When sisters Alexis Drake and Amanda Fuller first walked into Columbia’s Magnolia Acres to join a wellness retreat, Alexis turned to Amanda and said, “I feel like I just got home for the first time in my life.”
Magnolia Acres has that effect on people. It’s like wandering onto the set of your favorite southern movie, with its long alley of towering sycamores leading to an 1850 white-columned mansion. A massive magnolia tree stands sentry near the front entrance, the keeper of memories for those who have gathered here over the past 172 years.
The main house is surrounded by ten serene acres of former farmland. Guests can wade through creeks, dance in a rustic barn, try short-game golf, swim in a heated saltwater pool, laugh with friends around fire pits, entertain in the amphitheater, walk along trails with wildlife, and enjoy spa treatments from Columbia’s Elia Day Spa, which serves guests in the property’s cozy log cabin. Magnolia Acres has partnered with Elia Day Spa’s owner, Nichole Nace, who offers “spa days” for spa clients to relax at the estate and enjoy treatments like massages and facials in the cabin adjoining the swimming pool.
Alexis knew what she would create with this property, if only it could be hers. “I asked the retreat hostess if the owner would consider selling, and she said, ‘Oh no, she would never sell it.’ Then, last October, I heard the property was going on the market.” Alexis jumped at the opportunity. “I knew how special this place is, and how much history it has, and I want to make it so others can build on its history and make memories of their own.”
Alexis worked as a San Diego hospital manager for 17 years before she and her family moved to Tennessee, where she became an esthetician. Before long, she realized her true calling is hospitality. She curates a collection of homemade soaps, fresh flowers, champagnes, and other touches that she adds to her guests’ experiences.
The estate can be rented for reunions, retreats, weddings, showers, even film and photo shoots. “Kelsea Ballerini and Reba McEntire have shot here,” says Alexis. “The band ‘Need to Breathe’ wrote their latest album here.”
The main house has five bedrooms and can sleep 16 people. There are four bathrooms, formal and casual dining rooms, a family room with fireplace, living room with grand piano, decks and porches with twinkling string lights, and a dreamy kitchen flooded with sunlight from a wall of southern-facing windows. Other house amenities include heated marble bathroom floors, soaking tubs and linen duvet covers.
Located only ten minutes from Columbia’s public square, the estate is a popular destination for locals and travelers alike. “I’d like to bring new things to Columbia,” says Alexis. “Farm-to-table dinners, wine & painting nights, Santa’s workshop, mother-daughter teas …”
One only needs to visit Magnolia Acres to know Alexis’ dreams will soon become reality! TheMagnoliaAcres.com