Last Updated on September 1, 2023
It’s late summer in Fredericksburg, TX. The tasting rooms are bustling with wine lovers sampling the latest vintages. The boutiques and antique stores ring up sale after sale of gauzy dresses and hand-crafted art. There is live music in every direction. Visitors stroll down Main Street, popping into shops and darting across busy intersections to get to dinner reservations or to grab a cup of gourmet coffee.
I turn the car into a discreet, almost hidden, stone driveway. As the path slides between an 1800s house and an equally-as-old tasting room, the hustle and bustle of Main Street magically slips away. Suddenly, I’m transported to a lush, green courtyard lined with cottages. The peace that defines the space seems almost impossible since I am still in the heart of Fredericksburg,
This is what it’s like to arrive at Blacksmith Quarters in Barons Creek.
A Standout Among Fredericksburg Vacation Rentals
For decades, the Texas Hill Country and its tourist hub, Fredericksburg, were considered cute, quaint up-and-coming spots in the wine world. Well, no more. Today’s Fredericksburg has arrived.
Though the town has held on to its small-town charm, it’s a full-fledged tourist hotspot and one of the most visited wine regions in the nation. With nearly 1.5 million visitors each year, everyone seems to be looking for the perfect short-term rental in Fredericksburg.
There are over 1,500 vacation rentals in Fredericksburg alone. For me, one stood out from the pack. When booking a recent anniversary getaway, Blacksmith Quarters on Barons Creek was an easy choice.
The nine-unit property blends a prime location on Main Street with a tranquil setting. Even better, historic charm mixes seamlessly with modern amenities.
Historic, Yet Modern Accommodations
Blacksmith Quarters on Barons Creek doesn’t simply look historic; the property has played an important role in Fredericksburg’s storied past. Originally, the property was home to Carl Ransleben, the town’s blacksmith. Today, the family’s 1800s house, known as the Ransleben-Moellering house, is the most spacious and luxurious short-term rental on the property.
The three-bed, three-bath home has been recently restored and is perfect for families or groups of friends traveling together.
The eight cottages behind the main house are the place to be for a romantic getaway. The vacation rentals face a creek-inspired water feature that winds through the property and quietly spills over rocks. The water feature is not just Instagram-worthy, it makes the walk from the parking area to your cottage feel like a nature stroll.
The newly-built cottages feature designs reflecting various architectural styles from Fredericksburg’s past. There are several tiny Victorian cottages, a few limestone Sunday Haus-style buildings, and rustic plankboard homes. The combination of styles creates a charming, whimsical space.
For our stay, I selected the Bianca cottage. The limestone rental offered everything we wanted for our short staycation. It is worth noting that the Bianca and the other limestone cottages are duplexes, so you will share a wall with other guests. If you prefer a stand-alone rental, book one of the Victorian or plankboard houses.
One of the things I loved most about our stay was how efficient the online booking and check-in process were. Before my arrival, I received an email with directions, parking instructions, Wi-Fi access, and the code to a lockbox for retrieving the room keys.
When it was time to check out, we simply returned the keys to the lockbox and responded to a text to confirm our departure.
The cottages are surprisingly spacious and the décor is warm and welcoming. The Bianca cottage features soaring wood ceilings, leather chairs set in front of a cozy fireplace, and an animal skin rug contrasting with crisp white linens on the king-size bed. On the practical side, there is a kitchenette with a wine fridge for anything you might pick up in the local wineries.
Past the rich, warm tones of the main room is a bright spa-like bathroom. A double vanity and a two-person shower provide plenty of space, but the real star of the show is located through the door at the rear of the bathroom. Behind every cottage, there’s a small courtyard with a hot tub. Lift the lid, turn on the heater, and you are ready for a long soak under stunning starry skies. I recommend bringing plastic cups if you want to sip while you soak since there were only glass flutes in the room.
Wine Tasting in Fredericksburg, TX
Main Steet is home to roughly a dozen tasting rooms, and staying at Blacksmith Quarters on Barons Creek puts you within a 10-minute walk of them all. Happily, two of the best spots are literally at your front door.
Six Twists is a newly-launched tasting room next door to Blacksmith Cottages dedicated to sparkling wine. They are open Wednesday through Sunday and feature a massive selection of bubbles from around the world. Six Twists mixes elegance with relaxed vibes, and reservations are recommended.
Coordinates Vineyards is directly in front of Blacksmith Quarters with entrance and exit driveways for the cottages wrapping around the Coordinates building. The two businesses are also historically linked. Coordinates tasting room is located inside the blacksmith shop that Carl Ransleben once ran.
Most wines on the tasting menu are South African, with a few Texas varietals mixed in. I recommend enjoying a glass of their Pinotage on the back patio, which you can access from the parking area of Blacksmith Quarters.
Where to Eat in Fredericksburg, TX
Thanks to the area’s German heritage, many of the most popular dining spots are beer gardens and German eateries. There is also a broad mix of casual grab-and-go places and fine dining venues.
If you want a low-key lunch between wine tastings or while shopping, pop into Burger Burger. Its covered patio gives you a view of Main Street, and the burgers are enormous. I recommend the Big Dirty B which comes loaded with queso, chili, onion rings, and guacamole on a jalapeno cheddar bun. Plan to split this delicious, messy meal with a friend.
For something more refined, make a reservation at Sage. This upscale restaurant and lounge is located a block off Main Street, but still an easy walk from Blacksmith Cottages. Their 36-ounce ‘Tomahawk Ribeye for Two’ comes with black garlic jus and is a popular date-night choice. However, I recommend the locally sourced lamb chops with a pistachio & pumpkin seed crust.
If you need a bit of caffeine to start your day in Fredericksburg, stop by Twisted Sisters Bake Shop. You could walk out with just a cup of locally roasted coffee, but you should get a fresh cinnamon roll to go with it.
If you’re planning a trip to Fredericksburg, do consider a stay at Blacksmith Quarters on Baron’s Creek. It sets the stage for a wonderful, memorable travel experience in Texas Hill Country.