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Martha Stewart Living magazine just recommended Nova Scotia’s remote Trout Point Lodge among the influential publication’s favorite wellness retreats for its Forest Bathing experiences. That accolade follows a flood of attention from the likes of the Associated Press,  the Globe & Mail, Fodor’s guides, American Way magazine, and Bloomberg during 2016 alone (see www.troutpoint.com/forest-bathing.html). Indeed industry publication SpaFinder held out Trout Point as an example of the coming worldwide Forest Bathing trend in a 2015 analaysis, and CNN picked this tiny wilderness reatreat as offering the “wildest new trends in the wellness world” the same year.

Long known for its culinary classes, which the Lodge started offering in 2000 (long before cooking vacations were a norm in the travel industry), Trout Point also led North America towards astro-tourism, still a hot item among the array of outdoor experiences available at this outpost next to the Tobeatic Wilderness Area. The Lodge was named the world’s first certified Starlight Hotel in 2014. It started explaining Forest Bathing to guests in 2010, long before ti became popular in the travel trade.

As Travel Editor Beth Harpaz of the Associated Press explained in her article on Forest Bathing: “These programs take participants into the woods for a slow, mindful walk to contemplate nature with all the senses. It’s not a hike, because you don’t go far or fast. And while the term forest bathing may lend itself to jokes about nude hot springs, rest assured: You don’t take off your clothes.” Beth Harpaz, Forest bathing: A mindful walk in the woods, no getting wet, Associated Press 2016.

Following the tremendous interest in Forest Bathing, this season the Lodge will amplify its experiences involving the pristine Acadian Forest ecosystem around it, and has tasked nature guide Katey Gray and massage therapist Nancy Gagnon with helping guests understand the rationale and research underlying the therapy, as well as to cater wonderful experiences for them. According to SpaFinder, research database PubMed returns 100+ studies on the health impact of forest bathing, including studies indicating that it significantly lowers blood pressure (-1.4 percent), heart rate (-5.8 percent), cortisol levels (-12.4 percent) and sympathetic nerve activity (-7 percent) compared with city walks, while also alleviating stress and depression. The most provocative of these studies conclude that exposure to phytoncides, the airborne, aromatic chemicals/oils emitted by many trees, have a long-lasting impact on people’s immune system markers, boosting natural killer (NK) cells and anticancer proteins by 40 percent.” 2015 Trends Report: Forest Bathing, SpaFinder 2015

 

 

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A certified Starlight Hotel since 2014, Trout Point Lodge is responding to tremendous demand for guided star gazing activities by hiring two staff astronomer for its 2017 season. For the past 5-6 years, the Lodge has offered interpretive astro-tourism experiences from its position within the Acadian Skies & Mi’kmaq Lands Starlight Reserve, which sits at the heart of the eponymous Starlight Tourist Destination. The clear and dark skies, with essentially no light pollution, combined with the Lodge’s position near the end of the peninsula that makes up Nova Scotia, have made Trout Point a draw for many visitors who cannot appreciate the stars at home. Trout Point normally only has one staff astronomer each season, but the Lodge’s owners believe there is enough interest among guests to have two experts this year.

The first of the two staff astronomers is Alex Nadeau who studied astrophysics at the University of New Brunswick and was President of the university’s Astronomy Club. Alex was also an astrophysics intern in Germany. The other astro-guide is Daniel Shaffery, who is currently studying at the University College, Dublin (Ireland) where he is pursuing a BSc in Theoretical Physics.

Alex and Daniel will use the lodge’s stargazing platform along with a Meade 10″ telescope, astronomical binoculars, a portable Celestron SkyProdigy 130 mm scope, and Coronado 60 mm solar telescope.

“I estimate we saw double the interest is star gazing last year over 2015,” said Lodge proprietor Vaughan Perret. “It’s not just a sideline activity, but actually forms the purpose of many of our guests’ visit to Nova Scotia.”

Star gazing outings are offered every night after dinner given sufficicent weather conditions. Such conditions can be monitored from the Lodge’s Clear Sky Chart at http://www.troutpoint.com/astro-conditions.html.

Trout Point Lodge is pleased to announce it has received news of the 2017 Luxury Resort & Inn of the Year award from the United Kingdom-bAmerica-10(1)ased Luxury Travel Guide (www.ltgawards.com). The independent award nominations closed April 1.

The Luxury Travel Awards recognize and celebrate excellence across all sectors of the affluent travel and tourism industry. The Guide’s team of experts scour the globe and have travelled extensively in order to identify everything from the very best hotels, airlines and tour operators through to highlighting the most reputable transfer service companies.

Criterion used in making the awards include innovation & design, sustainable practices, rooms & facilities, service excellence, and use of technology.

We are honoured and pleasantly surprised to have received a call from the Luxury Travel Guide this week with the news,” said Trout Point Chef/Proprietor Vaughan Perret.

Trout Point Lodge is a boutique wilderness resort in Yarmouth County, Nova Scotia, and a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World.

Trout Point Lodge proprietors Vaughan Perret and Charles Leary announce the end of their tenure as President/Chairman and Treasurer, respectively, of la Société Touristique Bon Temps d’Argyle with a significant grant of funds to the Municipality of Argyle to continue the Starlight astro-tourism project in the local region. The Municipality has agreed to continue to administer the Acadian Skies & Mi’kmaq Lands region as a certified Starlight Tourism Destination with a certified Starlight Reserve at its core. The certifications come from the Starlight Foundation, a UNESCO-backed initiative headquartered at the Canaries Astrophysics Institute in Spain.

Argyle just received a cheque for over $24,000 from Bon Temps to continue marketing the area as a Starlight Destination, and to pay certification fees as a result of Perret and Leary’s proposal to the Board. Under their leadership, Bon Temps launched the succesful $200,000.00 project in 2013, including receiving funding from the province, local municipalities, and ACOA.

The Tourism Destination includes Acadia First Nation, Municipality of the District of Yarmouth, Municipality of the District of Argyle, and Clare Municipality. The Starlight Reserve encompasses the Tobeatic Wilderness Area and Indian Fields Provincial Park.

Perret and Leary spearheaded Bon Temps effort to have the certifications done, including supporting the collection of scientific astrophysics data and sponsoring the visits of two Spanish experts to the region.

Perret and Leary remain on the Board of Directors of Bon Temps. Trout Point Lodge was declared the world’s first Starlight Hotel by the Starlight Foundation in 2014.

For additional information on the Starlight certifications, visit https://propuesta10112014.wordpress.com/certificaciones-starlight/

After nearly three years, Trout Point Lodge and its proprietors Vaughn Perret and Charles Leary have prevailed over the objections of defendant Douglas Handshoe in Hancock County Circuit Court, Mississippi, in the enforcement of a substantial damages award for copyright infringement. The Mississippi blogger, Handshoe, has been defaming and harassing Leary and Perret online since 2010.

A copy of the judge’s Order appears here:

2017-01-05-order-denying-handshoe-objection-motion-to-strike

Additional background can be found in article by the Toronto Star.

Recognised as a Top Performing Inn as Reviewed by Travellers on the
World’s Largest Travel Site

Kemptville, Nova Scotia – June 11Print_Logo_COE2015_UK, 2015 – Trout Point Lodge today announced that it has received a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence award. Now in its fifth year, the award celebrates excellence in hospitality and is given only to establishments that consistently achieve great l reviews on TripAdvisor. Certificate of Excellence winners include accommodations, eateries and attractions located all over the world that have continually delivered a superior customer experience.

When selecting Certificate of Excellence winners, TripAdvisor uses a proprietary algorithm to determine the honourees that takes into account the quality, quantity and recency of reviews and opinions submitted by travellers on TripAdvisor over a 12-month period as well as business’s tenure and ranking on the Popularity Index on the site. To qualify, a business must maintain an overall TripAdvisor bubble rating of at least four out of five, have a minimum number of reviews and must have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least 12 months.

“TripAdvisor is pleased to honour exceptional hospitality businesses that have received consistent praise and recognition by travellers on the site,” said Marc Charron President, TripAdvisor for Business. “By putting a spotlight on businesses that are focused on delivering great service to customers, TripAdvisor not only helps drive increasing hospitality standards around the world, it also gives businesses both large and small the ability to shine and stand out from the competition.”

Travel & Leisure magazine has just published its list of the world’s top 12 stargazing locales, including Trout Point Lodge in the Acadian Skies & Mi’kmaq Lands Starlight Tourist Destination, as number 6. Author of the  article and online slide show entitled “Ready to Feel Small? 12 Otherworldly Locales Perfect for Stargazing,” Lindsey Olander, works as an editor at the magazine, including coordinating entries for its annual Global Vision awards. Now owned by Time, Inc., Travel & Leisure has 6.6 million readers.

The article identifies Trout Point as the world’s first certified Starlight Hotel, an honour it received from the UNESCO-backed Starlight Foundation in 2014. The Lodge was among just 2 accommodations mentioned in the article as superb astro-tourism destinations, the other being Ayers Rock Resort in Australia.

Trout Point Lodge has offered guided astronomy outings for the past few years, and in 2014 built a special stargazing platform also noted by Travel & Leisure. The Lodge’s owners Charles Leary and Vaughan Perret spearheaded the effort to have the surrounding area contiguous with the Yarmouth & Acadian Shores Tourism Region, declared a certified Starlight Tourist Destination. Leary & Perret are officers of La Societe Touristique Bon Temps d’Argyle, which officially sponsored the certification effort. Acadia First Nation helped sponsor the project. Olander noted: “The area was once the home of the indigenous Mi’kmaq nation, whose stories about constellations explained the changing of the seasons and other universal phenomena.”

Trout Point lies immediately adjacent to the vast Tobeatic Wilderness Area, which is now a Starlight Reserve. There are no sources of light pollution anywhere within the 104,000 hectare reserve, making for splendid dark skies at night.

Other places on the top 12 list include the Atacama Desert in Chile, Galloway Forest Park in Scotland, and Jasper National Park, also in Canada.