The Height of Treehouse Luxury

Treehouse meets spa in one of Portugal's lush, mountainous nature parks.

Outside Magazine Outside Magazine Pedras Salgadas Pedras Salgadas Spa and Nature  Portugal Portuguese Luís Rebelo de Andrade designer treehouse treehouse Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro eco-tourism eco house ecotourism escapes base camp thermal spa converted casino mineral water hot springs hydromassage

Even if its natural views weren't outstanding, the architecture sprinkled throughout Pedras Salgadas is enough to stun anyone.     Photo: Courtesy of Pedras Salgadas Spa & Nature Park

Many eco-resorts do the treehouse thing, but few can say they tapped a well-known architect to design theirs. Enter Pedras Salgadas Spa & Nature Park in northern Portugal’s lush, mountainous Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro region. This is port wine country, and you’ll want to sip yours from one of Pedras Salgadas’s two high-end tree suites, dreamed up by Portuguese architect Luís Rebelo de Andrade.

  Photo: Courtesy of Pedras Salgadas Spa & Nature Park

The slate- and wood-covered cabins, reachable by bridge, have an otherworldly aesthetic. Imagine a giant sculpture of a snake rendered in the Cubist style and you’re on the right track. Each treehouse juts out into the woods and has thoughtfully-placed windows for stargazing and bird watching, one bedroom, a living room, a kitchenette, and a bathroom.

  Photo: Courtesy of Pedras Salgadas Spa & Nature Park

If heights make you nervous, book one of the property’s “eco houses,” also designed by de Andrade. These modern cabins sleep up to six and offer a few more bells and whistles than the tree houses, including LED TVs, WiFi, air conditioning, and daily maid service.

  Photo: Courtesy of Pedras Salgadas Spa & Nature Park

Next to the contemporary accommodations, the big draw at the resort is its thermal spa, located in a refurbished 100-year-old former casino. The town of Pedras Salgadas is known for its natural supply of rejuvenating mineral water, which is incorporated into the various jet and hydromassage treatments on offer at the resort. Add it all up and it’s the greatest (and possibly only?) treehouse/spa weekend ever.

The Details: For availability and room rates, call +351.259.437.140 or email the resort's reservations desk.

  Photo: Courtesy of Pedras Salgadas Spa & Nature Park

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