Equinox Resort & Spa

The most prestigious of all New England resorts, the Equinox Resort and Spa in Vermont dominates the center of Manchester Vermont.

Equinox Resort & Spa was founded in 1853 as a retreat for wealthy urbanites who wanted to escape city air for the summer. Equinox Resort was at the forefront of modern tourism as railroads made it possible for city dwellers to take in the mountain air and exercise of rural Vermont. The original Equinox Resort started as a mansion on the lower slopes of Mount Equinox. Francis Orvis expanded his family’s large home (his father was a successful marble merchant) by acquiring neighboring lands and buildings. Soon Orvis has a large estate where guests could play croquet, hike Mount Equinox, ride horses, and attend evening concerts.

Orvis’s brother, Charles Orvis, made his living selling fishing supplies and equipment. Equinox Resort and Spa in Vermont became famous as an angler’s paradise; nearby Batten Kill was recognized as one of the state’s best trout stream. Orvis’s company is still a successful supplier of fishing and outdoors goods.

Batten Kill is no longer the trout stream it once was as development and over fishing have depleted its waters, but the area remains a popular fishing destination. The American Museum of Trout Fishing is now located from the Equinox Resort & Spa.

Golf has surpassed fishing as the most popular pastime at Equinox Resort and Spa in Vermont. Gleneagles, named after Equinox Resort & Spa’s parent corporation in Scotland, is recognized as the best of Manchester’s several golf courses. There are also many excellent hiking trails, including a path up the towering Equinox Mountain.

Equinox Resort & Spa contains several fine restaurants. The Colonnade, which takes its name from the many pillars and columns around the hotel, is a classy four-diamond fine dining establishment, one of the best in the state. The Marsh Tavern is more casual, but still of an exceptional quality. Apocryphally, the tavern was once a meeting place for Ira Allen and some of the Green Mountain boys.

The lavish public spaces, gardens, and grounds at Equinox Resort and Spa in Vermont hark back to an earlier era of country resorts, but its Avaynu Spa now includes all the modern spa amenities associated with the best luxury hotels. The spa offers numerous day and overnight packages, so you can take advantage of the state-of-the-art fitness center, massages, and body treatments even if you stay at a nearby hotel.

Rooms at Equinox start at about $250 a night, but it’s worth spending the extra money to stay in one of the exquisite presidential suites. Whichever room you choose, the historic setting, beautiful surroundings, and first-class service guarantee a pleasant stay at the Equinox Resort & Spa.

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