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Dispatch: Winvian, CT

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Set amid the tranquil forests and fields of Litchfield Hills, in western Connecticut, sits Winvian—113 acres of Norman Rockwell meets Alice in Wonderland. The eight-month-old resort, whose owner has ties to the Merrill Lynch fortune, consists of 18 themed cottages designed by 15 architects. The eclectic whimsy is evident in the barnlike cabin dominated by a meticulously restored 1968 Sikorsky Sea King Pelican helicopter. There’s also the Treehouse, suspended 35 feet aboveground. For golf enthusiasts the Golf Cottage’s undulating floors and carpeting mimic a putting green. And the entryway of the multilevel Stable Cottage, located close to the resort’s spa facility, resembles a stall and overlooks a sleeping area with views into the woods.

In the kitchen executive chef Chris Eddy, of Daniel Boulud and Alain Ducasse fame, cooks a mix of healthy dishes, comfort food, and decadent desserts.

But the highlight at Winvian is the 5,000-square-foot spa, which has on its menu Eve Lom facials—this is the first U.S. spa to offer them—and various body treatments that use Ren products. Developed by two of Britain’s most sought-after skincare firms, the treatments focus on the natural and organic. Ren products, for example, are created without any manmade ingredients. Eve Lom, who adheres to the "less is more" skincare philosophy, uses a minimal amount of product and stresses the importance of moisturizing. One of the six treatment rooms, the Forty Winks Suite, with its circular woodburning fireplace and two treatment tables, is ideal for couples; another room features a state-of-the-art air-jet tub for chromatherapy and hydrothermal massages. But the spa isn’t just about relaxation. You can take private hot yoga classes by the fire—think Bikram in a cozy setting—and personal training sessions are conducted both indoors and out. The impressively outfitted workout room has cardio equipment, weights, and stretching machines. From $1,450 to $1,950; 860-567-9600;


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