Hudson Valley Spring Weekender Guide

Photo: Matt Brodeur
Photo: Matt Brodeur

The Hudson Valley has long been a go-to weekend destination for burnt-out New Yorkers. With scenic stops all along the Metro North Railroad, in less than 3 hours you’re in an idyllic setting. A decade or so ago, these small towns were mostly filled with farm stands, antiques and a coffee shop here or there—but over the past few years, Hudson Valley has seen a boom in the hospitality department, thanks in large part to the the city’s art scene heading north.

So while you can still find plenty of antique shops, there are now a few more options for lodging and dining other than old-timey lodges and diners. See our picks for the towns to visit this spring.

1. Red Hook/Rhinebeck

Boasting hundreds of historic homes as well as independent shops, antique stores, amazing restaurants, and a thriving arts community, surrounding Red Hook and Rhinebeck epitomize the vibe of Hudson Valley. With Bard College nearby, the area (the town of Tivoli is often lumped in with this group) sees a healthy influx of young, scholarly residents.

STAY

Whistlewood Farm Bed & Breakfast

When in Hudson Valley, a few nights on a working farm seem called for. Enter Whistlewood Farm B&B which seeps with coziness—from the antique decor and enveloping furniture to the rustic fireplaces and handmade quilts. Guests indulge in a delicious breakfasts whipped up by Maggie, the property’s owner and caretaker for over 30 years. On the grounds, guests can hang out with animals (there are horses, cows, donkeys and chickens), enjoy the sunset, or relax with a deck of cards.

Address: 52 Pells Road, Rhinebeck, NY

Contact: (845) 876-6838 | www.whistlewood.com

EAT

Liberty Public House

If anyone is making America great again, it’s the folks at Liberty Public House in Rhinebeck. The historically set restaurant serves up feel good food like Catskill Trout, The Liberty Burger and Freedom Fries and a classic Iceberg Wedge. Outside, they’ve built a bar called The Boathouse from a 1976 Coronado sloop which, according to their site, once sailed the Hudson River.

Address: 6417 Montgomery Street, Rhinebeck, NY

Contact: (845) 876-1760 | www.libertyrhinebeck.com

Mercato

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Upscale farm-to-table eatery Mercato could be tucked away in the West Village were it not, instead, housed in a picturesque, historic Hudson Home in Red Hook. Rustic details beautifully blend with modern Italian cuisine (the chef is from Rome) to create a nostalgic yet “of the moment” vibe that’s not easy to find.

Address: 61 E. Market Street, Red Hook, NY

Contact: 845.758.5879 | www.mercatoredhook.com

EXPLORE

George Cole Auctions

Get down with the local culture with a visit to George Cole Auctions where items from estate sales and other valuables are hawked at lightening speed. Check the site for auction dates and details. Even if you walk away empty handed, you’ll have had an authentic Hudson Valley experience.

Address: 7578 N Broadway, Red Hook, NY 12571

Contact: (845) 758-9114www.georgecoleauctions.com

2. Saugerties

For a real country getaway, check out Saugerties, nestled between the Hudson River and the Catskill Mountains. One of Hudson Valley’s sleepier towns—with the exception of their annual Equestrian Show—it’s also the place Jimmy Fallon calls home. Go Antiquing down Main St., grab a bite on Partition St., or make a quick trip to nearby Woodstock.

STAY

Barn on the Pond

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If you have a large group gathering for a getaway, Barn on the Pond has you covered. The three bedroom renovated barn can comfortably fit 2-3 families—and can sleep up to 20 if you’re willing to utilize pull-outs and air mattresses. The price is somewhat steep ($975 per night or $4900/week) but if you gather enough people it could be a steal. Spend the days perusing farm stands and cooking up fresh, seasonal meals and your evenings around the fire pit. Or you could really splurge and have their concierge do it for you at an additional cost.

Address: 1203 Glasco Turnpike, Saugerties, NY

Contact: (888) 416-5551 | www.barnonthepond.com

Opus 40

Opus 40 is a legendary quarry built by sculptor and Bard College art professor Harvey Fite. Over nearly four decades, Fite worked to build and restore the art quarry and after his death in 1976, art lovers and historians have continued to visit his work. Now, visitors to Saugerties can stay in the artist’s family home, overlooking this majestic work of art. His descendents offer a suite with 2 rooms (a bedroom and sitting room that can be used as a second bedroom), a private bathroom, and kitchenette for $200 per night.

Details: Harvy Fite’s Airbnb

EAT

Gaskins


Ok, so Gaskins is technically in Germantown—about a 30 minute drive from Saugerties—but we simply had to include it. Nick & Sarah Suarez (who live above the restaurant) once had deep NYC roots, holding stints at The Modern, Marlow & Sons, Romans, Gramercy Tavern and Franny’s. But in 2015, they opened this space in Germantown to do what they love: “feed and take care of people.” Sourcing ingredients from local farms, Gaskins offers seasonal salads, housemade pastas, and upscale comfort food along with a cocktail list that rivals anything you’d find in a burgeoning Brooklyn neighborhood. This spot alone is worth a jaunt to the Hudson Valley.

Address: 2 Church Ave, Germantown, NY

Contact: (518) 537-2107 | www.gaskinsny.com

EXPLORE

Saugerties Lighthouse

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After the original was destroyed by a fire, the historic Saugerties Lighthouse was rebuilt in 1850 and then completely reconstructed and restored again in 1990. Take in the scenic views on the half-mile nature trail that lead to the lighthouse. Tours of the interior are scheduled on Sunday, otherwise the lighthouse is reserved for the resident lighthouse keeper and overnight guests.

Address: 168 Lighthouse Drive, Saugerties, NY 12477

Contact: (845) 247-0656 | www.saugertieslighthouse.com

Inquiring Minds Bookstore

A truly independent bookstore Inquiring Minds offers a range of popular titles, rare prints and drip coffee at their Saugerties location (they also have 18 books about Donald Trump and the history of Nazi Germany on display along with a sign explaining “the dangers of not forcefully speaking out against hate.”) Check out their schedule for author readings and other events.

Address: 65 Partition Street, Saugerties, NY

Contact: 845.246.5775 | www.inquiringbooks.com

3. Hudson

At the heart of Hudson Valley’s transformation is Hudson, NY, the second largest city in Columbia County. With its curated vibe and plenty of rustic chic inns and eateries, if you’re planning to stay in Hudson this summer it’s best to book early.

STAY

Rivertown Lodge

Much-hyped Rivertown Lodge deserves a heap of credit for Hudson’s revitalization over the last few years. Keeping things uber local, the inn’s 27 rooms are filled with light fixtures and beds custom-made by Hudson design studio, Workstead, while the communal kitchen and bar were both crafted by local Hudson-based woodworkers. Rivertown’s tavern serves wine, craft cocktails and seasonal dishes created by Jean Adamson of Brooklyn’s Vinegar Hill House. No wonder the same crowd flocked here in droves following its 2015 opening.

Address: 731 Warren St, Hudson, NY 12534

Contact: (518) 512-0954www.rivertownlodge.com

WM Farmer and Sons

For $250 per night you can rent a full suite with a sitting room and kitchenette at this historic downtown boarding house. The building was purchased and renovated by a married chef and designer who infused the space with Southern charm. WM Farmer and Sons also has a very alluring watering hole, aptly named Barroom, attached to it.

Address: 20 S Front St, Hudson, NY 12534

Contact: (518) 828-1635www.wmfarmerandsons.com

EAT

Fish and Game

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Fish & Game describes itself as “a leader in the local foods movement” and states that the restaurant’s core approach to food is “engaging intimately with nature both wild and domestic, building relationships with farmers, and exploring the joys of fermentation.” Chef and owner Zakary Pelaccio opened the eatery in 2013 and offers dishes such as Peconic Bay Scallops Squash Agrodolce and Sorprese with Lamb Ragu.

Address: 13 S 3rd St, Hudson, NY 12534

Contact: (518) 822-1500 | www.fishandgamehudson.com

EXPLORE

Ör Gallery And Tavern

Derived from the Icelandic word for “scar” Ör is part tavern, part gallery, and part design shop. If you weren’t looking closely, you might miss the bar stools lined up inside the transformed garage created by photographer Jennifer Tzar and her co-founder and “prolific maker” Adam Loomis. The spot serves cocktails, wine, beer and bites as well as displays photographs and other works by the designers.

Address: 35 S 3rd St, Hudson, NY 12534

Contact: (518) 828-0798 | www.orgalleryandtavern.com

4. Woodstock / Phoenicia

Two Catskills destinations, Woodstock and Phoenicia are quickly becoming hot spots for those looking to visit boiled down versions of artisanal city. Though not exactly in the Hudson Valley, these booming nearby towns are certainly worth a visit.

STAY

The Graham & Co.

Housed in a former fishing lodge, this rustic inn drew fresh blood to sleepy Phoenicia. Lounge by the pool, relax in the hammock, or grab a bike and pedal into town. (Or, you know, spend 10 hours putting together a puzzle in their garage-turned-lobby.) The Graham & Co. is close to hiking trails, provides ample parking and serves a scrumptious weekend breakfast.

Address: 80 NY-214, Phoenicia, NY 12464

Contact: (845) 688-7871 | www.thegrahamandco.com

The Hotel Dylan

Opening in 2014, The Hotel Dylan received a makeover courtesy of HGTV’s The Novogratz. Designed in the spirit of the Woodstock Music Festival (just slightly chicer) the funky hotel draws the more well-heeled crowd in search of a touch of glamour in this neck of the woods.

Address: 320 Maverick Rd, Woodstock, NY 12498

Contact: (845) 684-5422 | www.thehoteldylan.com

EAT

Cucina

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One of the most acclaimed eateries in the Catskills region is right off Woodstock’s main strip. Cucina serves up farm-to-table Italian food in a warm, upscale atmosphere. Don’t skip over the cocktail list.

Address: 109 Mill Hill Rd, Woodstock, NY 12498

Contact: (845) 679-9800 | www.cucinawoodstock.com

Phoenicia Diner

Tell anyone whose been to this area that you’re headed to Phoenicia and their first response will be: “PHOENICIA DINER.” Offering what can only be described as gourmet diner food, this breakfast and lunch spot is constantly packed with locals and visitors. Local, seasonal and healthy menu options abound but you can’t beat the cheeseburger, fries and milkshake here.

Address: 5681 NY-28, Phoenicia, NY 12464

Contact: (845) 688-9957 | www.phoeniciadiner.com

EXPLORE

Town Tinker Tubing

On a hot summer day, tubing down Esopus Creek is where it’s at. Be warned: this is no lazy river. Rapids and quick moving streams make this an adventure ride—but a cooling one at that.

Address: 10 Bridge St, Phoenicia, NY 12464

Contact: (845) 688-5553 | www.towntinker.com

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