4-Star Mountainside Resort Fed by Mineral Springs
In the late 18th century, Dr. John Anderson wanted to reap the curative benefits of the natural hot springs that dot the Allegheny Mountains. He purchased a 2,200-acre plot of land and used locally quarried stones to build the lodge that now serves as the foundation of Omni Bedford Springs Resort. Over the past two centuries, 10 US presidents have stayed at the hotel—a National Historic Landmark that recently underwent a $120 million renovation. But even with its newly restored wings, a historic, restored golf course, and plush guest rooms, the 4-star hotel’s main draw is still its eight mineral springs, some of which feed the heated indoor and outdoor pools.
Inspired by the local Native Americans who first discovered the springs' healing properties, the 30,000-square-foot Springs Eternal Spa uses natural mineral water in every one of its treatments. During Bedford Bath rituals, you can alternate between hot and cool mineral pools equipped with massaging jets. The spa also offers a ginger body polish and steam therapy infused with local botanicals. Other treatments, such as massages and body wraps, use local herbs, and others culminate with time in the private spa garden.
Offerings at the five onsite restaurants range from casual bar fare at Frontier Tavern to fine dining at the Crystal Room. The relaxed but upscale 1796 Room serves 21-day-aged USDA Prime beef along with a dessert menu freshly prepared in-house. After dinner, you can gather around a stone fire pit on the lawn and roast marshmallows over the flames.
Bedford, Pennsylvania: Rustic Mountain Town Convenient for Hiking and Cross-Country Skiing
The rural town of Bedford is cradled amid the verdant Allegheny Mountains, a little more than two hours northwest of Washington, DC. There are 25 miles of hiking trails accessible from Omni Bedford Springs Resort. The nearby Blue Knob State Park contains a network of gently sloping loops and steady uphill climbs. Multi-use trails are open for mountain biking, horseback riding, and seasonal cross-country skiing, along with downhill tubing and skiing. In warmer months, many head to the park's streams for trout fishing.