Each year, all around the world Spring holds the promise of a new beginning. A new start, a new opportunity that nature created for all of us.

This year Spring is even more special and certainly feels more familiar compared to last Spring. The 2020  Covid-19 Spring held a different promise. A promise of the unknown, crisis, uncertainty, panic and much more. But last year also offered plenty of opportunities for growth, to do things differently and to improve. Much as every challenge or change offers.

This year Spring feels great. All our staff has been vaccinated and all new incoming staff are being vaccinated. At The Hideout we care about our crew and team. Making sure our staff can work in a healthy, respectful, and caring environment. The very foundations of a great guest experience.

We are in the 2nd month of our season and guests have been enthusiastic, wonderful, and appreciative. Nothing has changed on that front.

Every season we always have new faces joining our crew for the season. And once more, this year we were lucky on that front.


To stay the same and keep our brand promise, we need to constantly change, adjust, and improve. The old normal is history! Embrace the New Normal.

The Kitchen Team

All-time favorite chef Rachel recruited Raven and Josh to work in the dining room as servers. They are two very enthusiastic, no drama and fun young people. Denise our new sous-chef is a gem. She is hardworking, loves the outdoors and adds new flavors to the kitchen. Two weeks ago, smiling, and caring pro Leslie joined us also. Maricela will join us during the summer months as she has been doing for 20+ years.



Marco and Ever, our long-time maintenance team are still looking for a seasonal irrigation and maintenance crew member to help them out.


Guille the head of housekeeping for over 20 years and her sister Norma managed to pull another sister, Betty, out of their hat to join us. Guille and Norma seem to have a never-ending stream of sisters to come and help us.


After managing the office part-time during the off-season, Melanie is as usual full-time on board during the season months. We still do not know how Melanie manages to operate that office with such professionalism all by herself, while modernizing software and other systems. Realizing that last year and this year were by far the most challenging years working reservations and guest services in the office.

Because of Covid-19 many reservations were changed multiple times, pushing forward to other seasons and other years. At this moment Melanie is rearranging all the international reservations for the 3rd and sometimes 4th time. Always with a smile, no panic and in control.

All this while managing her own ranch, calving, fencing, irrigating, etc.

As of this week Nina and Leslie will start helping Melanie on and off. It’s a long season.

What is happening at The Barn?

Much as last year, with exception of Ramon, and Peter riding occasionally, it is again once more an all-girls team headed by Marijn. Nina, Laura and Laurel are back for a 4th, 2nd and 7th season. Marijn managed to hire some very accomplished new female wranglers.  We still have two additional new wranglers joining us early Summer. One of them is an experienced high end jumping trainer, currently preparing high $ horses in The Wellington / Palm Beach, Florida area.

A fun, relaxed, yet professional culture at The Barn.  And these girls know about horses, hospitality people and riding.


Spring is in the air

Broken Back Marijn

Three weeks ago, one of our bigger horses spooked in the catch corral and jumped on top of Marijn and ran over her. Marijn suffered a cut in her face, a broken toe and broken back. She will be out of riding for a couple months to make sure everything heals up. Nevertheless, two days after the accident she is back managing the barn and meeting with the barn crew mornings and evenings and doing sign ups during cocktail hour.



New Bar Owners in town

Many of you many know the little bar in town, which dates from 1935 that was for sale. The good news is that it sold to friends of The Hideout. Knowing them and the standards they have, this will be a blessing for our little town!

More exciting news to come on the real estate side in Shell!


Thank you for reading our blog and wishing you great Spring.