Idaho Named Home of Three Best Resorts in the Western United States
If you’re looking to unwind and relax at one of the best resorts in the western United States, you can do it without leaving the state.
Earlier this year, Travel + Leisure put together a list of “The 15 Best Resorts in the Western United States” based on their readers’ experiences. They tell you right off the bat that the list won’t feature resorts from Arizona, California, Colorado, Montana, Utah or Wyoming because those states are so saturated with resorts each of those states gets its own list.
That leaves Idaho, Oregon, Nevada, New Mexico and Washington to choose from. There are beautiful ski destinations, excellent waterfront properties and sprawling wine countries in these locations, so it’s no surprise that there would be some gorgeous resort properties built there to entice people to visit. (We said visit. Not move there. Put down your pitchforks and use your disgustingly negative social media comments somewhere else.)
On the elite list of 15 best in the west, Bishop’s Lodge in Sante Fe, New Mexico took the #1 spot. In choosing the resort, Travel + Leisure praised the recent renovations that Auberge Resorts Collection did to guest rooms and suites, while still making the 150-year-old chapel and lodge an important part of the experience at the foothills resort.
The magazine said virtually nothing about their other fourteen picks, which is a shame because three Idaho resorts found themselves on the list. We’ve stayed at two of them, so we’ll try to fill in the blanks on what makes them great based on our personal experience.
#12 The Coeur d’Alene Golf & Spa Resort
Home to the famous Floating Green, The Coeur d’Alene is THE place to stay while visiting Northern Idaho. When we visited in February, their lakeside lounge “Whispers” had their cozy igloos set up on the docks. These cute little dining domes were heated, decorated in a Valentine’s Day theme and had a sips/bites menu exclusive to the igloo. We were lucky enough to visit early enough in the day when the igloos are open seating. After 3 p.m., they require reservations and a food/beverage minimum. Igloo season starts again in October.
As a bit of a spinning fanatic, this author was particularly impressed by the fitness center because they had Peleton bikes. We had always wanted to try one, but couldn’t justify spending the money on one without trying it first. It was cool to try one out during our trip to The Coeur d’Alene.
Beverly’s was everything you could ask for in a fine-dining experience. The scallops, while a bit pricey, were incredible and they surprised us with this cute cotton candy dessert to celebrate our anniversary.
Our only regret about the trip? Not knowing before we checked in that you had to book your soak in their infinity-pool-turned-hot-tub. It’s located by the golf course and they shuttle you over via Resort limo vans. The sessions were totally booked when we arrived, so we missed out on the experience. That said, they do have a very nice heated indoor pool and multiple hot tubs at the actual resort. We enjoyed getting to unwind there.
#11 Sun Valley Resort
This is the one we’re yet to stay at, so we’ll let Travel + Leisure do the talking. It was one of the resorts they singled out in the setup for their list. They said:
“Travelers who look beyond the busiest slopes in the Rockies will also discover some of the country's best ski resorts. One such property is this year's No. 11 entry: Sun Valley Lodge, in Sun Valley, Idaho. The destination, long a low-key celebrity favorite, is now getting a wider audience. For a less hyped experience, consider visiting in the warmer month.”
#5 Shore Lodge
On a whim, we decided to do a long weekend at Shore Lodge in McCall during the off-season in March when rooms are a little more budget-friendly. After that experience, we will absolutely say that if you love spending time in McCall, staying at Shore Lodge at least once is an absolute must.
Shore Lodge didn’t just live up to the hype, it over delivered. When you check in they offer you a complimentary glass of wine that goes great with their “fruit & cheese plate” if you choose to add it to your reservation. (You know that we absolutely persuaded our spouse to add it on!)
The photos the resort shares of their heated pool, hot tubs and restaurants are spot on with the actual experience, but what really impressed us about Shore Lodge were little things. The resort offers guests complimentary s’mores around the fire pits nightly. They package the graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallows for you. You grab the sticks and toast them to your liking.
We also loved, loved, loved their game room. You’ll find that downstairs near the Cutwater restaurant. It has shuffleboard, foosball and skee-ball, along with a selection of board games. We LOVE skee-ball, so the fact that we could play as many times as we wanted totally on the house was super, super cool!
If we had stayed longer, we would’ve been interested in experiencing services at their spa “The Cove.” For years we’ve been interested in The Cove’s immersion pools that you’re invited to enjoy after your treatment. Maybe next time!