More than a decade removed from the revolution that ousted its corrupt president and six years after the Russo-Georgian War, the tiny nation of Georgia is becoming a tourist draw—thanks in part to new accommodations such as Rooms Hotel Kazbegi. This remote alpine lodge, located just outside of a Russia-occupied territory showcases the Caucasus Mountains in its backyard, making it an under-the-radar happy place for hikers, climbers and heliskiers.
Named for a 19th-century Georgian poet, the 156-room mountain retreat does have a lyrical quality about it, with rustic-chic rooms blending wood and industrial flourishes and an a la carte restaurant whose menu sings with seasonal dishes.
Yet for an outfit whose architecture and interior design are decidedly contemporary, Hotel Kazbegi doesn't take itself too seriously, as evidenced by the Soviet-era movie posters that plaster the walls of the spacious lounge.
Amenities range from an indoor swimming pool with mountain views to a huge outdoor sundeck to an onsite casino (here at the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Europe, they love their gambling). Add a hyper-attentive staff and a fleet of mountain bikes available for rental, and is it any wonder we've got Georgia on our mind?
The Details: Rooms Hotel Kazbegi is located in northern Georgia, about 90 miles north of the capital of Tbilisi. Rooms range from $140 to $160.