Three Resorts Perfect for a Digital Detox
Updated: October 10, 2023
AAA takes a look at three resorts where you can disconnect from your devices and reconnect to nature and each other.
Courtesy of Little Palm Island
Palm Island Resort & Spa
Little Torch Key, Florida
It’s been called a real-world Gilligan’s Island, but you won’t find airings of the old TV sitcom at this adults-only island resort in the Lower Keys, accessible only by boat or seaplane. Welcoming guests in 2019 after a two-and-a-half-year shuttering due to Hurricane Irma, the resort features 15 redesigned South Seas-inspired thatched-roof bungalows, each housing two suites — with no TVs or telephones; instead, the ocean provides prime-time viewing. If you want to tune in to the tube, you’ll find the resort’s only TV in the Great Room. And while complimentary Wi-Fi is available throughout this five-and-a-half-acre tropical oasis, you’ll be too busy connecting to the postcard-perfect surroundings to be concerned about technological connectivity.
All the staples of an island escape are here, from snorkeling, scuba-diving and sailing to ecotours, fishing and hammock-napping on the white-sand beach. The resort’s award-winning Dining Room serves up French and Pan-Latin cuisine, and its full-service spa offers cross-cultural spa experiences (think Balinese, Thai and Caribbean spa treatments). If arriving by private boat, there’s a marina where you can dock. No boat? Simply drive to the Welcome Station on Little Torch Key, where you’ll be shuttled to the resort via motor yacht.Book Now
Courtesy of Lake Placid Lodge
Lake Placid Lodge
Lake Placid, New York
Getting away from it all — email, phone calls, social media and the like— i s easy at this elegantly rustic resort, the only hotel smack-dab on the tree-lined shores of Lake Placid. Built in 1882 as a private camp and rebuilt in 2005 after a devastating fire, the lakeside lodge recalls the Adirondack Great Camps of the Gilded Age, replete with 30 well-appointed accommodations — no two of which are alike. Whether you stay in any of 13 guestrooms and suites in the Main Lodge or Lakeside Building or in one of the 17 cabins, you’ll enjoy the warmth of wood-burning stone fireplaces hand laid by local masons, the beauty of ornate beds hand-built by local artisans and the absence of TV.
Double-down on disconnecting from your digital devices with the Check In to Check Out program. Upon check-in, simply give your devices to the front desk staff for safe keeping and reclaim them upon checkout. No screen time means more together time for hiking, boating, mountain biking, skiing, ice skating, fishing, stargazing, wilderness adventures, cooking classes and bonfires. You can also enjoy farm-to-fork dining, including four-course dinners, at Artisans Restaurant or casual fare at Maggie’s Pub, which houses the resort’s only TV. Of course, there’s nothing like slipping into an Adirondack chair and absorbing the majestic scenery of this unplugged paradise.
Courtesy of Lake Placid Lodge
Lost Valley Ranch
The Old West is alive and well at this family-owned and -operated dude ranch set amid 26,000 secluded acres of Pike National Forest in the Rocky Mountains. What began in 1961 as a working cattle ranch has evolved into an all-inclusive luxury retreat — one that has earned the AAA Four Diamond Award for the past 43 consecutive years — where you can get out of digital-age Dodge and seek refuge in any of 23 private cabins sans TVs, phones, and even Wi-Fi. (If you must make a call, you’ll have to hoof it to the main lodge.)
But far from primitive digs, each one-, two- or three-bedroom cabin is outfitted in stylish Western décor and modern conveniences such as Keurig coffeemakers and mini-fridges. Some cabins have Jacuzzi tubs and multiple bathrooms, too. Housekeeping and wood delivery for your fireplace are provided daily, and in-cabin massage therapy is offered (for a fee). As nice as the cabins are, though, you’ll want to be outdoors enjoying horseback riding (the ranch is home to 140 horses), hiking, square dancing, swimming, fly fishing, trapshooting, archery, hayrides, ice cream socials, campfire singalongs and cowboy cookouts. (Select activities cost extra.) You can also take part in Round-Up Week (in fall) and attend rodeos (held weekly in summer). But the most popular pastime in these parts may be kicking up your boots and rocking to the rhythm of a porch swing.Book Now
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Stacy Tillilie is a AAA Travel Expert.