Five Reasons Comfort Suites Potomac Mills is a Great Hotel Choice

Five Reasons Comfort Suites Potomac Mills is a Great Hotel Choice

One of the most important things to enjoying any travel is your home away from home.  The place where you’ll be laying your head while you’re on the road for business or pleasure.  A bad hotel could end up ruining any travel plans, or leaving you with bad memories from your trip.  On my most recent press trip with Discover Prince William Manassas, we stayed at Comfort Suites Potomac Mills, and I must admit I was simply blown away.  Forget everything you think you know about Choice Hotels and rediscover what it means to get high quality at an affordable price.  Here’s five reasons Comfort Suites Potomac Mills is a great hotel choice.

Reason #5: Separate Sitting Area

Most times when I travel we wait till we’re ready for bed to head back to our hotel because it’s usually just the beds and two chairs.  Comfort Suites Potomac Mills offers guests a separate sitting area with an office chair and desk.  You can watch television on the couch or work at the desk.  Don’t worry though you can still watch television in the bedroom if you like.  Plus bonus the sofa in the sitting area opens into a full size bed.

Reason #4: Free In Room Safe

Safes use to be standard in hotel rooms, however I’ve found more and more hotels opting out of keep them in rooms or adding a service fee to use them.  It gave me comfort to be able to lock away my camera and other valuables while I was away from the room.

Comfort Suites Potomac Mills

Comfort Suites Potomac Mills

Comfort Suites Potomac Mills

Comfort Suites Potomac Mills

Reason #3: Clean and Spacious Bathroom

Cleanliness is one always on top of my list when booking a hotel.  I read reviews of past guests to learn about the property and how clean the rooms and bathroom are on property.  This hotel had a very clean bathroom with lots of space.  There’s a tub/shower that was big enough for me to take a bath if I wanted.  There was enough towels for at least four people and each day housekeeping replenished toiletries.  Each day I left and returned my bathroom was spotless.  Housekeeping did an amazing job keeping my room clean each day of my stay.

Comfort Suites Potomac Mills

Comfort Suites Potomac Mills

Comfort Suites Potomac Mills

Reason #2: Comfortable Bed & Sleeping Area

A good night’s sleep when traveling is key to enjoying your travels.  The bed was big and very comfortable.  The linens were soft and perfect for a good night’s sleep.  The curtains were thick so it kept the room dark although I was facing the street with heavy traffic.  I also noticed that the traffic wasn’t so loud that I was unable to sleep.  There were two night stands on both sides of the bed.  Both had extra plugs so I could plug in my cell phone or other electronics close to the bed.  There was even a separate door that I could close from the rest of the suite.

Reason #1: Amazing Staff & Amenities

The best thing about my stay at Comfort Suites Potomac Mills was their amazing staff.  They were very friendly and helpful when I had any questions.  Shortly after checking in, someone called my room to ensure it was up to my standards and liking.  The list of amenities alone makes this a top choice hotel for the area.  Room rates include a hot breakfast daily, use of the exercise room, free high speed internet, guest laundry, indoor heated pool, and much more.

Next time you’re traveling to Prince William County in Virginia, be sure to check out Comfort Suites Potomac Mills for your hotel needs.  The hotel is located at – 14525 Gideon Drive, Woodbridge, VA, 22192, US.  Call (703) 490-4100 for booking inquiries.

 

Enjoy Hours of Fun at Manassas Mall

Autobahn Indoor Speedway Manassas Mall

Enjoy Hours of Fun at Manassas Mall

Most people think of the mall for shopping and maybe some food options.  Earlier this fall during my blogger weekend with Discover Prince William Manassas we ended the trip at Manassas Mall.  We started our afternoon at Uptown Bowling Alley.  Then some of the ladies hopped on the racetrack at Autobahn Raceway.

Bowling at @uptownalleymva today. #NRMTravels #ad #DiscoverPWM #UptownAlley

A photo posted by Nickida Stephens (@nostephens) on

If you live in the Manassas or plan to visit I highly suggest an evening at Uptown Alley.  It’s one of the best bowling alleys I’ve even visited.  It’s large enough to hold several groups of people without you feeling crowded or clustered.  There are several hang out spaces aside from the lanes.  There’s even an arcade for gamers to enjoy if they don’t like bowling.  The food is amazing, I was surprised when the food came out from the kitchen.

Uptown Alley Manassas Mall

Uptown Alley Manassas Mall

Uptown Alley is new so you’ll have to practice patience when visiting.  The kitchen was a little slow with our meals, and the staff was still learning the ropes.  Despite the waiting we enjoyed our time bowling and trying items from the menu.

Uptown Alley opens daily from 11 AM to 12 AM, Monday through Thursday, 11AM to 2 AM on Fridays, 10 AM to 2 AM on Saturdays, and 10 AM to 12 AM on Sundays.  The bowling alley is located inside Manassas Mall – 8300 Sudley Road Suite A06 Manassas, Virginia.

Autobahn Indoor Speedway Manassas Mall

Once we finished at the bowling alley, we headed next door to Autobahn Raceway.  This indoor European style go-kart race track is perfect for speed lovers.  The go-karts at this track can reach speeds of up to 50 mph.  The track isn’t just for speed demons though, they also have races for kids.  Getting signed up was easy, but I recommend heading to the track early in the day and signing up as soon as possible.  When we arrived there was already a three hour wait for races.

Autobahn Indoor Speedway Manassas Mall

Sign up at the iPads in the front of the track then see the cashier to pay for your annual speedway license ($6 – Required to race. Unlimited helmet & headsock rental, online scoring, access to special offers.), and your races.  Individual races costs $20, and there are special discounts for multi-race packages.  Races never expire so I recommend buying the eight race package for $100 and using them over time.  Once you’ve paid you’ll receive a special race card and a time to return to view the safety video and get ready to head on the track.

Autobahn Indoor Speedway Manassas Mall

Autobahn Indoor Speedway Manassas Mall

The Autobahn Indoor Speedway is open 10 AM to 10 PM Monday through Thursday & Sunday, and 10 AM to 12 AM Friday and Saturday.  The speedway is located inside Manassas Mall – 8300 Sudley Rd Suite A5 Manassas, VA 20109.

Explore Outdoors While Learning History in Northern Virginia

Explore Outdoors While Learning History in Northern Virginia

Early in fall I attended a press trip to explore the Prince William and Manassas area.  I’m familiar with both counties in Virginia but I hadn’t explored the area much.  Over the course of the weekend we visited two parks in the area.  We spent one day at the Prince William Forest National Park, and one at the Manassas National Battlefield Park.  Each park was unique and offered different experiences.

You can really take a step back in history walking the trails at both parks and learning about what happened in those places.  Our weekend started at Prince William Forest National Park with one of the park rangers.  It was a bit wet outside so we ended up doing a combination of a driving tour and a walking tour.  The park itself is 15,000 acres, it’s so huge it has two access points separated by the highway.  The park has 21 miles of bicycle trails and 37 miles of hiking trails that criss-cross Quantico Creek and its tributaries.

While at Prince William Forest National Park we learned about how the park was started.  The history with Civilian Conservation Corps, that built cabins for underprivileged youths to experience camping outdoors.  Those cabins were later used by the Office of Strategic Services to train intelligence operatives.  To learn more about the cabins at the park or find information about booking visit the Prince William Forest National Park website.  Learn about the fees for entrance at the park and find out about their fee free days online.

On our second day we walked on the battlefield where Union and Confederate officers fought the first and second battle of Manassas.  It was a very ire feeling walking around the battlefield and learning about how these soldiers.  It’s a very heavy and somber place to visit but instrumental in learning about the history of our country.

We came across an old house on the battlefield and learned that it belonged to a family that refused to leave once fighting began.  Everyone in the house ended up getting killed besides one member of the family.  The house is sometimes open for public tours.

We then went on a hike near the Stone Bridge Trail to enjoy another area of the park.  It was a beautiful section of the park to see, most of which remains natural.  We arrived at the top of a plateau with the most amazing views of the surrounding area.  It was worth the walk just to experience the views.

Entrance to Manassas Battlefield National Park is free, however visitors can donate at the visitors center.  Plan your visit and learn more about the battlefield by visiting their website.

Visit Prince William’s First Brewpub – Ornery Beer Company

Visit Prince William’s First Brewpub – Ornery Beer Company

Earlier in the fall I attened a press trip in the Prince William & Manassas area.  I had the opportunity to to visit some local business and attractions in the area.  It was very informative and fun because I didn’t realize how many great things were right in my back year.  One of the places we visited was Ornery Beer Company in Prince William.  It’s in a shopping center right behind Potomac Mills Mall, and the food was absolutely delicious.

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About Ornery Beet Company

Ornery Beer Company & Public House is Prince William County’s first brewpub!  The Ornery Beer Company Public House is a casual but elevated pub serving our meticulously crafted, house brewed ales & lagers paired with a creative menu.  Virginia has become the craft brewing epicenter of the east coast.  Ornery wants you to have a fun & casual pub where you can have a pint and a great meal too.   Head Brewer Chris Jacques has perfected his beers throughout his 15 years of professional brewing.  Our Executive Chef prepares each dish guided by your enjoyment and pairing with your beer.  We hope you agree, Ornery Beer Company & Public House will be your Neighborhood Brewpub!

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If you’re a beer drinker I highly suggest trying one of the beer flights served at Ornery.  It’s a great way to try several beer varities for a great price.  Your server can help you pick the perfect six for your flight, or you can choose based on what you like the most.

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If beer isn’t your thing, that’s fine because Ornery also has a wine flight that includes a variety of white and red wines.  This is another great way to try several different wines and find something different from what you’re used to drinking.

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For dinner that night I ended up choosing a flank steak that was on the menu at the time.  Be sure to ask about specials when your server comes to take your order.  You can also view their menu online to plan your meal choices ahead of time.  After dinner we had the opportunity to tour the brewery and learn about the beer making process. If you ever find yourself in the Woodbridge area be sure to check out Ornery Beer Company, and if you are in Prince William or Manassas counties ask if they have Ornery on tap.

Five Reasons to Spend the Day at the National Museum of the Marine Corps

Five Reasons to Spend the Day at the National Museum of the Marine Corps

Every year on November 10th, the United States Marine Corps celebrates its birthday.  I had the opportunity to visit the National Museum of the Marine Corps last month. To celebrate the birthday I wanted to share with you five reasons to spend the day at the National Museum of the Marine Corps.

national-museum-of-the-marine-corps

The National Museum of the Marine Corps is a lasting tribute to U.S. Marines–past, present, and future. Situated on a 135-acre site adjacent to Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia, and under the command of Marine Corps University, the Museum’s soaring design evokes the image of the flag-raisers of Iwo Jima and beckons visitors to this 120,000-square-foot structure. World-class interactive exhibits using the most innovative technology surround visitors with irreplaceable artifacts and immerse them in the sights and sounds of Marines in action.

National Museum of the Marine Corps

The museum is free to the public and parking is also free.  It’s open daily from 9 AM to 5 PM, except for Christmas Day.  The Museum, located astride I-95 near Marine Corps Base Quantico, is easily reached from the Washington, D.C. metro area. Guided tours are run daily based on availability. Wheelchairs are available upon request. Tours and special educational programs are available. The Museum Store carries a full line of Marine themed merchandise. An audio tour, which includes dramatic details and oral histories not found in the galleries, is also available for rent in the Museum Store.

Five Reasons to Spend the Day at the National Museum of the Marine Corps

I think the most obvious reason I’ve already post above, it’s free so why not spend the day learning the history of the organization.  Still here’s five more reasons:

1. You Can Get Married at the Chapel 

The museum has a beautiful chapel on the right of the entrance.  You can get married there in a small ceremony, then spend the day exploring the museum.  It’s open to members of the public and you do not need to me former military to use the chapel.

National Museum of the Marine Corps - Semper Fidelis Memorial Chapel

National Museum of the Marine Corps - Semper Fidelis Memorial Chapel

National Museum of the Marine Corps - Semper Fidelis Memorial Chapel

National Museum of the Marine Corps - Semper Fidelis Memorial Chapel

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The views from the chapel are amazing.  Just ten minutes in there and I could easily see why this beautiful location has been used by soon to be brides to celebrate their special day.  The Semper Fidelis Memorial Chapel was built with the concept of a “transparent chapel in the woods,” allowing guests to remain connected to the surrounding nature. The Chapel has won many design and construction industry awards. Visit the events page to learn more about all the events you can hold at the museum and book your special occasion now.

2. Life Size Vehicles 

As soon as we walked into the museum we could see quite a few life-size models of different vehicles used by actual military personnel. While at the museum you can ask one of the veterans volunteering about the models on display and their history.

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

Oh and one quick fact I learned while visiting the museum, the people you see around and in the vehicles, are not maniquens, but replicas of actual people.  Former military members pose to have them made so they look life like.

3. There Are Exhibits for All Ages

One fun thing I noticed about the museum is the different kinds of exhibits they had displayed.  There was something for all ages.  The museum also features an easy to navigate design that allows visitors to start at the Legacy Walk Exhibit and travel all through the Vietnam War.

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

The museum is building additional exhibits to expand and include more current events like 9/11 and the future.  The new phase is currently scheduled to open in 2018.

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine CorpsIf you’re visiting with children be sure to check out the special section just for kids.  There are also movie showings for visitors wanting to sit and relax while learing about the Corps.

4. The Riffle Range

In Making Marines, visitors can experience a motivational speech from a Drill Instructor, heft a fully loaded pack, and test their aim on the M-16 Laser Rifle Range.  I must admit as soon and I noticed the range I wanted to take a shot and see how well I would do.

National Museum of the Marine Corps

There is a nominal fee of $5 per person to use the rifle range.  The Marine Corps Heritage Foundation utilizes revenue generated from ticket sales from the rifle range to support the operations and future development of the museum.

5. Dine at Tun Tavern 

Legend has it that the first Marines were recruited at the original Tun Tavern in Philadelphia on November 10, 1775 by Captain Samuel Nicholas. The Museum´s intimate and authentic replica offers a full lunch menu along with bar service.

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Right outside Tun Tavern is a small replica of the original that’s in Philly.  It was cool to see how it looks up close and personal.  The tavern itself has many of the same things you’ll find at the original.

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I tried the crabcake sandwich for lunch while there and it was simply delicious.  If you ever visit the museum I highly suggest stopping by Tun Tavern for lunch.  There’s also a large group cafeteria for quick eats like hot dogs, and other mess hall fare.

To learn more about the National Museum of the Marine Corps visit their website to see their temporary exhibits, how you can volunteer, and you can even make donations to the museum as well.  If you’re visiting the DMV area be sure to add this to your list.

Get In Line for Duck Donuts in Woodbridge

Get In Line for Duck Donuts in Woodbridge

Earlier this month I was invited to press trip by Discover Prince William & Manassas.  We were scheduled for and outdoor tour but the weather wasn’t the best.  Despite the clouds and light rain we started our day at Duck Donuts in Woodbridge, VA.

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Despite the weather people were lined up at Duck Donuts waiting for their turns to order from their menu of speciality coffees, donuts, and breakfast sandwiches.  The store was packed with customers and a line was just starting to form outside as well. We waited outside a bit and then went in to place our order before sitting down to speak with the owner.

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We started with a variety box of donuts so we could try the different flavors on the menu at Duck Donuts.  I have to say I was hooked at the first bite.  It was fresh, soft, and so delicious.  I was super excited to try the Maple Bacon Donut the most followed by the French Toast Donut. I have to honestly say though that the Peanut Butter and Jelly Donut was so good.

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The Pumpkin Pie Donuts are available through November @duck_donuts #duckdonutswoodbridge #DiscoverPWM #NRMTravels #ad

A photo posted by Nickida Stephens (@nostephens) on

We also had a second box with chocolate topped donuts and the seasonal Pumpkin Donuts.  I’m not a fan of pumpkin so I didn’t try them, but you can get your Pumpkin fix at Duck Donuts Woodbridge through November.

You can also add Duck Donuts to your Halloween traditions. Stop by the store to purchase special coupon booklets with coupons good for one donut, each booklet contains 20 coupons.

Duck Donuts also gives back and this month when your purchase the Breast Cancer Donut, a portion goes to support a local Breast Cancer Organization.

Duck Donuts are made to order, and if you have peanut allergies be sure to let your server know when ordering.  They will let you know which donuts you can order, and they prepare them in a separate space to reduce the risk of cross contamination *(see Duck Donuts’ statement below).

Donuts costs about $1.25 each at Duck Donuts Woodbridge, and it’s best when warm.  You can reheat them the next day for about 10 seconds in the microwave, with the exception of the Pumpkin Donut, which they recommend you enjoy the same day. You can also purchse them by the half doze, dozen, bucket, and order for events like weddings and parties.

Duck Donuts Woodbridge is located at Stonebridge at Potomac Town Center – 15101 Potomac Town Place, Woodbridge, VA 22191, United States.  The store is open daily from 6 AM to 9 PM.

To learn more about Duck Donuts visit their website, and be sure to get social with Duck Donuts Woodbridge.

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*Food Allergy Information:

Nut Allergies:

Chopped peanuts are a regular topping offering for our donuts. As such they are located on the topping tables and we cannot guarantee that they have not migrated during the topping process. If we are not extremely busy, we are willing to top a few donuts in our preparation area for you. This will lessen the chance that the peanuts have migrated into other toppings. However we cannot make guarantees to that regard.

Unfortunately we cannot guarantee 100% that any ingredients we use are not manufactured in a facility free of tree nuts or any other class of nuts.

Other Food Allergies:

Our donuts contain wheat gluten, dry milk and egg yolks.