Since 2005 The Resort at Paws Up has welcomed travelers looking to escape the rat race relaxing and adventuring on its 37,000-acre pristine playground. This year, the luxury ranch debuted green o, an intimate, adults-only boutique sanctuary on a private section of the Montana ranch property.
Soaring towards the Big Sky that Montana is named for, the Tree Haus is a two-story “cabin” perched 15 feet in the air.
While Paws Up Resort is rustic chic, green o is modern personified. Twelve design-forward glass cabins, invite guests to drink in the forest views. While there are several different styles to choose from including the Green Haus, with its living roof, my favorite is the Tree Haus.
This is your childhood tree house all grown up. Soaring towards the Big Sky that Montana is named for, the Tree Haus is a two-story “cabin” perched 15 feet in the air. The piece de resistance is a glass spiral staircase leading to a romantic bedroom suite. Two terraces allow you to get out and enjoy the view even more.
In addition to the living roof, the Green Haus features a skylight above the bed for you to stargaze with your sweetie. The Round Haus is all sexy curves giving guests 180-degree views of the Montana ranch wilderness, while the Light Haus delights with a private hot tub and not one, but two fireplaces.
While the green o name is a nod to the town of Greenough where Paws Up Resort is located, it also reflects the sustainability practices that were incorporated into the resort. Site selection for each house ensured that no trees would need to be cut down, and the building practices used were designed to showcase the surrounding forest.
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With only 12 homes, each cabin affords couples abundant privacy, but should you want to socialize, the center of green o is its Social Haus. Designed by Seattle-based architectural firm Mutuus Studio, the contemporary glass lodge features a lounge and open kitchen concept gourmet restaurant helmed by Executive Chef Brandon Cunningham and James Beard Award-nominated pastry Chef Krystal Swenson.
The 24-person restaurant is exclusive to green o guests and is focused on local, sustainable ingredients like cherries, wild chamomile, elk, beef and unexpected flavors like Douglas fir tips. The centerpiece of the kitchen is its live fire cooking. The chef rotates the menu often and can easily cater to guest’s dietary needs and requests.
While all green o facilities are restricted to its guests on the Montana ranch, anyone staying at green o can enjoy all the activities and amenities of Paws Up Resort. The 60 square miles to explore is made more manageable with either the mountain bikes or the Lexus hybrid SUV that comes with each haus.
When on a Montana ranch, it’s time to channel your inner cowboy or cowgirl, and embrace the wide variety of ranch activities available. With more than 30 miles of trails available, I opt to take a guided five-mile nature hike. Not only do I learn about the flora and fauna of the area, but I also get handy tips like, it’s good to always make noise when hiking to deter bears. Clearly this is not the place for a silent meditative stroll.
In the afternoon, I join an ATV tour that lets me get out and really explore the wilderness, including the Blackfoot River, which cuts through the property and was made famous in the Brad Pitt movie, “A River Runs Through It.”
On another day, it’s time to play Annie Oakley, shooting clays at the resort’s shooting range, while my friend opts for a horseback ride leaving from the resort’s Saddle Club, the largest equestrian center in the state that is at Paws Up Resort. Horse lovers can take guided rides, lessons or partake in activities like cow croquet, team penning or wagon team driving.
After all that activity, I’m glad to relax with a deep-tissue massage in Spa Town. Located in soaring pines, Spa Town is a colony of pristine white tents stitched together by a wooden boardwalk. Each treatment tent features a meadow view and a soundtrack sung by Mother Nature. It’s beyond easy to Zen out here.
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Throughout the year the Montana ranch resort hosts many special culinary weekends, including The Wonder Women of Food & Wine event that is taking place during my stay. Three top female chefs create two nights of delectable wine-paired dinners that make me glad for all the outdoor activities to work off the calories. If you’re a wine lover, spend some time talking to the Azi, the resort’s effervescent sommelier.
After dinner, guests retreat to Trough for an after-dinner drink and live music or to the outdoor fire pits for a lesson in S’more-ology, featuring over-the-top s’mores fixins’ like sea salt caramel and candied bacon.
Living in a city, I realize how soothing and restorative sheer quiet and nature can be.
During the summer months, Paws Up Resort is decidedly family-focused with the opening of several glamping communities on property. The one-, two- and three-bedroom timber homes also make great communes for a multi-generational getaway. During this busy season, couples will greatly appreciate retreating to the quiet romantic calm of the new green o.
While green o and Paws Up Resort offer up a wealth of activities, I find that my favorite part of the trip is the quiet simplicity. I enjoy being in my cabin staring at the wide-open, beautiful, untamed country and hearing no cars, no people and no noise. Living in a city, I realize how soothing and restorative sheer quiet and nature can be.
No matter whether you come for the more than 50 outdoors adventures, the epicurean delights or simply to escape to reconnect with your partner, green o and Paws Up Resort has a Montana getaway for everyone.