The Raleigh/Durham area was in dire need of a true first-class hotel and Umstead now fills that void. As the first 5-star hotel property in all of Wake County, the 150-room accommodation offers chic luxury amidst an abundance of trees and a 3-acre lake on the campus of SAS Institute (majority ownership is held by SAS' founder and his spouse). As its name suggests, the hotel is also located very near Umstead Park, a wonderful outdoor playground for runners and hikers.
Guest quarters at Umstead spoil travelers with spacious 540 square foot floor plans, 32-inch LCD televisions, pillow top beds, separate showers and tubs, and free wireless internet access. A first class restaurant is also on-site, along with a 14,000 square foot spa and, of course, a workout facility.
Umstead's gym is nothing flashy, but a solid sweat option for athletic-minded travelers. Cybex strength and cardio machines make up the bulk of the inventory, including one of our favorites, the Cybex elliptical. We think it offers a more challenging workout than Life Fitness and Precor ellips. Cardio equipment has plasma televisions attached.
For those who want the pampering, the spa covers 2 floors and was completely renovated in 2013. There is a co-ed relaxation lounge, and an open-roof, co-ed current pool with 12-ft (3.6-m) privacy walls. It's very upscale. Yogis aren't left out of the fun - Umstead hosts weekend morning yoga session from 9:00 to 10:00 am on Saturday and Sunday.
Bike and helmet rentals are available, as Umstead is close to a quarter-mile jogging and walking path around a three-acre lake.