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Culture / Travel

Inside a Private Hill Country Retreat

Shooting, Wine and Golf Make This Exclusive Club a Unique Blast

BY // 08.09.16

Fredericksburg, a city rich in German heritage with a bustling arts scene and the country’s second-largest wine-making region, is near and dear to my heart. My great-grandparents lived there for many years, and I have fond memories of traveling to spend time with them while growing up in San Antonio. In a wave of excitement fueled by nostalgia, I recently took a quick trip back to the heart of the Hill Country to visit upscale community Boot Ranch.

Touring the private club and family retreat — a sprawling 2,000-plus acres located five miles north of downtown Fredericksburg — was like taking a mini vacation, exchanging a day in the office for a day spent admiring the land and properties, soaking in the sunshine on a golf-cart excursion around the picturesque course, indulging in some skeet shooting (I hit my first-ever clay pigeon!), and sipping Becker Vineyards wine at sunset.

skeet shooting
Taking aim: I hit the second of two clay pigeons.

Designed to accommodate 450 homeowners, Boot Ranch offers four different types of real estate: Custom Homesteads, Country Homes, Overlook Cabins, and Sunday Houses. The community is unique in that it offers multi-generational memberships, sans additional fees. Translation: Membership privileges extend beyond spouses and young children to include grandparents, parents, adult children, and grandchildren, allowing everyone to enjoy Boot Ranch’s fusion of elegant and rustic, ranch-like aesthetics, whether they’re looking for a vacation home, second home, or a permanent place to put down roots.

Among the luxurious privileges? The aforementioned 18-hole golf course, designed by PGA champ Hal Sutton (you might recognize holes No. 3 and No. 10 from the movie Seven Days in Utopia starring Robert Duvall); access to the 55,000-square-foot Clubhouse Village, complete with casual or fine cuisine from exec chef Aaron Staudenmaier, a bar, wine cellar, workout facility, locker rooms (spotted: Lance Armstrong’s name above his locker), and spa; the Ranch Club, where you’ll  find three heated swimming pools, a Jacuzzi, an open-air pavilion with a dining and bar area, tennis courts, playground, and changing rooms; and a trap and skeet range that’s open all year long.

Although trying my hand at skeet and drinking rosé as the sun disappeared behind the rolling hills were definitely highlights of the adventure, seeing what the community had to offer its members in such a tranquil, idyllic location was what really impressed me. And, there’s even more in the works: Boot Ranch plans to create a hiking and biking trail system throughout the property, and a Lake Club, which will serve as a hub for outdoor activities like fishing in Longhorn Lake. Tap their website for more details.

Boot Ranch, 77 Boot Ranch Circle, 830.997.6200.

Holiday Gifting

  • Cle Du Peau - Nail Polish
  • Loeffler Randall - Shoes
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Loeffler Randall - Clutch
  • Nocturne Studio
  • Casa di Lino
  • Mariquite Masterson
  • Oscar De La Renta - Clutch
  • Cle Du Peau - Lip Gloss
  • Bond No 9 - Perfume
  • Bond No 9 - Candle
  • Oscar De La Renta - Earrings

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