By Leigh Powell-Hines
Before last week, my children had never seen the mountains. They have spent plenty of time on the coast, but the mountains remained a mystery. As a reward for my son, who is finishing kindergarten this year, we packed our Audi wagon and took our kids on a road trip to see North Carolina’s Appalachian Mountains.
|The Blue Ridge Parkway|
Wataug County, known as North Carolina’s High Country, is about a three-and-a-half-hour drive from Raleigh. The area is bustling in the winter ski season, is home to Appalachian State University, and is a refreshing vacation retreat in the spring and summer.
Tucked away on a quiet, curvy, mountainous road in Valle Crucis, North Carolina, is a little slice of heaven called The Mast Farm Inn.
|The Mast Farm Inn is located in Valle Crucis, North Carolina|
Here, you can enjoy the crisp, early-morning, mountain air while taking in nature’s beauty. You will feel as if you are a million miles away from the daily grind of life, and it is here where you can renew, recharge, and relax, all in mountain luxury.
The Mast Farm Inn, a historic property placed on the National Register of HistoricPlaces, is about 15 minutes from Boone, North Carolina, and 30 minutes from the town of Blowing Rock. This country inn is an ideal base for exploring the area. The farmhouse, dating back to the 1880s, has seven unique, luxurious rooms that are wonderful for a couple getaway. The inn also has eight cabins on property, some historic and some brand new.
|Historic cottages on the grounds have been restored, and modernized with luxurious touches.|
Our Cabin: Mam’s Refuge
Nestled on a mountain above the farmhouse, we stayed in the cottage called Mam’s Refuge, built last year.
As soon as you step inside, it is a retreat like none other.
|The cabin living room|
The all-wood, 1,000-square-foot cottage has a living room area, a downstairs bedroom, one full bath, an eat-in kitchen, and an upstairs bedroom loft. But what took this cabin from ordinary to extraordinary was the beautiful décor. I felt as if I had stepped onto a photo shoot for a magazine.
My children loved the delicious cookies that the inn left for us in our cabin upon arrival. They even took the time to personalize our welcome and to remind us that they were just a phone call away if we needed anything.
|Delicious cookies and coffee at The Mast Farm Inn|
Mam’s Refuge has all the amenities you expect in luxury hotels such as high-quality linens and bath toiletries. The in-room coffee was exceptional. I typically drink tea at home, but I could not resist the French Roast coffee while there. My husband remarked that it was the best coffee he had enjoyed in a hotel room in a very long time.
Since this cottage and Uncle Earl’s Haven, located next door, are Mast Farm’s premiere family cabins, I loved that they had a basket of children’s books available for reading. Here my children are enjoying a bedtime story about the adventures of Angelina Ballerina.
The Mast Farm Inn is also well-known for its farm-to-table dining. A gourmet breakfast is included in your daily room rate. My kids loved taking the wooded trail to the main inn for breakfast, which is served from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
|Our cabin was a short walk to the main inn.|
Our breakfast was a culinary, mountain-man breakfast delight with an oatmeal parfait, farm-fresh eggs, Southern grits, bacon, and a cheddar-cheese biscuit.
|Breakfast is different every morning at the Inn. This is the Monday morning breakfast.|
The inn has an intimate, award-winning restaurant called Simplicity at the Mast that serves dinner to the public Thursday through Saturday evenings. It was not open while we were there, but I think it is a must-do for a future trip when our children are a lot older and both children can handle a fine-dining-type experience. My restaurant-loving son is almost there, but, unfortunately, my 2-year-old has a ways to go.
Mam’s Refuge and Uncle Earl’s Haven can be rented weekly, and you can also deduct daily breakfast from the cost. On some mornings, you may enjoy not racing against the clock and instead enjoy a leisurely breakfast in your own cabin. My kids even had toaster pastries before walking down to the real breakfast, shortly after 9 a.m.
There is no doubt that The Mast Farm Inn captures the charm of the area, and, quite honestly, it was very hard to leave the tranquil bliss of our cabin.
Rates vary at the inn depending on the season and room type. Rates for our cabin range from $299 to $389 per day.
Want to Go:
Leigh Powell Hines is a former TV Journalist/Communications
Executive turned stay-at-home mom. As founder of The Hines-Sight Blog, when she is not on the Internet, she is running ragged after two children under the age of six. Having her last baby at 40, Leigh believes that motherhood keeps you young and half-crazy. Leigh’s writing passion is in travel, and she is ready to travel the world, one luxury hotel at a time.
Connect with Leigh: