For those of you who enjoy traveling with your dogs, have I got a find for you! This edition of Glamorous Getaways features The Park On Main in Highlands, North Carolina, a hotel that not only allows guests to bring their dogs but was designed with man’s best friend in mind. Our two dachshunds, Louis and Coco, joined us on this adventure which entailed a 12-hour drive from South Florida, but it was well worth the trek to discover this wonderful respite from the sweltering South Florida Summer heat!
The Park on Main is located at the western end of Highland’s tony Main Street which features a delightful selection of restaurants, art galleries and boutiques. Originally built in the 1980’s, the hotel operated as the Highlands Suites Hotel until it was purchased in 2013 and closed for a year long renovation. The hotel reopened in July 2014 as The Park on Main and the result is an elegant, yet relaxed 24-suite hotel whose rooms surround a beautifully landscaped garden terrace, inspired by New York City’s Central Park.
The hotel entrance is flanked by Mackenzie-Childs Courtly Check water bowls and stone statues of a dachshund and the hotel’s mascot, Mr. Pickles, a spunky black Scottish terrier, which made our pups feel right at home! The beautiful black and white lobby features a gorgeous crystal chandelier, sumptuous drapery, and beadboard paneling adorned with floor to ceiling canine oil paintings. The hotel staff was also very helpful and welcoming led by General Manager, Michael Hammond who’s been with the hotel since it re-opened a year ago. “This is a hotel built by animal lovers,” Hammond shared, “we’re also the second hotel in the nation to partner with a rescue organization to help shelter animals get adopted.” The Park on Main partners with the Cashiers-Highlands Humane Society and features a dog on-site every month that’s available for adoption. “Clyde was our dog who just got adopted and we’re waiting to get another one.” It’s nice to know a hotel which caters to pets also goes the extra mile to help shelter pets in their community find loving, forever homes.
Upon entering our room, Louis and Coco bounded into the beautifully appointed (Superior King) guest suite which featured the hotel’s hallmark Mackenzie-Childs dog bowls, cozy Orvis dog bed, lovely white marble bathroom and extremely comfortable bed which Louis approved after performing his rigorous quality check (watch above video to see him in action). Amenities included in every hotel suite at Park on Main are a refrigerator, Keurig coffee maker and generously sized flat screen TVs in both the living area and bedroom. Our Superior King Suite had plenty of room for the pups to run around and fit all of our “gear” comfortably. While the hotel does not have an onsite restaurant, they do offer a selection of breakfast items in the morning (yogurt, croissants, English muffins, milk and cereal etc) and there are plenty of dining options available on Main Street just steps outside the front door.
The Park on Main is a true gem in North Carolina’s beautiful Highlands and we’re already looking forward to our return. If you decide to go and bring your dog(s), here are 5 things you won’t want to miss during your visit:
1.) Stroll down Main Street: While only a few blocks long, Main Street is perfect for a stroll with your pups – there’s so much for them to sniff and savor! Just be prepared to stop every few minutes for people as well as shop keepers to love on your pooches and give them treats.
2.) Ice Cream at Kilwin’s: An afternoon scoop at Kilwin’s became part of our daily routine during our stay. The courtyard out front is a social gathering place full of delightful folks and their children and pets seeking to socialize and enjoy the beautiful day – not to mention the ice cream!
3.) Dine al fresco at Bistro on Main: This delightfully dog friendly eatery is perfect for enjoying lunch or dinner outside with your pup(s). Summer daytime temps seldom break 75 degrees and evenings are in the low 60’s, making it the perfect spot to relax and enjoy the delicious food and ambiance. The Bistro’s delicious Southern-inspired cuisine will also delight your palate!
4.) Curl up on a rainy afternoon: Highlands experiences abundant rainfall, averaging about 100 inches per year, so chances are you’ll experience some rain during your visit. When a storm blows in, be sure to seize the opportunity to curl up with your pup and read a favorite book or magazine and enjoy the moment.
5.) Enjoy a glass of wine at the Mountaintop Wine Shoppe: We fell in love with this adorable wine store located across the street from The Park on Main in one of the oldest historical buildings in Highlands. So leash the hounds and trot them over for a delicious glass of wine on the front terrace under the oak trees. Be sure to check their calendar of events as well!