As Americans continue to travel closer-to-home and fall accelerates a desire for travelers to seek destinations with sophisticated ambience, intimate accommodation options, and breathtaking scenery, design-forward small towns offer the ideal getaway.
Aurora, New York
Aurora, New York, an intimate lakeside village in the Finger Lakes, is home to less than 700 year-round residents where guests will enjoy an inspired waterfront getaway at the small town’s luxury resort, Inns of Aurora. Five impeccably decorated boutique inns are complete with resident innkeepers, in-room fireplaces, and private balconies, as well as exceptional work from artists like Wolf Kahn and Helen Frankenthaler, and worldly antiques like 14th century Chinese Baskets – all from the personal collection of the resort’s founder, Pleasant Rowland.
After enjoying private experiences like essential oil blending lessons with the Director of Serenity and guided foliage hikes with resident Outdoorsmen, guests can grab a complimentary paint kit and easel kit to enjoy a lakeside painting session. At the new Spa at the Inns of Aurora, a 15,000-sq-ft wellness center dressed in modern art and contemporary interiors, indulge in an extensive menu of Ayurveda-inspired treatments before forest bathing through the surrounding lavender fields and scenic nature trails.
El Prado, New Mexico
Located in the “Land of Enchantment,” the stunning town of Taos, New Mexico is most known for its historic adobe buildings, Native American history, and breathtaking mountain views. There’s no shortage of places to visit, from renowned art galleries to famous World Heritage Sites, including Taos Pueblo, one of the most iconic churches in the US.
Visitors can book Vacasa’s Taos Mountain House, surrounded by majestic mountain views and furnished top to bottom with uniquely New Mexican touches. With features including a fireplace, spacious layout, deck, and occupancy for up to 10, groups of family and friends (plus dogs) can all enjoy the home. This beautiful adobe retreat is the premiere spot for design-lovers looking for the ultimate Southwestern fall escape.
Roxbury, New York
Located in the sleepy upstate New York town of Roxbury, The Roxbury at Stratton Falls offers travelers a getaway steeped in culture, style and design by way of its highly-immersive bespoke accommodations. Built from the ground-up, eight unique Tower Cottages present a whimsical atmosphere with bespoke, thematic accommodations, that allow for a true cultural immersion.
From the astronomy-focused Galileo’s Gate with its own glass-ceilinged observation deck to the cavernous Crown of the Pendragons with a monarch-worthy, 85-gallon tub, the immaculate attention to detail that is present in each Tower Cottage proves that style and design truly does allow for an immersive design-forward experience.
One of the most eclectic small towns, Bristol is a hidden gem that offers the perfect destination for an uncharted getaway in Southern Appalachia, offering access to outdoor “hotspots” such as the Appalachian Trail, South Holston Lake, Holston River, and Bristol Taverns.
Built within Bristol’s original 1925 architectural landmarks, The Bristol Hotel is a historic restoration and the first boutique hotel in the city. Historic design elements include exposed brick with original pressed lettering, the building’s former hand-crank elevator displayed in the lobby and Roman-arched entryways, as well as locally inspired pieces like a hanging glass vintage soda bottle sculpture and L.C. King denim upholstered chairs in the hotel’s regionally inspired Appalachian restaurant to tell the story of Bristol’s rich industrial history.