Your very own mountain-top castle in spectacular surroundings.
Ninety miles north of New York City, one enters a silent nature preserve at the ridge of the Shawangunk Mountains. Perched in this thousand-acre oasis is the tranquil Mohonk Mountain House, with 85 miles of hiking trails to call its own. Unlike many Victorian-era mansions, this one has not only maintained its original splendor, but it has upped the ante several times over. It is run by the Smiley family --- twins Alfred and Albert Smiley built the place in 1869. The family offers what it calls the Full American Plan, complete with meals in the elegantly rustic dining room (jackets for men) and seasonal outdoor dining with barbecue and lobster cookouts. Given that there are more than 300 fireplaces, it's hard not to feel relaxed and comfortable here. Tower rooms are the priciest, but they come with views and verandas. Individual cottages are surprisingly the most economical and sport themes like Golf and Oak Woods. While the rooms are welcoming, guests are generally found outdoors. Recreation abounds, including ice skating (at the resort's own Skating Pavilion), daily hikes, fishing, carriage rides and golfing on a Scottish-designed course. Best of all, most of this is included in the price. In addition, the resort's 30,000-square-foot spa wing features sixteen treatment rooms, a solarium and an outdoor heated mineral pool. There are also an indoor heated pool with an underwater sound system, a comprehensive fitness center and a yoga/motion studio. Seeking a little something extra on top of all these extras? You can enjoy programs such as culinary courses, tango dancing, rock climbing and gardening lessons.