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The Founders Inn and Spa 3.5

Virginia Beach, Virginia, United States

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Review Summary

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  • Convenient location adjacent to Regent University
  • Traditionally elegant rooms with flat-screen TVs, coffeemakers, and mini-fridges
  • Manicured grounds with walking paths and huge, fenced-in dog park
  • Fresh seafood in restaurants plus bar with draft beer selection
  • Outdoor pool has a huge enclosed slide that's great for kids 
  • Fantastic facilities for weddings and events
  • Modern fitness center plus huge spa
  • Free parking and free Wi-Fi
  • Shuttle service available for local destinations


  • At least 20 minutes by car to the beach
  • Downtown Norfolk is a 15-minute drive away 
  • Style can be stuffy for some guests, some rooms look dated
  • Shuttle service is not free

Bottom Line

Situated next to the Regent University campus, the 240-room Founders Inn and Spa is an upper-middle-range property that blends colonial heritage with resort-style features. The perfectly manicured grounds are a highlight here, complete with a fenced in dog park, an outdoor pool, and spa. Rooms are traditionally elegant, with floral patterns, four-poster beds, antique furnishings, and modern appliances. The property is equipped with meeting and banquet space, plus an indoor pool and fitness center. This dog-friendly hotel is a good pick for events, business, or leisure travel, though the nearby Crowne Plaza Town Center has more lavish and modern rooms. 

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Traditionally elegant hotel with expansive, manicured grounds 

From the outside, The Founders Inn resembles a colonial estate, all red brick and white trim. Surrounded by perfectly manicured trees and hedges, a series of red brick paths wind through the grounds that are spotted with benches, a large pond, a children’s playground, and a 30,000-square-foot, fenced-in dog park. Inside the hotel, the atmosphere is traditional and elegant. The lobby is expansive, sectioned off into four lounge areas decorated with antique Victorian and colonial-style chairs and sofas. There are chandeliers throughout the lobby and in the Swan Terrace restaurant, adding an additional refined touch. Breakfast takes place in Swan Terrace, which features hand-carved wooden chairs, round tables, and a large wooden cabinet containing fine china occupying one wall. There is also a large wooden piano where a musician occasionally plays background music in the evening. This property attracts leisure guests with its pool and spa, business guests for its meeting facilities, and groups that are attending events like weddings. 


Walking distance to Regent University, but 15 minutes or more to the beach and Norfolk

This hotel is in a quiet and peaceful area of Virginia Beach, though don't expect easy walks to the Atlantic Ocean. Situated adjacent to Regent University's campus, the hotel sits just off of I-64, with a Waffle House and University Shopping Center plus a few ethnic restaurants and a convenience store about an eight-minute walk away. The location may not be ideal for tourists, as it's removed from most major attractions in the area. It is a 15- to 20-minute drive or shuttle ride to the beach, Farm Bureau Live, and the Virginia Beach Sportsplex. Downtown Norfolk takes about 15 minutes to reach by car from the hotel, as do Mount Trashmore Park and Norfolk International Airport.


Traditional rooms with four-poster beds and antique features

None of the hotel’s 240 rooms are exactly the same, but each features a selection of antique furniture plus handsome navy blues and greens alongside brighter colors, usually seen in floral patterns and stripes in the curtains and bed coverings. Desks, chairs, nightstands, and cabinets are solid, light- to mid-tone wood and beds sit on two- or four-poster frames. While rooms have a traditionally elegant style that some guests may find stuffy (or dated), there are modern touches too, including flat-screen TVs, free Wi-Fi, mini-fridges, safes, and coffeemakers. Fireplace Suites feature a cozy personal gas fireplace next to the beds, while Parlor Suites include separate living areas with sofa beds, armchairs, and a second TV. Bathrooms are modern and tiled in light neutral tones, with pedestal sinks or spacious granite vanities. Many have walk-in showers, though some have a shower/tub combo, and all include high-end Caswell Massey toiletries.


Outdoor pool with waterslide, huge dog park, fitness center, and spac

The Founders Inn has features that make it stand out when compared to the local competition. These include its indoor pool (with a hot tub and pretty French windows in the sunroom), and outdoor pool with a 25-foot-high covered waterslide that's great for kids. Kid-friendly as the hotel is, it's also dog-friendly and offers a 30,000-square-foot, fenced-in dog park on its grounds. There is also a full-service spa offering everything from manicures and pedicures to massages and facials of all varieties. The hotel’s restaurants serve fresh, seasonal fare for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, including fresh seafood and homemade pastries. Breakfast is not included with room rates. The Hunt Room is a bar area complete with a pool table and a decent selection of beers on tap. The hotel is popular for weddings and features an enormous banquet and event area with wedding services that can include horse-drawn carriages. There are several meeting rooms available, a business center on-site, and a large fitness area with several modern treadmills, bikes, weight machines, and space for yoga and free weights. Guests have access to free outdoor parking and Wi-Fi throughout the hotel. The hotel runs a shuttle to local destinations for a small extra fee.

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5641 Indian River Rd, Virginia Beach, Virginia 23464-5247, United States

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