I know spring is here, but wanted to share this post. Early fall (and spring) can be very pleasant here in the South. The last week of September M. and I took advantage of the beautiful weather and planned an overnight trip to nearby Lake Rabun. M. was wanting to go somewhere a little different and since we had never explored this area before we were curious to see what it had to offer.
We spent the day making impromptu detours through some of the small towns we drove past. One stop was at this nursery. M. loves to garden so the pretty mums and fall decor made it impossible to drive past without taking a look.
After purchasing a cute little clay pot snowman to add to our Christmas decor, we ventured closer to our destination.
We were getting hungry and decided on a place called the Universal Joint to have lunch. It is a former gas station they converted to a restaurant. The weather was pleasant so we chose to eat our yummy sandwich at a table outdoors.
After a visit to an apple farm, we finally arrived at the Lake Rabun Hotel. This charming little place is described as a “boutique” hotel. You can’t help but visually relax as you arrive. The peace and serenity of the gardens and trees that surround you is a welcoming feeling. No televisions or telephones are in any of the cozy guest rooms. It is a 95-year-old former mountain lodge which has been carefully restored. Fresh baked cookies, tea, coffee, and assorted sodas are available all day. There is also a restaurant, a small bar and spa services. Local artists have paintings for sale hanging on the walls throughout the hotel. A baby grand piano graces one of the rooms and is available for anyone to tinkle the keys.
After we checked in and were given a grand tour, we decided to go for a ride and follow the road around the lake. The hotel is snuggled in nature so lake views are limited. Driving along, we noticed trails for hiking. We later talked with a lady who told us there was boating and swimming available as well as tent and RV camping in certain locations around the lake.
Take a look at some of the boat docks located along the shore. I have never seen such an elaborate boat dock so I had M. pull over to the side of the road so I could snap these photos. These have lovely sun decks on top, but some we saw looked as if there was a small apartment on the top-level. (We live very close to a lake and the docks I’ve seen are nice, but nothing like these!) The added bonus was the occasional glimpse of the magnificent homes that go with these boat docks which are nestled slightly uphill in the trees!
When we returned to the hotel we relaxed and sipped an adult beverage on one of the rooftop decks.
As the sun began to set, the temperature began to drop, but what an enjoyable evening! We chose to sit outside on the heated screened-in porch with other guests. Taking pictures of food and making it look appetizing is difficult for me, but this chocolate s’mores martini was such a surprise hit I had to share. (Complete with a toasted marshmallow!) The dinner, grilled wild Alaskan salmon, was one of the best meals we had eaten anywhere, ever. I am honestly not exaggerating! The staff was very pleasant and made you feel welcome.
After dinner we returned to our room. We decided to open the windows so we could enjoy the cool mountain breezes as we drifted off to sleep under warm blankets.
The next morning we enjoyed a generous gourmet breakfast provided by the hotel. As we loaded up the car to drive home, we could not help but agree that we will be visiting this very special “boutique hotel” and the surrounding area again.
By the way, I do not receive any compensation from any of the places we visit. I just want to share in case you are interested in a little get away too.