Like its home state, Hotel Vermont feels chic and modern with a touch of rustic. The contemporary poured-cement floors, inlaid with purple stones and shells from the beaches of Lake Champlain, and the granite walls of the entranceway contrast nicely with the 100-year-old reclaimed oak floors in the hotel bar and Juniper restaurant. In the lobby, you can sit by a wood-burning fireplace while taking in the views of Lake Champlain.
At check-in, look for Color Code, an artwork made of salvaged wood by local artist Duncan Jones (other works of art from local artists are also scattered throughout the hotel). While the bellman takes your bags to your room on a bell cart made by a local craftsman, pull up a seat at one of Juniper’s communal tables and sip a cocktail made exclusively with Vermont-distilled spirits. There’s an ever-growing list of local partners on a chalkboard at the bar. Opt for the Bee’s Kiss, made with Dunc’s Mill Maple Flavored Rum, honey, and cream. If the weather’s right, sit out on the terrace or the second-floor green-roof garden, where you can take in the lake and mountain views while enjoying a cocktail.
Each guestroom has a window that can be opened to let in the brisk autumn air (flannel blankets and Vermont Flannel PJs are guaranteed to keep you extra toasty if you do). From Lunaroma aromatherapy to Lake Champlain Chocolates to Vermont Teddy Bears, the hotel’s Bedtime Menu is designed to give you even more comfort options. Bathrooms feature large wood vanities with vessel sinks and backlit mirrors; the toilet and shower are actually two separate rooms, each with its own frosted-glass sliding doors.
Downtown Burlington, VT
Scenic view of Vermont
Dine: While farm-to-table is a fairly new trend in Westchester, it’s a way of life in Vermont, and both in-house restaurants use local products. Juniper is the perfect place for breakfast, offering everything from blueberry pancakes to gin-cured salmon with cream cheese and pickled red onion on a wood-fired bagel. For dinner, head to Hen of the Wood, where James Beard Award finalist Chef Eric Warnstedt crafts delectable plates of fried oysters and hanger steak, among others. The house-made ice creams and sorbets alone may be worth the trip.
Explore: Take advantage of the hotel’s fleet of repurposed bikes (free to all guests) and enjoy a casual bike ride along the lakeshore, or peruse the shops on Church Street. There’s no better place to take in the foliage than from the lake, so, as part of the hotel’s Sailing package, go for a jaunt with Let’s Go Sailing’s (vermontsailing.com) Captain Gideon Bavly, who’s never short on entertaining stories. Or, venture out a little farther to Shelburne Farms (shelburnefarms.org), a working farm with 10 miles of walking trails where you can have a picnic right along Lake Champlain. If you enjoy artistry, there’s AO Glass Works (aoglass.com), where you can watch White Plains native Harrison McCandless, along with owners Rich Arentzen and Tove Ohlander, make beautiful glass pieces. If you’re feeling adventurous, take a 13-mile bike ride along (and over) the lake on the Island Line Trail, utilizing the Local Motion Bike Ferry, to view the untouched beauty of the Champlain Islands.
Insider Tip: While local favorite Dobrá Tea holds daily teatime at the hotel, visit its location on Church Street. Opt to sit in one of the pillow-lined booths rather than at a table; between the candles, the tea ceremonies, and the décor, you’ll feel transported to the Far East.
41 Cherry St, Burlington, VT
Distance from White Plains: 5 hours
Details: Rooms start at $249, as do sailing packages. A number of other packages, including Bikes & Picnics (from $239), and Cloud Nine (from $279), a romance package featuring top-tier accommodations and amenities, are also available.
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