Muddy reviews: Feuerstein Nature Family Resort, Italy
Looking for an easy to reach, hassle-free, action-packed family getaway? This South Tyrol playground ticks all the boxes for a year-round Muddy escape.
Feuerstein Nature Family Resort looks exactly as it sounds; a low-built wood and stone escape barely visible above the tree line in jaw-droppingly beautiful Pflersch Valley, home to mountains, waterfalls and meadows. To reach this natural playground for kids, we flew to Innsbruck from where it was a 35-minute transfer, meaning the whole journey took less than four hours.
Owner Peter Mader dreamt of creating a hotel immersed in nature that’s fun for children and parents and boy did he deliver. Scandi-sleek interiors make it feel sophisticated, yet there are plenty of child-friendly touches all around, like a small play area IN RECEPTION – believe me that’s a God send if you arrive with tired, cranky kids who would rather lie down on the floor than queue to check-in…
SCOFF & QUAFF
Breakfast, an afternoon snack (3pm-5pm) and evening meal are included in the daily price and the level of cuisine is so high. Suppers include a menu packed with dishes specific to the South Tyrol region, like spinach-filled ravioli and wiener schnitzel with berry sauce, created using local produce including veg and herbs from the hotel’s garden.
The help-yourself ice cream station caused much excitement in our family – what topping to choose: sprinkles, marshmallows or chocolate drops? These are the kind of pressing problems you face at Feuerstein. Even babies are well catered for, with a menu of blended food on offer for diners yet to grow teeth.
Oh and if you want a night off, there’s a small children’s restaurant supervised by childminders on site, so you can enjoy a wine tasting or private suppers in the resort’s extensive cellar.
The décor had a clean, Scandi vibe, with light wood furniture, crisp white linen and enormous windows leading to private balconies and terraces to make the most of the mountain and valley views. There are various types of rooms, suites and chalets to fit your family size, from couples to suites sleeping eight.
Our family suite came with a small living room with table and chairs, and two bedrooms with interconnecting door. An ideal choice for a multigenerational family holiday are the eight detached wood chalets lining one side of the bathing pond, which sleep up to six and have open-plan living areas with lounge and kitchen.
OUT & ABOUT
We visited in summer and spent our mornings hiking straight from the hotel to discover nearby waterfalls, pretty Alpine villages and fast-flowing streams to stepping-stone across, with afternoons spent playing in the hotel’s natural swimming lake, catching tiny frogs and making endless trips to an island on a raft pulled by ropes.
Feuerstein’s four heated swimming pools were a HUGE hit with all members of the family, particularly the gorgeous infinity pool reached by swimming through automatic sliding doors (a source of constant amazement for the kids, seriously they never tired of this) and an activity pool with enormous enclosed slide complete with timer on the wall to see how fast you descend.
Up to seventy hours of childcare (up to the age of 16) per week means you get the chance to relax on a lounger or book a massage in the Mountain Spa safe in the knowledge the kids are enjoying treasure hunts, hikes to rivers and toasting marshmallows around a fire pit. A painting studio, indoor sandpit and playbarn complete with dressing up area and hayloft for jumping into provide fun on bad weather days. Teens can get involved in football tournaments, climbing, rafting and even overnight camping trips.
Our long weekend passed by in a blur as we enjoyed a family climbing session and a woodcraft workshop, emerging with basic hand-made guitars and proud faces. Time ran out for e-biking and using the painting studio, but a refreshing lack of screen time for all ages meant we departed feeling healthier and happier than we had in a long time.
It’s worth noting that in winter time, the resort’s blanketed in snow and morphs into a winter playground, with practice ski slopes accessible straight from the hotel, or hop on the free shuttle bus for a five-minute ride to Ladurns Resort, with its 15km runs and excellent Fichti Kinderland Ski School.
THE MUDDY VERDICT
Good for: Families who love action, adventure and the great outdoors. We felt so healthy and happy and the kids tried things (food and activities) they hadn’t done before, which always feels like a win.
Not for: The fly and flop brigade. Lying on a sunlounger for a week is a totally valid holiday option (hey, we all work hard), so if you want this look for a beach break instead.
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