Travel

Mohonk Mountain 

This past weekend we packed our bags and escaped to a remote Victorian Castle nestled in the mountainous Hudson Valley to celebrate my 31st birthday. Mohonk Mountain, a National Historic Landmark built in 1869 is a tranquil spa resort surrounded by snow covered mountains and a never-ending forest. It is the perfect place to sneak away to detach and relax in an expansive nature oasis.Mohonk Mountain is famous for their spa that has been ranked the number one resort spa in the USA by Condé Nast Traveler. This caught the eye of my husband (who surprised me with the weekend getaway) because it is one of the only facilities in the United States that has the option to receive a Lomi Lomi massage – a treatment native to Hawaii that incorporates long strokes, stretching and healing practices. We fell in love with this style last December when we vacationed in Kauai so we jumped at the opportunity to experience Lomi Lomi again. After the eighty-minute couples massage we soaked in the outdoor heated mineral pool while overlooking the mountains as a light flurry fell above us – a moment so enchanting that it felt like we were on the set of a Hollywood film.Hiking trails and a 60-foot deep mountain surround the resort. We explored the grounds around the lake and even stumbled upon an old museum where we saw antique items from the the last two centuries, like carriages, sleds, kitchen and farming equipment and old cars. The restaurant on site was cozy and rustic, using the freshest seasonal ingredients sourced locally from nearby farms. The tables overlooked the mountain ranges while a floor-to-ceiling fireplace created a warm ambiance for each meal.The trip ended with one of the best yoga classes I have ever taken in my life. My husband and I did a private session that incorporated both Vinyasa and Restorative techniques. After an hour class, I could actually feel and see my body becoming more flexible. I love practicing yoga as a way to balance the heavy full-body lifting I do, and our teacher was able to give us tips on how to properly do each stance, and how to maximize the stretches to ensure our bodies were feeling the full benefits of each pose.Living in Manhattan, I crave nature. I didn’t want to spend my 31st going to a bar and drinking all night in the city – I had the big party last year. Health and wellness are a big part of who I am and I believe the way you start off a fresh year truly sets the tone for how the year will play out. I need to inhale fresh air while being surrounded by greenery. I need to hear the sounds of birds chirping and leaves blowing in the wind instead of cars honking. I left the resort feeling centered and ready to get back to Manhattan to dive into a new year. And the best part of it all? I dived into my 31st year with my husband by my side.