Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Getting into the Spirit

I haven't had much time for photography or writing as of late but I wanted to share a few of my weekend captures. I was lucky enough to be part of the Ecora AGM held at Spirit Ridge Winery Resort and Spa last Friday. The resort is located in the border town of Osoyoos B.C.  about two hours south of Kelowna.

It was a rush to get ready for the overnight stay so I figured my phone would suffice for photos.  My regret was immediate and my iPhone declared useless as we wound our way up the hill to the main building.  The weather was grey and overcast but somehow the low hanging cloud added to the mystical ambiance of the place.  My eye was caught by movement in the hills and I watched three wild horses - one charcoal black and two chestnut, as they moved over the dessert scrub that covered the undulating hills surrounding the resort.  Their manes and tails flowed behind them like silken flags, and without ever stepping inside the place, I immediately fell in love.*

The fact that they are also dog friendly added to the love.  As is the case in my own home, the dogs get greeted and treated before I do.

The resort is made up of a main building with restaurants, meeting rooms and Solterra Dessert Spa.  The rooms are in separate buildings; one and two bedroom suites, owned by individuals but put into a rental pool.  The accommodations were luxurious and spacious including a full sized fridge in the kitchen and many amenities including a washer and dryer.  

There is an outdoor pool, waters slide, hot tub, steam room, and fitness room located in the pool area. There were also some private cabanas but I'm not sure what that was about.   








Nk'mip winery, North America's first Aboriginal  owned and operated winery is located beside the main building and is definitely worth a tour.  

Also within walking distance is the NK'mip Desert Cultural Centre.  Our visit was too short to fit this in, but I visited the centre several years ago when it first opened and I highly recommend it, especially if you bring the kids.  

The combined facilities cover more than 200 acres so there are a number of trails to explore, and at this time of year you don't have to watch out for rattle snakes.











After the board meeting we had a delicious dinner in the main dining room.  I had the beef back ribs which were delicious and tender.  The chef salad was also fresh and flavourful, the wine was excellent, the cheesecake bite I had was dense and tangy and my espresso machiato was a perfect end to my meal.


The following morning I wasn't suffering too badly from my "spiritual" evening and a friend and I relaxed in the spa on the massaging chairs while we had a pedicure.  We decided on the Christmas special that included a gingerbread exfoliation and candy cane foot cream.  It was a great way to finish the visit along with the bonus of 15% of future visits to the resort.  I'm looking forward to our return, sometime soon I hope...where we can sample more NK'mip wine, tour the cultural centre and take in more sights in Osoyoos.  Consider these few photos an appetizer for a photo feast in the future, perhaps when the desert hills are in bloom.

*After further research I cannot say for sure that the horses were wild.  There are wild horses in the Osoyoos area, but there is also a riding stable near Spirit Ridge Resort.  The romantic in me chooses to believe they were wild and I would think those in the riding stable would be in a fenced area.

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