What's New in Williamsburg in 2017
Landmark new museums, tempting new restaurants, and exciting new attractions provide more reasons than ever to visit Greater Williamsburg this year.
From the new American Revolution Museum at Yorktown to the first wooden coaster at Busch Gardens to the new Revolution Golf and Grille featuring Virginia’s first and only indoor golf simulator, Greater Williamsburg is welcoming some groundbreaking attractions in 2017. There’s never been a better time to visit.
American Revolution Museum at Yorktown
Busch Gardens Williamsburg
The world’s first crowd-sourced ride and the first wooden coaster at Busch Gardens Williamsburg opens this spring. Called InvadR, the new thrill ride boasts a 74-foot drop, nine airtime hills and a speed of 48 mph. The first drop — a straight dive with a great vertical curve — will be another first for the theme park: a covered drop. Resembling a tunnel, the drop will give riders an outside/inside/outside/inside/outside speed effect that’s bound to wow them.
Revolution Golf and Grille
Coming to Williamsburg this spring in The Shops at High Street, this revolutionary sports bar will feature Virginia’s first indoor high-definition golf center with six golf simulators. Revolution Golf and Grille is locally owned and operated by longtime friends and Air Force veterans Jim Hartney, Jeff Leeper and Ken Terry, who share a passion for exceptional food and golf.
Muscarelle Museum of Art
At The College of William & Mary's Muscarelle Museum of Art, a stunning new exhibit, “Botticelli and the Search for the Divine: Florentine Painting Between the Medici and the Bonfires of the Vanities,” opens on Feb. 11. One of only two of Botticelli’s paintings of an isolated Venus will be on view for the first time in the United States. On display only in Williamsburg and Boston, the show is considered the largest and most important exhibit of its type ever organized in the country.
The renovated Williamsburg Inn re-opens in April, just in time to commemorate the historic inn’s 80th anniversary. The second part of its multi-phase renovation includes a new signature restaurant, an elegant reflection pool at the main entrance and an expanded Queen’s Terrace ideal for weddings and larger functions.
The Rockefeller Room will serve as the Inn’s signature dining experience, paying homage to the evolution of American cuisine. With a focus on locally sourced ingredients, the menu will embrace traditional Southern dishes infused with flavors brought to the New World from abroad. An outdoor bar and terrace featuring a picturesque fountain and fire pit lounge will serve as an extension to The Goodwin and Terrace Rooms and offer inn guests an additional al fresco dining option. And the Restoration Bar will offer the perfect spot for a nightcap or to relax after a day of sightseeing, with a variety of small plates and bar snacks based on local flavors and ingredients, complemented by local beer s and signature craft cocktails.
Golden Horseshoe Golf Club
The multi-million-dollar renovation of Colonial Williamsburg’s Golden Horseshoe Golf Club’s award-winning Gold Course is scheduled for completion in the spring. The course is listed in “Top 100 Resort Courses in America” by Golfweek Magazine. Improvements include: All fairways, tees, roughs, and greens will be re-grassed; the greens on four holes will be rebuilt to adjust slope; all bunkers will be redesigned with the “Better Billy Bunker” technique; new forward tees will be built on nine holes; “drop areas” will be re-built on all four par-three holes; and landscaping and select cart paths, will be extensively enhanced.
Adding to Greater Williamsburg’s thriving culinary scene, the chefs behind some of the region’s most popular eateries, Blue Talon Bistro and The Trellis Bar and Grill, recently opened the more casual Culture Cafe in the heart of The College of William and Mary. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, the new restaurant strives to unite cultures and food by serving small plates in a uniquely communal dining experience. The two most popular dishes are the shrimp tacos and the Moroccan meatballs. Why? Their recipes are unique to Williamsburg using a cross-cultural cooking technique including curry and Moroccan flavors.
Virginia Beer Company
In March, Virginia Beer Company will start bottling specialty beers in 750 mL bottles. The first release will be the company's first anniversary beer, an Imperial Stout that has been aging in Old Forrester Bourbon barrels and Laphroig Scotch barrels. Samplings can be enjoyed during an anniversary party the weekend of March 25. Additional bottled beers will be released monthly.
In 2017, the Williamsburg Winery will enhance two very popular programs from 2016. Escape to the Wine & Brine Lounge every Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Gabriel Archer Tavern to taste some of the Chesapeake Bay’s finest oysters along with other fresh seafood delights such as shrimp and mussels. On Sundays, join cycling enthusiasts from The Williamsburg Winery team on a group ride through the Historic Triangle and back to the winery for wine and brunch specials at the Gabriel Archer Tavern. This year, the Williamsburg Wine Cycling Club will offer two different cycling options to accommodate a wider range of cyclists, including a group with an average pace of 11-14 mph and another with a pace of 15-18 mph. The Williamsburg Winery Cycling Club season will begin on March 19 and welcomes visitors. All rides start at 9:00 a.m.
Copper Fox Distillery
Copper Fox’s second distillery, which opened in Williamsburg in late 2016, is adding Scottish Master Distiller Andrew Shand this year along with a new cocktail menu that changes seasonally. The new facility boast an outdoor patio and fire pit and a new Malt House where visitors can get a behind-the-curtain look at the malting process: grain delivered from a local farmer, malted on the floor, tasted and dried in the kiln. Copper Fox is notable for producing handcrafted whiskey from scratch, including the first applewood-aged whiskey in the world.