Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Our Epic Family Vacation to Stowe Mountain Lodge

A huge thank you to Stowe Mountain Lodge for providing a media rate for our accommodations as well as a number of complementary meals and services during our stay! 

Oh, man, I don’t even know where to start with this recap. We had such an awesome time and haven’t stopped raving about our experience to family and friends since we got home. Seriously, we are so in love with Stowe Mountain Lodge and can’t wait to visit again in the future. We highly recommend it as a place to vacation year-round!

Stowe Mountain Lodge is a popular destination during the colder months because of its proximity to skiing and other winter activities, so we were pleasantly surprised that there was so much to do in the “off season.” While staying at the Lodge, you can enjoy everything from 36-holes of golf and zip lining to mountain biking, rock climbing, kayaking, Stand-Up-Paddle boarding and canoeing, guided hikes and a Treetop Aerial Adventure Course, to spa services, outdoor yoga classes, and more. I know, right? There’s seriously a zillion thing to do! Ok, let’s get to the recap, so you can see just how much fun we had! 🙂

When we checked into our room, we were greeted with all sorts of goodies – craft beer, wine, snacks, and a Vermont Teddy Bear for Qman. Quinn filled the bear with stuffing later that night and appropriately named him “Stuffy.”

Our room was gorgeous. It was a one-bedroom suite with a full kitchen, fireplace, marble-finished bathroom, and balcony overlooking the pool.

There’s a refrigerator inside that cabinet!

It was a balmy 66 degrees outside, which, of course, meant that we needed to check out the pool. You know you’re from New England when…

But, first, we needed to visit the arcade! 🙂

The pool was absolutely amazing! I felt like I was somewhere in Europe – not Vermont!

Photo by Quinn:

The pool is actually heated year-round to 84 degrees F, so it wasn’t too cold at all. There’s even a section of the pool that’s located inside, so you can climb in there and then make your way outside in the colder months. I’m a huge wuss when it comes to cold temps, so I especially love this feature!

Getting out of the pool was a different story. Brrrr!

After some fun at the pool, we headed back to our room to shower and get ready for dinner. On the way to the restaurant, we popped by the arcade again. Qman got to play his first game of Pac-Man!

We had dinner at Hourglass Lounge, which was a nice combo of upscale dining mixed with a laid-back vibe and plenty of kid-friendliness.

Hourglass offers an awesome beer selection, so Mal had the opportunity to enjoy a tasting of Vermont brews. He was in heaven!

Not long after ordering our drinks, our tiny human escaped the patio. Oh, dining with a 3 year old is always an adventure!

But, seriously, we appreciated that the resort wasn’t crazy-busy, so we weren’t disturbing too many people’s meals while trying to wrangle a kid, who had been in the car for 4+ hours.

The menu at Hourglass features fresh, local, and traditional options with a fun and creative twist on ingredients. We started with the hummus, which was served with organic veggies. It was so good, and I probably ate more than half of it myself!

Qman was a fan of the freshly baked rolls with local Vermont butter that he housed! #butterlover

Our entrees were so tasty! Qman had grilled cheese sticks and fries, I went with the shrimp and truffle fries, and Mal ordered the pork loin. Mmm!

Dining mountainside was so relaxing. It was such a nice way to kick off our vacation!

The next morning started bright and early (Qman was too excited to sleep), so we were really thankful that there was a cafe just steps away.

The Beanery offered all sorts of delicious options (breakfast sandwiches, smoothies, pastries) as well as a full coffee menu. Sign us up!

But, first, coffee…

After breakfast, it was time for a morning adventure on the gondola.

Of course, Stuffy came along for the ride! 🙂

Qman loved the gondola, and we ended up riding it 3 different times during our stay! 🙂

At the top, we took a little time to hike around and enjoy the beautiful views before heading back down the mountain.

After our gondola adventure, we dropped Qman off at Cubs Day Care for a few hours. I was a little hesitant to leave him at a new daycare, but the staff was so friendly and the toys were so cool, he was totally okay spending some time there.

Then, Mal and I checked out the fitness center and did a quick 25-minute workout before meeting the Lodge marketing team for lunch.

After lunch, Mal and I went zip ling – and, whoa, it was definitely an adventure we’ll never forget!

It’s the longest and one of the fastest zip lines in North America. The first (of three) zip lines was nearly a mile!

Holy cow, it was exhilarating. I was nervous about going because I generally don’t like heights, but it was quite the trill soaring above the trees and taking in the amazing views. I highly recommend this adventure if you have a chance to visit – totally worth it! 🙂

After zip lining, we picked Qman up from daycare and headed back to our room to freshen up for happy hour and dinner.

Cheers to vacation!

We took our drinks outside and played yard games on the lawn, which, in the colder months, turns into an ice skating rink!

After playing so many fun games, we worked up quite the appetite. We dined at Solstice, which was a bit more refined than Hourglass, but still casual and kid-friendly. Once again, all of the ingredients used were local, fresh and, in many cases, organic. The menu also changes quite frequently with regard to the seasons, so there’s always something new and exciting to try. We loved our dining experience there!

We saved some room for dessert because s’mores were on the agenda! (When we were at lunch with the marketing team, it came out that Qman had never made s’mores, so they sent up all of the necessities to make his first one!)

Quinn lovvvvved his first s’mores-making experience! 🙂

Our final morning at Stowe Mountain Lodge started with coffee and breakfast sandwiches from The Beanery once again. The iced coffee was truly amazing – Mal actually ordered a second one for the drive home!

After breakfast, I was treated to a treatment at the spa while the boys played at the “Enchanted Forest Playground” and pool for a couple of hours.

The spa was absolutely amazing. It’s made up of 18 treatment rooms, a relaxing sanctuary lounge with stunning views of Mt. Mansfield (pictured below), a dry sauna, herbal steam, “rain panel,” hot tubs, fitness center, and swim-out outdoor pool. There are even kid’s spa services! 🙂

The spa operates according to the Green Spa Network Standards and uses many recycled and local materials. The Spa Sanctuary and treatment room’s hallway carpet are made from recycled materials and the massage oils are locally blended. The spa even sends the towels that have become too worn and tattered to use to folks that need towels in poverty areas.

The spa recommended the Harmony/Kundalini Massage for me since I deal with a lot of back (scoliosis) and digestive issues, so it would be a way to “heal from the inside out.” I also loved the use of essential oils and hot stones. Ahhhhh!

We had such an incredible time at Stowe Mountain Lodge, we actually made an appointment to learn more about the real estate options. We could totally see ourselves wanting to visit on a regular basis! There area variety of exciting real estate opportunities available, including studios, two­- or three­-bedroom residences, and fancy-schmancy fractional ownership penthouses in the Front Four Private Residence Club. We’re still debating what to do, but we know for sure, we love Stowe Mountain Lodge, and we can’t wait to visit again! We want to get Qman on skis this winter, so we’ll definitely head up sometime in the colder months! 🙂

Did this post pique your interest in Stowe Mountain Lodge!? Well, if you’re thinking about a summer vacation, the resort is making it really easy for you to book a visit. You can reserve a room and add all sorts of fun activities, like the ones mentioned above, to create your own personal custom package. And if you book a stay for the summer of 2017, you’ll get the lowest price of the season and save up to 40% on activities added at the time of booking. Now, there’s a reason to try that zip line adventure, right!? Long story short, you don’t have to go through the hassle of booking activities separately and you’ll actually save money by booking everything together. More details here!

I hope you enjoyed reading our recap. It was a fun one to write, and we only have amazing things to say about Stowe Mountain Lodge. It’s definitely worth a visit! 🙂


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