Travel - June 27, 2022
High Hampton Inn Review
I’ve been visiting Highlands, NC for years but have never stayed anywhere in the neighboring town of Cashiers (just a few miles down the road). But when I heard how the company that recently acquired High Hampton Inn brought in the team behind Blackberry farm to help with renovations and reimagine the resort, I knew I had to add this spot to the top of our list.
Although I’ve never personally been to either of the blackberry properties, it has been on my personal list for 8 years. We plan on going once I’m not pregnant and without kids for a Fall or Winter getaway soon. Anyway, we’ve heard nothing but amazing things about Blackberry Farm, so I knew this new property would be nothing short of amazing!
I absolutely love this part of the country during the Summer and Fall; it’s so beautiful and quiet. Plus, it’s a great escape from the Texas heat during the summer! I’ve been to Old Edwards Inn in Highlands several times over the pat 10 years and have visited the area with friends who own homes in the area. It’s truly a magical getaway spot if you ask me.
I got a lot of questions through Instagram DMs about our trip, so I decided to write a blog post dedicated to our trip for future reference if any of you want to visit. For starters, I absolutely loved it! But I thought I’d get into more detail and answer some of your questions!
The trip was not sponsored, and we paid for everything ourselves. I always like to clarify this, however I would share my experience honestly either way.
What Makes It Great?
As I’ve gotten older – and especially since becoming a mom – the quality of service a property offers has become more and more important to me. I used to not really understand or appreciate this aspect, but it has become the most important factor now when planning our trips.
The way I see is if I’m going to pack up and travel to and from another location, take time off work and pay an arm and a leg to sleep somewhere that’s not home, I want the experience to be well worth the trouble. And the main thing that makes all the difference for me is the quality of service. All this to say, the service at High Hampton Inn is beyond compare! I couldn’t have been more impressed.
The people that work there are all incredibly friendly and – at least it felt this way to me – always excited to see you and help in any way they can. Since most of your meals are on the property, you get to know them pretty quickly! The staff also went out of their way to continually accommodate us, specifically Four, throughout our stay. For instance, I forgot a Slumberpod for the pack-n-play (which they provided – so nice not to have to travel with ours), so they helped me put up a makeshift solution with a curtain rod and a blanket to create a blackout space for Four to nap.
But other than the service, I think the other things that stood out to me that make it great are the weather and the food, which I’ll get into more below.
What Do You Get With Your Stay?
With your room rate, you get:
- breakfast in the main dining room
- dinner in the main dining room
- access to amenities on property
I should mention the food is exceptional, but I wouldn’t expect anything else from the geniuses behind Blackberry Farm. There are several delicious options to choose from for breakfast and I think you can order as much as you want. For dinner, there are three courses and the menu alternates each night for 3 nights.
You also get access to all of their lake equipment so you can do activities like kayaking and canoeing, access to their Club amenities like the pool and golf, and tennis. Plus, there are several nearby trails that start from the property. But you can also explore the surrounding areas of Highlands and Cashiers, which have additional hiking adventures.
What Is There to Do at the Resort?
You can spend your trip relaxing by the pool or fill your time with lots of activities. I personally like to do a little bit of both, but probably more relaxing than adventure most of the time. Since we had the baby, we did a little hiking and spent a lot of time at the pool.
There is a lake located in the resort where you can do things like fish for bass or trout (they have fishing boats you can rent), kayak, canoe, or try a stand-up paddleboard. And we can’t leave out the pool of course! That was maybe Four’s favorite part of the whole trip. ;)
If water activities aren’t really your thing, they’ve got a gorgeous 18-hole golf course at the resort with the most amazing view of the mountains. Duncan played on Father’s day and really enjoyed it!
We sadly never hit up the tennis courts, but you can also rent racquets and balls and play tennis or pickleball. I also saw some people playing croquet while we were there!
Like I mentioned, there are tons of hiking trails surrounding the resort. We took Four (thanks to Baby Quip for the backpack rental so we could tote Four easily around with us) on all of our hikes and each one was the perfect distance!
The resort also has a great fitness studio with everything from Peloton bikes to pilates machines — and they offer well classes if you make a reservation.
One really cool thing about the resort is the kids club. They have lots of different activities for kiddos of all ages, including a playground and games tailored to the kids. Four was too young, but it looked like they kept the kiddos busy.
What Was the Spa at High Hampton Like?
I wanted to give the spa its own little review because a few of you had questions about it when I posted on my IG stories. I decided to get a facial while we were on our trip, so I booked one at the Spa at High Hampton.
The spa is on the third floor of the inn building. It’s not really a full spa experience (there isn’t a sauna, whirlpool, locker room, etc.), but I think they’re in the process of building one. I didn’t really want or need the full spa experience, so I was totally happy with just my facial. It was super relaxing and the esthetician did a great job. She even offered me special skincare recommendations for my skin since I’m pregnant.
How Long Do You Recommend Staying?
We initially planned to stay 4 nights/5 days but decided to extend our trip halfway through because we were enjoying it so much – and honestly just didn’t want to go back to the Texas heat. I think most people stay 3-4 nights though.
Is There a Time of Year That’s Best to Visit?
I loved going during the Summer but I think Spring and early Fall would be wonderful too. They consider Memorial Day weekend through August/September High Season, so everything is bustling — especially in the surrounding towns. I’ve heard fall and winter are a bit more of a dead zone as temps are cooler and there are way fewer visitors at the resort.
What Kind of Room Did You Stay In?
For the first few nights of our stay, we stayed in one of the Inn rooms. I believe there are only 12 rooms? It was nice being in the building and so close to where breakfast and dinner were. But I think a common complaint for the property (and all the rooms, even the cottages) is that they’re a bit small. So just keep that in mind. The bathrooms were lovely though – especially the bathroom in the Inn room.
When we extended our stay, we stayed in one of the lake cottages – a very short walk from the Inn. It was also small and pretty snug. But I didn’t really mind it to be honest. I just wanted to note this in case you’re used to bigger-sized rooms.
Was the High Hampton Resort Kid-Friendly?
We felt like the resort was plenty kid-friendly. There was a pretty equal mix of couples and families from what I could gather at meal times. They definitely have high chairs and are able to accommodate kids (plus there’s the kids club!). I think most of the families that brought multiple kids must have opted for the multiple room cottages. But one thing I’d note is that all the rooms – regardless of the type – are pretty snug. I think it’s mostly because they maintained the historical buildings when doing the renovation.
It was also nice to not have to leave the resort at all unless we wanted to (we drove into Highlands, NC, one day for lunch, but other than that, we stayed in the resort)!
Since Four is still so young, he wasn’t able to participate in a ton of the pre-planned activities set up in the kids club, but offer a Kids Camp for kids 5 years old and up.
What Did You Pack for the Trip?
For the day time, i mostly packed workout clothes for hanging out or hiking and then a swimsuit and coverup for each day. I brought a lot of dresses (shocking, I know!) for dinners. But I do want to note that the restaurant is pretty fancy, so keep that in mind when packing dinnertime outfits. Here’s a quick list if you find lists helpful:
- swimsuit/coverup/pool bag for spending time at the pool
- workout clothes for hiking/tennis/activities
- lounge clothes or casual dress for roaming around property, lounging or to throw on for breakfast
- dressy clothes for dinner each night
I’ve linked most of what I packed below!
What Airport Did You Fly Into?
We flew into Greenville, SC, and drove for about 2 hours to get to High Hampton. I think Asheville is technically closer, but they have fewer flight options and they’re usually way more expensive.
Every other time I’ve come to this area over the past 15 years, I’ve flown into Atlanta, but the drive is like 3 hours and we didn’t feel like adding an extra hour to our drive with a 1-year-old. We rented our car through Hertz and were able to also rent a car set!
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