TALLINN - The last month of the year brings a special feeling of pre-holiday joy and celebrations. Windows are lit up with candles, shops are full of visitors choosing Christmas presents and everyone is talking about where and when the big party will be.
Those are pleasant things to worry about 's but stop for a moment and realize that not only is the next year coming, but the present year will only last for a few more weeks. This is the best time to gather your loved ones and head for a nice and cozy weekend in a very special place, the Kalvi Manor.
The Kalvi Manor is an amazing complex. Founded by the Danish back in 1196, the huge territory, perched on a cliff, probably has the best sea view in all of Estonia. The house itself was rebuilt numerous times and the ruins of the previous manors are still kept on the territory, lending a very special feeling of historical background to the site.
The Kalvi Manor that stands today was built between 1908 and 1914 after the last one, located 100 meters away, was half destroyed by fire. In 2000 a restoration was performed so that it now looks exactly as it did back in 1914.
Today, Kalvi Manor house has been turned into a luxury spa hotel. Located just 130 kilometers away from Tallinn, this is one of the best imaginable weekend destinations.
After arriving it feels like civilization is far-far away 's a special atmosphere that surrounds the manor. The Gothic style corbie-steps and jaded towers are reminiscent of a medieval English castle. A similar style runs throughout both the interior and the beautiful park, replete with fountains and a pond perfect for afternoon tea, which surrounds the manor.
Not many can resist exploring the surroundings and take a long walk through the park. Numerous paved paths lead to a romantic arbor surrounding a perfectly round pond, and to a large terrace where it is possible to enjoy the view of the sea accompanied by the gentle murmur of the fountains.
The park is also decorated with very interesting sculptures, created by famous Estonian and foreign artists.
The hotel itself is quite unique, at some points it almost feels like a museum, but at the same time it is so homey and comfortable that during a stay there it is possible to completely forget that the place is, in fact, a hotel.
Hours can be spent just walking the corridors, viewing the old paintings hanging on the walls and sculptures littered throughout the house. The old squeaky wooden staircase and dimmed light of the crystal chandeliers and candles make one completely forget life back home, with its e-mails, TV news, currency exchanges and the phone ringing every five minutes.
After the soul is replenished it is time for the body. The ground floor offers a swimming pool, Jacuzzi and a few saunas, after which one can enjoy a glass of fresh juice while watching blustery sea out the window.
Get the lost calories back with the help of the a la carte restaurant, where the chef prepares delicious dishes with fresh products provided by the Manor's agricultural farm. Freshly baked bread and a seasonal menu are accompanied by a great wine selection.
Evenings are best spent at the fireplace with a glass of red wine or cognac and selection of interesting books. Men will appreciate the hunting room and pool tables.
The day flies by here, but it goes so softly and quietly that one weekend easily counts for a week of relaxation.