Alta Crystal Resort
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Alta Crystal Resort
“Resort” seems like a bit of an overstatement when describing these 23 suites and log cabin. The vibe is low-key, particularly in summer, when guests make the most of the long daylight hours by logging long days in Mount Rainier National Park (the Sunrise Visitor Center and trailhead is 40 minutes away). Surrounded by 150-foot evergreens, these buildings have a hushed, secluded feel: The resort actually sits on National Forest land, and hiking paths link it to the Pacific Crest Trail (an eight-mile walk from the property). Set apart from the other buildings, the honeymoon cabin features gleaming blonde logs and quirky wooden furniture purchased from art galleries in nearby Enumclaw. Like the lodge suites, it has a kitchen (there’s no on-site restaurant) where you can fix your own meals. Or, just heat up a gourmet frozen dinner: The resort buys small-batch heat-and-eat meals from Kitchen Door catering in Seattle, which preps the likes of Argentine-style grilled flank steak with chimichurri sauce, roasted potatoes, and sautéed green beans. The flavor and convenience beats almost anything you might yank out of your cooler. After hiking, relax in the outdoor pool and hot tub, or cozy up beside the fire (all accommodations include wood- or gas-burning fireplaces).
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