World’s Largest Treehouse Resort Opening in the Smoky Mountains
[Apr 1, 2022: JD Shavit, The Brighter Side of News]
Mangroves, which have been in decline in recent years, can sequester up to 10 times as much carbon compared to terrestrial forests. (CREDIT: Creative Commons)
Treehouses inspire visions of Tarzan swinging through the forest, beautiful vistas and childhood fun. That's why I was so excited to learn about Tennessee’s Sanctuary Treehouse Resort as they are about to take the treehouse experience to the next level becoming the largest treehouse resort in the world.
In addition to being the first treehouse resort in East Tennessee, this property will be the largest treehouse resort in the world, with 130 treehouses set on 40 acres. Nearby is the Great Smoky National Park, America's most visited national park.
The resort is owned by Amanda and Brian Jensen, who operate Gaitlinburg SkyCenter, a restaurant and shop at the top of a chairlift with panoramic views of Gatlinburg and its surrounding mountains. The concept was inspired by a treehouse that they built for their kids that had bunk beds and a zip line.
“We joked about renting it out because tree houses were becoming ‘a thing,’” Amanda Jensen said.
Sanctuary Treehouse Resort was created when the Jensens, decided to rent out their child's childhood tree fort, since such glamping opportunities were becoming increasingly popular.
Sanctuary Treehouse Resort Map (CREDIT: Sanctuary Treehouse Resort)
Once they saw how popular it was becoming, they decided to turn 40 acres into the largest collection of tree houses and forts in the world.
Three types of treehouse rentals are planned: Tree Fort, Tree Fort Double, and The Luxe.
The Tree Fort can accommodate 2-6 guests and has unique amenities such as spiral slides.
Tree Fort Doubles will feature unique ways to link the rooms mounted on different trees, such as rope bridges, and even drawbridges.
Their most extravagant treehouse will be The Luxe, with a king-size gel cooling bed, a copper clawfoot bathtub, an outdoor tub, and suspended daybeds.
Rental units also include other wild features including a spiral slide, a climbing rope, a net swing, a secret ladder and a trapdoor. Clever design touches throughout include bathroom sinks crafted out of whiskey barrels and a drink shoot that lets you send bottles from the kitchenette down to the lower porch.
With breathtaking views of the Smoky Mountains, guests will be entertained with walking trails, scavenger hunts, gatherings in an enchanted forest, live entertainment, local storytellers, an outdoor hot tub, two 18-hole golf courses and more. The rooms are only accessible by golf cart.
“Here at the Sanctuary Treehouse Resort, it’s a family affair,” the Jensens wrote on Instagram. “Show your children your dream, but more importantly share it with them. Show them the process so that they can see that dreams do come true if you believe in them and work hard at it.”
Mountain-modern architecture firm MossCreek Designs is working with the Jensens to bring their vision to life. The first rental units will be available by the end of summer 2022, and each year will feature a few more until the resort is finally completed.
View of exterior to Tree Fort at sundown. (CREDIT: Sanctuary Treehouse Resort)
According to their website at the time of publication, the rates will be $299 and up based on the treehouse chosen and the booking season.
In terms of accessibility, they do plan to have treehouses for guests with mobility disabilities.
In order to respect the peaceful environment and the wildlife that lives there, however, they will not be allowing pets to stay at the resort.
For more science news stories check out our New Innovations section at The Brighter Side of News.
Note: Materials provided by The Brighter Side of News. Content may be edited for style and length.
Like these kind of feel good stories? Get the Brighter Side of News' newsletter.