Archive for August, 2013

Beautiful Saranac Lake

Posted on: August 19th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments

Flower Lake

Though the village of Saranac Lake is almost twice the size of its neighbor, Lake Placid, it doesn’t receive nearly the amount of tourist attention.  If you’re looking for a place to get away and not be bothered by mobs of tourists, this is the place for you.

Despite the name the village of Saranac Lake does not sit on any of the three lakes bearing the name Saranac.  It actually sits on Lake Flower.   The village sits near the center of the Adirondack Park, making it an excellent base for any of the outdoor activities that the Tri-Lakes region has to offer.

The area was first settled for logging in the 1820s.  However in 1848, William F. Martin built a hotel – one of the first in the Adirondacks – that quickly became a popular place for socialites to vacation, as well as for woodsmen and huntsmen to stay.  This was the beginning of the area’s popularity was a vacation destination.

In 1876, Dr. Edward Livingston Trudeau came to Saranac Lake to treat his tuberculosis.  He returned in 1884 to establish the Adirondack Cottage Sanitarium.  This “cure cottage” grew in fame and eventually grew so large that it required its own post office, just for patients’ mail.

Many famous people came to cure their TB including author Robert Louis Stevenson.  Saranac Lake became world renowned for Trudeau’s sanitarium, and the many other cure cottages which sprung up throughout the village.   They continued to treat patients even into the 1950s, despite the development of a more effective treatment in 1944.

In 1901 the village enjoyed a visit from Mark Twain, at the height of his fame.  During the 1920s bootlegging was common in the village and notorious gangster Legs Diamond even came to town to visit his brother while he stayed in a cure cottage.

In the 1930s and 40s, Albert Einstein maintained a summer home in Saranac Lake which he rented from architect William L. Distin. He liked to go sailing on Lake Flower with his wife.

Today, Saranac Lake is an excellent place to visit.  Much of the original architecture has been preserved and restored, making it beautiful and charming.  In summers, it’s an excellent place to go enjoy the water, hike in the forest, go rock climbing, or simply stroll through the streets and take in the local shops.

Getting there is no problem.  Commercial flights fly into Albany, and Burlington, and Lake Clear.  It’s also possible to charter flights to Lake Placid or nearby Adirondack Regional Airport.


Where to Stay in Holderness, NH

Posted on: August 16th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments
The Manor on Golden Pond

The Manor on Golden Pond

Holderness and the lakes region is full of great b&bs and hotels many of which offer gorgeous views of the lakes, easy walks to the shore, and excellent hospitality.

The Manor on Golden Pond – A member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, this gorgeous turn of the century manor was built at the turn of the 20th century as a luxury resort. Sitting on 13 acres of the foothills of the beautiful White Mountains, this is the perfect location for a romantic escape, weekend getaway or just a luxurious stay in an English style manor.

The Jonathan Beede House  –  Once a stop on the Underground Railroad, this home as seen its fair share of history.  Allow a stay here to take you back to a simpler time by experiencing the warm, country hospitality of a classic New England village.  The property adjoins several wildlife trails, has easy access to the Squam Lake beach and boat launches, and is family friendly.

The Inn on Golden Pond –  This beautiful colonial bed and breakfast is only a few minutes from Squam Lake.  Beautifully restored and expanded they’re the perfect place to unwind after a long day of hiking, or boating on the lake.

Cheney House –  Built in 1895, this bed and breakfast has everything you might need, including gym! Located in Ashland, they are central to the Lakes Region, giving you easy access to anything you might want to see in the area.

Squam Lake Inn –  Experience all that the Lakes Region has to offer when you stay in this 1895 Farmhouse.  Each guest room is decorated with a New England theme and after a delicious full breakfast it’s just a short walk to Squam Lake.

Where to Eat in Holderness, NH

Posted on: August 16th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments
Van Horn Dining Room

Van Horn Dining Room

The village of Holderness offers plenty of delightful eateries and waterside restaurants to enjoy.

Annie’s Overflow – If you’re looking for a great breakfast you can’t beat Annie’s! Build your own omelettes, enjoy some delicious steak n’ eggs or hash browns cooked to perfection with some tasty coffee at this local favorite.

Walter’s Basin – Sitting just besides Little Squam Lake, Walter’s Basin offers diners a gorgeous view while they enjoy some great American food.

Van Horn Dining Room – The Van Horn Dining Room is the hub of haute cuisine in the Lakes Region.  They offer breakfast and dinner an a relaxing, elegant setting that reminds one of something seen at a fine English manor.  A vegan tasting menu is available by special request.

Squam Lake Inn Kitchen and Bar – The motto here is “Food Among Friends!” and they do everything they can make you feel like you’re dining with your oldest chums.  Using fresh, local ingredients from local farms and fish they create a truly memorable experience that should be part of any trip through New England.

Corner House Inn – This pub has been in operation for over 150 years.  Enjoy a casual dinner upstairs in the pub, or enjoy a more intimate setting in one of the dining rooms downstairs.

Relax in Holderness, NH

Posted on: August 16th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments


Just a two hour drive from Boston, Holderness and the Squam Lakes region has so much to offer and so many things to do.  Enjoy the lakes  by swimming, kayaking or fishing.  Explore over 50 miles of hiking trails, or take in some of the gorgeous views by car, on foot, or even on horseback.

Let the quaint architecture take you back to a simpler time as you explore the many shops and art galleries.

The region offers many delightful places to eat, ranging from fine dining to casual fare.  Many offer delicacies prepared from local, farm fresh ingredients carefully paired with delicious wines which you can enjoy while you take in the view of the lake or enjoy the coziness of an historic building.

As it became a popular place for Bostoners to escape the city in the 19th century many places to stay cropped up in the Lakes region, some of which are still in operation.  Enjoy a stay in a cozy 19th century luxury hotel, or a beautiful 19th century home and hearken back to a simpler time.

Holderness has much to offer in terms of charm and luxury.  It’s also a great location for outdoor summer fun! It makes the perfect summer getaway from the city.

Things to do in Holderness, NH

Posted on: August 13th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments

MerrimackRiverOver the summer many tourists flock to Holderness and the lakes region to take advantage of the many lakes and all the fun they have to offer.  Fishing, boating, water skiing, and kayaking are just a few of the great things to do!

If history is your thing you might enjoy the Holderness Historical Society’s points of interest driving tour.  See the waterfalls, the mill which was once part of Holderness, the Holderness School, and many other historic buildings, some of which date back to the 18th century.

The Squam Lakes Natural Science Center is a great place to stop if you’re hoping to catch a glimpse of all the local wildlife without getting too close.  The Science Center is full of interactive exhibits, as well as live animal exhibits and several hiking trails and lake tours.  There is plenty to see and lots to learn about!

The Quincy Bog Natural Area  and the Markus Wildlife Sanctuary  are both home to some lovely hiking trails.  As nature preserves they will allow you to see plenty of flora and fauna in all of its unspoiled glory.


Experience Holderness, NH

Posted on: August 12th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments

Squam-Lake-2006Hidden away in the White Mountain National Forest mountains lays Holderness, New Hampshire.  Sitting on the Squam River, Holderness and White Mountain have becoming a great destination for camping, fishing and boating.

In colonial times the area was used as a trade route by Native Americans and settlers because of its proximity to the river.  It later developed into a farming and fishing village.

In the 1800s the unspoiled beauty of the mountains and lakes became a large draw for people hoping to escape the suffocating day-to-day of Boston or Baltimore during the Industrial Revolution.  By the turn of the century, Holderness was full of fishing camps and hotels along the shore and hillside.

Today, Holderness is still mostly rural.  The stunning natural beauty of the mountains and lakes continue to draw tourists throughout the year.   Its serene, mountain side location make it a great getaway from the city.


Escape to Tarrytown

Posted on: August 9th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments

Tarrytown is just a short distance outside New York city making it a great place for a day trip or a weekend getaway.

It’s full of historic landmarks or fun and interesting things to do.  Visiting Kykuit or Lyndhurst will take you back to the early 19th century.  Fans of Washington Irving can visit his home at Sunnyside or visit some of his local haunts.  For the Ichabod Crane experience stop by Horseman’s Hallow or visit the Headless Horseman’s Bridge.

Many of Tarrytown’s sprawling Victorian and post Victorian estates have been converted into charming and romantic hotels and b&bs which are fabulous places to stay.  Some have even been fully restored so that it feels like you’re taking a trip back in time.

And of course you’ll never run out of great places to eat in Tarrytown! From the Zagat rated Equus, which holds Five Stars from the American Academy of Hospitality Sciences, to the more casual Green Grass Grill, there is something to satisfy every palate.

A day in Tarrytown is the perfect way to experience the country and escape the city.

Places to Stay in Tarrytown

Posted on: August 8th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments

Tarrytown and the surrounding area have plenty of adorable hotels and  b&bs to stay in. They range from converted barns, sprawling historic estates that have been painstakingly restored, to beautiful riverside castles.  Wherever you stay you’ll get a feel for the wonderful historical atmosphere of Tarrytown.

Castle on the Hudson – Sitting on one of the highest points in Westchester County, this 100 year old castle offers gorgeous views of the Hudson River Valley.  The surrounding gardens and grounds provide the perfect backdrop for a romantic getaway at this lavish escape.

Tarrytown House Estate – A stay at this sprawling historic estate will be unforgettable.  This hotel features two 19th century mansions, one of which has been fully restored to its Georgian era glory, taking guests back to a time of simple luxury.

Riverview Bed and Breakfast –  A beautiful Dutch Colonial home built circa 1835, this house is the former home of My Fair Lady star Rex Harrison.   It sits on a cliff overlooking the widest point of the Hudson River, providing stunning views and a relaxing atmosphere.

Kittle House – The Kittle House has been operating as an inn and restaurant since the 1930s, this house has been extensively restored and enhanced to create the stellar experience that the Crabtree family hopes to give their guests today.

Bricktown Inn – This 19th century colonial home has been equipped with all modern amenities without compromising the beautiful Victorian architecture.  Be ready for some real home town hospitality!

Places to Eat in Tarrytown

Posted on: August 7th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments

Tarrytown is just full of great places to eat! Whether you’re looking for a gourmet experience, or something a little more homey and comforting you’ll find it in Tarrytown.

Village Dog – This isn’t your typical hot dog joint! Village Dog serves gourmet hot dogs and sausages that are all handmade, from naturally farm raised meats.  Whether you’re looking to try something adventurous like lamb topped with tzatziki, or just a bit of comfort food, you’ll find it here.

Bistro Z –  located in the Doubletree hotel, this surprising restaurant blends simple elegance with a casual, relaxed setting, while offering an imaginative American menu.

Sweet Grass Grill – A true Tarrytown gem, the Sweet Grass Grill is a casual restaurant that offers a fresh, seasonal menu that varies weekly.  Farm fresh ingredients and simplicity is the name of the game here.

Equus at Castle on the Hudson – This Zagat rated, Five Star winning restaurant will offer you a dining experience you’ll never forget. Using locally grown products and ingredients, Equus presents a fantastic seasonal French menu that will dazzle and delight as you enjoy views of the Hudson River Valley and the Manhattan skyline.

Osaka – Offering a wide range of Japanese cuisine, Osaka creates a more intimate feel than the typical teppanyaki restaurant.

Cellar 49 – With an intimate dining room sitting directly in the cellar of the Biddle Mansion, it’s easy to assume that wine is a big focus at Cellar 49.   This tavern offers typical tavern fare with a modern twist, along with some hard to find wines, and great craft beer selection.

Find more places to eat in Tarrytown here.

Things to Do in Tarrytown

Posted on: August 6th, 2013 by Erin Weir No Comments

Along with its great antique shops and boutiques, Tarrytown offers everything that any waterside village would including great boating, kayaking and fishing.

It also offers a chance to get a look at some really fantastic local history.

For any Washington Irving fans, a trip to Sunnyside is order! His former home has been restored to look just as it did when the author lived there. You might also consider doing a tour of Iriving’s landmarks to see his favorite haunts, the places that inspired his stories, and of course, the headless horseman’s final resting place.

The Tarrytown Lighthouse is a great family friendly option! Located inside Kingsland Point Park, it’s the perfect location to picnic on the waterfront.

Two National Trust Historic Sites are quite nearby. Kykuit, the Rockefeller estate, and Lydhurst, a stellar example of the American Gothic Revival movement.  Both of these beautiful 19th century estates are gorgeously preserved.  Lyndhurt is a must see for any Dark Shadows fan as it was the set for both 1970s films.

Of course if you’re looking for a bit of entertainment you can’t beat the Tarrytown Music Hall.  Built in the early 19th century, it’s an old, cozy hall with great acoustics and a lot of charm.