In an age when eschewing expected amenities such as WiFi in every room—hell, even phones in every room—would sound the death knell for most hotels, the High Hampton Inn has managed to stay in business for 90 years without doing much in the way of modernization.
Originally built as a summer retreat for Civil War General Wade Hampton, the Cashiers, North Carolina, establishment welcomed its first guests in 1922, and its traditional and low-key charm has attracted generations of families ever since. More time capsule than throw-back (hard to be considered retro when you never moved forward in the first place), it’s a place where nature drives the day’s schedule—from fly-fishing with expert guide Alex Bell to boating and swimming on the 35-acre Hampton Lake—and the evening meal is still a coat-and-tie affair. Picnics are a common sight in the afternoon, and everyone—everyone—partakes in charades and milk and cookies after dinner. But don’t mistake the High Hampton’s old-school MO for quaintness. Surrounded by the lush blue-greens of the Blue Ridge Mountains, this is a place where people choose to unplug and relax the old-fashioned way. It’s a simpler way of living, and these days, we all know that’s a great luxury.