Inn of the Month: Homestead Resort

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Midway, Utah

Scuba diving may seem an odd match with skiing, but at the Homestead Resort in Midway, Utah, the two are the perfect match.

Located in Wasatch Mountain State Park, site of the cross-country skiing and biathlon competitions of the 2002 Winter Olympics, Homestead offers a rural retreat 20 miles from Park City's bustling Main Street, Deer Valley Resort, Park City Mountain Resort, The Canyons and Sundance.

Homestead also boasts one of the most interesting swimming holes anywhere. The 55-foot-high, hollowed-out Homestead Crater is a natural hot spring with waters that maintain a temperature of about 96 degrees-the ideal retreat after a cold day on the hill.

Homestead dates to 1886, when weary miners soothed their muscles in the crater's mineral-rich waters. Now, the resort's 154 rooms are spread out in 22 cottages, which hold between three to 16 rooms per building. There are also 24 condos and homes and 24 kilometers of cross-country trails on the Homestead campus.

The family-friendly atmosphere is decidedly country, with décor running to flowered wallpaper, brass fixtures and oak furniture. Pick from three restaurants, the finest of which is Simon's, serving soul pleasing plates such as lamb chops and mashed potatoes.

Still, it's the crater that intrigues. Some guests float while gazing at the sky through the small opening at the top; others grab a mask and snorkel to peer into the depths. Certified divers come to explore the 65-foot-deep hourglass-shaped wonder.

If you're interested in Homestead as a base during February's Games, you're out of luck. The resort will be hosting 22 national teams.

Rooms start at $129; suites and executive rooms begin at $199. Condos and private homes start at $259. Call 800-327-7220, or log onto www.homesteadresort.com.