Transcendentalist writers Henry David Thoreau and Ralph Waldo Emerson already knew that a back-to-nature philosophy could lead to wellness, as they often found inspiration for their work in the New England backwoods.
Fast-forward 150 years, and it should come as no surprise that mountain retreats such as the Eastwind Hotel & Bar, located in the Catskill Mountains, are looking to take groups back to a similar way of life. Debuting in June in Windham, N.Y., the new retreat oozes with earthy charm so revitalizing that attendees may leave citing Emerson quotes of their own—ahem, “The earth laughs in flowers” is a personal favorite.
The property was once a 1920s bunkhouse for hunters, fly fishermen and outdoor enthusiasts, and now it’s been revamped into a boutique hotel for incentive groups in search of a plug-free zone. Four room types make up the 19 accommodations available—each of which are designed with a Mid-Century look.
First, attendees can choose from the 11 guest rooms, including two writer’s studio suites, in the Bunk House, home to the main check-in area. The Bunk House also features a communal Salon, where coffee and signature cocktails can be ordered and later sipped on the outdoor deck, complete with a fire pit on the lawn. The original wood structure was reused in the Bunk House’s wood flooring, while black and white photographs line the walls. The nearby Hill House features five other guest rooms that offer views of the surroundings, while attendees can also stay in one of the Lushna Cabins, which offer a more private space as well as a camping kit for solo fire making.
Groups can visit year-round and expect an array of different activities that change with the seasons, including movie screenings in the summer, game nights in the winter and concerts and art classes held indoors and out throughout the year—all of which promote team building while offering a much-needed digital detox. Equipment for a variety of activities is also available, including rain boots for fall foraging, snowshoes for winter excursions and backpacks for summer hikes.