Anybody who has lived in the sweltering South knows about Georgia Mountain getaways. Just a two-hour drive transforms your world from sticky red clay to pine trees and waterfalls.
There’s a Pavlovian response to try and get a cabin in the woods; I blame Thoreau. You might consider staying at a full-on resort with championship golf, full-service spa, swim through indoor-outdoor pool, and on-site restaurants if you’d rather spend your time relaxing instead of burning hot dogs on a stick.
Where is Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa Located
At 4,784′, Brasstown Bald is Georgia’s tallest mountain, and the Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa is at its base near the town of Young Harris. The resort is 2-hours north of Atlanta, close enough for a weekend escape from the city or to use ATL as your arrival airport for a corporate retreat.
Brasstown Valley is one of the southernmost Blue Ridge Mountain Resorts, with enough amenities that you can stay on the property all weekend. It’s also close enough to the mountains that you can use it as a plush base camp for outdoor adventures.
Accommodations at Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa
The resort has three types of accommodations: the main lodge, cottages, and the Spa Suite. The lodge has 102 guest rooms, many with balconies, gas fireplaces, or panoramic mountain and golf course views.
Google rates the lodge as a 3-star hotel, which could be technically correct per standards, but it’s quite possibly the nicest three-star property we’ve seen. The property isn’t a state park, but it is state-owned, so they aimed for an accessible price point and had ‘value engineering’ restrictions keeping them from entering the high-end luxury market. Long story short, you get a lot for your money at Brasstown Valley Resort, in a location that can’t be beat.
If you’re looking for the next level up in accommodations, there are five one-bedroom suites in the lodge and eight private cabins located in the woods. The cabins come with their own kitchen, so maybe Thoreau was on to something after all. Then again, he did go back into town on occasion to have his mom bake for him, so there’s that.
If you’re looking for the crème de la crème, you have to check out the 825-square-foot Equani Spa Suite. It’s next level with a private rooftop deck, a Jacuzzi tub for two (featuring a 46-inch flat-screen TV and fireplace), and a spacious ‘Experience Shower’ providing a full-sensory experience with double-drench shower heads, steam, aromatherapy, LED lights, marine speakers, and 12-head Swiss shower bars.
The Spa Suite is the perfect retreat for newlyweds who just enjoyed a destination wedding at Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa. It is available more often than you might think, so go ahead and ask if it’s open and treat yourself.
Amenities at the Main Lodge
The Main Lodge at Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa isn’t like a traditional hotel. It’s like your mansion in the mountains, with everything starting in the lobby, affectionately known as the living room. It’s not uncommon to see people work or gather around the 72′ tall stone fireplace, looking out the panoramic bay windows while sipping coffee or cocktails from the lobby bar.
Every mansion should have a playroom too. There’s also an indoor/outdoor pool with a swim-through gate, hot tub, workout facility for active guests, and an arcade popular with the kids. Of course, if you’re in the Georgia mountains, you’ll want to play outside, but that’s coming up soon. Now it’s time for something near and dear to everyone – the kitchen.
They say the kitchen is the heart of the home; perhaps that’s why Brasstown Valley has two restaurants to choose from. Upscale menus in The Dining Room include their popular Friday night seafood buffet, Saturday night prime rib buffet, and Sunday brunch. If you’re looking for something more casual, visit Brassies Grill for a relaxing lunch, quick afternoon snack, or cozy fireside dinner. We loved that there was enough quality and variety of dining that we never had to leave the resort to eat. There’s enough kitchen space to cater the many banquets, conferences, and weddings the resort hosts every year.
Conferences and Weddings at Brasstown Valley Resort
Since we brought it up, let’s talk a little about the different venues at Brasstown Valley. We’ve already discussed the food options, but the variety and diversity of their meeting spaces are incredible. They have 14,000-square-feet of meeting space that can accommodate small groups and massive gatherings of up to 330 people, including some truly unique options that we got to see for ourselves.
There’s an amphitheater with state-of-the-art electronics and on-site IT support, along with many configurable rooms within the main lodge. Additionally, there are several meeting areas outside the lodge, such as the Sunset Pavilion, the stables, and even a waterfall garden.
Brasstown can even package in golf, spa treatments, team building, and off-site activities. Be sure to ask plenty of questions to their group coordinator, so they can prepare the perfect package for your needs– which brings us to our next topic.
Activities at Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa
Golf and Spa are the cornerstone activities at Brasstown Valley Resort. They have an 18-hole championship course that’s particularly special because, since the resort is on state land, there are no homes built along the fairways. You get to enjoy superb golf and the exquisite beauty of the mountains without feeling like you’re putting around in somebody’s backyard.
The Spa is full service and offers a variety of treatments inspired by the local Cherokee Indians. The tribe was consulted with the design and layout of both the golf course and the spa treatments to ensure they were culturally appropriate. We learned about a couple of places on the golf course where the holes would have cut through sensitive native areas, so the resort changed the design to allow those sites to remain undisturbed and protected on state land.
There are over 500 acres of nature to explore at Brasstown Valley, with 9.2 miles of hiking trails and fishing ponds. There’s also a stable if you want to hit the trail in style. There’s nothing quite like a trail ride on a beautiful horse to make you feel at home in the mountains. They also have ax throwing and archery, which is always fun and make for great team-building exercises on retreats.
Things to do Around Brasstown Valley
With its location in the Georgia Blue Ridge Mountains, outdoor activities off-property are abundant, like hiking on the Appalachian Trail, summiting Brasstown Bald, white water rafting, and visiting Helen, the Bavaria of Georgia. However, there are two special activities right around the corner from the resort that we loved, wine tasting and boating on the Chatuge.
We went wine tasting at Crane Creek Vineyards, which is only 10-minutes away from the resort. They make a variety of wines, but their flagship is a 100% Norton red called Hellbender. It’s their homage to Georgia’s famous Muscadine wine but refined enough to win awards in California competitions. They’re a wine-forward vineyard, but they have live music every Friday catered by their on-site restaurant Paris & Company.
Lake Chatuge is the highest major lake in the state of Georgia with 132-miles of shoreline and an elevation of 2000′. It’s also only a 10-minute drive from the resort, so it’s easy to get out on the water with mountains in the background. We procured our boat from Lake Chatuge Marine and Marina because they have not only the newest and nicest boats on the lake but also the best prices. We loved their easy-to-use navigation system and the fact that they can get anybody onto the water with a short training film. If you’re willing to watch it online, all you’ll need to do is pick up the keys and hit the water.
Wrapping Up our Experience with Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa
We loved our weekend at Brasstown Valley Resort and Spa. We took the time to book a massage, play a round of golf, and take a trail ride. We loved that we could eat well at the resort all weekend, even though we were in a quiet corner of North Georgia.
The facilities were quite nice, but the staff was excellent. Many staff members have been with the resort for over ten years. That is truly a testament to the quality of the leadership team that shines through each department.
We were impressed with the professionalism of everybody we met. They took the time to greet us and ensured that we had what we needed to make the most of our Blue Ridge Mountain vacation.
As always, the views and opinions expressed are entirely our own, and we only recommend brands and destinations that we 100% stand behind.
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