Luxury Resorts: Imagine a place nestled far in the Vermont woods on 300 acres where the only thing you will hear from your private cottage is the distant call of a bird or the light rustling of leaves from a passing buck. That's exactly what you will find at Twin Farms. When the country property opened in 1993 in the small town of Barnard, the owners were looking to create a unique experience for guests untraditional from a typical hotel experience, but more like being at home. Rates are all inclusive and guests here have full reign of the property, which include everything from full access to a pub, 24-hour fitness center, lakeside cabana with paddle boats and all meals and snacks.
The original 1795-era Vermont farmhouse and lodge were converted into living and dining rooms with an additional six guest rooms. Ten additional freestanding cottages, which offer more privacy, can be found dotted throughout the property. Each is beautifully and uniquely designed — from a modern look to a Moroccan inspired cottage — and offers a wood burning fireplace, separate tub and shower, Twin Farms own line of bath products, and a fully stocked refrigerator.
We stayed in the Woods cottage, which offered a king bed with "Palazzo" style leather headboard, Italian oak writing table and sandstone floor. We felt like we just stepped into Little Italy complete with a beautiful Tuscan setting, sundrenched arched picture window with beautiful meadow views and screened porch where we enjoyed both a late night and early morning fire from the red brick fireplace.
When you book a stay here, you will be asked to fill out a brief questionnaire about your preferences, allergies and dining options. Because there is no menu at the restaurant as the chef caters each meal to your own unique preferences, we were excited to see what was in store for us. Dining here is a culinary lover's dream come true — Chef Ted Ask, a graduate of the New England Culinary Institute, has an on-site garden where he grows fruits, vegetables and spices for a farm to table experience. He even makes his polenta from corn grown, dried and ground entirely on-site while the compound butters served alongside house made breads and rolls are infused with flavors from his garden.
Before dinner, we arrived in the Barn Room for cocktails with other guests before moving into the adjacent main dining room. Our server greeted us and presented us with a basket of warm breads and creamy butter. We started off with a salad of fresh greens topped with Vermont cheese and drizzled with a light dressing. Dinner here is always varied and might include a tender filet or a hardwood-grilled Atlantic salmon with a compote of baby fennel but is always served at 8 p.m. in the dining room of the Main House. (You may also opt for a fireside dinner be set up in your cottage). Wine manager Eric Reichenbach selects complimentary wines from the impressive 26,000-bottle wine cellar to accompany the meals however, guests are not limited to these selections and can make special requests without incurring additional costs. In the afternoon, don?t miss a visit to the beautifully designed Pub where you can enjoy a microbrew while playing some pool, listen to music from the jukebox or simply relax by the fireplace.
A walk along the spectacular grounds here was such a relaxing experience — chipmunks were seen running by as we crossed the covered bridge to the spa and fitness center. Be sure to stop on the bridge and view the numerous frogs jumping from one lily pad to the next in the small pond below. The acres upon acres of perfectly manicured lawns and gardens are simply breathtaking. In the warmer months, be sure to take a canoe out for a relaxing cruise along the seven-acre lake.
The service here is tremendous and the staff will go out of their way to accommodate each and every request. One morning, we opted for the continental breakfast brought to our room to enjoy the calm and peacefulness of our wonderful retreat — a lovely basket of warm fresh breads and croissants arrived with muesli, a fruit plate and a pot of coffee. You may request a picnic lunch be set up anywhere along the property if you don't want to venture to the main dining room where it is traditionally served. One afternoon, we wanted to enjoy our cottage some more and requested lunch be set up in the Woods cottage. Warm lobster with a salad and balsamic vinaigrette dressing, a selection of fresh berries, chick peas and an olive salad arrived and was served up next to the fire. (When requesting room service, we were asked if we preferred a bottle of wine or champagne to complement the lunch — champagne, please).
On the day of our departure, we were sent away with a boxed lunch. This is not your traditional fare but rather a beautifully packed perfectly cooked roast beef and horseradish sandwich with fresh fruit and homemade cookies. In the winter months, the property offers acres of snow covered fields for cross country skiing or snowshoeing. Whether you want to do everything or simply spend the entire weekend inside your luxury getaway, Twin Farms provides it all.
Off-peak rates start at $1,300 per night based on double occupancy and are inclusive of daily breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner, all beverages, wine and unlimited use of all on-site recreational facilities. The entire property may also be rented out for $41,000 per night. For reservations or more information, call (800) 894-6327 or visit the property online at www.twinfarms.com.