The Equinox, a Luxury Collection Golf Resort & Spa, Vermont
What We Love
- The prime location in the heart of Manchester Village, the area’s lively shopping and dining district
- Its illustrious past: the hotel has hosted four American Presidents
- The Falcon Bar, where the menu includes high-end chocolate and local cheeses
- Over 60 beer varieties (many from Vermont breweries) at the onsite tavern
What To Know
- Despite their 18th-century bones, rooms contain 42-inch flat-screen televisions
- The hotel offers complimentary valet parking
- A room at the Charles Orvis Inn, with its own hot tub and porch, is the one to book
- Treatments like the Maple Scrub and the Mountain Man Facial at the spa were inspired by the natural surroundings
- Free WiFi
- Golf Course
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
The 195 accommodations at this 200-year-old complex (spread out among a main building, a clutch of townhouses, and a restored inn distinguished by its iconic Doric pillar façade) underwent a $20 million overhaul in 2008. While rooms swapped their outdated pine furniture for contemporary pieces by New York-based designer Geoffrey Bradfield, the property retains its quaint soul thanks to uniformed bellhops and homey details like rocking chairs that line its front porch. One of the original taverns, rumored to be a watering hole and strategizing spot for revolutionaries during the Civil War, also remains. The neighboring 1,000-acre wilderness preserve is a pretty natural playground where city slickers can participate in a long list of rugged pursuits, like a crash course (no pun intended) on off-roading aboard one of the property’s Land Rovers or Hummers or trout fishing on the Battenkill River, while colder months offer snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. The nights here, which might involve a board game session besides a crackling stone fireplace, are delightfully low-key.
In the Area
The resort, a leisurely four-hour drive from New York City, is ideal for a New England road trip. Manchester’s burgeoning artisanal scene—think plenty of farm-to-table fare in quirky settings, like a former dairy barn—and local craft emporiums are attempting to hold their own against the high-end factory outlets sprouting up on Main Street. get a true taste of the region’s timeless pastoral charms in the nearby Green Mountains, ideal for avid hikers and bikers and equally gorgeous whether it’s covered in a blanket of snow or maple leaves.
How to Get There
We stayed here for one night and we were pleased with our stay. The hotel is huge with lovely open fires that you can sit at in the lobby areas. Check in was good and smooth and our room was lovely. It was spotlessly clean and spacious with a great shower and good toiletries. The free shuttle into the main village was a nice touch although the driver had no knowledge of the area or where was good to eat etc. He should be able to chat about the 4 American presidents who have stayed at the hotel. He didnt know who they were! We had dinner in the bar restaurant which was just ok. The food was fine but was way over priced. This was a good hotel stay for us and we would return if in the area again.
My wife and I and a friend were looking for a respite for the Veteran's Day weekend and the Equinox looked like perfect choice. Advertised as one of the best resort properties in New England with a spa and large heated pool and a restaurant.
Both my wife and our friend are undergoing medical treatment, so a luxury resort with amenities is just what we wanted.
We arrived at noon and were told that the rooms weren't ready but to check back every 30 minutes. Understanding that official checkin time was 4:00PM, I decided to stay in the lobby and sent my wife and friend to the pool. The spa and pool are not connected to the main building so you have to wear your fleece, down and boots to get to it. Once there, they they were informed that all the lockers were full and there was no place to store their clothes or their valuables. In addition the there was something wrong with the pool heater, so the water was too cold for them to swim, although the staff assured them that it was 82 degrees.
The hot tub was outside the pool room, where the air temp was in the low 30's and every time someone exited the pool room to go to the hot tub, you were blasted with 30 degree temps.
Back in the lobby I waited 4 1/2 hours to get my room update and at 4:45 PM I went to the head concierge and cancelled the reservation. We then drove 2 1/2 hours to return home.
Although all the staff was courteous and doing their best, the place was utter chaos. Many families spent hours in the lobby and other common spaces with restless children and even a few dogs waiting to check in and start their holiday weekend. The cleaning staff was obviously not communicating with the front desk and, on two occasions, the front desk person servicing me had to leave the desk and check for himself.
As I loaded up my car to leave at 5:00 PM, they announced that my room was ready.
We left never to return.
My wife and I visited early November 2018. The room was in the main hotel and was beautiful. The bed was excellent. Room temperature could have a bit cooler for my liking. AC thermostat did not allow for that. Linens and towels were outstanding. Even though the history of the building dates back hundreds of years, the room felt very modern.
The concierge was very helpful in getting us rides to and from our two dinner reservations each night so we didn't have to drive. The hotel itself is fun to explore and had two woodburning fireplaces to curl up in front of. They also have a huge gas fire pit with heat lamps on the patio although the heat lamps weren't on. It was a little too cold for that (mid 30's) anyhow.
We did not use the spa but we did visit the hot tub on a chilly, rainy night and enjoyed that. It was VERY hot and had a covering so we didn't feel the weather around us.
We did not eat in their restaurant but did enjoy the roomy bar each evening before dinner. They have a nice selection of wine with cheese plates if you're into that. Make reservations at Silver Fork!!!
The parking behind the hotel is a little far so make sure you valet when dropping off your luggage. After that, the walk to and from the lot was nice because the grounds are pretty.
We didn't compare this hotel to some of the other upscale ones in the area so you might want to look into that. You can't go wrong with this place in my opinion.
I stayed here with my husband on a recent trip around New England. This was undoubtedly the worst place we stayed in. We arrived around 2pm. The room was not ready but check in wasn’t until 4pm so that was fine. At 4pm the room wasn’t ready and after repeated trips to reception (no one offered to find us to let us know when it was ready) we finally got to our room at 5pm. There were a number of other guests in a similar position. We were in the Townhouse and the room was very small. It was on the ground floor and the windows would not shut properly so it was noisy too. Fortunately we were only staying for one night. We decided to eat in restaurant which was expensive and very average to say the least. (See my separate review). On arriving home we discovered that in addition to our bill we had credit card charges of $431. Despite numerous attempts to contact the hotel in relation to this we have been ignored and so far are no closer to get our money back.
This classic New England Inn has a rich history and a terrific location (shopping and dining in Manchester, but close to hiking opportunities, ski mountains, and nature). You'll love the way they updated the old buildings while retaining the old features - think uneven ceilings and lovely carved wood details). The pool and spa were wonderful, but the multiple seating areas and fireplaces were the features we enjoyed the most. One complaint: the plates at the lovely breakfast buffet were ice cold, not good for the hot dishes. It was great that a luxury resort felt....homey.