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Journal / Special series
A Tale of Two Farms
As the world comes alive with a sense of adventure and healthy wellbeing, Tata is inspired to journey across the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee to her forever home-away-from-home, Blackberry Farm. Hidden away in its own private oasis, this wellness destination has lived off the land using its own old-world methods to live in an unwavering alignment with nature. With every visit, she is instilled with a grounding sense of peace that reminds her of her own skincare farm, and this summer, she invites you to join her for the long-awaited stay that’s been a year in the making.
Naturally secluded and existing in its own enchanting world, every corner of Blackberry’s lush 4,200-acre estate radiates a sense of serenity. As one of the leaders in luxury farm hotels, this rustic yet refined oasis offers a restorative space for the mind, body, and soul. With every mindful offering tying back to the healing elements of nature, this stay has always reminded Tata of her own skincare farm, which also instills a balanced and natural approach to self-care.
Rooted in a deep respect for nature, Blackberry’s gardens are where their farm-to-table journey begins. Grown with a variety of healing botanicals, not unlike our own, this is where The Farm’s Master Gardener, John, finds solace to plant, nurture, and harvest all the native herbs, plants, and mushrooms that eventually make their way to Blackberry’s extraordinary dining experience.
“Seeing this garden and nature is so precious.
So wild, rustic, abundant, and fragrant.”
- Tata Harper
The farm’s philosophy for living off the land resonates throughout, reminding us of our own grounding farm-to-skin methods. While strolling through the blooming gardens, Tata took moment to appreciate all the botanicals and produce being grown which then reminded her of her own garden.
One of the most unique aspects of the farm is its foraging practices. In their gardens and throughout their fields is where the farm’s chefs and gardeners venture out to forage for wild mushrooms. Depending on the seasons, they’ll collect a range of mushrooms including Shitake, Turkey Tail, and Morel — a species that grows all over our own farm in Vermont.
To pay their respects to the native land, Blackberry Farm also utilizes their time-honored traditions of preserving their seeds. Taking their signature heirloom seeds, they refrigerate them for over 60 years to preserve their genetic diversity. With this system of seed preservation, some of which spanning over 300 years, the garden is able to offer the purest, nutrient-rich varieties.
“It wasn’t until later that I realized how much genetic diversity we were losing, so seed preservation became important.
A lot has been collected and saved, and we’re always on the lookout for something to add to the collection.”
- Jonn, Master Gardener
And what’s a new and exciting addition that’s coming up with Blackberry? To elevate their farm-to-table dining experience, The Farm is working to plant a new truffle orchard with Burro trees which are a native species to the land.
From their original truffle orchard that was planted 10 years ago, they’ve learned so much about the cultivation and are looking forward to starting fresh with Burr Oaks.
This new orchard will take another 10 years to grow, however, Blackberry looks forward to cultivating the necessary, symbiotic relationship with the local soil to produce truffles that are best in their class.
In celebration of nature’s ability to renew year-round, Wellhouse Spa offers our very own Tata Harper spa treatments featuring our natural and rejuvenating products. As the first destination in the nation to carry our 3 brand new Sensorial Resets, Tata looks forward to being one the first to experience these ethereal, facial and body offerings designed to captivate all five senses using our luxurious and farm-fresh formulas.
TATA HARPER SENSORIAL RESET TREATMENTS AT WELLHOUSE SPA
Balance & Ground
Designed to melt away stress, these facial and body treatments take your senses through a warm and soothing journey to leave you feeling at peace while revealing skin that looks healthy and glowing.
Soothe & Reset
A restorative and soothing treatment that encourages a bodily reset for optimal performance leaving you feeling energized and comforted.
Illuminate & Energize
Crafted to stimulate cellular renewal and inspire a refreshing and calming sense of lightness, this treatment will reveal flawless, radiant skin that looks lit-from-within.
Steeped in the farm tradition, this is where their garden-grown dining experience comes to life. Often known as their Foothills Cuisine, their seasonal menu balances nature’s most rustic and refined elements. From freshly foraging their mushrooms that very day to utilizing their on-site dairy farm, their Blackberry chefs prepare a stunning, multi-course meal brimming with garden-fresh herbs and produce.
“We really feel like what we do here is very special with the aromatics of the meal and the magical, outdoor dining scenery. Every dish is very intentional, with each telling a story. They speak to sitting around a table in a moment of time and season.
- Sarah Steffan, Executive Chef at the Dogwood Restaurant
In celebration for Tata’s birthday, Sarah, Executive Chef at Blackberry Farm's Dogwood Restaurant, designed the perfect menu inspired by Tata Harper and our signature botanicals. In preparation for the meal, she walked to the gardens to pick all the flowers and herbs found in our own Farm Beauty Complex that would complement the dinner. In addition to their inclusion in the meals, the flowers also adorned the table offering the most magical tablescape and setting for the special occasion.
The evening began with selections from their prized wine cellar, one that’s famously the 2nd largest collection of wine in North America, that was served by their dedicated connoisseurs. The meal then began with their garden-fresh Heirloom Tomatoes & Peaches, followed by their Lavender Rosemary Grilled Broccolini paired with signature forest mushrooms, and then to end the exceptional meal, Tata enjoyed her famously prepared Garden Cake that was complimented by a Meadowsweet Gelato.
Sound familiar? Inspired by our Farm Beauty Complex that makes up most of our farm-fresh formulas, chef Sarah created this special treat steeped with fresh Medowsweet, Lavender, and Chamomile to create the ideal pairing for the Garden Cake.
In every aspect at Blackberry, wellness and nature are instilled in every offering. To ensure their guests are cared for based on their unique needs, the hotel offers wellness programs as well as rejuvenating fitness offerings to best suit their goals. Their wellness experts, like our own skincare experts, offer personalized plans to promote a healthy well-being no matter where they find themselves in their health journey.
For a grounding time in nature, Tata and her friend Jenny enjoy a yoga session on Blackberry’s outdoor platform immersed in the lush forests of the Great Smoky Mountains.
During their flow, both enjoyed an occasional mist of Hydrating Floral Essence, then a sensorial moment with the Irritability and Stress Aromatic Treatments to set the tone for a rejuvenating session.
Infused with fresh essential oils, our Aromatic Treatments act as natural mood boosters to help promote mental clarity and ease tension.
After her yoga and hike-filled day, she cleansed her skin with our creamy, exfoliating Regenerating Cleanser that she brought with her for the trip, along with our Summer Road Trip Essentials.
“Our adorable pups have been greeting guests since 2007. That’s when our first Lagotto Romagnolos, Tom and Lussi, took up residence at the farm. They’re working dogs with a legendary sense of smell, the breed has become synonymous with truffle hunting.
- Jim Sanford, Premier Truffle Dog Trainer
Rejuvenated from her stay and inspired to return to her own farm, Tata mindfully reflects on her appreciation for farm living. With this lifestyle, she’s able to embrace at both Blackberry Farm and her own farm, she is reminded of the all-encompassing beauty and high quality ingredients that nature provides.
In partnership with her friends at Master & Dynamic, Tata curated a playlist inspired by her Blackberry Farm getaway. Listen along wherever you are to transport yourself to this rustic yet refined farm retreat.
TATA'S BLACKBERRY EXPERIENCE
Now’s your chance to bring the Blackberry Farm experience home. From Tata’s favorite garden-fresh jams & cheeses, to their spa-worthy bath and wellness collection, and the playlist and headphones that inspired the getaway, enter to win: