Salamander Resort & Spa in Middleburg, Virginia
Photo: Courtesy of Salamander Resort & Spa

Acres of scenery: You’ll cover more ground on the back of a horse

After more than a decade in the making, the 168-room Salamander Resort & Spa (500 N. Pendleton St., Middleburg; from $425) opens Thursday, August 29, in Virginia’s Middleburg Horse Country. Owned by Sheila Johnson, Black Entertainment Television co-founder and a former Chicagoan, the property’s 340 acres sprawl across the rolling green hills once ravaged by the Civil War and, later, trotted upon by avid equestrian Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and her horse.

In addition to a wide array of equestrian programming to match miles of trails (including beginner lessons and human-horse synergy rides), there are many luxury amenities: a 23,000-square-foot spa with an outdoor infinity pool; an Italian-meets-Virginia Piedmont menu designed by D.C.’s award-winning chef Todd Gray and sourced from the resort’s two-acre culinary garden; proximity to more than 50 wineries (all within an hour’s drive); and shopping in downtown Middleburg.

Check out the resort’s posh interior in this photo slideshow in the Washington Post. Can’t wait to go? Southwest Airlines is having a sale that ends tonight at 11:59 p.m.: Good for travel between September 3 and February 12, the fares to dozens of U.S. destinations include Washington Dulles (35 minutes from the Salamander Resort & Spa), just $140 from Chicago each way.

Here’s a Guide to the Best in Travel Gadgetry

You’ll find an armload of travel-friendly technology from solar charging panels to slim laptops in Condé Nast’s Traveler’s “Best New Gadgets for Tech-Loving Travelers.” Our favorites: Belkin’s Ultimate Keyboard Case for iPad ($100), the lightweight iBattz Mojo Slim Universal Travel Adapter ($30), the mount-it-anywhere GoPro Hero3 camera (from $200), and Google’s Nexus 7 tablet with its bounty of Google-friendly features ($199).

10 Places to Visit for a Good Drink

Will travel for cocktails? Check out Afar’s global list of “10 Exceptional Drinking Experiences,” which includes a Pisco Sour aboard Peru’s Hiram Bingha train and the 10-course cocktail tasting menu at Chicago’s Aviary.

When Should You Book Your Thanksgiving Flight?

“If you plan to fly on what are traditionally the busiest days of this holiday period, start looking and booking now,” says airfare analyst Rick Seaney. But you can wait until early September if you plan to fly before November 27 and after December 1. Read more at FareCompare.