Blast from the past

Winnipeg Free Press - Section E - - TRAVEL -

THERE are many ho­tel op­tions in Fred­er­icks­burg, but the one with the best nov­elty fac­tor is the Hangar Ho­tel. De­signed to em­u­late an old air­port hangar, it’s like tak­ing a step back to the Sec­ond World War era (not to men­tion the fact it’s ac­tu­ally ad­ja­cent to an air­port; you can watch planes land from the ho­tel’s ob­ser­va­tion deck). The rooms are done up in retro 1940s style, and there’s a cosy Of­fi­cers Club lounge filled with avi­a­tion me­mora­bilia, an old-school diner and a con­fer­ence cen­tre whose palm tree decor pays ho­mage to USO dance halls in the South Seas — a nod to the fact Ad­mi­ral Chester Nimitz, com­man­der in chief of the U.S. Pa­cific Fleet in the Sec­ond World War, was a na­tive son of Fred­er­icks­burg.

Tak­ing ad­van­tage of the Hill Coun­try’s net­work of B&Bs and house rentals is also great op­tion — the lat­ter es­pe­cially for fam­i­lies who want to spread out while ex­plor­ing the area. I stayed at adorable Blue Cot­tage, just a few blocks from the main road. The own­ers pro­vided a cou­ple of coaster bikes, which proved the per­fect way to tour the town. The side-gabled cot­tage, dec­o­rated in coun­try chic style, has a long front porch and lovely back­yard, com­plete with pic­nic ta­ble, grill, chiminea and a swing to lounge in while en­joy­ing a glass of Texas Ries­ling.

Yes, you read that right. Texas is just one of many states that is dip­ping its toe into the wine busi­ness, and Fred­er­icks­burg is at the heart of the vine­yard route that runs along High­way 290 and the sur­round­ing area. A very pleas­ant day could be spent driv­ing from tast­ing room to tast­ing room, sam­pling the wares and strolling in the sun­shine among the vines.

And what bet­ter way to wind down your day than by en­joy­ing the warm spring breeze with the per­fect wine to ac­com­pany a fresh bratwurst, bar­be­cued in your own tem­po­rary back­yard, fol­lowed by a deca­dent Ger­man pas­try. Prost!

Lobby of the Hangar Ho­tel.

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