Explore: Moab’s glamping resort; the fancy form of roughin’ it

A "deluxe" tent at Moab's "glamping" resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 15, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

MOAB — The most extravagant camping experience in the southwest exists right on the brim of Arches National Park. Surrounded by some of nature’s most bizarrely beautiful structures, this fancy glamping resort tastefully complements some of the most famous scenery in the Southwest.

A group of tents and tipis at Moab's "glamping" resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 16, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News
A group of tents and tipis at Moab’s “glamping” resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 16, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

Moab Under Canvas is a safari-style tent motel ideal for vacationers who yearn for something less predictable than the Best Western but aren’t ready for a bona fide camping trip. On 40 acres of natural desertscape 12 miles north of Moab, 40 tents of various sizes provide a remarkably cozy yet elegant shelter for travelers.

Though relatively pricey  depending on which tent option you select  Moab Under Canvas is an ideal place for those looking for an uber-scenic and memorable lodging experience while traveling the national parks circuit.

A view into Arches National Park from the interior of a deluxe tent at Moab's "glamping" resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 15, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News
A view into Arches National Park from the interior of a deluxe tent at Moab’s “glamping” resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 15, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

Founded on a goal of sharing the outdoors experience with those not-so-nomadic types, these tent lodges include modern beds, housekeeping services, hot water,  plumbing and – though relatively rudimentary – air-temperature control in the form of wood stoves and internal mist sprayers.

“We are environmental stewards who are just trying to share the outdoors with people,” the  resort’s manager, Daren Cole, said. “Without something like this, a lot of people would never go camping.”

The idea seems to be working. The glamping resort, in its first year, has been sold out most weekends, Cole said. In fact, the mother company, Under Canvas, which runs two other glamping resorts near Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons, is planning on opening several more glamping resorts across the West in the next few years.

Tami Thomas enjoys the view from the front of the less expensive, ground level, "safari" tent at Moab's "glamping" resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 16, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News
Tami Thomas enjoys the view from the front of the less expensive, ground level, “safari” tent at Moab’s “glamping” resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 16, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

The actual lodging experience varies widely depending on which tent you choose. The tents span from a very basic tipi to a resort-style, two-bedroom, cabin-sized suite.

The lower-end tipis and ground-level safari tents, though more affordable  $79 to $214  are crammed in tightly. A stay in one of these options yields less seclusion from other resort guests; neighboring tents are within spitting distance, and bathrooms and showers are shared by the community. However, these options still include housekeeping services, comfy beds and many modern amenities.

Two "deluxe" tents on the outskirts of the property at Moab's "glamping" resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 16, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News
Two “deluxe” tents on the outskirts of the property at Moab’s “glamping” resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 16, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

The pricey deluxe tents  starting at $279 a night  are much more private, and feel more like staying in a lodge then a tent. Deluxes are mostly on the outskirts of the property; so, although you have neighbors, you are for the most part entirely secluded. Deluxes are also lifted on a wood deck and include a private bathroom, a dresser and a wood-burning stove.

No matter which tent you choose, Moab Under Canvas provides one of the more unique lodging experiences in the Southwest. But remember, it’s not a luxury spa. Guests stay in a tent village outdoors in the wide-open desert.

A group of tipis at Moab's "glamping" resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 16, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News
A group of tipis at Moab’s “glamping” resort, Moab Under Canvas, Moab, Utah, Sept. 16, 2014 | Photo by Drew Allred, St. George News

For those who are hopeless romantics, a little more adventurous, or just lovers of beauty, you’ll adore this place. For those who want your vacation stay to be more like the Hilton, you might be moderately disappointed.

NOTES

  • Although the resort’s backyard is literally Arches National Park, there’s no direct access into Arches without driving
  • Prices vary depending on vacancy
  • Moab Under Canvas is open seasonally from early spring to late fall – it closes near the end of October

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Email: dallred@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2014, all rights reserved.

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2 Comments

  • Bobber October 8, 2014 at 11:34 pm

    A tent that costs more than a hotel room? really?

  • Moabite October 10, 2014 at 7:34 pm

    They look terrible coming down the highway seeing all the tents in your view!!!! Just what Moab didn’t need.

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