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Leafy Retreats

by Becca Hensley

Last September, I hid away for a month in a mountainside cabin in Utah. When I arrived, the sun-dappled mountains shone a bright, blinding emerald. Soon, however, the landscape transmuted to soft, gleaming golds, flirty pinks and warm oranges. In real time, I saw myself change with the colors. I began as energized as the summer’s green hues, then moved to a more reflective state of being—as if my own leaves were transforming. Here are transformative places to enjoy the autumn season.

Hotel Viking - Newport Beach, Rhode Island

Presenting its legacy of Gilded Age romance with modern pizazz, this recently refurbished member of Historic Hotels of America in downtown Newport holds a century of secrets. From its front desk depicting Nordic Runes to its original 1926 brass letter box in the lobby, the hotel exudes gravitas. Spa Fjör, a small enclave with six treatment rooms and a curative Himalayan sea salt wall, offers seasonally appropriate treatments such as Escape into Fall Body Wrap, an 80-minute retreat chock-full of autumn references— including the aromas of apple cider, clove, honey and cardamom.

Hidden Pond - Kennebunkport, Maine

Encircled by 60 acres of balsam and birch trees, this sanctum in the woods, replete with two swimming pools, reigns as a beloved hideaway for nature enthusiasts who harbor Walden states of mind. Its peerless Tree Spa, as airy and cosseting as a bird’s nest among the branches, connects deeply to the environs with treehouse-like spa suites. With balance as the spa’s mission, it customizes treatments with organic herbs and natural oils to help guests achieve their goals. Try A Walk In The Forest, which revitalizes with cedar and cypress essential oils, a salt scrub and a sculpting massage.

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