Got cabin fever?
Spring is here, and the end of the pandemic appears to be in sight, so many of us are itching to return to special activities we haven't enjoyed in a year, like traveling. However, social distancing isn't quite behind us yet, so if you are looking for more pandemic-friendly options, the Getaway House could be for you, especially since the staff has created a completely contact-less experience.
What Is Getaway House?
Getaway House is a company that has converted locations such as old RV parks into cabin rentals with a focus on escaping to nature and unplugging. Each location features "modern cabins," which are essentially quirky hipster tiny houses with private fire pits that are within easy distance of outdoor destinations and other local attractions. The first locations were outside Boston and New York City, but have spread to the southwest, the midwest, and the Pacific northwest. Founders Jon Staff and Pete Davis pitched the idea on Shark Tank in 2017, and their success has only grown since then.
The Washington, D.C., Getaway
More accurately, this location is in Stanardsville, Virginia, a 2-hour drive from Washington, D.C. However, it's an ideal location if you intend to spend a lot of time in Shenandoah National Park. It's a short drive from the Swift Run Gap entrance, where you can access plenty of trails. Even if hiking isn't your bag, you could easily spend the day at one of many nearby vineyards, get ice cream at the Moo-Thru, or take a day trip to Charlottesville for some history and shopping.
Shenandoah National Park: Hightop Mountain Trail
If you browse the Getaway website, the pictures may give you the impression that the cabins are well isolated from each other. In reality, you may find yourself more connected than you would expect. All check-in procedures are completely contact-less, with all communications arriving via text or email. Guests are given a door code to enter their space. However, many cabins are around 100 feet away from each other, and you will be able to both see and hear your neighbors. However, the staff has established all hours as quiet hours, and guests respect this guideline. Cell reception is also still available, but every cabin has a cell phone lockbox to help guests unplug.
Courtesy of Adventure Moms DC
The Getaway House strikes a pleasant balance between camping and hotel stay. Cabins are equipped with linens, dishes, running water, a kitchenette that includes a mini-fridge, and a heating/air conditioning unit. The staff provides complimentary s'mores materials. Firewood, coffee, hot chocolate, and insect repellant wipes are also available for purchase. In a pinch, you could always go into Stanardsville down the road for anything you forgot to bring. However, if you plan to cook, you will most likely need a cooler. Also, shower time will require some planning, especially if you are visiting with a group of 3-4 people since the hot water goes quickly in the tiny house.
Courtesy of Pack More Into Life
Is It Worth It?
The Getaway House is ideal for couples and smaller groups who want to spend quiet time in nature for 2-3 days. However, if you want to take the whole family on vacation for longer, then the Getaway House probably isn't for you. Most cabins contain one bed, and space is tight. There are larger cabins available that have loft beds, but there is not much storage for food and gear, and figuring out the shower schedule is sure to cause some stress. On the other hand, if you are an outdoor enthusiast, and especially if you plan to visit Shenandoah National Park multiple times, then the Getaway House will absolutely be worth it for you. Entry to the park is $30, which would be expensive for a day trip under normal circumstances, but the pass is good for seven days, which makes it a convenient, cost-effective, breathtaking place to repeatedly return to during your stay.
Are you planning to travel this spring? Would you consider the Getaway House? Let us know in the comments.