Let’s Go Glamping!

By: Amari D. Pollard

There’s nothing better than becoming one with nature. Watching the soft waves of the lake as you wait patiently to catch a fish or letting the heat from the campfire crawl up your skin alongside goose bumps as you listen to old ghost stories. For the most part, it’s calm and relaxing, but then you have the pestering bugs and bumpy, damp ground that taunt you with the probability of a sleepless night.

Camping can be a good time, but it certainly isn’t for everyone. Which is why so many people are grateful the brilliant minds of innovators and hipsters resurrected the Turkish Ottoman tradition of glamping.

Glamorous camping—or glorious camping, whichever you prefer—puts you at the heart of mother nature with all the amenities of luxurious lodging. Forget about having to lug your camp equipment for miles, pitching a tent, and dealing with the late-night chills. Now you have heated tents and queen beds clothed in Egyptian cotton to help you rest easy.

The summer months in Upstate New York may belong to salt potatoes, buying from local farm markets, and The New York State Fair, but glamping might just become another staple of the season. Glamping used to be most prevalent on the West Coast, but now the East is catching up and Upstate New York is home to some of the most premier glamping destinations, equipped with tree house yurts, full spa access, and “tent service.”

Sharon Boustani of Gilbertsville Farmhouse in South New Berlin, NY insists glamping is something everyone should try at least once, and once they do, they’ll instantly understand why everyone is obsessed with the trend.

“[Glamping] has created an opportunity for people to enjoy what campers have always enjoyed: getting back to nature. That’s why I think it has become so popular, because you’re able to enjoy the outdoors with some of the comforts you’ve come to expect,” says Boustani.

Gilbertsville Farmhouse, run by Boustani and her husband Aldo, primarily operates as a rustic wedding and retreat venue. Their 125-acre property is equipped with a milking parlor, reception barn, glamping village, and hammock park. Guests are able to indulge in activities ranging from backyard movie nights to a game of volleyball to goat yoga—yeah, got yoga. (You would be astounded by how relaxing doing yoga with baby Nigerian dwarf goats is!)

The Boustanis originally purchased the property from dairy farmers to use as a vacation home for their very busy city family. The beauty of the area and the slower pace of a small town gave them a way to escape New York and truly appreciate their time away.

That’s the experience they want their guests to have.

“We’re very enthralled in this fast paced, technology-driven life that we lead now, and we’re getting the point where people need a true break,” says Boustani. “You can go away and still be so connected, either by technology or in your mind, that it’s hard to unwind and enjoy where you are. But you relax the moment you get here—it puts you in a different state of mind.” Why camp, when you can glamp.