By Cheryl MacKinnon, Wellness Travel BC
Tucked in amongst the heart-stirring beauty of the Canadian Rockies lies a perfect getaway – yes, perfect. Cathedral Mountain Lodge rests amidst towering rock walls and mountain peaks, dramatic waterfalls (Takakkaw Falls, Canada’s second highest waterfall is just minutes away), and by the roaring, glacier-fed Kicking Horse River. A mighty river that slows to a gentle flow as it passes by the front doors of several of the Lodge’s cabins letting visitors know they are in a haven of rest and recreation, created by nature.
Located in Field, British Columbia at the centre of Yoho National Park, the Lodge is easily accessible by heading east on the Trans-Canada Highway from points around the province. Cathedral Mountain Lodge’s central location makes it the perfect Rocky Mountain basecamp for bespoke wellness. Wide open spaces with less faces, the most refreshing, almost moist scents of evergreen, wild brush, and roaming wildlife, each come together in a peaceful setting that is unmistakeably beautiful.
Handcrafted log cabins boasting floor to ceiling stone fireplaces, lots of windows, and each with a generous deck… create a picture-perfect view to reflect on life. Past the main lodge, rock gardens and old oak barrels overflow with wildflowers enticing you to wander down pathways towards the river. Adirondack chairs call from the water’s edge to come and sit awhile. Close your eyes as you drink in the sweet smells and sounds enveloping you. Bliss, contentment, and relaxation are now yours.
Resplendent in mountain-styled elegance, the main lodge reflects a comfortable ambiance throughout the dining room to the patio and the massive deck. An afternoon respite in front of the outdoor fireplace gently prods one to linger, longer…perhaps over a glass of wine with a specially prepared cheese tray if time of day is of no concern. Early evening onwards, dinner menu choices won’t disappoint. During our last visit, a guest we chatted with shared she was enjoying Chef Steven Lay and his team’s passion for mouth-watering fresh, local, and certified organic ingredients a week after she’d arrived. And, after a deep, peaceful, and ever-so-restful sleep, awakening to Chef’s breakfast goodies is a palate-pleaser savoured in the main lodge dining room, or out on its expansive view deck.
Bring the Kids?
Cathedral Mountain Lodge and surrounding terrain deliver on an outstanding holiday for families with children six years and older (book a cabin with a sleeping loft for added fun). No computers or swimming pool here – the entertainment is pure, raw, and digital free if you so choose. Nature calls to come outdoors exploring the abandoned railway trails, ride a bike, take a hike, even catch a fish – you decide.
When you’re feeling the need to chill, head back to your cabin, grab the board games or play cards. Maybe steal a quiet seat on the cabin porch and read a book together. Without a doubt, this setting provides a wonderful opportunity to entertain your brood in ways often craved back home in the city. Note too that with advance notice, the Management team and their superb staff can arrange meals for picky eaters or those with food allergies.
Nancy Stibbard, CEO of the Capilano Group of Companies
Most of us with tenure in BC’s tourism industry either know of, or have worked in some capacity with Nancy Stibbard, CEO of the Capilano Group of Companies. Without question, there is a shared awe, and in fact, fascination for this dynamic woman’s energy and business savvy. Products owned and operating under Ms. Stibbard’s perceptive eye range from Vancouver’s oldest visitor attraction – Capilano Suspension Bridge, to Stanley Park Pavilion, Stanley’s Bar & Grill and Prospect Point Bar & Grill and Trading Post in Stanley Park, retail operations in Victoria, Moraine Lake and Banff. Stibbard’s company resort projects include Moraine Lake Lodge and Cathedral Mountain Lodge. Having received numerous business honours throughout her notable career, including induction to Canada’s Tourism Hall of Fame, Nancy Stibbard stands out as one of the most highly respected and inspirational entrepreneurs within tourism and hospitality in British Columbia, and indeed, Canada. We owe her a debt of gratitude for her leadership, her vision, and her integrity.
In the summer, the highway drive from points around British Columbia to Cathedral Mountain Lodge is filled with photo-op scenery of clear open spaces and very few faces taking center stage. Celebrate our province’s return to travel by visiting smaller communities along your route, as health and wellness protocols are maintained by residents, visitors, and business alike.
When You Go (Anytime After June, 2021)
Reservations are being accepted now for the 2021 season which begins June 11 and closes for the season on Sunday, September 26, 2021 at Cathedral Mountain Lodge. Whether you choose the start of the season or after the kids are back in school, this is one holiday that you will enjoy at any time throughout the summer, to early fall.
For information and specials, visit online at www.cathedralmountain.com or telephone toll free 1.866.619.6442. For route and general travel information, including the history of the Spiral Tunnels and the town of Field, please visit www.kootenayrockies.com.