Natural hot springs have long been a source of rejuvenation, renewal and detoxification of the body. Its benefits are numerous.
Oregon has more than its fair share of natural hot springs. Native Americans in the La Grande area of northeastern Oregon were the first to utilize these natural hot springs medicinal powers.
Later on, weary travelers off the Oregon Trail two miles west of here, found relief in the hot, soothing waters.
Before too long, in the 1880s, the medicinal properties of the bountiful hot springs lake led to the formation of the Hot Lake Sanitorium, an elaborate medical facility. The sanitorium served both resort guests and medical patients.
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Fast forward to today and The Lodge at Hot Lake Springs — a 64,000-square-foot brick structure offering lodging and hot springs pools to the public.
The geothermal water comes out of the ground at a scalding 186 degrees and, of course, is cooled down before filling the soaking pools. The hot springs push 2 million gallons a day into the lake.
The history of The Lodge at Hot Lake Springs lives in the 15 renovated lodging rooms. Each room is unique, designed as a mix of century-old features and mid-century modern.
TVs? Nope. That would ruin the vibe. But, yes, there is internet.
La Grande is just 13 miles northwest of the resort and Interstate 84 is just a few miles away. But you feel years away from the hectic, digital interconnected world — and that is part of the charm of this place.
Guests have 24-hour access to the pools. There are plans to add up to 25 more pools.
There is a pub just steps from the pools. There is a bona fide movie theater.
And there are cool little getaway corners of the building where you can play a card game, read a book, take a cat nap — you get the idea.
They also use much of the geothermal hot water for more than just soaking. They also operate a hot springs RV resort right next door, with 100 full hookups, yurts and soaking pools.
Yes, it is a long drive from Central Oregon, but when you arrive, just imagine the payoff — a luxurious hot springs soak just steps from your room.