The Essex Resort & Spa rolls out the green carpet |

5 Nov

It seems there are always several lists with “dog-friendly” hotels and places to visit. Often they are expensive hotels with huge pet fees and very few amenities that we want. Earlier this fall The New York Times published an article about dog-friendly hotels and we were very intrigued by The Essex Resort & Spa’s Top Dog Weekend. An entire weekend devoted to the pups at a beautiful resort near Burlington, Vermont! We were hooked!

Doggy treats at the reception desk

Doggy treats at the reception desk

Getting There
We rented a car and drove the 6 hours from Midtown Manhattan to Essex, Vermont. We stopped at Dog Mountain in St. Johnsbury about 90 minutes east of Essex. We highly recommend this stop!! Dog Mountain is one of the most magical and beautiful places we have ever visited! The drive up to Essex is very beautiful with several stops along the way.

Top Dog Weekend
The Resort had several doggy activities planned for us beginning Friday night. The package deal for $499 included all activities, hotel for 2 nights, and the hotel pet fee (normally $45 per night per pet). We had a welcome reception Friday evening, a dog treat cooking class Saturday morning, a guided hike Saturday afternoon, and a grooming pawty Sunday morning before we left. Everyone at the hotel seemed to genuinely like pups! We got freshly baked doggy treats every day and we were given doggy toys and water bowls. Mom thought she was getting a bargain for all of the amenities and activities!! We will go back for sure!

Hanging by Lake Champlain

Hanging by Lake Champlain

The Hotel
The Essex Resort & Spa is an 18-acre property, so there is a lot to explore! We had a huge room with a separate bedroom and a full kitchen. The bell staff brought doggy treats straight to our room every day! We had really great take out food from the on-site restaurants. Mom said she needed more time to check out the spa, tennis courts, swimming pools, hot tub, zip line, gardens, and shopping! We did visit the chickens and looked at the bonfire with s’mores!

Side Trips
The Essex Outlet mall is walking distance from the resort. We loved the Orvis Outlet store! Burlington, VT is a 20 minute drive to the east. We enjoyed shopping on Church Street and found most of the shops to be dog friendly. There is also a beautiful walking path along the lake. Of course, Dog Moutain is a must see! Also, allow time for the cute shops and stops along the roads. The Resort can book a dog sitter ($15 an hour) and humans can check out the Ben & Jerry’s tour! The off-leash dog park is about 10 minutes from the resort by car. Next time we will stay for 3 nights since there is so much to do!!

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