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VA - Destination charging experiences

Discussion in 'Mid-Atlantic' started by swengl, Aug 5, 2015.

  1. swengl

    swengl Member

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    #1 swengl, Aug 5, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2015
    I'm planning to take a road trip in a few weeks and I figured it would be nice to post about experiences with the destination charging spots around Virginia. I plan to take my camera with me to capture some pictures of the site and where the charger is. In this particular case, I'll be going by the Inn at Riverbend in Pearisburg. I spoke with a gentleman there and he was very polite and helpful. Since I will not be staying at the Inn, he requested that I pay a nominal fee ($5) to charge, which seems very fair to me. He also requested that I call ahead to ensure no one was blocking the parking spot when I arrived. Here's the website: Inn at Riverbend: A Bed and Breakfast near Blacksburg VA
     
  2. swengl

    swengl Member

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    #2 swengl, Aug 17, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2015
    I stopped by the Inn today on my way to Richlands, VA for work. I fully charged the car at the house (using the scheduled charge feature to ensure it didn't stay at "FULL" for too long) and took off early this morning (about 6:15 a.m.) or so. I ended up using about 140 miles worth of range driving 116 highway miles (not bad considering the elevation changes and the speeds of between 65-70 for over an hour and a half of the trip. My GPS led me directly to the Inn (both the onboard maps and Waze on my phone). John and Jeanne were very friendly and accommodating. The Inn is not within walking distance of any other conveniences, but they were very hospitable and very curious about the car. Apparently, I was the first one to use their charger since it was installed, which was neat (for me at least). It worked flawlessly (I was getting about 60mi/hr charge) and I charged for about 2 hours while I chatted with John, toured the Inn and enjoyed the view. Overall, the charging experience was very pleasant and I look forward to stopping there again on my return trip on Wednesday. The Inn itself was very nice and I can imagine that staying there would be very quiet and relaxing. It was great that John and Jeanne are very eco-conscious and having a set of both chargers (the HPWC and a J1772 charger) will draw like-minded clientele to their Inn.
     

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  3. swengl

    swengl Member

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    The Holiday Inn Express in Claypool Hill, VA (near Richlands) has been very accommodating and has let me charge nightly on the indoor pool side of the building. The staff was very friendly and the head of maintenance was very helpful in locating an appropriate plug. It's just a regular outlet, but every electron helps ;) The outlet itself is under a slight overhang and with the rain here the past few days, the wall plug stays relatively dry. There are not many options for lodging in this area and from what I can tell, this is about the best option in about a 30 mile radius.
     
  4. swengl

    swengl Member

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    On the return trip by the Inn at Riverbend I ran into something that bears mention: I plugged in, saw that the charger started and walked away. I checked the car via the Tesla app about 20 min. later and noticed that the charge rate was 12mi/hr (where it should have been between 55-60mi/hr. I unplugged the car, looked in the charger end (which I had used 2 days ago) and noticed a spider egg sac had been built in the plastic section in the middle of the charger plug. I pulled out a Q-tip, cleaned it out, plugged it back in and got the expected 55 mi/hr charge. Moral of the story: Always check the charger connections (both the cable and the car plug) before plugging in and once you do plug in, check the charge rate to ensure the proper functionality.
     
  5. swengl

    swengl Member

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    I'll be stopping at the Holiday Inn in Christiansburg for a charge on their HPWC on Monday on my way to Abingdon. I'll be sure to post some pics on my way through. I'm staying at the Holiday Inn Express in Abingdon and they have a 110 outlet available for a trickle charge. I will post more info on that, as well.
     
  6. glenhurst

    glenhurst Member

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    Does the Inn at Riverbend have a HPWC as well as the Clipper Creek EVSE? In your photo, I only see the CC, but it looks like there might be a HPWC on the backside of the post.
     
  7. LetsGoFast

    LetsGoFast Active Member

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    I've been to two of the "Select Registry" B&Bs in Virginia and they both had the exact same set-up which was a Clipper Creek EVSE and a HPWC mounted on a post. Given the picture and the fact that the OP says they have both makes me very confident that this Inn is set up the same way.
     
  8. swengl

    swengl Member

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    IMG_1973.jpg Yes, the Inn at Riverbend has both chargers. I can only vouch for the functionality of the HPWC, of course ;)
     
  9. swengl

    swengl Member

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    I started my road trip to Abingdon, VA today. I started with a full charge (275) and reached Christiansburg with about 160 SOC. I stopped at the Holiday Inn where they had a destination charger setup with the HPWC and the Clipper Creek chargers. There was no ICEing and the spots were right by the road (and the sign). I went in to thank the staff and they were the nicest folks. They were thanking ME for using the charger! There's a Red Robin across the street, a Dick's Sporting Goods and, I believe a Texas Roadhouse across the entrance to the Holiday Inn so there are places to go while charging. Here's a few pictures from the stop. IMG_0001.jpg IMG_0002.jpg

    - - - Updated - - -

    I'm staying the night in the Holiday Inn Express in Abingdon and they have a regular wall plug on the side of the building. I had to park just outside of the spot to stretch the cord, but it's not blocking anyone in and the gentleman at the front desk was very helpful and friendly when I asked about charging.
     
  10. cmu5p

    cmu5p Member

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    Here's where you've been, swengl! I wondered where you went....

    My personal VA destination charging experiences:

    1. L'Auberge Provencale in Boyce, VA: Romantic Virginia Bed and Breakfast :: #1 Rated VA Wine Country Inn, very nice country inn with upscale dining and French country accommodations. Beautiful gardens. HPWC x2, no problems using.

    2. Iris Inn in Waynesboro, VA: The Iris Inn: Bed and Breakfast in Shenandoah Valley Virginia, perfect for leaf-peeping right on Skyline Drive. I didn't actually stay here as I live about 1 mile away, but they have 2 HPWC for guest use. Very friendly owners and the Inn gets great reviews every year. If you come here, pm me. I'd love to buy you a cup of coffee. Tesla's are few and far between in my (literal) neck of the woods.

    3. Renaissance Capital View in Arlington, VA: Hotels in Arlington, VA | Renaissance Arlington Capital View Hotel. I stayed for a conference at their sister hotel (Marriott) a few blocks away, but used the Renaisssance HPWC (2 available) for charging. Choice of parking spots were terrible as it seems to be fit only for a compact car. I was afraid my nosecone would get hit by incoming traffic and the "larger" spot was ICE'd. Fortunately, the ICE moved as I fumed in my car. They also have J-1772 x 2 which were blocked by valet parking space, but they moved when I called parking services.

    4. Williamsburg Woodlands Resort, Williamsburg, VA: Williamsburg Woodlands | Hotel Rooms and Suites | Colonial Williamsburg. They are right across Colonial Williamsburg. Family friendly, but I would have preferred staying at the Kingsmill resort (Tesla HPWC available), but they were booked. Woodlands only has 110V for trickle charge, but worked for us to replenish for short trips to Busch Gardens/ Water Country. Accommodations ok only, but they did have a small splash park for the kids, pool, cornhole and mini-golf.

    5. Charlottesville, VA: Lots of options here with tesla charging stations. I live close by so I have never stayed in any of them, but hearing good things about:

    - Keswick Hall: Keswick Hall. Upscale accommodations in VA countryside. I've been for high tea.
    - Oakhurst Inn: Oakhurst Inn a Boutique Hotel at the University of Virginia. Near UVA and hospital. They will let you charge even if just dining at their restaurant
    - Hyatt Place at Stonefield: http://charlottesville.place.hyatt.com/en/hotel/home.html. Typical Hyatt in the midst of shopping complex with theaters, Trader Joe's, various shopping, etc.
    - Homewood Suites: Homewood Suites Charlottesville VA Hotel. Chademo for $ available.
    - Downtown Mall: Technically not a place to sleep, but lots to do, see, eat, theaters, etc. Parking lot at 1st and Market with 2 HPWC that were sadly ICE'd the last time I was there (to attend an Avett Brothers concert). I tried to get them towed to no avail. $ for parking, free to use HPWC.
     
  11. swengl

    swengl Member

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    I've been wandering western and northern Virginia in the past few weeks ;). I forgot to mention that I stayed at the Hyatt Fairfax at Fair Lakes when I stopped at the SuperCharger in Strasburg. The Hyatt has a Blink charger which appears to be functional (I didn't need to charge at the time). The charger is to the right of the front entrance. I will be traveling through Richmond next week, so I will finally get to use the Glen Allen SC, which is only about 10 miles for my company's HQ.
    IMG_2161.jpg
     
  12. jthompson

    jthompson JThompson

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    cmu5p: Outstanding report!
     
  13. AB4EJ

    AB4EJ Member

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    Nice report. Would you say that your efforts in searching out Blink chargers and other similar equipment trace back to the lack of superchargers along I-81? For example, if I wanted to come from AL to see a Va Tech game, I would be looking entirely for small chargers all the way north from Knoxville...
     
  14. swengl

    swengl Member

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    Without a doubt. If there had been a SC in Wytheville, my trip to Abingdon would have been a non-event (from a charging perspective). They cannot build 2-3 SCs along I-81 in VA fast enough, in my opinion.
     

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