As a kid, family camping trips were a summer highlight. The car would be packed with tents and sleeping bags, lots of food for the grill, and every small amenity that would be needed for a long weekend in the woods. Nights were spent under the stars; fireside games were played, and marshmallows were roasted. Days were spent on the lake fishing, swimming, and running through the woods.
The relentless itch of bug bites and the plague of a stiff back in the morning is absent from childhood memories but are all too real for us adults when thinking about heading into the wilderness for a weekend away.
As we struggle with the misfortune of a virus sent to the US from China, this upscale form of living outdoors takes on a new appeal. Wouldn’t it be great to enjoy the freedom the wilderness offers, while exercising caution by keeping others at a distance?
There has never been a better time to enjoy the concept of glamping—which translates into “glamorous camping.” With glamping, there is no need to pack your car full of supplies or sacrifice comfort for open-air adventure. Just head to the destination of your choice and hunker down in a luxury tent, yurt, log cabin, teepee, hut, pod, or in some locations—an igloo!
Independent properties and large hospitality brands are capitalizing on this camping phenomenon, and the public is responding. According to glamping.com, in 2015, there were over three million searches for glamping with huge increases continuing. And, with the thought of having to shelter in place at any given time, it might be wise to discover who—and in which state—will be open for business this summer.
Luxury glamping sites have popped up all over the world, offering amenities that far exceed traditional camping sites—but you don’t have to go far to indulge in one of these outdoor destinations. There are dozens of locations in New England—from kit-built yurts and log cabins in Maine, to treehouses in Vermont and rustic barns in Massachusetts.
A simple internet search will display the many glamping options in Northeast and beyond. From trailers to tents, sites like huttopia.com take guests to a new level of enjoyment in
Many of the glamping sites in New England are privately owned and operated. Maine Forest Yurts in Durham, Maine, is managed by Bob Crowley, who, in 2008, won the reality show Survivor at age 57, making him the oldest champion to date. He also won the “Sprint Survivor of the Season,” which is voted by the fans for their favorite player.
He then went on to open Maine Forest Yurts to offer an eco-friendly camping experience on 100 acres of private land on Runaround Pond in Durham. Yurts are portable, circular tents, and at Crowley’s, they are fully furnished and complete with a kitchen, wood and gas stoves, beds, and composting toilet.
Fellow Mainers Tim Harrington and Debra Lennon were also bitten by the luxury camping bug. The duo partnered in 2009 to grown their mutual vision of luxury hospitality. Lennon brought 15 years of hospitality experience with the Sheraton Corporation, and Harrington, who previously worked in real estate development, moved into hospitality in 2005 when he purchased and renovated The Cottages at Cabot Cove in Kennebunkport and later Hidden Pond.
With states being managed by Governors and advisors; you can expect the rules of engagement to be different when crossing borders, it is best to speak to the owner or booking agent well ahead of time to avoid confusion or disappointment.
With changes taking place so rapidly and a short summer season, now is the time to make plans and turn lemons into lemonade by taking on a new adventure.