Whether plotting prime positioning for the upcoming Draconids Meteor Shower in early October or simply longing for expansive outdoor spaces, here are five luxury hotels offering out of this world stargazing experiences.
The Little Nell (Aspen, Colorado)
Celestial adventures abound at The Little Nell, the area’s only five-star, five-diamond hotel situated at the base of Aspen Mountain. Hop into one of their SUVs and trek to the top of Ajax for unobstructed views of the evening sky. A local astronomy expert will provide binoculars, blankets, and house-made granola and popcorn courtesy of the chefs at the hotel’s award-winning restaurant, Element 47. Once you’ve ridden back down the mountain, retreat to the lobby and reward yourself with the hotel’s decadent hot chocolate with oversized homemade marshmallows.
Ventana Big Sur (Big Sur, California)
A luxurious adults-only wilderness resort with 59 guestrooms and 15 safari-style canvas tents studded with plush custom-designed mattresses, high thread-count linens, and a wood-burning firepit on the adjoining private deck. Minutes off Highway 1, Ventana Big Sur is perched on 160 acres and offers scenic views of the Pacific Ocean. The property’s two-hour “Star Bathing” experience takes guests on a night hike amid the grandiose redwoods with flashlights in hand. Along the way, participants learn about the constellations overhead, as well as the area’s flora and fauna.
Shore Lodge Resort (McCall, Idaho)
About 160 km north of Boise — near one of the largest congressionally-designated areas of wilderness in the continental United States — is the town of McCall, home to the sumptuous Shore Lodge Resort. Upon request, the concierge of this 77-room resort will create a stargazing adventure that includes a custom viewing set up at your choice of various locations on property, including lakefront on the resort’s dock or whisked away into the Salmon River mountains for a secluded front row seat to the Milky Way and shooting stars from a yurt, complete with s’mores and a bonfire.
Mauna Lani Auberge Resorts Collection (Island of Hawaii)
Beachside bliss is even more transformative while enjoying a dinner under the moonlit sky at the newly reimagined Mauna Lani, Auberge Resorts Collection. With the soothing sound of the waves in the background, dine on Executive Chef Matt Raso’s five-course prix-fixe, Japanese-inspired menu highlighting Indigenous flavours of the Hawaiian Islands from an oceanfront cabana or on the shore with your toes in the sand, all while a local astronomer guides you through a tour of the stars.
Enchantment Resort (Sedona, Arizona)
Thanks to its high altitude and lack of light pollution, Sedona is one of the top stargazing locations in the world. Set against the region’s red rocks, Enchantment Resort takes guests on a seductive tour of the universe in this International Dark Sky community guided by the property’s resident astronomer, Dennis Casper. Using state-of-the-art telescopes he personally crafted, Casper educates visitors about constellations, star clusters, galaxies, and binary stars visible in the Sedona sky. Highlights include the Andromeda galaxy, the Caroline’s Rose and Coathanger star clusters, and Neptune. Private stargazing sessions are available by reservation.
Lead Image: Steve Goff Photography