Often when you travel to scenic parts of the U.S., your choice of hotels often comes down to a charming Bed and Breakfast or (shudder) a theme hotel. We got lucky on our visit to Lancaster, PA. — famous for the local Amish and beautiful farm land – that a new Marriott had sprung up, smack in the downtown area in Penn Square.
As stunning as the local architecture — due to the hotel keeping much of the original facade and building in the same ornate style — The Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square has all the modern amenities, including an inside pool, a destination restaurant in “The Penn Square Grille and “Rendezvous Lounge,” and work stations with wifi access in the all the rooms. All the rooms feature the luxurious pillow-top bedding, which after a cross-country flight is perhaps the most important feature, plus 37-inch LCD TVs, granite countertops, 2 concierge levels, and a full-service spa, The Mandarin.
Located in Downtown Lancaster (a National Historic District) it puts you near Central Market, the Fulton Theatre, and all the unique shopping and restaurants. Fridays are famous for their fresh- food market, and there’s always the popular Amish buggy tour or a Ghost tour, if you’re not a scaredy cat like us.
The local visitors building is conveniently right across from the hotel so start there. They’ll tell you about all the tours and the recommend a visit to the country’s oldest farmers’ market, in the heart of Amish country, which is located in a beautiful 120 year old red brick building. Regional food specialties include Pennsylvania Dutch sausage, scrapple (a breakfast meat of pork scraps and cornmeal), and headcheese (like scrapple, an acquired taste). Open Tuesdays and Fridays, 6:00 am to 4:00 pm, and Saturdays, 6:00 am to 2:00 pm year-round; the market is also a great place to buy souvenirs.
When you need a respite from the historical yours, try a shopping remedy at the Tanger Outlets, which features, well….everything.
Our home away from home, the Rendezvous Lounge, is beautifully appointed with it’s marble bar and European feel, and provides a wide selection of wines, many available by the glass.
Whatever your reason for the trip, make your stay something to remember at the Penn Square Marriott.