Family Traditions

For those who didn’t grow up spending their summers at the family cottage, The Lodge at Glendorn (Bradford, PA) offers a taste of what they missed. From fly fishing and canoeing to hiking and enjoying s’mores around a campfire, boredom is the one thing not on the menu at this secluded retreat. Located next to the Allegheny National Forest, it began as a cherished family destination after C.G. Dorn purchased the property in 1927 as a getaway for his growing family. Over the years, new family members built individual cabins to accommodate their own growing broods. In 1995, the Dorns decided to open their beloved estate to the public. One family who had become enamored with the enchanting property became instrumental in preserving it after it was put up for auction in 2009. Cliff Forrest and his family not only made Glendorn their home but also set about enhancing the property, made up of 12 guest cabins decorated in the vintage style of when they were built and the main lodge, which includes the dining room, kitchen, four guest bedrooms, a billiards room, and a sun porch. One of the most highly anticipated enhancements was the addition of The Forest Spa.

According to spa director Jennifer Kwiatkowski-Herzog, the spa’s location, near the main lodge, played a large part in its development. “This was a three-year project,” says Kwiatkowski-Herzog. “We wanted the perfect location on the property and found just that. The Forest Spa is a place where guests can unwind and experience the ultimate relaxation, all while enjoying the Glendorn charm and feeling found throughout the property.”

Not surprisingly, nature takes center stage in not only the activities guests participate in but also in the spa itself. In fact, the spa subscribes to the philosophy, as noted on its website, that “nothing is more beautiful or healing than nature.” With that in mind, the menu was designed to showcase treatments that incorporate the best nature has to offer. For example, the Fresh Facial ($215, 50 minutes) features a customized cleansing using berries foraged from the property followed by an exfoliation with freshly ground nuts. After a relaxing facial massage, guests are treated to a fresh honey mask, an upper body massage, and an application of fresh rosewater toner and moisturizer. Other menu highlights include the Wine Lovers Body Treatment ($280, 80 minutes), which features an exfoliation with crushed grapeseeds and blackberry fibers and a stimulating massage with a blend of Mediterranean olive oil and red grapeseed extract, and the Lavender and Lemongrass Manicure and Pedicure ($160, 80 minutes), which involves a soak and scrub infused with lavender and lemongrass grown at Glendorn.

“When creating the menu, we felt it was important to offer a variety of spa services—something for everyone,” says Kwiatkowski-Herzog. “Whether it be a fresh all-natural facial, a body treatment, our signature tandem massage, or our Bunny Patch services for tweens and teens, we wanted guests of all ages to be able to take part in the spa.” The spa’s Bunny Patch treatments include the Spa Petite Facial ($125, 40 to 50 minutes), a mini facial intended to educate younger spa-goers on the importance of healthy skincare, and the Petite Manicure ($50, 30 minutes) and Pedicure ($60, 30 minutes).

Educating guests is actually one of Kwiatkowski-Herzog’s biggest challenges, specifically teaching them the importance of continuing treatments once they’ve returned home. “Everyone wants to take care of themselves on holiday,” she says. “But, more often than not, when they return home, they don’t continue getting massages for their aches and pains or facials to keep up with what we have done.” To encourage guests to adopt an at-home routine when they leave, every treatment offered has a corresponding homecare regimen. The spa also features product lines that are not only esthetically appealing but also feel great on the skin. Even the spa’s lingerie line, Fleur’t, was chosen because of its softness.

While guests visit the spa for many reasons, relaxation is generally a priority. Fortunately, with 10 employees on staff, the spa can help approximately 40 guests each day achieve that desired state of backwoods bliss. “Our guests come to Glendorn to get away from it all,” says Kwiatkowski-Herzog. “They get to take a step back in time and relax in an environment where they can be one with nature but also get out and have some fun.”