Explore The Best Fall Getaways From House & Home
What makes a cottage or cabin welcoming year round? Other than a winterized space with proper heating, a cozy and welcoming atmosphere is a must. Our best fall getaways have a few things in common: a roaring fire, plenty of wood and an earthy palette that welcomes autumn’s changing leaves as much as it does a calm summer lake. So snuggle up and click through to virtually visit these inviting escapes from the House & Home archives.
This Maritime log cabin in Maces Bay, outside of Saint John, has been in designer Fenwick Bonnell’s (shown) family since the ’50s. It was carefully renovated to maintain the charm that has made this spot a treasured family hub in all four seasons, but in fall it’s particularly compelling with a stone fireplace and comfortable armchairs set nearby.
Fenwick’s parents brought the mahoe wood coffee table in the great room back with them after a trip to Jamaica. Many of the furniture pieces and accessories preserve the cottage’s history.
The cottage’s original log cabin frame opens into a quaint dining area. A contractor replaced the windows and redid the exterior walls with painted V-groove panelling, while Fenwick added floor-length linen drapery to dress up the space.
One of the three small bedrooms holds twin beds. Fenwick designed the headboards and the night table, and refreshed the other two bedrooms with identical furnishings.
H&H senior editor Morgan Michener’s family cabin is exactly what you’d want in a fall escape. She updated the space from rustic to refined while respecting its rural roots. In the living room, a roaring fire on the woodstove keeps things cozy.
The black kitchen cabinets and natural wood panels offer a moody look that’s right on trend. The brass hardware and glass cabinets filled with pottery (not shown) add touches of personality to the high-style space.
The vintage bed frames, jute rug and buffalo check comforter in the kids’ room are reminders of a once endless summer, even as the seasons change.
A dry laid stone fireplace in this Quebec cottage has a grandeur that’s emphasized by the impressive antler chandelier. A cast-iron stove (not visible) keeps this space even more toasty when the fire is roaring.
A suspended canoe tucked under the rafters is an evocative touchstone in this rustic escape. The framing serves as bookshelves, and layered cowhide rugs and a leather sofa are durable and welcoming.
This kitchen boasts a ton of vintage character. A sturdy farm-style table and Persian rug makes this an inviting spot for mulled cider after a walk in the woods.
Former H&H editor Suzanne Dimma’s treetop cottage on Drag Lake in Haliburton, Ontario, was carefully orchestrated to frame this impressive view. The rock face beyond this window acts like a work of art, especially at night when it’s lit from below.
A screened-in porch is Suzanne’s favorite spot in the cottage. From the daybed, it’s possible to hear a waterfall through the full-height screened panels: the perfect soundtrack for whiling away a fall afternoon.
This centrally located wood burning stove generates enough heat to keep this off-the-grid getaway warm all fall (and winter) long, and there is plenty of room so chairs can be drawn close.
No drapes required: when you can wake up to this tapestry of fall colors, you’d hate to miss out. A tonal wool blanket, textured rug and small hide throw set a comfortable tone in this cottage’s principal bedroom.
This kitchen is dedicated to the beauty of wood — and the woods. Clean lines and no uppers means there is nothing to obstruct the view of the golden leaves and birch trunks while seated at the island.
Toronto designer Alex Arnott infused this cottage’s classic interiors with laid-back, breezy style. A plush Persian rug, baskets of cozy throws, and a languorous tabby cat to curl up with make it a dreamy fall destination.
To make the space more efficient for gatherings, the dining table was moved into the former family room. When the patio doors are opened and the outdoor table is brought in, the space seats up to 20 people.
Playing on the Cape Cod theme, a mahogany bench painted with high-gloss lacquer, like the varnished wood on a vintage boat, compliments the rich red door.
The original cottage had a huge principal bedroom. The space was renovated to include an airy and luxurious ensuite complete with a steam shower and double vanity.
If it’s fall in Canada, it’s time to cue the antlers and field stone. Slipping durable leather slipcovers over the armchairs and adding red throw pillows helps this Muskoka cottage’s living room easily shift gears from summer to fall.
This screened-in porch is enclosed with sliding doors and equipped with heated floors, so when the temperatures drop the fire can be stoked and the season extended. Want to make woven patio furniture look seasonless? Add an earthy linen slipcover and throw.
The kitchen is well-equipped enough for a professional chef, but remains user-friendly. The polished look of the Caesarstone counters, custom-made oak cabinets and minimal brass hardware is tempered by well-loved cutting boards and potted herbs. The zinc hood’s matte patina gives the new kitchen a legacy look.
To make this cottage bedroom seem even more welcoming, it was warmed up with heirloom rugs and patterned bedding in rich fall tones. An upholstered headboard and wood furniture warms up the shiplap walls.
In the principal ensuite, high windows and undermounted lights bathe the space in light. Wall-to-wall floating cabinetry maxes out storage, while the freestanding tub is positioned next to full-height doors leading to a private patio.
A rusty length of Corten steel stands in for a mantel in this modern twist on a classic cottage fireplace. Barnboard panelling makes this prefab cottage in Georgian Bay feel custom built, and unique to the family.
A sofa piled with pillows (the color was chosen to reference granite and lichen) is the ideal spot for surveying the changing seasons. This family room’s soft, neutral palette and reclaimed wood coffee table doesn’t pull focus from what’s going on outside.
Hudson’s Bay Point blankets never fail to show their true colors. This multi-hued staple is de rigeur in a Canadian cottage, and the pure wool is warm enough for the chilliest nights.
Reclaimed barnboard cladding makes this cottage kitchen feel like dining in the woods, literally. Reclaimed Douglas fir floorboards and a branch-like chandelier up the woodland authenticity and charm.
In this autumn-ready retreat, modern icons like lights by Isamu Noguchi and George Nelson and a glass and metal coffee table by Warren Platner offer a striking contrast to the rustic wooden structure, which homeowner Kelvin Browne left exposed to show off its spartan beauty. An antique carpet found in Marrakesh injects more warm color.
The high ceiling in the completely rebuilt kitchen is a welcome change from the coziness of the lower ceilings in the rest of the main floor. Stainless steel countertops and a slate floor infuse a contemporary spirit that works well with the simple, traditional cabinetry and classic double kitchen pantry — the left side for food and the fridge, the right for dishes and the bar.
The Danish teak dining set and sideboard feel like a natural fit with the exposed hardwood beams. The sideboard houses three contemporary metal pieces from India and a ceramic lamp bought in the nearby town of Wellfleet.
The mantel in the dining room was likely added in the 1950s, when the house was “modernized” with drop plaster ceilings and new bathrooms. The two photographs of green fields are by Toronto-area artist Pamela Purves.
With its walls and ceiling painted in pale hues, this southwest-facing office is the brightest in the house, and a nice break from all the dark wood in the surrounding rooms. A sleeper sofa here lets the room act as a TV room or third bedroom if needed.
In the new great room adjacent to the kitchen, a natural neutral palette feels comfortable and cozy on both warm summer days and snowy nights. Natural textures such as driftwood, river rocks, wood and linen-clad sofas bring the outdoors inside.
The new principal bedroom has wraparound windows to maximize lake views. The clean lines, Moroccan lantern and Indian-print pillows keep the mood contemporary, not kitschy.
The kitchen is designed to handle a crowd: open shelving and an armoire with chicken-wire fronts make finding things easy; the massive island houses two heavy-duty dishwashers.
Rustic twin beds brought from the family’s previous cottage provide a cozy kid-friendly retreat in one of the guest bedrooms.