Tag Archives: cabin rentals

wintery-fall

Ho Ho Ho, What do you know?

Blairsville-Union County is not your average sleepy mountain town. There seems to always be something going on in these mountains. As we wind down on a fun, fall season, full of festivals and music, we look ahead to cooler days, crackling fires and special holidays.

Cooler days mean outdoor adventures and exploring. Choose one of many hiking trails on or adjacent to the Appalachian Trail, down to waterfalls, or even up to the highest peak in Georgia. From moderate to extreme and short to long, hiking trails are abundant in and around Blairsville-Union County. Consider a short hike to Helton Creek Falls or Wolf Creek Falls at Vogel State Park. Maybe choose a more moderate hike to the summit of Georgia’s highest mountain, Brasstown Bald rising 4,784 ft above sea level. For a more strenuous challenge, hit the Appalachian Trail at the top of Neel’s Gap and conquer Blood Mountain.

Whether you decide to camp or rent a cozy cabin, a warm crackling fire is in order this time of year. From rustic to chic, you can find a cabin on the banks of the Nottely River or on a mountaintop with endless vistas. With 90% of the county protected by the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest, you have your choice of prime campgrounds. The act of gathering around a fire dates back to prehistoric times. So, unplug your phone, grab a bag of marshmallows and enjoy that mesmerizing glow of the fire with your loved ones.

So, now you know that as the last leaf falls off the trees and cold air nips at your nose, you can keep busy or unplug, shop till you drop or rejoice with the holiday season. Blairsville-Union County has everything you need for a well rounded mountain vacation with your family and friends. For more information about camping, hiking, lodging, events or area information call 706-745-5789, check out www.VisitBlairsvilleGa.com, or stop by the Welcome Center at 129 Union County Recreation Road in Blairsville.

Photo courtesy of Ilke Lander

Paradise Hills Resort & Spa Offers a Unique North Georgia Vacation

Paradise Hills Resort and Spa offers its guests a relaxing North Georgia vacation. Conveniently located in Blairsville, a two hour drive is all it takes to escape the crowds, noise, and stress of Atlanta. This North Georgia resort offers cabin rentals and a variety of activities. Ready for adventure? Enjoy the scenic hiking trails, waterfalls, and lakes in the surrounding Chattahoochee National Forest. Want to take it easy? Kick back and relax with massages at the resort spa and wine tasting at the farm winery, all located at the secluded mountain resort. We talked to Ilke Lander who hosts the resort along with her husband Robert, about what makes Paradise Hills special.

Paradise Hills was created in 1988 by a local man who brought in a portable saw mill, milled the lumber onsite and hand built the first 4 cabins. Since the beginning, there have been 3 owners – including the founder and current owners Robert and Ilke Lander. The Landers took over in 2002 and at the time, had only cabin rentals to offer. They offered the original cabins plus 4 more, totaling 8 cabins.

“My husband and I ran the entire place by ourselves, from check-in, to cleaning, to maintenance to business administration,” said Ilke Lander. “Today, we have 10 part time/full time employees but we still are very involved in the day to day operations. Bob is our winemaker and vineyard manager and I oversee all aspects of the combined businesses as the general manager.”

The resort is known for it’s world-class service, proven by the many awards won for their services. Paradise Hills is unique among other cabin rentals in North Georgia as a European style spa and farm winery with a wine tasting bar are all on one property. “As far as I know, we are the only resort in the state that offers this combination of services,” said Lander. “More importantly, we pride ourselves in the highest quality of customer service.”

When asked about what she has learned from her experience in opening and managing a business with her husband, Lander discusses how it’s important to approach every new circumstance with flexibility. “We have learned to be patient with business growth but continue to move forward and stay progressive,” said Lander. “We have learned to evolve as the world evolves, as our guest requests/needs evolve, and as our business model evolves.” Paradise Hills, added the Lodge and spa in 2006, and in 2012 the farm winery and vineyards were added.

The Lander family first came to Blairsville as tourists. We loved the quaintness of the small town, the beautiful landscaping of the mountains and the idea of a safe, family oriented community to begin a family in,” said Lander.

Blairsville has welcomed Paradise Hills, and has provided numerous opportunities for the Landers over the years. Bob and Ilke Lander participate in the community’s development as members in civic organizations. They were also board members for the local chamber of commerce.

“Blairsville offers a great deal of support for business owners starting out; there are many resources for business owners,” said Lander. “We have been fortunate to be supported by our local representatives as well, with the addition of our farm winery – a first in our county.”