The warm season is behind us, and with it goes patio weather and the pop of fall colour. There’s plenty that makes Kawarthas Northumberland an inviting winter destination (see here for a few ideas on that front), but there’s no denying the shorter daytime hours can take a toll on mood. For anyone who’s looking to preempt the winter blues, here are a few comforting options that’ll take the bite out of the cold.
There’s something about Rice Lake—on the south side is the majestic Rice Lake Scenic Drive, and on the northern shore sits Elmhirst’s Resort, one of the top destinations in the Peterborough area. Elmhirst’s is best known for its locally sourced culinary experiences, offered in both the elegant Heartside Dining Room or the casual Wild Blue Yonder Pub. Some of the meat and produce is actually raised or grown on Elmhirst’s property, including Angus beef, Pekin duck, and seasonal veg.
Guests can a meal package to their accommodation and know that food’s taken care of. Special culinary events are offered regularly too, like the Sunday Best prix fixé lunch. The kitchen is only part of the appeal, however, with cozy lakeside cottages available year-round. The property’s 240 acres are open for guests to explore, with a range of experiences such as horseback riding available for booking. If the weather’s blustery, retire to the fitness centre, indoor pool, sauna, and whirlpool to warm up.
Completing Elmhirst’s appeal is the onsite spa overlooking the pool and garden. Available options include deep tissue massage, pedicures and manicures, acupuncture, and hot stone massage, among others. If you can’t decide, multi-day packages are on offer.
Look at a picture of Ste. Anne’s Spa and you could be forgiven for thinking it was taken in the French countryside. This Grafton-area destination is inside a nineteenth-century fieldstone castle, combining Old World elegance with thoroughly modern wellness amenities. Come for the day and enjoy an all-inclusive experience, or indulge in specialized options like the Couples or Mom-to-Be packages.
Book a longer stay and choose between a room in the main inn or a spa cottage of your own. All accommodations afford easy access to Ste. Anne’s facilities, with unique architecture and charm and tasteful decorative flourishes. The outdoor hydrotherapy experience is on offer even in winter, allowing you a relaxing soak regardless of the season.
Farm-to-table cuisine is top priority at Ste. Anne’s too. Gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan options are easily accommodated—just check the onsite gluten-free bakery for proof. If you’re travelling with a group, you can even book a private chef to prepare a four-course meal in the comfort of your accommodation. Customize the menu to your taste, and watch the chef work their magic.
Eganridge’s manor house enjoys a prime vantage point above Sturgeon Lake. The square-timbered historic building provides a luxurious hub from which to take in the lakefront and manicured grounds, and the many appealing accommodation options include lake views, king-size beds, vaulted ceilings, and whirlpool baths. Private cottages are perfect for a romantic getaway.
The lower level of the resort is home to Cosmopolitan Salon & Spa, where services range from hair styling, massages, and facials. Experienced stylists and registered massage therapists are friendly and responsive to guests’ needs. Round off a day of pampering with a meal in the Dining Room at Eganridge, a beautifully appointed dining room with panoramic views and a distinguished wine menu. A number of local attractions may tempt visitors off-site, but many guests are content to explore Eganridge’s 4km of cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trails. Overnight guests are provided complimentary snowshoes, so they can enjoy Kawartha Lakes’ quiet woodlands and expansive views at their leisure.