Spring in the Coun­try

Victorian Homes - - Contents - BY KRISTIN DOWDING

Visit a charm­ing New Jersey inn, full of English coun­try style.

Trans­port your­self to the past by vis­it­ing this charm­ing New Jersey inn full of English coun­try style.

To this day, there is a rock em­bed­ded in the struc­ture that is said to have saved Prall’s life when his boat crashed in the rag­ing Delaware River that runs near the inn. The house re­mained in the fam­ily un­til the 18th cen­tury, when Mau­rice Woolver­ton pur­chased the es­tate and made sev­eral ren­o­va­tions, in­clud­ing the iron mansard roof, front porch and en­larged win­dows. He com­bined 18th and 19th cen­tury el­e­ments into the struc­ture, mak­ing it a unique build­ing. It was years later that the house be­came an inn, and is now un­der the own­er­ship of Mary and Mario Pas­salac­qua. The cur­rent own­ers, the Pas­salac­quas, are com­mit­ted to main­tain­ing the inn to pre­serve its orig­i­nal grandeur..

Re­lax­ing, beau­ti­ful and se­cluded, the Woolver­ton Inn re­ally shines in the spring. Built in 1792 by John Prall, Jr., the inn was orig­i­nally a manor house.

ROOM IN THE INN

The inn has two sep­a­rate ar­eas, each with different goals. The main manor house has eight guest rooms: three suites on the sec­ond floor and five rooms on the third floor. Each room has a different name and dé­cor style, pro­vid­ing guests with a unique ex­pe­ri­ence, de­pend­ing on the room they choose. The style re­mains co­he­sive through­out the whole inn, as each room is a different take on English coun­try style. “We want to cre­ate a com­bi­na­tion of some­thing that brings you back in time with mod­ern com­forts but is still true to the his­tory of the place,” Mary says. Each of the rooms has been up­graded and re­mod­eled with whirlpool tubs, mod­ern show­ers and central air, but the an­tique fur­ni­ture, elegant wall­pa­per and lovely fire­places have guests think­ing they’re back in the Vic­to­rian era.

For ex­am­ple, Amelia’s Suite has a warm red and gold pal­ette. The ex­trav­a­gant pat­terns on the walls and pil­lows are com­ple­mented by the gold-col­ored wood of the fire­place and tub. The dark col­ors make the room cozy and re­lax­ing. The Balustrade Room, on the other hand, uses light col­ors that make the room feel open and cheery. While both rooms al­lude to English coun­try style, the Balustrade em­pha­sizes the ro­man­tic, flowery as­pect of the era while Amelia’s Suite puts an em­pha­sis on the high-end, re­gal side.

In keep­ing with their de­sire to re­turn the inn to its orig­i­nal splen­dor, Mary and Mario have stripped, pol­ished and re­stored the main floors to their orig­i­nal beauty.

The style re­mains co­he­sive through­out the whole inn, as each room is a different take on English coun­try style.

COZY COT­TAGES

More re­cently in 2002, the pre­vi­ous own­ers of the inn de­cided to build five, 600-square-foot cot­tages as se­cluded, ro­man­tic get­aways where cou­ples can re­lax and spend time to­gether. Like the suites in the main build­ing, th­ese cot­tages have all the mod­ern ameni­ties with a ro­man­tic English coun­try theme. “The cot­tages were built to mimic the un­usual ru­ral farm build­ings that you see as you tra­verse the county and the Hun­ter­ton county area: places where they break all the ar­chi­tec­tural rules and end up with styles that are ex­tremely un­usual,” Mario says. The Audubon, for ex­am­ple, adorned with flowery wall­pa­per, has a sub­tle bird theme through a few of the dé­cor items and the color scheme. The Gar­den Cot­tage is the def­i­ni­tion of ro­man­tic, with its pink com­forter, chairs and stained glass win­dows that em­pha­size the light.

Some of the cot­tages mimic 19th-cen­tury ar­chi­tec­ture. “The vaulted ceil­ings and high beams cre­ate a very dra­matic light­ing ef­fect,” Mario says. In­deed, light is an im­por­tant el­e­ment in the cot­tages, as it brings na­ture into the struc­tures, giv­ing them a feel­ing of the out­side world while en­joy­ing the in­te­ri­ors.

LIV­ING ROOM SPLEN­DOR

In keep­ing with their de­sire to re­turn the inn to its orig­i­nal splen­dor, Mary and Mario have stripped, pol­ished and re­stored the main floors to their orig­i­nal beauty. They are made of pump­kin pine and accent the col­or­ful rugs in ev­ery room. The main house was al­ready so beau­ti­ful that Mary claimed they only “re­freshed” the main house, in­stead of do­ing any real ren­o­va­tions. With an­tique fur­ni­ture, the liv­ing room is the per­fect ex­am­ple of their English coun­try style.

Just out­side is the newly ren­o­vated horse­shoe gar­den, specif­i­cally for outdoor wed­dings. In­tri­cate ta­bles dot the open area, giv­ing guests the per­fect place to drink wine or have af­ter­noon tea. Graz­ing in the pas­tures next to the gar­den are the inn’s sheep. Beloved and cher­ished, the sheep are a fa­vorite of the guests, as vis­i­tors are able to in­ter­act with them if they so choose. “Sheep are the eas­i­est pets in the world,” Mary says. They’re easy to care for and as­sist in trans­port­ing the guests back in time. Their pres­ence helps the guests feel as if they are in the coun­try, even though they are a short drive away from the city.

The main manor house has eight guest rooms: three suites on the sec­ond floor and five rooms on the third floor.

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