Thing to Do #30: Stay in the Best Suite in a Five Star Hotel

The Umstead

The Umstead

I’ve stayed at a Five Star Hotel before, but not the BEST suite; I guess its kinda like staying in Richard Gere’s Penthouse at the Beverly Wiltshire Hotel in Pretty Woman.  Recently announced, there are now two five star hotels in the Raleigh-Durham area:  The Umstead in Cary and Fearrington House Inn in Pittsboro

The Umstead  is a full-service hotel with a 150 Rooms that feature luxury linens and fully-stocked bars.  The full-service Umstead Spa offers a quiet retreat after a day by the outdoor pool or a workout in the state-of-the-art fitness center and Herons restaurant is a local favorite for its creative New American cuisine.

The BEST suite in the Umstead is the Presidential Suite.  This 1,725 square-foot, sixth (top) floor suite offers panoramic vistas over the lake below and miles of pine trees beyond. Special features include an elegant limestone and granite foyer, inlaid wood floors combined with custom Axminster carpets, fabric wallcoverings, silk draperies and pillows, furniture designed in exotic woods, and original artwork. Palatial bathrooms have a deep soaking bathtub and a marble tiled shower, while a separate pantry features a refrigerator and wine cooler.  However, I checked it out and there is no availability through June 2010; apparently you may have to BE a president to stay in this suite.

The second best suite is the Governor’s Suite.  This 1,208 square-foot luxury king bed suite offers a patio overlooking the beautifully landscaped gardens, and is close to the spa, fitness studio and heated outdoor pool.  Two pocket doors separate the parlor and bedroom.  The Governor’s Suite IS available for only $800 a night.  I can also add to my suite a Playstation 3, Wii, or XBOX 360 ($35), Chocolate Strawberries (6 for $45), or even Cookies and Milk ($25)!

Fearrington Inn

Fearrington Inn

Much more affordable is the Fearrington Inn.  Each of the 35 guest rooms at this charming North Carolina country inn has been created with its own distinct character.  Rooms feature European antiques, luxurious fabrics, original Southern artwork, fresh flowers and exceptional amenities. Stunning vistas of trellised gardens, water sculptures, and manicured English gardens surround the inn and restaurant. 

Its best suite is the Grand Suite, which is $575 a night.  The Grand Suite is a Luxurious large bedroom with king bed, elegant sitting room with fireplace, and bathroom featuring whirlpool tub and separate shower.  Complimentary items include:  English Afternoon Tea, Full Gourmet Breakfast, Port Wine & Chocolate Truffles at Turn-Down, Molton Brown Bathroom Amenities, Daily National Newspaper, High Speed Wireless Internet Access Local Phone Calls, and use of Duke Wellness Center.

Economically, the Grand Suite at Fearrington makes sense, however, I could have one awesome party in the Governor’s Suite at The Umstead.  One night’s stay is my monthly mortgage payment, and is about 200 more square feet than where I LIVE. 

Anyone out there that has stayed in the best suite of a 5-Star Hotel?  Did you have a party?  Do you want to come to my hotel party when I decide to blow my mortgage payment on a night’s stay?

About Jessica

Mild mannered marketing drone by day. Bucket list adventurer by late afternoon. Having first drafted a list in high school, Jessica's list of things to do before she dies has slowly taken over her life and consumes her thoughts. Because of the list, she has traveled to Mordor, plummeted towards the Earth's surface from 13,000 feet up, cavorted with whale sharks in open water, skinny dipped herself into the Guinness World Book, and cursed the day she was born during the last miles of a Marathon. It's safe to say that if Jessica is doing it, it's on the list.


  1. Update to THE List « 101 Things to Do Before You Die - October 1, 2009

    […] Stay in the Best Suite in a Five Star Hotel […]


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