Now and then, effete brie eaters like to pretend to “get back to nature” without, you know, having to have any contact with nature, any effort beyond swiping a credit card, and any change to their routine of unvaried comfort.  Behold!  There is a business to cater to the Pampered Set who want to “camping” but don’t want the hassle of camping: Glamping!

I notice they offer this even at our family’s Hidden Island Redoubt where we go each Memorial and Labor Day.  Happily, they will not be there on those days, because the sheer wrongness waves this whole enterprise emits would destroy the fabric of space and time and mess up my sleep.

If you go camping, go camping.  If you want a bed and breakfast, just do that. Oy!

God sends us stupid bishops...
The McMass Project
As we near the season when historically illiterate skeptics around the world declare...
  • Dale

    Meh, vacation resorts in foreign countries have been doing similar more many years. The company which is trying this business model in the US may or may not succeed. But if this venture results in more revenue for the state parks, is that such a bad thing?

    Being an inveterate backpacker or at least tent camper, I am not sure that glamping is all that different from staying in an RV.

  • Doug

    I think it’s a throw-back celebration of Euro-African colonialism while trying to pretend it wasn’t at all racist. No, really not at ALL.

    When one goes on ‘safari’ so to speak in the Americas, one may not even come into contact with any their less-pale citizens if one is careful and travels in the right sort of circles.

  • Linda C.

    “Glamping” goes beyond standard RV use, to sinking inordinate amounts of money into fixing up campers (preferably vintage ones), etc.. It’s all about the luxury. Mary Jane Butters wrote a book on it, if you care to look further.

  • Scott W.
  • bear

    I’ve actually seen more elaborate setups from people in SCA. Witness:

  • Mitch

    Loathsome… then again I have a relative who wouldn’t pay for this but brings all of her own stuff to do basically the same thing. Nope. Still Loathsome.

  • Wills

    Why do you care? I backpack and camp but this looks like fun too. Lighten up.

    • Scott W.

      It’s obviously a light-hearted entry. Physician, heal thyself.

  • Will J

    Reminds me of a story told by John Denver at a concert in the 1990s. He was invited to go horseback riding and camping with some rich people. They rode all morning and came to an lunch site all set up with fancy tables, linens, and food. They rode all afternoon and came to another site all set up with all of the amenities of a Four Seasons for dinner and overnight. He told the story with a bit of humor as if it was not quite his style.

  • Beadgirl

    What’s wrong with brie? Spread on a crusty loaf of French bread, with maybe some smushed roasted garlic or a not-too-sweet jam . . . mmmm . . . brie . . . .

    • KML

      Argh! Pregnant! Can’t have delicious brie! I shake my fist at you in rage for the tasty vision you just planted in my brain!

      • Beadgirl

        KML, because of a 2004 law, brie sold in America is pasteurized and safe for pregnant women to eat! No, it’s not the same as French brie, but it’s something.

        • KML

          SWEET! You just made my Friday.

  • Chris-2-4

    Wait for it…

    wait for it…

  • Faith

    I think it kind of hearkens back to the days when the generals’ wives would follow the army around as they marched from battle to battle. Or Bedouins sheiks moving all their tribes and flocks around. Heck, Abraham might have camped this way! But seriously, I think we are so self-indulgent these days with a nail salon on every corner (for example) now that we have to think up ways to spend our money. Wouldn’t it be nice if people just went regular camping and then spent the money they would have thrown at such luxuries on, say, people who have no homes? Just saying.

  • KML

    Beyond the weird disconnects and philosophical issues I have with this, it just seems like a terrible business model. How much must it cost to keep and maintain things like mattresses, linens and furniture that are to be used out in the wilderness, not to mention the cost of getting it there and set up? And given the cost, why on earth would anyone choose this over, say, a B&B out in the boonies? And having possibly done so once and experienced the kitsch of doing so, sign up to do it again? This just seems like the of camping.

    • Marthe Lépine

      You are right! I never thought of the bugs getting in the mattress… or colonies of mice making a nest there… or…

  • Thew

    Actually, as a sometimes camper this looks pretty cool- not as an every time camping sort of way, but as a whimsical kind of mix of civilization and nature. And in a sense, isn’t all camping a mix of the wilderness and civilization? Otherwise camping would be running off naked into the woods for several days, which doesn’t sound fun to me.

    • Marthe Lépine

      Another idea: I think for seniors like myself, however with much more money than I, it would not be such a bad idea. The illusion of coming back to younger days were actually camping was fun, but with more material comfort, and some people around to look for us. However I wonder what would happen if a bear or a coyote came sniffing inside…

  • HBanan

    Mark, please. Admit it.

    You want to go glamping.

    Just add the money bar, “Contribute to my opulently rugged vaction” and sit back while the money rolls in. Then you too, along with your wife and other family members, can enjoy being pampered in the wilderness by a team who claims, “We begin each morning with a piping hot cup of black coffee and only rest after we have accomplished all that we promised to….We never settle for just five stars.”

    They say, “Our guests demand an environmentally conscious experience customized to fulfill their curiosity, passions and hobbies.”

    That is you, Mark.

    Imagine it.

    You and your wife wake up to the sound of birds, in a comfy bed in a tent in a forest in which no other campers are permitted. Outside your tent, a herald (robotic, of course) reads off a scroll of your latest accomplishments and evil deeds as the Dark Lord. Hot, fresh coffee brewed from the tears of your conquered foes is poured into a golden mug sent in tribute by the Queen of Assyria. You smile as you look over the cascading waterfall, and marvel at how the mists rise to reveal the carefully maintained flock of Cardinals, which your hosts know are of interest to you. You stretch and look forward to a day in which the wilderness itself will seem to bend and twist through space and time to satisfy your dreams.

    When you leave, you are given a card, a card on which to indicate stars. Even writing the number of stars in scientific notation would require more time than our sun will endure, so you simply fill the page and let fall one solitary tear — a tear of regret that you cannot fully express your gratitude, and a tear of joy that you have lived through such wonder.

    • Mark Shea

      Hot, fresh coffee brewed from the tears of your conquered foes is poured into a golden mug sent in tribute by the Queen of Assyria.

      I must confess you make it awfully tempting.

  • Alister

    And there I was considering myself a shameless hedonist investing in a camp stretcher.

  • S. Quinn

    I looked at the photos on the glamping link. Who knew there was such a thing as “camping porn”? (Get your mind out of the gutter! There are no naked people in the photos! I meant along the lines of “food porn.”)

  • Jeff

    This looks awesome!

  • Ted Seeber

    In some Oregon campsites (mainly on the East side of the Cascades, where the weather can get quite bad) there are Yurts that are close to this. I’m sure with enough money, you could easily get catered meals at a Yurt- I’ve had pizzas delivered to one. At some you even have internal plumbing; at the smaller ones you’ve got to walk a short distance to the loop restroom.