Blast from the past
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.