...because home doesn't happen overnight.
10.11.10 / A Real Vacation

Handy Hubby and I are fast approaching our 8th wedding anniversary.  In all the time since we’ve been married, we’ve only taken 1 vacation by ourselves…our honeymoon.  A real vacation without the kiddos, family members or any other distractions was long overdue.  So a few months back, we planned a getaway for just the 2 of us and it finally rolled around last week.  We enjoyed some great R&R via Lakeview at Fontana in North Carolina.  I came across their feature in Southern Living magazine earlier this year and it sounded too good to be true:  low-key, cozy, small scale and secluded.  Not to mention crazy affordable.  Think less than $90 a night for a basic room.  {We brought along a borrowed mini-fridge and stayed during the week to save even more money.}  Well, it wasn’t too good to be true.  The staff was friendly and accommodating.  The lake and mountain views were phenomenal.  Hiking and biking trails were located nearby.  Local eateries served up some awesome grub {try Lulu’s in Sylva, NC!}.  And the hour massage following my first mountain bike excursion wasn’t too bad either.  But, you know me, I tend to be inspired by all things.  Lakeview did not disappoint.  I was surprised by how chic the decor was that I just had to share it with you.  So prepare yourself for some major eye candy.

Now I know it says ‘resort and spa’ and that usually conjures up visions of pretentious hotels but, really, this place is totally a ‘kick your shoes off, wear sweatpants every day and walk slowly’ kinda place.  Meet Wally, the venue’s mascot.  {I’m not a cat person but I wanted him to come home with me on our last day.}

As you pull up to the resort, here’s what awaits.

Have you ever seen such a stylish office door?  {Don’t even get me started on the fabulous craftsman doors.}

As soon as we walked into the office to check in, I told Handy Hubby I wanted to come back.  We hadn’t even been there 5 minutes.

Past the desk is the the TV lounge {the one and only TV on the premises} and guest computer.

They used the oldest trick in the book for making the small room feel larger…tall, leaning mirrors propped up across from the window.

I was in love with this vase.

And this door holder.

The employees weren’t shorted on style either.  Just take a look at the adjoining office space.

So, that’s the main building…where you can check in, watch some TV, sit by the fire, surf the internet or ask staff for local restaurant suggestions.  Now onto the coffeehouse where you are served a light breakfast daily {the fresh French press coffee is divine} along with complimentary wine and cheese in the early evening.

I think these windows were my favorite design element of the entire resort.  They fold open.

Inside, this utilitarian kitchen had me at hello.  The medallion on the peninsula is a great yet simple focal point along with the trio of pendant lights.  Yum.

Can you say painted, open cabinetry?

This utensil storage is a work of art.

A few steps up, and you can look down into the kitchen/dining area.  The concrete floors are painted to look like old tile.

Do you spy the coffee table bottom right?  It’s a salvaged door attached to a terracotta planter.  Ingenious.

The upper floor of the coffeehouse is home to a few booths simply formed from a built-in bench, a freestanding table and 3 dining chairs.  Comfy pillows beg you sit and stay for a while.

Handy Hubby and I spent an evening at a booth working a puzzle.  Doesn’t that sound boring?  But it wasn’t.  It was so quiet and relaxing.  Just what we needed.  Alright, back outside to show you more of Lakeview.

The uh-mazing view.  My God, the view…

The flower boxes…

More of those gor.ge.ous cottage doors…

Driveway lanterns…

Outdoor vignettes…

I’m not the only one who likes porch pews…

Don’t you want to visit Lakeview?  You should.  Handy Hubby and I had such a casual, relaxing few days here.  We will be back.  A few words of wisdom:  Lakeview is not the place for people looking for lights, noise and action.  Creaky floors?  Sounds of nature?  Spotty phone and internet service?  Mountain views?  Imperfect perfection?  A break from real world stimulation?…then, yes, this is where you need to be.  It’s the first vacation I’ve been on where I didn’t feel like I needed a vacation from my vacation when I got home.  And all the decor inspiration was icing on my cake.  What’s your favorite part?

Come back tomorrow to tour a local North Carolina shop that knocked my socks off.

FYI – H*T receives no form of payment for this review.  I just like sharing good stuff when it crosses my path.



This resort looks awesome and I am going to check out the website right now! Thanks for sharing the great pictures!

[…] yesterday you got a peek {albeit a very detailed peek} at my vacation in the mountains of western North Carolina.  But Lakeview at Fontana wasn’t […]


I too just visited Lakeview at Fontana and found it to be the most relaxing vacation I have ever had–I went alone. I too discovered Humanite, plan to go back–loved that place. I did not see the article in S. Living, just googled spas in NC (I live in Knoxville, TN). Wow! is all I can say. Please visit my website soon. Hope to get it up and running by Jan 1, 2010. It will be a blog plus goodies for sale (found treasures). Julie

[…] monthly glossies from BHG and House Beautiful {they’re gift subscriptions}.  However, on a recent vacation I picked up the current issue of DIY Magazine for the drive.  And I was not […]


i love your blog!! we live a few hours from the lakeview at fontana and are thinking of going for a little mini getaway this summer. did you take any pics of the room? are there views from the rooms? thanks for your help!