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Image Credit: Michelle Watt

USA cabin retreats by Getaway: The ultimate digital detox

By James Wong on 13th February 2021

Though it’s February, many of us are already in need of a mini break from our soul-zapping screens. Escaping to nature does just the trick in helping us disconnect with business and reconnecting with ourselves. In 2015, Jon Staff and Pete Davis launched Getaway – a set of tiny cabins out in the (easily accessible) wilderness – designed for stressed-out city folk looking for a quick, easy and rejuvenating escape.

The cabins have been a runaway hit all over the US – with outposts outside of major hubs including Los Angeles, Austin, Atlanta, Washington DC, Boston and, of course, New York City. Here’s the lowdown if you fancy a couple days off from being on.

How it works

Whether you live in Boston or you’re visiting NYC on business and need a breather, all outposts are located within a two-hour drive from major US cities. Simply log on, select your closest stay, and you’re emailed the full address in the confirmation. There is no front desk, so instead you’re provided with a door code on the morning of check-in. Parking spots are also offered.

Locking away the tech

This is what it’s all about – disconnecting. The cabin has a cell phone lockbox which you are encouraged to use and there is no Wi-Fi, so leave the laptop at home. A landline is available in case of emergencies or if you need to contact staff, whom are available 24/7.

What the cabins are like

Waking up to views of the woods is a welcome change from the noise of the city

The custom-built tiny cabins range from 140 to 200 square feet and come with most home comforts. You’ll find inside a queen bed or queen bunks with fresh linens, a kitchen area with stove, mini-fridge and sink, private toilet and shower with biodegradable shampoo, conditioner, and body wash, and, of course, there’s climate control (vital in America!) in the form of both heat and AC. Outside, there’s a fire pit with grilling grate and seating. Guests may bring their four –legged friends along for a small fee and in turn are provided with dog bowls, treats, waste bags, and an outdoor lead.

Expect amazing sleep

A getaway like this promotes optimum sleep, with blue light eliminated and just nature as company. To further enhance, add a natural supplement with valerian root, chamomile, and GABA such as Liveli’s ‘Sleep Peacefulli’, and use a Farmtrue’s ‘Meditation Trio’ which comes with purify smidge, ghee candle and meditation roller. The cabin has curtains but for full blackout we recommend a silk eye mask too.

Cooking in the cabin

The cabin is equipped with a kitchenette, complete with tools; cutting board, can opener, soap, olive oil and the like, all stored in a way that really makes the most of the space. For those unfamiliar with US supermarkets, HEB and Kroger are massive, but Whole Foods Market reigns supreme for quality. Look for 365, which is their own range (think M and S or Waitrose) including snacks that are indulgent yet (almost) guilt-free. Organic trail mix anyone?

Or a take-out alternative

Each cabin is equipped with a kitchenette, with all the essentials and running drinking water

For those not big on preparing dinner, why not have someone else do the work? Dorothy Lane Market is a premium family-owned gourmet grocer with the most amazing American and European cheese packages to start you off. Go Buddha is one for plant based diets – you can get a week’s worth of dairy free, gluten free and vegan friendly mains (and dessert) delivered in a box for your trip, and they are fresh for up to four days. For bigger groups, have Hungry Catering’s local chefs whip something up for the team.

What to drink

There are coffee and tea making facilities available with easy-to-make drip coffee, and bags of TeaPigs stocked. Add some Manukora Manuka Honey instead of sugar to really luxe it up. In terms of wines and spirits suited for the outdoors, Avaline recently launched a sparkling vegan wine which is clean and crisp, and ‘Merican Mule do a funky canned whiskey cocktail called Fire Mule that’s cooler transportation friendly.

Reconnecting with humans

There are plenty of options to keep you entertained and cabins come with a booklet to spark ideas. Go hiking, practice yoga, or have some campfire fun (firewood is available for a small fee) – laughter is one of the best cures for stress. There’s nothing like a hilarious game of Cards Against Humanity with a circle of cheeky friends (and for those travelling with kids, don’t worry, there’s a less explicit family edition, too).

A bookworm haven

Bookworms will be in their element in this relaxing space surrounded by nature. Image credit: Michelle Watt

The huge glass window is so inviting that you’ll want to pass hours leaning against it with a good book, and the cabin even has a small selection for guests to borrow. Otherwise the 7” Kindle Oasis is a must (yes, yes, technically tech, but it’s 2021 – books are still heavy and some of us like Audible!). The sleek model holds millions of books, newspapers and audio books to stimulate minds for hours on end and, best of all, it’s waterproof, so you can read it by the lake without worrying about dropping it and ruining the Becoming Michelle Obama experience.

Pampering outdoors and in the tiny space

For those who’ve spent the day hiking around the woods rather than reading, get creative in nourishing the body outdoors. A forest foot soak can easily be conjured up with a container, some rose petals, and Unplugged Essential’s hemp infused bath soaks which freshen and soften the skin, or back inside, how about a Lush shower bomb that foams and fizzes as you shower? It’s a bath bomb standing up.

Essentials to pack

Bring all the essentials you would if you were glamping, and if you’re feeling adventurous, some hiking boots. The cabin has a portable lamp, useful for after-dark wanderings, so perhaps bring something warm to wear, even if it’s warm during the day.

Whilst we should always pack sanitizer and masks, you probably won’t need to use them at all during your stay. There are other guests, yes, but their tiny houses are secluded away, and you can completely avoid interaction with other beings and tech during your entire stay.

For more information, visit getaway.house

Images courtesy of Getaway.