It is indeed rare for a new Auberge Resorts property to show up, especially one that is just 90 minutes from New York City in the Catskills. The company has a memorable list of luxury haunts, including Auberge du Soleil in Napa Valley, White Barn in Kennebunkport, Malliouhana in Anguilla, The Lodge at Blue Sky in Park City, and Hotel Jerome in Aspen.
The Catskills are clearly ready for prime time when a luxury company from the rank of Auberge Resorts moves in. That’s why there’s excitement for the opening of Wildflower Farms, which will bring the brand’s five-star level of service and discernment to a rural destination where the Hudson River Valley meets the foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Scheduled to open in late 2022 in Gardiner, New York, the property will be within driving distance of Dia: Beacon, Storm King Art Center, Mohonk Preserve and the Culinary Institute of America, New Paltz and Hyde Park, New York. It is a region rich in orchards and farms, particularly beautiful in summer and autumn. Weekends come for state parks, bucolic vistas, art galleries and antique shops.
These are by no means the Catskills of yore. The design of the property is more like a luxury Napa Valley getaway. The vision comes from Venice Beach, Calif.-based architecture firm Electric Bowery and New York-based design studio Ward and Gray, which worked with Auberge on the project.
The setting is 140 acres, with a river and view of Shawangunk Ridge. Expect orchards, heirloom gardens and fields of wildflowers everywhere. There will be 65 self-contained accommodations, including self-contained bungalows, cottages and suites. The inspiration is both Napa Valley and Scandinavian minimalism. Natural materials rule the roost, including wooden floors and ceilings, and the use of woolen fabrics. There will be window seats and fireplaces. Outside, there will be terraces, private patios and fire pits.
Design elements are gardening, agriculture and botany. The hall is built around a shed and will provide a fireplace and a conversation pit. The color palette includes sage green, burnt orange and indigo.
Facilities will include an outdoor lodge-style fitness center. The 9,000 square foot Thistle, An Auberge Spa will combine age-old remedies and therapeutic body treatments with the essence of slow-moving wellness and the healing powers of nature. The spa will offer organized wellness trips. Facilities will include five single and one couples treatment rooms, outdoor hot tubs and an indoor saltwater pool.
The restaurant will have a bar, an open kitchen and a farm kitchen. Clay is the name of the restaurant, which will serve a new Rustic American menu. The cooking experience will also be interactive, and guests can participate in hands-on experiences such as foraging, growing organic vegetables, and cooking classes.
The Great Porch will offer morning coffee and evening cocktails, as well as memorable views of the Shawangunk Ridge. The Dew Bar is an outdoor cocktail bar.
There are miles of nearby hiking trails to explore. The resort will also provide nearby access to Mohonk Preserve, a private preserve known for world-class hiking, biking and rock climbing.
Wildflower Farms would seem like more proof that the Catskills are heading to the Hamptons, offering high-priced luxury getaways for discerning New Yorkers.
Visit wildflower farms.