Welcome to historic Camden, South Carolina. There are so many things to see and do in this back country town. This was my first visit to South Carolina and my first time to see so many Antebellum homes. If you’ve landed on this hotel review you are probably considering a romantic escape or maybe you came to experience the famous Carolina Cup horse race. I had the opportunity to stay overnight at Bloomsbury Inn during a whirlwind tour of this corner of Kershaw County. Filled with history, horses and a whole lot of Southern hospitality, Camden is a place of discoveries for the nature lover, outdoorsman or equestrian. I only wish I’d had more time to explore this part of South Carolina.
When you turn into Bloomsbury Inn, you can’t help but notice the huge, wrap around veranda and its stately white pillars that stretch from the roof to the ground. Owner Katherine Brown waved me in from the front porch and asked if I needed help with my luggage. I travel light, so my suitcase was not a problem. Travelers with disabilities should take note that there are stairs to climb into the house and again up to the four en suites chambers.
I could have spent the entire evening listening to Proprietor Bruce Brown share the oral history of this lovely bed and breakfast. Instead, I opted to visit the Little Theater and see a preview of the Equus Film Festival, before joining fellow equestrians for a dinner in town. Had I stayed on property, I would have enjoyed wine and tea, accompanied with light hors d’oeuvres with the owners and fellow guests on the veranda, weather permitting, or in the ladies’ parlor.
One of the pleasures of staying at a bed and breakfast is getting to know the innkeepers and learning about the unique features of the property. For the antique lover, the front parlor is quite impressive. The room is filled, floor to ceiling, with treasures that the couple has picked up during their distinguished military career and international travels. Katherine’s eye pulls together this old house, adding splashes of color with racks of fine china and small collectibles, each holding special memories for Katherine and her family.
I was fortunate to stay in the Sally Chesnut room, also referred to as the garden bed chamber. The light-filled room features a queen-sized, four-posted bed, two wing-backed chairs and a fireplace, in addition to a private bath with shower. While I didn’t make it to the Owners’ Hour, I did find the home baked cookies waiting for me in my room, as well as the chocolate left on my pillow. Another highlight of this plantation house are the bathrooms. They feature the original tiles installed in the 1930’s. What a treat!
What’s a bed and breakfast without a killer bed, gourmet breakfast and hot cup of coffee? Fortunately, Bloomsbury Inn excels in all areas. I could have lingered longer over the three-course breakfast, but once again, my day was jam packed with the many things to see and do in Camden. Katherine had whipped up farm fresh eggs from free-range birds and creamy grits for breakfast, but it’s the strawberry lavender preserves that served as the crown jewel on top of hot biscuits from her Grandmother’s iron skillet. Perhaps I need to return in September to participate in the Jam off – see my Insider Tips below.
Katherine had whipped up farm fresh eggs from free-range birds and creamy grits for breakfast, but it’s the strawberry lavender preserves that served as the crown jewel on top of hot biscuits from her Grandmother’s iron skillet.
Need to know:
Check in is between 3:30 pm and 7:00 pm. Check-out is between 8:30 am and 11:00 am. The Inn is not pet-friendly, although service animals are welcome. Bloomsbury Inn is a member of Select Registry.
Rates: Range from $175 – $250 and include full breakfast served in the dining room. Rooms include Egyptian cotton linens, evening turndown service, port/sherry decanter, drinks (coffee, tea) at all times, afternoon Owners’ Hour, private baths, robes, on-site parking, sweets and complimentary Wi-Fi.
Insider tips: As guests of the Inn love their jams, they’ve created a Jam Off, held annually every September. Another “must-do” is the self driving tour to see Camden’s horse country. For additional insider tips follow luxury travel writer @Nancydbrown on Twitter or Instagram @Nancydbrown and @BloomsburyInn on Twitter.
If You Go:
Bloomsbury Inn (803) 432-5858
1707 Lyttleton Street
Camden, South Carolina 29020
Bloomsbury Inn review, video and all photography by travel writer Nancy D. Brown. I was a guest of The City of Camden, however, all opinions are my own.