Saturday, January 2, 2010

Guest Blog: The Hills are Alive: The Trappe Family Lodge, Stowe, VT

"The Hills are Alive" with the Doron-Czerniach family, not to be confused with the von Trappe family who founded the resort after fighting off the Nazis as memorialized in the Sound of Music.

Guest blogger Shira Doron reports from the hills of Vermont at the:

Trapp Family Lodge
700 Trapp Hill Road
Stowe, VT

If you live in New England, and you want a vacation that doesn't involve flying, you will have to resign yourself to the fact that it won't be a warm one. And as long as it's going to be cold, you may as well EMBRACE the cold and go somewhere where snow is revered as an implement of fun and an item of beauty, rather than an commuter's impediment. We chose the Trapp Family Lodge. Considered a "small luxury hotel" you will probably experience some pain in your wallet

The food is expensive (breakfast buffet for a family of four will run you $70 and dinner is well over $200) and so are most of the activities, like snow-shoeing, cross-country skiing and sleigh rides. Nevertheless, you can't help but be impressed with the vast wooded property all coated with white and not a dirty Boston snowbank in sight (see the view from our hotel room that had a door opening right out onto the snow). There are 100 kilometers of trails including a 3-mile hike to a cabin where you can have lunch and warm up (too far for my little ones). There is no shortage of fire places (see photo) to cuddle in front of, and a card and game room features great board games like Harry Potter Clue. Kids' activities (no parents allowed- yay!) include animal shows, jewelry making, and movie matinees. On New Years' eve we dropped the kids off for a kids-only party (miraculously free of charge) where they were given pizza and chicken fingers and had the option to use the rock wall, play ping pong, and/or go swimming (my kids swam for two hours, obligating one of the counselors to hold my 3-year-old non-swimmer in the water the entire time- man, was she pruny!)

The Stowe Mountain resort is 10 miles away. Available programs for kids include a 2-hour "Three Ski" class for 3-year-olds and either a two-hour (for beginners only) or all-day school for kids ages 4 and up."