My hubby is a born explorer. He spent three years traveling around the world and has been to countless destinations. However, he believes that you don’t need to get on an airplane or travel thousands of miles to explore. There is always somewhere or someplace not too far away to check out. On weekends, he often says, “ok, it’s time – let’s go exploring!” We will simply hop in our Jeep and just drive around our neighborhood - stumbling on back roads that we have never been on before. Or sometimes, our journey consists of just stepping outside and taking a walk. His love for exploring has been a huge plus in my life and lead me to many near and far unexpected destinations…. which finally brings us to this weeks destination – the Wheatleigh Hotel in Lenox, MA.
While on one of our weekend trips, where we frankly just got in the car with no particular place in mind, Victor remembered a stunning hotel where he had visited which was somewhere in the Berkshires. He could not remember the name, but only the general location and decided that is where we must go. After googling it on his phone (and finally figuring out exactly where it was), the destination had suddenly become a surprise. "I would love where he was taking me," he exclaimed. Well, he rarely disappoints and so I went with it. When we approached the Wheatleigh, I could not believe that this is where our Saturday drive had taken us...
Architecturally designed based on a 16th century Florentine palazzo, Wheatleigh was a "summer cottage" built in 1893 as a wedding present by Henry H. Cook for his daughter, Georgie and husband, Count Carlos de Heredia. The exterior details are exquisite, but the grounds and location really make it a spectacular getaway.
The "park" surrounding the palazzo was originally designed by the landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed Central Park. You can stay close to the palazzo and take in the views or you can explore the sprawling grounds, which has many, many walking trails.
They also have a tennis court on the grounds and access to one of the oldest golf courses in the country, Stockbridge Golf Club. Tanglewood is close by, as well as many other local performing arts centers. Once you are done being active, you can lounge by the pool and enjoy nature.
The dinning experience at Wheatleigh is unforgettable. You can sit on their terrace and have a leisurely summer lunch or brunch. Or you can have an elegant formal dinner in their dinning room where you can either go with the tasting menu or a four course option. European and seasonally influenced, the menu choices are creatively inspired using fresh flavorful ingredients such as sunchokes, truffles and kumquats.
The interior of the hotel has been upgraded for modern day and the decor has clean minimal lines with traditional touches. All the main rooms have sweeping views of the estate and big bright windows that allow the natural light to pour in.
If you decide to go for a weeknight stay, on Wednesdays nights from June 26 through September 4, the hotel is hosting Midsummer Night's BBQ's on the upper terrace.
With only 19 rooms, it is a perfect destination for a romantic excursion. The staff at Wheatleigh is extremely accommodating and whether you go just for a day or stay a week, it will be a memorable experience.
Images: 1-3 & 5-11 from Wheatleigh Hotel