You may recognize the exterior of the hotel from the 90s TV series Twin Peaks. Venture inside the Craftsman-style lodge to find warm-hued woods, fireplaces, leather furniture and accents, rustic touches, and slate floors evocative of the black river rocks found in the Snoqualmie River Canyon below. Although we have good things to say about our first time stay (weather played nice for a nearby hike, we explored the Northwest Railway Museum, drank Snoqualmie Brewery beer at The Pour House in nearby North Bend, and hit up roadside fruit stands), we fantasized about holing up in the digs on a cold/rainy/snowy Washington night.
Regardless, we there on a relaxation mission, and here’s how our evening played out:
At precisely 6:20 p.m., our massage therapists knocked on our door. Wearing only our robes and flip flops, we did a quick meet-and-greet with the masseuses before we all waltzed through our room (a slightly odd logistic), out the back door, and down a stone path through a garden to a tucked away terrace. There, a private tented area within earshot of nearby Snoqualmie Falls kitted with massage tables, hot rocks and plenty of massage oil awaited.
For 50-minutes, we were lulled into a state of total relaxation as our therapists gave our tight muscles some much-needed tough love, with the sound of water falling 270 feet providing the background soundtrack, and thankfully not Enya. We segued from our massage to an al fresco table set for two, a mere 10 feet away. We’d pre-ordered from the Moonlight Over the Falls menu, so all we had to do was sit back, enjoy the sounds of the falls and watch stars appear after the sun had set in brazen shades of orange and red.
The way it works is you can pick one of these two dining options: soup or salad, small plate, and an entrée or small plate, entrée and a dessert. We opted for the former and Chef de Cuisine Jack Strong created a Moonlight Dinner Hidden Terrace menu for us that emphasized his interpretation of indigenous Northwest cuisine.
Among the culinary highlights:
· Summer Herb Roasted Quail: heirloom tomato terrine, rosemary pesto, caramelized cipollini onion confit
· Buttermilk and Sage Marinated Pheasant: black plum farro, crispy gingersnap tuile, organic baby carrots, apricot brandy reduction
· Hot and Cold Artisan Foie Gras: foie gras torchon on petit brioche with cornichons and truffle aiolo, seared foie gras with poached black plum, wild huckleberry gastrique
The meal is accompanied by sommelier hand-selected wine pairings (three in total), although in reality, the smallish portions are more like a tasting. This is a matter of personal preference, but we like a little something in our glass at all times and firmly believe that all special occasions should start with a glass of bubbly. A meal like this could only benefit from some kind of champagne independent of the pairings to add to the romantic mood. Just an idea.
Though there seem to be a few minor logistical kinks to work out (I fear how far our server had to schlep to the kitchen), we can’t imagine a more stunning venue for proposals, celebrating birthdays and anniversaries, or simply when you need to get your sorry ass out of the dog house. Everything about Salish Lodge—and especially this package—was built for romance.
Other current spa specials include:
· $20 Yoga Classes every Friday and Saturday morning on the outside terrace
· Early Bird Specials ($40 off spa treatments, Monday-Thursday, 8:00-9:00 AM)
· Back-to-school Essential Teen Facials ($115 for 50 minutes)
· Power Repair Facials ($135 for 50 minutes, plus a complimentary Eyebrow Tint)
· The Outdoor Moonlight Massage and Hidden Terrace Dinner package starts at $500 and is subject to availability/weather permitting. Accommodations are not included in this rate; room rates start at $199.
Full disclosure: The writer’s one night stay was comped by the hotel, as she writes about Seattle-area food and travel topics for several publications.
[Photo: Globetrotting Gourmet]