Embarrassingly, I haven’t left New York City since I got back from our trip to Dubai. If you live here, you understand that thriving here means leaving the city from time to time. (i.e. as often as possible). So David and I packed up the car last Friday and decided to spend a winter weekend in Vermont.
Truthfully, I just wanted to do some skiing, but we ended up squeezing in some shopping too which is pretty much like hitting the jackpot in my world! We settled on Okemo since it’s one of the closer mountains – a four-hour drive instead of five. David suggested we stay in Manchester, a 45-minute drive from Okemo. I wasn’t thrilled with this idea because I usually like to stay closer to where we’re skiing, but in this case, it worked out well.
When we arrived in Manchester, it was so quaint that I was very happy with our decision. We were both tired on Friday night when we arrived so we ate dinner at the hotel restaurant, The Copper Grouse, and had a glass of wine by the fireplace.
On Saturday morning, we woke up early, ate breakfast and made the 45-minute drive to Okemo. We were blessed with snow on Friday night and Saturday morning so conditions on the slopes were perfect if only a little cold and windy at the top. There were long lines in the morning for the lifts but they died down by the afternoon. The best way to describe Okemo is family-friendly with wide runs and plenty of options for all levels of skiers.
After a long day of skiing, we made it back to the hotel in time for their complimentary guest happy hour and then got ready for dinner. We decided on Ye Old Tavern for dinner which is a converted inn from the 1700s. It’s very traditional inside, but the food and service wasn’t a favorite for us.
On Sunday, we spent time shopping. The town of Manchester is home to a handful of outlet stores that are tucked into authenticly restored houses and woven into the fabric of the town, which made us feel like we were shopping in boutiques rather than at a big outlet mall. Before starting the drive home, we had a quick lunch at Mystic Cafe and Wine Bar.
We loved our Winter Weekend in Manchester so much that we’re planning on making it an annual trip!
Where We Stayed
The Kimpton Taconic Inn was everything you would imagine a Vermont hotel should be with plenty of fireplaces and little nooks. The Kimpton thinks of everything from complimentary valet to the guest happy hour.
Where We Ate
There are plenty of cozy restaurants in Manchester all of which cater to any type of diet and many focus on fresh, local ingredients. The Copper Grouse, where we had dinner the first night and breakfast both mornings (order the green juice!), puts a modern spin on traditional pub fare.
Ye Old Tavern is a historic inn with a traditional menu of steak, fish and also vegetarian options.
Mystic Cafe and Wine Bar is an adorable little self-service cafe with soups, sandwiches, salads and of course, wine. We could have spent hours there with a bottle of wine, but since it was lunchtime, I opted for a turmeric latte which was perfectly warm and creamy.
Where We Skiied
We only skied at Okemo Mountain, which is the largest mountain and also very beginner and intermediate skier-friendly. Bromley mountain is much closer to Manchester, but also much smaller and Stratton Mountain is another nearby choice.
Where We Shopped
Manchester is a town of only 4,000 people so you can imagine how quaint it is. Aside from the outlet stores, there are also a handful of independently-owned bookshops, cafes and gift stores along the town’s main street. It’s all very walkable in nice weather too.