Brookside Inn and Retreat Center
Take in Aurora's history and natural beauty from Brookside Inn's wraparound porch.
The former Gaymont Cottage, now known as Brookside Inn and Retreat Center, is a wonderful place from which to contemplate Aurora’s history, take in its natural beauty, and learn about the Aurora Project—while relaxing and enjoying some of the best food anywhere.
When this shingle-style lodge was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992, its description included the note that the interior remained in “almost original and pristine condition.” Innkeeper Michele Moure-Reeves has lovingly preserved it and has renamed the lodge in honor of the long-gone resort of which it was once a part. The front desk from the original hotel graces the inn’s spacious great room.
In warm weather, groupings of wicker furniture invite guests to relax on the wraparound porch. In cooler weather, people gather in front of the woodstove in Brookside’s first-floor great room, where comfortable Mission-style furniture complements the handcrafted woodwork that encircles the room. The walls are filled with historic photographs of Aurora, and the tabletops with the innkeeper’s quirky collection of antiques—including several cameras. Upstairs is another large central room, a sitting nook with a bay window, and four large, antique-furnished guest rooms, each with a private bath.
Michele works magic in a small kitchen just off of the great room, tantalizing guests with the aromas of her cooking. An adventurous chef who regards recipes as inspiration for culinary creativity, she favors local and organic ingredients and uses homegrown and wild foods when possible. This spring, for a group of vegetarian guests, she concocted a savory black bean soup from a base of ramps and roasted red peppers, topping the bowls with tomatillo salsa, yogurt, and chopped ramp greens. Like most of her offerings, it garnered rave reviews and disappeared quickly.
Michele will prepare dinners for guests by reservation, and a full breakfast comes with every room reservation at the inn. She holds a Sunday brunch, open to the public, on the first Sunday of each month.
The inn’s newest addition, completed earlier this year, is a cozy tavern, open 4 p.m. to midnight Thursday through Saturday and 4 to 9 p.m. Sunday. Light meals—entrée, salad, and antipasto—are available 4 to 9 p.m. each night.
Brookside Inn and Retreat Center, 25174 George Washington Highway, Aurora, WV 26705; 800.588.6344; email@example.com