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Blackberry Farm and Mountain

by Isabel Burton

Blackberry farm

& mountain


The bond between Blackberry Farm and Blackberry Mountain extends beyond geography; it exists in the shared mission to provide a rejuvenating experience, roots in the history of the land, nature, wellness, and an appreciation of the simpler aspects of life. 

These timeless retreats honor their roots, love the land, and bring you incredibly luxe R&R.

Blackberry Farm isn't your ordinary escape. It's time travel to a simpler existence. Not as some simulacrum of nostalgic rural humbleness, but as a magnificently pleasure-focused form of living that doesn’t invite modern complications. The overall effect: deep relaxation, extreme gratitude for this earth and its knockout beauty, and genuine joy (additional special thanks to the fun, food, and spa for that).

The slice of Tennessee countryside is indeed a legit farm. A place where lamb and sheep graze, fresh vegetables travel from soil to kitchen, cheese is churned in the creamery, charcuterie is cured on-site, and locally harvested herbs are added to beer made in the brewery. 

White wood fences crisscross the expanses of green pastures, and a big tree with an old-school swing nail the image of a blissful, bucolic homestead; Smoky Mountains dominate the horizon.

"Here, wellness is rooted in an appreciation of natural balance. Just as each season on the farm affects the next, our perspective on wellbeing focuses on actively seeking out and savoring all facets of the good life," Kathy Rivard, spa and wellness director, details the Blackberry philosophy that pervades. Sprawling across 4,200 lush acres, the resort isn't trying to be anything but itself, and that authenticity is its allure. 

So is the incredible luxury.

Pampering here is above-and-beyond in a quiet, competent manner, delivered with extraordinary Southern friendliness. This is good energy.

Sixty-eight suites give you choices for your stay, some of them tucked away as solitary cabins within the woods. Inside, opulent comfort is a very nice contrast, and complement, to the wildness outside. Each room comes with a golf cart to tootle around the property in—no cars, no car stress. For daytime adventures, there are hiking trails, fly-fishing in the stream, biking, horseback riding, swimming, boating, and, of course, visiting the animals.

The farmy food is a serious affair. Chef Cassidee Dabney cooks what she calls refined “foothills cuisine,” in a century-old barn-turned-restaurant; a well-stocked wine cellar holds 180,000 bottles. And for more casual meals, there's the main house with an outdoor deck where if you could easily linger for hours over a laid-back lunch and vista of the pond, and beyond, those crazy mountains.

Ahhh, the spa. The view from the lounge alone could qualify as a tension-relieving treatment. But for something hands-on, the Smoky Mountain Skin Glow feels perfect for the setting. “The Wellhouse spa embodies the rustic design of the property with treatments that lend to a slower pace," says Rivard. The Glow uses a blend of pomegranate seed, orange peel powder and essential oils to scrub you down, and a full-body massage with body butter to moisturize your new silky skin. It is heaven. As is the scalp and foot rub, focusing on two nerve-heavy areas that renders you mush.

While this place will have you feeling totally new again, there’s an old, long legacy to which the Farm is beholden. A history that includes early Cherokee and Appalachian settlements, then an evolution in the 1930s when a couple from Chicago, David and Florida Lasier, on a hunt for a blissful spot to settle, veered off the beaten track and stumbled upon this wild beauty in Walland, Tennessee. When Florida's silk stockings snagged on a blackberry thicket, they found the name for the homestead they would build and open officially in 1941. 

Today’s owners, the Beall family, continue to preserve the hospitality, environment, and history. Blackberry Farm keeps the land-first ethos alive, fusing luxury and tradition. Today’s indulgence, yesterday’s heritage.

Blackberry Mountain

If Blackberry Farm is about loving the land, its sister property, Blackberry Mountain, is an ode to the sky. Just next door, the 5,200-acre resort is perched high, built into Tennessee’s Chilhowee Mountain range, with views…and then more views. In fact, hike the trail (there are many, as you can imagine considering the mountain location) that leads to a restored 1950s fire watch tower, climb that, and you’ll get a panorama of Tennessee, Georgia, and the Carolinas all at once. 

Here, the wellness theme present at Blackberry Farm is dialed up even more. You can bike, join organized fitness programs like the Arbor Adventure that includes traversing rope bridges through the tree tops, and try mindful rituals like forest bathing.

And there’s The Hub, a hotspot of wellbeing, which has a gym, rock-climbing wall and basketball court, multiple Zen-beautiful rooms for yoga and other classes, and the very cool Recovery Lab, where you get to experience the latest in body-resetting technology, like fascia scraping to reinvigorate the net-like tissue that surrounds your muscles and organs, and compression boot therapy. You come out of here feeling invincible.

Lodging includes cottages, stone cabins, and even treehouses. All are immersed in nature, surrounded by wildflowers, and have private decks so from your aerial viewpoint, you can take in the spellbinding scene of the mountain during the day, and stargaze in the pitch-blackness at night.

The Nest, Blackberry Mountain’s spa, offers natural holistic therapies like a Himalayan Salt Stone Massage and Wanderlust Grounding Treatment (a healing foot and leg ritual that does wonders after a long hike) plus science-based skincare. Its pros are no joke: World-renowned aesthetician Joanna Czech has recently established her first Czech-certified spa in the U.S. here, offering her famous signature facials and product line. "Joanna has worked extensively with our team, training them on all aspects of her facial method and skincare brand,” says Rivard. 

The bond between Blackberry Farm and Blackberry Mountain extends beyond geography; it exists in the shared mission to provide a rejuvenating experience, roots in the history of the land, nature, wellness, and an appreciation of the simpler aspects of life. “We feel that the foundation for true wellbeing is found when we honor our mind, body, and spirit,” says Rivard. Here, at the intersection of Southern hospitality and the great outdoors, a unique, and supremely gratifying, experience awaits. blackberryfarm.com

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