The Gentlemanly Escape
By Jefferson Hopkins
While nothing beats a handwritten note or letter for keeping in touch, nothing can match a great trip for creating memories worth keeping in touch for. That's why at Forgetful Gentleman we're big proponents of the Gentlemanly Escape. When was the last time you got away with just the guys, no girlfriends, wives or kids? And we don't mean a day trip to the ballpark, we mean a full-on, overnight MAN WEEKEND. To give you some inspiration, we're launching an on-going blog series entitled The Gentlemanly Escape. In each edition, we'll choose a theme and then offer two options: the ultimate, no holds barred experience and a more budget friendly, yet no less manly, alternative. This week we've got something for those of you who love nothing more than the sound of a cast line over a bubbling brook, the smell of spent shotgun shells and the taste of handcrafted American whisk(e)y.
THE GENTLEMANLY ESCAPE - THE OUTDOORSMAN
The unspoiled beauty of the Smoky Mountains, over 700 miles of fishable trout filled streams, shotguns and rods by day, acclaimed gourmet dining and aged whisk(e)y by night. This may very well be the sporting gentleman's heaven. We're talking about Blackberry Farm, the first ever two-time recipient of the prestigious Orvis-Endorsed Lodge of the Year award and the premier fly fishing destination east of the Rockies.
Nestled on a pastoral 4,200 acre estate in the foothills of Tennessee's Smokey Mountains, The Farm is the perfect escape when you tire of the city and all its hustle and bustle, noise and stress. Instead of conference calls and status meetings your days will be filled with award winning fly fishing, clay shooting, horseback riding and even that most gentlemanly of time honored traditions: the fox hunt.
And there's no better place to unwind and relax after a long day of sporting than "America's Number 1 Small Hotel" as rated by Travel & Leisure and Zagat. Enjoy the height of gourmet "Foothills Cuisine" at The Barn paired perfectly with a wine selection from the 8,000 square foot wine cellar. Then sit around a fireplace and argue about who landed the biggest trout and who is the best shot while sipping on a nightcap from the collection of the 60+ small-production, artisan American whiskies. You may never want to go home.
Blackberry Farm is easily accessible from Atlanta or Knoxville
Rates start at $745 including meals
Looking for a sporting weekend without breaking the bank? For luxury on a budget, our recommendation is The Residences at Biltmore located in Asheville, North Carolina. The condo-style apartments are spacious, well appointed and easily shared, making for great group bonding. Offset a splurge dinner at the fantastic Fig Bistro by cooking chili in your room's kitchen the next night. And with the French Broad River and hundreds of miles in hiking trails nearby, there is no shortage of activities for the sportsman in you. In fact, as long as you don't mind doing some planning yourself, this trip to Asheville can be just as much fun as a trip to Blackberry Farm.
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