Hotels for adventure travelers don’t tend toward the stylish. Enter Basecamp, a new property in the town of South Lake Tahoe, Calif., which opened in June. The concept? To embody the spirit of a traditional base camp — where mountaineers swap equipment, advice and war stories before expeditions — with a modern, eco-chic touch.
“There’s an amazing sense of community and exploration in these camps,” says the hotel’s owner, Christian Strobel, an avid hiker and mountain biker, and the former chief development officer at Joie de Vivre hotels. “That’s the DNA of the brand.” Then there’s the design, a riff on the idea of roughing it. In each of the 50 rooms you’ll find tarp headboards, kerosene desk lamps and reclaimed-wood furnishings.
Some rooms offer bunk beds with bright orange frames, and one, called the Great Indoors, has green carpet that looks like grass, an electric log fire and a tented king bed. Landscape drawings by the San Francisco illustrator Wendy MacNaughton adorn the walls, and guests can roast s’mores at two fire pits on the grounds.
As for the actual great outdoors? Tahoe is one of the most beautiful places on earth,. Biking at the Flume trail —it’s one of the world’s best rides — and there’s no better place to standup paddle-board, as the lake water is crystal clear. Other activities include rock-climbing, fly-fishing and kayaking — or taking in the Sierra Nevadas from Basecamp’s rooftop hot tub.
Basecamp, 4143 Cedar Avenue, South Lake Tahoe, Calif.; (530) 208-0180;basecamphotels.com; doubles from $170.