Once you’ve lived in New York City, it can be hard to imagine living any other place. Where else in the world can your kids be exposed to so many different kinds of people, places, things, and 24-hour pizza joints all in one place? But when New Yorkers plan vacations, they tend to look for those few things that the city can’t give them, like warm temps in the winter, white sand beaches and crystal clear ocean waters, or an authentic, immersive cultural experience. While a mid-winter trip to a tropical island or a European getaway are all great vacations, maybe it’s time to switch things up and plan a vacation around some of the other things that are missing from NYC life.
Enter Suncadia Resort, a sprawling 6,400-acre property that is a part of the Destination Hotels collection and tucked into the Cascade Mountains in Cle Elum, just 80 miles east of Seattle, Washington. There are a few things you notice immediately while driving through the winding, tree-covered roads that lead to the property—the abundance of trees, wildlife, and natural beauty, a lack of noise pollution, and how everyone you meet is in no rush to be anywhere, because they are just enjoying the moment they are in.
When it comes to creating an all-inclusive experience for families, the Suncadia staff taps into their natural surroundings to immerse guests into a state of total relaxation. You won’t see anyone running from place to place because, unlike in New York, days in the mountains best spent when they’re not packed to the brim, and it’s common for outdoor adventures to be sandwiched between long, leisurely meals and calmer activities. There is no such thing as too much down time here, and Suncadia’s staff understands that for families with younger kids that need naps and frequent breaks, how the day is structured is key to a successful vacation.
City kids will love being able to explore Suncadia’s expansive backyard filled with trees, the Cle Elum and Yakima Rivers, and native plants and wild animals. Nature-loving kids can participate in either of the resort’s two educational programs, Suncadia Junior Rangers (a journey through the resort’s grounds learning about native plants, wildlife, and geology) or KidCadia Adventure Collection (a customizable adventure combining indoor and outdoor activities that help kids earn KidCadia Adventures Badges and win prizes). Other activities include hanging out by the resort’s pool, sliding down either of the two water slides, and enjoying crafts and games put on by the resort’s staff that vary from week to week. For a special treat, kids can head out to the fire pit in front of the Lodge and get a complimentary bag of s’mores supplies, perfect for cooking up their own sweet treat.
While the kids are entertained, parents can find their own ways to unwind and get in touch with nature, including taking a Bike and Brew tour to the famous nearby Brick Brewery, enjoying private fly fishing, or checking out the resort’s 54 holes of championship golf. Adults can enjoy the comforts of home thanks to Suncadia’s full-service gym, group aerobics classes, personal training services, and the Coal House Caffe, a coffee shop near the lobby of the Lodge that offers a cup of Joe for parents and some cute souvenirs for the kids. For some extra pampering, stop by the Glade Spring Spa, a tranquil oasis for men and women featuring two dry saunas, massages, facials, four hot mineral baths, and salon services like manicures, pedicures, and waxes.
Parents and kids have plenty of fun things to do on their own, but Suncadia also offers plenty of activities that families can enjoy together, like bike rentals, bird trekking tours, river rafting excursions, kayaking and paddle boarding, and over 40 miles of hiking trails. The resort also has a 1,000 steps project—a stair case leading from the resort down to the Cle Elum River that highlights native wild and plant life through educational signs and realistic animal foot prints imprinted on the steps. Kids will love exploring down the stairs, learning about all of the animals they may run into at the bottom, but after descending 1,000 steps, be prepared for a workout on the journey back up to the resort!
All of that exploring and relaxing is bound to leave the family pretty hungry, and thankfully there are plenty of restaurants on property to feed your little adventurers. Portals-Pacific Northwest Provisions is located in the heart of the lodge and offers breathtaking panoramic views of the Cascade Mountains and delicious menu options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The elegantly rustic restaurant offers signature cocktails and fare cooked up with local ingredients and inspired by the Pacific Northwest. For some smaller bites or a pre-dinner drink, head over to Fifty-6 Degrees Lounge, bar in the lodge featuring 56 rotating seasonal cocktails like the Roslyn Sour. For even more local libations, grab a table at Swiftwater Cellars, Suncadia’s on-site winery that sits atop an old coal mine and offers local and global wines and live music. There are also plenty of hot spots for smaller meals, like the Kitchen (Suncadia’s seasonal food truck near the pool), the Lunch Bucket (a sandwich shop near the golf courses), or Gas Lamp Grille (a quick service restaurant located in The Inn).
On top of Suncadia’s many restaurants and family-friendly activities, they also offer four different lodging options that your family can call home during your stay. Enjoy a more traditional resort experience at the Lodge at Suncadia, which offers unparalleled views of the Cascade Mountains, 254 rooms from penthouses to one- and two-bedrooms, and amenities like spacious kitchens, deep soaking tubs, private outdoor balconies, gas fireplaces, and more. If you’re looking for a more intimate experience, The Inn at Suncadia’s 14 guest rooms and views of the Prospector Golf Course are the right fit for you. For extended vacations, consider staying in one of the 18 different Trailhead Condominuims, which offer one- to two-bedrooms, full-sized washers and dryers, gas fireplaces, and large decks with tables and chairs. Larger families can enjoy some quality time in one of the 70 fully furnished luxury vacation homes on property, which offer one- to six-bedrooms and a more private experience.
Whether you are looking for a place to host your next big family reunion, a quiet, adults-only retreat to celebrate an anniversary, or a vacation spot where your kids can take a walk on the wild side, Suncadia’s expansive property, luxury amenities, family-friendly activities, and untouched wildlife are a perfect fit for your next big getaway. Once you take a deep breath of mountain air and hear the sweet sound of silence, it will be hard to convince yourself to head back home to the city.
For more information on Suncadia Resort, visit destinationhotels.com/suncadia-resort.