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January 26, 2012 - Image 52

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2012-01-26

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Fancy a bit of history with your luxury? Follow in the footsteps of assorted presi-
dents and family (Joseph and Rose Kennedy honeymooned here in 1914), Rocke-
fellers and Astors, Davy Crockett, Princess Grace, Bing Crosby and General Robert
E. Lee, and soak up the gracious elegance of the Greenbrier in White Sulphur
Springs, W.Va. Tucked into a valley within the spectacular Allegheny Mountains,
what originated in 1778 as a mecca for health-minded visitors coming to "take the
waters" and socialize at the resort's Springhouse, still on the property today, has
over the years become renowned as the epitome of Southern graciousness and im-
peccable service. The 6,500-acre estate is highlighted by lushly manicured grounds
and a stunning interior: Thirty miles of carpeting, 15,000 rolls of wallpaper and
45,000 yards of fabric were hand-picked by New Yorker Dorothy Draper, the
queen of 20th-century interior design, and vividly lavished throughout the estate
(an on-site upholstery shop whips up
replacement fabrics beginning to show
signs of wear).
Used during various wars as a hos-
pital, military headquarters — even a
top-secret Cold War underground bomb
shelter — the Greenbrier is a National
Historic Landmark with 682 rooms,
suites, guesthouses and cottages at your
disposal for a celebration as all-encom-
passing or intimate as you choose. Bride
and groom can arrive in a horse-drawn
carriage and choose from a rose-covered
gazebo, an ornate pink ballroom with
dinner served on custom china trimmed
in 24-karat gold, a stunning mountain-
top ceremony or a simple streamside
service to say their "I Do's."
CAPACITY Up to 400 guests can be
accommodated for seated dinner and
MENU A brigade of more than 150 chefs
will be on hand to customize a menu
using produce grown by the culinary
team at the on-site Greenbrier Farm and
beef from the Greenbrier Cattle Com-
pany. Led by the resort's French pastry chef, the on-site bakery, which has been in
continuous operation since the 1800s, has 12 full-time bakers to create the cake of
your dreams.
WHILE YOU'RE THERE Guests can take advantage of the resort's four champi-
onship golf courses (Sam Snead was hired as the golf pro in 1936 and remained
until his death), 40,000-square-foot spa, indoor and outdoor tennis courts and
pools, an assortment of dining from casual to formal plus the underground Casino
Club. No need to leave the grounds for a shopping excursion: More than 30 shops
and boutiques offer everything from high-end designers to gifts for the home and
gourmet chocolates.
CONTACT (888) 598-0246; greenbrier.com .

" 20 February 2012 I


When Jenna Lyons, now creative director at J. Crew, was married at the "black-tie
barbecue" of her dreams in 2003, the site, Gedney Farm in New Marlborough, Mass.,
suddenly found its name rolling off the tongues of East Coast elite and fashionistas and
written up in New York's gossip pages. Since then, the charming locale tucked into the
Berkshire Mountains, always a local favor-
ite, has quietly played host to many rustic-
chic weddings on the farm, including that of
a Glamour fashion editor highlighted in the
pages of Martha Stewart Weddings in 2010.
If gathering up an intimate group of
friends and family and opening their eyes to
the stars and the simple and gentle beauty
of a historic corner of the country they likely
never have heard about sounds like a dream
come true, check out Gedney Farm, at the
east end of the historic village of Berk-
shire. Built at the turn of the century as a
showcase for the finest Percheron stallions
and Jersey cattle of the day, the barns at
Gedney Farm were modeled after the great
Normandy barns of 19th-century France.
Beautifully detailed dormers and cupolas,
gambrel slate and cedar roofs majesti-
cally illustrate the Berkshire's Gilded Age
and high standards for craftsmanship — a
principle from which all renovations were
begun. What used to be the cattle barn,
with soaring, 30-foot ceilings, has been
transformed into 16 rustic yet elegant guest
rooms and suites with granite fireplaces and
large tiled whirlpool tubs — some under
glass-domed ceilings — in a design that
effortlessly integrates the past with contem-
porary design and modern comfort. Across
a courtyard and garden terrace used for
cocktail receptions, the former horse barn is
now a magnificent space used for weddings
and other special events.
Additional guests can stay down the
road in the privacy and serenity of an Old
Berkshire manor house. Built in 1906 as
a family estate on gently sloping lawns by
a prominent New Marlborough resident,
Mepal Manor and Spa, a country hotel and luxury 6,000-square-foot spa and yoga stu-
dio, offers 12 guest rooms while a great hall opens to a covered terrace and spectacular
panoramic views of the rolling Berkshire hills to the Southwest. The area is also packed
with an abundance of charming inns, bed-and-breakfasts and hotels.
CAPACITYGedney Farm can accommodate up to 250 people for a seated dinner with space
for a band and dancing.
in Parmesan Tuille or a Sushi Station; or entrees including Sesame Crusted Fillet of Wild
Salmon with Lemongrass Sauce or Grilled Petite Filet Mignon, starting at $95 per person.
Exquisite custom cakes start at $8 per person.
within the rolling Appalachian mountains and a -three-hour drive from New York City, the
Berkshires is about as picturesque as it gets. Enjoy farm-fresh dining, quaint villages, an-
tiques shopping and an abundance of Gilded Age mansions to tour; or take the short drive
to hear the Boston Symphony Orchestra at its summer home, Tanglewood.
CONTACT (800) 286-3139; gedneyfarm.com .


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