Stockton Inn had given me a chance to rest after the day’s drive. Over an exceptional salad of mixed greens, mandarin oranges, glazed nuts, cranberries, toasted wonton strips and balsamic vinaigrette dressing, the stress of travel faded away. I followed the salad with an appetizer portion of lemon-pepper chicken, equally delicious.

Setting my fork down, I sat quietly after finishing my meal. Votive lights flickered as darkness began to fall. The sound of an outdoor fountain mixed with a few Neil Young tunes, cast about by live musicians. The air was soothing – not too warm, not too cool. A faint breeze floated through the patio. It was a perfect moment.

Though stopping for a meal brought me in after dark, it didn’t take long in the morning to realize how exquisite the inn’s location was. Set on ten acres and encircled by an additional 300 acres of farmland, the 1792 stone manor and surroundings resembled a scene from a Thomas Kinkade painting. It was idyllic. Breakfast ranked up there with the best I’ve ever enjoyed. Juice, coffee, ice water, homemade granola, yogurt and a basket of fresh muffins started off the morning feast. Given a choice of two breakfast entrees, I managed to finagle a mini-portion of each: lemon-ricotta pancakes and eggs with herbs, brie and sausage. Both were outstanding. I caught myself attempting to scrape herbed brie off my empty plate.

The Woolverton Inn has more going for it than just its amazing accommodations, food and peaceful surroundings. A short stroll from the inn leads to The Delaware River. Nearby Lambertville offers exceptional antiquing. Shops, cafes and galleries are merely a saunter across the bridge to New Hope, PA. The many enticements of Bucks County, PA, are only a short drive away, including the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works and the Mercer Museum. Winery tours, train excursions and hot air balloon rides are all easily arranged. There’s no shortage of area activities. The only challenge facing guests is in stepping away from the luxury of the inn itself.

I would have loved to stay a second night, but my schedule didn’t allow it. I packed my overnight bag and thanked the inn for the luxurious accommodations and wonderful hospitality. I left feeling very fortunate, as if I’d stumbled into a secret paradise. Maybe because I did.

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