Paradise Hills Resort Spa Winery Georgia Travel. We took a fun family staycation in the Blue Ridge Mountains and it was FABULOUS.
By “We” I mean the Sci-Fi movie crew and our families (read more about our monthly Sci-Fi movie nights HERE). Five couples, nine kids and the ENTIRE blue ray collection of Star Wars 1-6…well we didn’t watch Episode 1, more on that later. We wanted to cram the series before the release of Star Wars-The Force Awakens later this month. My teens hadn’t seen the any of the movies so this was mandatory viewing for them.
My husband, our kids and I drove up GA 400 until it ended and slowly wound our way up the steep, twisty road into the mountains not realizing that there was a much easier route to the resort. It was a beautiful ride with amazing views but I admit to being completely terrified even though my husband drove slowly around the sharp curves. I’d never been on a ride like that, so gorgeous and scary, I’m glad we went up that way but we took the much less scenic way back home, down I-575.
Wanda, one of our Sci-Fi Movie Crew members, found Paradise Hills Resort and Spa on Living Social – she booked the cabins and scheduled our ladies’ spa day. Wine tasting was also included in the Living Social deal. Before heading out to cabins we checked in at the lodge where they also host the wine tasting, the spa is downstairs at the lodge.
The cabins were clean, warm and rustic, you’ve got to like a lot of knotty pine if you’re going to stay up here. Nothing fancy but comfortable. Each cabin was a little different, ours had a jetted tub in the master bedroom (the toilet, sink and shower were located just off the living area just before you get to the master bedroom) and a loft bedroom overlooking the living space. My daughter slept in the loft, there was a good amount of space up there and she had her own bathroom. The living area had a small couch with a pull out bed but that wasn’t comfortable for my son to sleep on. He folded the bed back into a love seat and slept on that with his feet propped up on a chair. We offered to run out to the Walmart nearby and get an air mattress for him but he declined saying he was comfortable on the couch. I didn’t argue with him because the less I have to argue with a teenager about the better.
The kitchens had everything we needed for our extended weekend visit, I did bring my cast iron dutch oven because I planned to fry some chicken for Sunday dinner. The cabinets were full of plenty of cookware, plates cups and such but I brought along paper plates to avoid having to do dishes. We divided the meal responsibilities between families, I was tasked with Sunday dinner and movie snacks. Every evening in the days leading up to our visit I prepared a portion of one of the menu items for Sunday dinner, one night I made a huge batch of red rice. Another night I roasted several racks of ribs and the next night I made green beans with caramelized onions and garlic. I froze each part of the meal so on Sunday all I had to do was pop these items in the oven. The only thing I cooked in the cabin was fried chicken thighs dusted in potato starch (Wanda is gluten free and I didn’t want to cook a separate batch). I seasoned the chicken and froze it before we left, I let it defrost in the cabin’s refrigerator and it was ready to cook when it was my turn.
On Saturday afternoon we enjoyed our ladies’ spa day and enjoyed sipping tea and chatting before we took turns in a relaxing mineral soak and an hour long massage. This was my first massage so I didn’t know what to ask for or what to expect. My massage therapist, Maureen, and I talked about my expectations (or lack thereof since I was a first timer) and she really took great care of me.
Later that evening a few of us headed back to the lodge for wine tasting, we sampled 5-6 different wines that night (I’ve misplaced the list of wines we sampled. I’ll email them and let you know what we sampled), each of us found something we liked. I bought a couple of bottles of their beautiful Sunset Rosé.
After wine tasting we had dinner lovingly prepared by Gretchen, one of out movie crew members and started our Star Wars marathon. We viewed the series in Machete Order starting with Episode IV-A New Hope and moving on to Episode V-The Empire Strikes Back. After breakfast on Sunday (bacon, eggs and biscuits prepared by Rayna) we moved on to Episodes II, III and finishing up with Episode VI- Return of the Jedi. We owe our sanity to Lysa who kept the smaller kids in another cabin while we ate the desserts she brought. Seems unfair to Lysa, I know, but she hates Sci-Fi movies and is a genius when it comes to kids..which makes sense because she’s a doula (check out her service Mother 2 Mother Labor Support Services here)
Travel with teens can be tricky, they were stuck in the middle of a bunch of adults and a bunch of much younger kids. With no wifi in the cabins (there is wifi in the lodge) I was wondering if they would have a breakdown but they were fine. We brought old school Connect 4 and they spent a bit of time outside. Roasting marshmallows in the fireplace may have been the highlight of their weekend
In between all of this the dad’s in the group took the smaller kids out to play in the cool fall air. You would think running up and down the hills and through the grapevines would wear them out but no, they were energized all weekend… and it made me glad to be a mom of teens.
Paradise Hills Resort Spa Winery Georgia Travel