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Tag: winter travel


Winter Yoga, Serenity and Wellness in Nature

“There is a privacy about it which no other season gives you…only in the winter, in the country, can you have longer, quiet stretches when you can savor belonging to yourself.” ~ Author and Gardener Ruth Stout

As The Ranch’s Granite Spa developed from a traditional luxury spa to a holistic nature spa, we sought to approach our spa offerings with the same customization that our entire activities program affords.

No person desires the same wellness retreat. This is why we offer fall and winter retreats that are customizable, including two treatments and two mind & body classes of your choice, in addition to The Ranch’s all-inclusive guided outdoor activities, newly featuring downhill skiing and snowboarding; luxury accommodations; farm-to-table meals; and stress-reducing amenities, like airport transfers, winter gear and fireside cocktail hours. From December 1 to March 31, guests can also receive a complimentary fourth night.

Granite Spa Manager Karen Piacquadio starts a forest bathing class in fresh snowfall.Granite Spa Manager Karen Piacquadio

Our Granite Spa Manager Karen Piacquadio takes the helm of the blog this week and invites you to step into her idea of the perfect winter retreat. After reading, consider crafting your own ideal getaway from our versatile spa menu.




A Bespoke Winter Spa Retreat

“I fell in love with The Ranch, Philipsburg and the magnificent landscape. The solitude and beauty of winter on The Ranch triggers a desire to step back and focus on your own health and wellness. I would like to share with you what a perfect day on The Ranch in winter looks like through my eyes.” ~ Granite Spa & Wellness Manager Karen Piacquadio

Journey to The Ranch at Rock Creek for a little winter respite. Our Winter Luxury Spa & Nature Retreat allows you to fully embrace the winter season as a time for introspection and restoration.


Sweet Grass Canvas Cabin, a year-round glamping cabin along blue ribbon Rock Creek.

Imagine waking up in a luxurious mountain cabin or lodge room engulfed in warm bedding. Gazing outside, you see the beauty of winter, and the silence of a world waking up slowly, under a cover of fresh fallen snow. A family of deer walk past your window as you step out of bed to start the first day of your winter vacation.

A group of deer cross the valley during snow squall in Montana

Wander down to the Granite Lodge, where you can indulge in a chocolate croissant and cup of tea. When your tea cup is ready to be refilled, move to the dining room for a healthy and robust breakfast created by our AM chef, Tom Gillespie.


A plate of Huevos Rancheros in the Granite Lodge dining room. Photo by Groups Coordinator Kate DeMello.

Following breakfast, bundle up for a guided naturalist trek on property with Montana Master Naturalist Kelsey Bruns. Learn about our winter ecosystem and gaze at the amazing views of The Ranch’s 6,600 acres. Finish your morning trek by warming up next to an outdoor fire while sipping a warm beverage.

After working up a sweat on your trek, it’s time to return to the Granite Lodge for a grilled steak salad and tomato soup lunch. With a happy stomach and tired eyes, retreat back to your accommodation for a little cat nap, reading or journaling. If you’re feeling energized, channel it into one of our outdoor winter activities, like cross-country skiing, a mountain peak tour, horseback riding or ice skating.

Mid-afternoon, regroup with your friends and walk to the Granite Spa for a Bulletproof Coffee Detox Wrap or Adventurer’s Massage.

Winter mind & body classes at The Ranch come in many forms, from adventurous natural movement classes to meditative forest bathing to customized indoor sessions overlooking beautiful vistas. You’ll be escorted to the gazebo to watch the sunset during a private candle-lit restorative yoga class with me.


Spa & Wellness Manager Karen Piacquadio teaches a flow class in the gazebo.

Round out your day with a culinary delight, our Chef’s Tasting Menu. Enjoy the craftsmanship and creative passion that our Executive Chef Josh Drage and Executive Sous Chef Ben Miller put into each bite, and feel the magic and mystery of our winter space come to life.

Your evening can be spent quietly in your accommodation or, you can spend some time sipping cocktails made by our bar manager Ned Derosier and then move into the Silver Dollar Saloon for some friendly competition in bowling or billiards.

After all, you are on vacation. Tomorrow will usher in more chances for relaxation through yoga, Granite Spa treatments, outdoor splendor and farm-to-table cuisine.

Picture your entire retreat unfolding when you read the sample itinerary. Friends or family members can join you on this experience or choose another of our curated winter adventures.




The Ranch’s Granite Spa is one of the few optional, additional-cost amenities at The Ranch, along with off-Ranch excursions and Mercantile. It has become an integral part of The Ranch at Rock Creek’s experiential travel offerings. Our Winter Luxury Spa & Nature Retreat allows guests to enjoy $800 worth of spa services included with their stay.


Further Reading, Winter Yoga and More:

Granite Spa Manager Karen Piacquadio

What is Forest Bathing?

Granite Spa & Little Barn Apothecary

Finding Winter Wellness in the Wild

Winter Getaways: 10 Calorie-Melting Snow Sports

 

Tag: winter travel


Fresh Experiences in Fresh Powder

New Winter Experiences at The Ranch

The New Year is a chance to start fresh, so we have a slate of new winter experiences—adventure and culture-based—that are unique to our luxury guest ranch.


View a video of a typical winter getaway at The Ranch at Rock Creek.

Every year, since we opened in 2010, we’ve looked to heighten our commitment to experiential travel. Watch our new video above to see what experiential travel means to us. Each activity must aid guests in forging a deeper connection with Montana’s environs or culture. The list of novel adventures and cultural additions below is aimed at ensuring our travelers enjoy the ultimate Montana getaway.

The Nordic Bonfire is one of our new winter experiences that mixes gourmet cuisine with fireside camaraderie
The Nordic Bonfire is one of our new, popular winter experiences. 

If you’d like to celebrate the best that a Montana winter has to offer, please join us for our Frost & Fire Winter Celebration from February 14 through 21, where all of these new winter experiences are coupled with festivities, like a barn dance, brewfest and a Valentine’s celebration to warm you to the core. Read more…

Tag: winter travel


Winter Corporate Travel: Board Room to Bucket List

Montana Group and Corporate Travel

This week we’re reposting a blog that one of our ranchers wrote for Glacier Country Tourism, Montana by guest blogger Heather Rue, a former Ranch at Rock Creek employee. Over her career in marketing, she has produced hundreds of corporate, nonprofit and cause-marketing events and programs. Heather is active in her local community and is raising country kids, chickens and labs while soaking up all life in Montana has to offer. Read the original blog here


Throughout my career, I have had the pleasure of producing hundreds of corporate meetings and events in some of the world’s greatest destinations. While the purpose, scope and locations of these gatherings have varied, all of them were designed to inspire excellence, trust and community while nurturing new thinking about business relationships and value creation. More often than not, we aspired to showcase the event destination in a creative way, as we provided a unique and enriching experience for the attendees. As planners, we didn’t want to duplicate our company’s conference room in a different locale; we wanted to draw from the culture of the destination and inspire them through novel experiences, like skiing after a morning meeting or receiving a handmade box filled with local treats at turn down.

A group gets ready to ride a run at Discovery Ski Area in Philipsburg, Montana

Throughout the last decade, my passion for event planning and marketing has continued to blossom because of that essential, powerful ingredient—experiential travel. After living and working in many US cities, I am grateful to call Montana my home, especially since Montana is a place where travelers are instantly captured by a sense of wonder. Montana, through my lens, is an extraordinary, transformative destination for everyone from homebodies to globetrotters; a place where bucket-list experiences are checked off left and right.

Read more…

Tag: winter travel


Silver Dollar Saloon: Val-Gal-Pal-entine’s Cocktails

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Welcome to the Silver Dollar Saloon

As Valentine’s Day approaches, our bartenders in the Saloon and Great Room aren’t content to just chill the champagne in anticipation of the celebration. They have been busy creating a seasonal cocktail menu that will give guests a taste of winter in Montana with Big Sky spirits and local ingredients. Just like Chef Drage’s menus, the cocktail menus change frequently, highlighting the holidays and activities that we enjoy. Read more…

Tag: winter travel


Comfort & Joy: Winter Glamping in Montana

Wintertime Glamping at The Ranch

We’re switching gears to our winter glamping season. If you’ve fallen in love with luxury glamping like we have, you may picture gourmet picnics amidst wildflower meadows and bespoke tents within earshot of a babbling stream. Now, it’s time to update that image to include all the possibilities of glamping in the snow.

The sun sets on a day of winter glamping at The Ranch at Rock Creek

What makes winter glamping so enjoyable is that it’s not summer glamping disguised in wool and down. Instead, it’s comprised of an entirely different set of adventures and amenities. Following on the heels of winter features in Collective Quarterly and Architectural Digest, we wanted to attest to the reasons why winter glamping is fit for your wanderlust list. To take advantage, check out our winter special offers. For example, The Indulgent Frontiersman special highlights the frontier experience, along with the best Big Sky comforts.  Read more…

Tag: winter travel


Holly Rancher: Eat, Drink and Be Merry!

Christmas boots hang from the mantel at The Ranch at Rock Creek

There’s no one-size-fits-all way to celebrate the season; however, the instructions “Eat, Drink and Be Merry” might be the perfect recipe for a good holiday party and a “Holly Rancher” (someone who is celebrating the season in Ranch-inspired style). In anticipation of upcoming holidays at The Ranch, our culinary team has shared some recipes for winter comfort food. They believe that the key to a memorable celebration is putting a lot of care into what you serve and then taking the time to savor it. If you’re still searching for a holiday home base, only a few accommodations remain at The Ranch.

We hope you’ll enjoy these delicious recipes and use them to channel a country Christmas wherever you celebrate this year. Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Holidays!

Read more…

Tag: winter travel


A Mystical Mountain Christmas

The 2015 Granite County Festival of Trees

This year, we started celebrating Christmas early. With Thanksgiving still on the horizon, we had the opportunity to welcome the Granite County community to The Ranch at Rock Creek for the second annual Granite County Festival of Trees. Fifty decorators on 17 teams gathered to transform the Buckle Barn into “A Mystical Mountain Christmas,”the theme for this year’s event.

The Ranch at Rock Creek's Buckle Barn hosted the 2015 Granite County Festival of Trees

This fantastic local event allows friends of The Ranch to gather for “the season of giving” to celebrate charity, creativity and community, as well as Christmas. It is the main fundraiser for the Granite County Medical Foundation, a local non-profit that we’ve supported for several years. Our Mercantile Manager, Shannon Drage, sits on the board and several staff members volunteer their time to support its projects. Each year, The Ranch aims to give back to local charities that we believe will improve the quality of life for local residents. Read more…

Tag: winter travel


Transformational Travel: Outdoor Yoga

Taking Yoga off the Beaten Path

Over the past few years, The Ranch has expanded its outdoor yoga menu significantly, in order to take advantage of all that 6,600 acres of Big Sky country could offer.

The first step was to offer a family practice; a cooperative class to help everyone in a family improve strength, balance and flexibility. Every member of the family can connect with the importance of deep breathing and openness through this customized class.

Family Yoga at The Ranch at Rock Creek Read more…

Tag: winter travel


Winter Getaways: 10 Calorie-Melting Snow Sports

According to a oft-quoted Statistic Brain study, the most commonly made New Year’s resolution is losing weight. But it can be hard to stick to a resolution like this if you’re used to being a homebody in the winter. When January 1 comes around, it’s easy to choose a good book and crackling fire over bundling and braving the outdoors.

The Nordic Bonfire is one of our new winter experiences that mixes gourmet cuisine with fireside camaraderie

The Benefits of Frost & Fire

Yet, as a destination built on the spirit of play, we know that outdoor experiences and experiential travel can prime your body and mind for the year ahead. So we bring the cozy fire outside with our weekly Nordic Bonfire (see above), and supply all the gear, guides and warmth necessary to enjoy winter to the fullest. This year, we’re taking things a step farther and celebrating winter with new activities and a Frost & Fire winter fête between Valentine’s Day and President’s Day. Frost & Fire will celebrate the best adventures, farm-to-table cuisine, drinks and quintessential snowy moments in one winter getaway. If you’re looking for an inspiring way to start a new year with friends or a loved one, this is it!

Winter Getaways & Workouts

Winter getaways can also jumpstart your fitness goals. We’ve used our robust winter activities program and our own Montana winter experiences to inspire this blog. The Ranch at Rock Creek is a “choose your own adventure” of winter fun. We suggest guests channel their sense of childlike wonder and pick what suits their bodies and ambitions best—a heart-pumping workout or a serene, slow-paced wander.

winter-adventures

Below is a list of our winter vacation activities in order of approximate calories burned per hour for a 150-pound person. If you can’t visit us at The Ranch, we hope they can inspire you to get out before it’s too late and these amazing workouts are gone again for another year. Read more…

Tag: winter travel


Winter Holidays & Hot Toddies

Our corner of Montana is ready for the winter holidays. We love the winter so much, we’re celebrating it with three curated specials.

Luxury private homes at The Ranch at Rock Creek are warm and cozy places to spend a winter vacation

December ushers in snowshoeing treks, UTV tours and sleigh rides. In between activities, there are opportunities to enjoy  our “winter warmers.” These hot drinks quench a cocktail-hour thirst, and they heat the body thoroughly, so you won’t miss a herd of migrating elk or a silvery sunset.

sleigh6_zpsa91fad5f Read more…