The SpaceDesigned originally as a women's retreat center, GardenSpirit has been described as a "powder puff" of comfort and relaxation. Soothing colors, thoughtful amenities and calming privacy hold out the promise of a wonderful stay, nurturing your spirit as well as your body.
GardenSpirit is a warm and welcoming place for quiet conversation, reconnection and tranquility. It is especially wonderful to walk the forest paths in the morning or sit in the kitchen to watch the squirrels scamper and the birds enjoy their breakfast. There is a young fox who often hides out near the Creative Cottage and you will probably see our (too) friendly deer and fawns grazing nearby. (Less wonderful are our raccoon visitors ... we discourage them as much as possible but they are pretty darned smart and manage to eat more birdseed than the birds. Grrrrr...)
Most importantly, we pride ourselves on providing a spotless home away from home. The house is always professionally cleaned after each guest stay. We wash and disinfect ALL bedding - comforters and mattress pads included, which many hotels rotate only occasionally. Doorknobs and jambs are disinfected as well as that much-used TV remote! We scour GardenSpirit top to bottom to make sure it meets our exceedingly picky standards, then share it with you. If we'd stay here (and we would and do) then it's immaculate.
- We provide all linens (sheets, bath and dish towels, beach towels for the hot tub).
- The kitchen is well stocked - from tea bags to basil, slow cooker to Keurig.
- Plenty of dinnerware and flatware and serving dishes.
- All TV cable channels plus HBO, Netflix and Showtime on 55" flatscreen.
- High speed internet w/wifi password protected (desks in each bedroom).
- New Weber gas grill with a bottle of propane.
- ‘Midnight massage room' - think “starry, starry night.”
- More than a mile of groomed, gravel paths on which to walk, meditate, enjoy the day.
- Wildlife galore - bluebirds, deer, chipmunks and silly squirrels.
- Your own unique passcode for alarm system and door locks.
- Three living areas: sunroom, living room, family room.
- Dining room seats 8; kitchen table seats 5 plus three at bar.
- Always freshly baked cookies, Southern sweet tea and a basket of goodies for your arrival! Guest AccessOur registered guests are welcome to use the Guesthouse plus the marvelous meditation paths, the Purple Treehouse and hot tub and decks. The 10-acre private estate is shared by the owners (our house is separated from GardenSpirit by more than 3 acres of land yet we are close enough for instant help). Our visitors are invited walk the 7-circuit ,tri-color outdoor labyrinth and visit the organic gardens.
The hot tub LOVES to be used, but please honor our outdoor quiet hour policy - quiet from 11 pm to 7 am.
The lofty Purple Treehouse is big enough for two adults and has a side deck attached for a tranquil view of the property, conversation or a relaxing nap. You might prefer to wander over to the hammock and spend some time gazing at the towering tree tops.
The Creative Cottage is an art building, stocked with scrapbooking supplies, paints, markers, paper and other goodies. It is not included in the basic rental price but access can be added for a small fee.
The Purple Golf Cart was purchased for guests who have mobility problems so they could reach the labyrinth. If you need this kind of assistance, please let us know and we'll come get you! Interaction with GuestsSomeone is always available to help 24/7. Linda and Victor, the owners, sometimes travel, so super assistants Kathy and Janine are also on call for anything you need.
We will meet you at GardenSpirit to check you in and give you a quick tour of the property and amenities for your stay. The person who made the Airbnb reservation must be present at check in (we'll wait for you!).
We weren't born in Durham but we got here as fast as we could, so we know the area intimately (30+ years here). Depend on us for area "best of" recommendations or check out the constantly-updated guidebook for our favorite restaurant and event suggestions.
We will visit the house at least once a day, in part to make sure you are happy and in part to feed the many bluebirds and cardinals that crowd our back porch feeders. Even the hummingbirds dive-bomb each other from May-October! We try to be unobtrusive but you might hear the garage door go up in the mornings. No worries, we won't barge in!
Checking out? Call before you leave - we want to stop by to wish you a fond farewell and troubleshoot any problems that might have cropped up (actually we like to troubleshoot those during your stay so you have a perfect experience).
We are a friendly bunch, so it pains us to have to have to spell out a detailed warning about noise, but we have had a few isolated problems so here goes: GardenSpirit is private, but it is not isolated. We are located inside an established, quiet subdivision with neighbors within earshot. So we ask that you honor their need for peace and quiet. Our goal is to co-create a wonderful place to stay for a few days or even longer. The NeighborhoodHeather Glen is a quiet (especially quiet at night), slow-moving neighborhood. The speed limit around the hairpin turn where GardenSpirit lives is literally 20 mph. You'll see more dogs and owners walking the neighborhood than cars!
GardenSpirit is the only house on the block and is located directly across from undeveloped wooded property. There is amazing privacy. However, the house is not completely isolated; there are neighbors behind the property and in the next block.
This is a solidly middle to upper-middle class neighborhood and residents take great pride in their homes and well-manicured yards. There is an active neighborhood watch and homeowners association. Rest easy at night and during the day.
For your added peace of mind, the exterior of the retreat house is protected with 24/7 video surveillance and the interior of the house has a monitored alarm system. Getting AroundHeather Glen is a suburb, so you'll need a car to get around, buy groceries, go downtown or get to a movie (try Silver Spot Cinema in Chapel Hill - amazing!). Or call Uber or Lyft, which has an active presence in the Triangle. Just FYI - it you are flying in to RDU, Uber is half the price of a cab ride ($25 vs $52). If you're driving, we'll be happy to provide excellent, clear directions to reach Gardenspirit.
Duke campus is 12-15 minutes away depending on where you want to go; UNC and Chapel Hill are 25 minutes away with light traffic (not on game days though). Nearest/best grocery store is a 10-minute drive; ditto for restaurants. Nearest shopping center is 15 minutes -- best shopping center is 25 minutes south (near the airport). Don't miss funky, fun shopping on 9th Street near Duke East campus, now updated to include Panera Bread and a bunch of other neat-o stores (huge, brand new Harris Teeter grocery store). Parking is free and abundant these days (a change from the tight quarters just a few years ago).
Speaking of traffic, north Durham is lightly traveled except at rush hour (s). Cole Mill Road is the quickest way to get to points south because it has the fewest stop lights.
Check the Guidebook for more suggestions about what to do in Durham and the Triangle - always something interesting going on. Other Things to NoteThe house has four bedrooms, one with extra long twin beds, three with king beds for a maximum of six spaces. Though the house is fairly large (2800 sf), with only three bathrooms, it works best with six or fewer guests. If you have more than six in your entourage, we can accommodate eight by shifting beds (there is a small additional fee for additional guests). Just let us know a week in advance so we can make it "just right" when you arrive.
We've changed our policy about children - YES bring them. We found that they love walking the trails and playing in the tree house. We have board games and appropriate kid-friendly TV channels. You might consider renting the Creative Cottage during your stay ($50 one time charge) and let them go crazy with artwork and creativity. No worries about spills and spatters out there!