Southall Farm & Inn offers an idyllic escape that emphasizes sustainability

Spanning 325 bucolic acres, the luxury retreat is powered by a sustainable working farm in Franklin, Tennessee
Southall Farm & Inn in Franklin, Tennessee

Photo by Heather Durham

A farm stay may call to mind images of someplace quaint and simple, but Southall Farm & Inn is neither—in the best way. Spanning 325 bucolic acres, it’s a luxury retreat powered by a sustainable working farm in Franklin, Tennessee, 45 minutes from Nashville. Perched on the hillsides among the trees are 16 cozy cottages with porches overlooking the lake and 62-room main inn.

Inside one of the property’s hillside cottages

Photo by Heather Durham

Southall’s upscale touches (think oversized soaking tubs in each room, swing beds on some of the private porches, and a 15,000-square-foot spa) are certainly impressive, but the emphasis on sustainability is what sets it apart. The on-site restaurants serve hearty, wholesome dishes with as many ingredients as possible grown or raised on the property, including fresh eggs, fruit from the orangery and orchard, and lettuce from the hydroponic garden. Produce that isn’t used gets composted or sent to the Jammery, where it’s canned, pickled, or preserved. In the apiaries, more than 4 million bees produce honey that gets shaken up in cocktails at the bar and blended into smoothies at breakfast. Even the loofahs are grown on property.

Unused produce is sent to the Jammery, where it’s canned, picked, or preserved

Photo by Heather Durham

Southall excels at curating an “adult summer camp” vibe with a litany of add-on activities, including lessons in falconry, fly fishing, plein air painting, and beekeeping. Mornings can be spent in the yoga studio meditating with a sound bath, afternoons on the aerial ropes course, and evenings at an intimate tasting dinner with the head chef, beekeeper, and sommelier explaining their contributions to the meal. Days can be as action-packed or relaxing as one desires, but either way, a sense of deep connection to the land prevails.

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Insider Intel
Jay Williams, head beekeeper at Southall, shares his favorites at the inn and nearby downtown Franklin

Aerial Adventure
“My favorite activity to tackle at Southall is the ropes course. It challenges you in ways you never quite expect. Both courses are suspended off the side of a hill, giving you the impression that you’re high up amongst the treetops.”

Dinner Must
“My go-to dish at Sojourner is the Smashburger. The double-patty burger is made with locally raised beef, onion jam, aioli, and B&B pickles. It always satisfies after a long day out working with my bees.”

Caffeine Fix
“My favorite spot to hang out around downtown Franklin is the Coffee House. Converted from an old farmhouse, it’s cozy and friendly with tons of corners to hide and read a good book.”

This article appears in the Winter 2024 issue of Southbound.