The United States has an authentic Japanese-style B&B.
Pembroke Springs Retreat is the place for U.S. citizens who love the Japanese culture, and at the same time for Japanese people living in the U.S. to affirm their identity.
It is one and a half hours’ drive from Washington D.C.
The way to Pembroke Springs Retreat is a well-maintained dirt road.
I found a pension-like building in the forest.
This B&B declares that they are doing the business as a hobby, so that they normally open only half a week.
Taeko and Lisa who immigrated from Japan started their business.
It is totally family operated by the Floyd family.
The building is in Western style.
There are five guest rooms with two price ranges.
I chose Maple Room, one of cheaper options
Different from more expensive ones, which are more Japanese-like, it looks like a mixture of cultures.
All rooms accommodate yukatas to wear.
Look at the original towels!
These are placed carefully, so that a hot spring mark is shown at the center.
How trivial, sensitive, and touching it is!
I believe that the real Japanese ambience comes from here for example, not from traditional furnitures.
This small tatami mat is the only space to sit down in the room.
Instead, guests can use a spacious lobby.
You can enjoy even Japanese TV shows at the lobby.
This is the view from balcony, which is almost same as that from bathrooms downstairs.
Taeko recommended that the fall foliage season would be the best.
Two Private Baths
Guests can use two private baths on a first-come, first-served basis.
Reservations can be made by just taking a note at the entrance.
Let’s look into the bathroom with blueish tiles.
It is large enough for a family.
I found the water flowing out of the outlet was cold.
Water in the tub was as warm as 104 degrees F.
That means cold mineral water is heated and circulated in the tub.
The typical washing place is for washing your body clean before soaking.
Another bathroom is tiled with brownish ones.
A fishing gear is placed as a decorative figurine.
The water is not chlorinated, and does not have particular characteristics.
I observed a small amount of mineral deposits in the tub.
The wood decks are the best places for cooling down.
Honestly, I felt the water should be hotter, however due to the state restriction it was impossible.
Real Japanese Food
Guests can have breakfast in the dining room.
Sometimes they serve dinner as well; they will let you know it some days before the stay.
Look at this plate!
Yeah, it is not authentic or traditional Japanese food, like sushi.
However, it is real, in terms of the light tastes, colorful looking, and delicate layout.
Pembroke Springs Retreat, Star Tannery, Virginia, U.S.
- Walk-in: No
- Lodging: Yes