10 Amazing Hotels for Rustic Weekend Breaks From New York City

Ocean House exterior
Ocean House // Photo courtesy of Laura Davidson PR

by Emma Beaumont and Telegraph Travel experts, The Telegraph, December 18, 2018

In New York, the lights are always on. The 24-hour neon signs flash on a loop, Chinatown dive bars keep serving until the sun is up and there's always an open-all-hours deli where you can find a salt-beef sandwich. But after a few days of high octane action, it might feel like time to dial things down a little, so why not extend your next trip to the Big Apple with a bite of something a little more laid-back. Within a three-hour drive of Manhattan, you’ll find quaint white-picket-fence towns, low-key hipster hubs, as well as bracing mountains and surfer beaches – the challenge is where to choose. Here we round-up the very best hotels for a weekend trip from New York City.

New York State

The Wick, Hudson 

The Wick is a boutique property in the historic (and now rather hip) town of Hudson. The former candle factory – hence the name – was refurbished to create a spot where travellers can recoup after exploring the Brooklyn-style downtown area, the nearby Catskills and picturesque Hudson Valley. It’s about a 15-minute walk from Warren Street (Hudson's main drag) but within a three-minute walk of the Amtrak station, making the locale ultra-convenient for travellers coming by train from New York City. The hotel exudes an industrial vibe from the outside in, and its history as a former factory is apparent the moment you approach the property. Once inside, You'll find claw-foot bathtubs, high ceilings and original hardwood flooring, along with that most modern of touches - electric car charging.

Around a two-hour drive from New York City, or a two-hour train ride from Manhattan's Penn Station.

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Read the full review: The Wick

Hotel Dylan, Woodstock

This pint-sized motel has boutique hotel attitude, groovy décor by two of America's top designers, Sixties and Seventies vinyl on hand to set the mood, and a dinky saltwater pool. There's a long grass patch for lazing about in Adirondack chairs, toasting s’mores by the fire pit or playing ping pong. A Seventies VW van with a glowing peace sign tacked to the radiator is the indicator that you've arrived. While it's not slap bang in the middle of Woodstock, it's an easy eight-minute drive to the centre. Hotel Dylan is also a great base from which to explore the Catskills. For a real adventure don't miss the Wallkill Valley Rail trail (hike and bike), or – if the season is right – skiing at Belleayre and Hunter Mountains.

Under a two-hour drive from New York City. 

Read the full reviw: Hotel Dylan

The Arnold House, Shandelee Mountain

Picture a 100-year-old inn with a square dance barn and a little spa, set on seven acres of land in an untouristy corner of the Catskills. The cool yet rustic Arnold House sits on top of Shandelee Mountain in Sullivan County. Nearby are picturesque covered bridges, three breweries and the Prohibition Distillery, while the quaint towns of Callicoon, Youngsville and Jeffersonville (perfect for shopping and dining) are within a 10-minute drive. The hotel also provides its own homemade guides to nearby attractions like fly fishing, biking, hiking, horse riding and snow shoeing. Inside the place has bags of charm, layering in hip new furnishings amidst the barn tables, wood burning stoves and vintage jukebox.

Around two hours and 15 minutes by car from New York City.

Read the full review: The Arnold House

The Graham & Co, Phoenicia

Flee the city, breathe in the fresh Catskill Mountain air and get back to basics at this no-frills conversion of a traditional 1940s motel which transplants a rugged Brooklyn aesthetic to humble upstate town, Phoenicia. The authentic heritage of Graham & Co has been preserved and re-styled by its creative New Yorker founders. The only covered communal area is a 'den' in a converted garage, and in the big garden, with its wigwam, badminton net, there’s a fire pit to roast marshmallows on and a dinky pool. All 13 rooms are simply styled and furnished in a palette of khakis and grey. Head for hikes, borrow a Schwinn Beach Cruiser bike, and do little else (though do go skiing in winter) – that’s the point of this hotel. 

Under a two-hour drive from New York City.

Read the full review:  The Graham & Co

•  The best boutique hotels in New York

Sound View Greenport, North Fork, Long Island

While many New Yorkers will attempt to flee for The Hamptons when the summer heat becomes too much, nearby North Fork has far more to offer. Discerning city-dwellers have long been enjoying weekends away on this northerly tip of Long Island, finding wares in vintage shops and sampling the wine from the area’s plentiful vineyards. Among the gently rolling fields is Sound View, a beach-side motel that has been hosting Manhattanites since the 1950s, but has been recently revamped with bespoke cabinets, elegant bathrooms and an irreverent wit. The hotel looks out across The Sound – as the local stretch of the Atlantic is known –  and watching the sunset from the deck (niftily accessed from each room) with a cocktail should be mandatory.

Around a two-hour drive from New York City.

•  The best New York hotels with pools

Montauk Beach House, Montauk, Long Island

Montauk sits at the eastern tip of Long Island and is a haven of surfing beaches, seafood shacks and low-key bars, although the glamour that defines the rest of its Hamptons neighbours is certainly present too, with huge white wooden houses standing proudly above the beaches. The bohemian town is very popular in summer, so try and visit in May or September, when you can explore the old lighthouse and enjoy the atmospheric crashing waves without the crowds. One of the best places to stay here is Montauk Beach House, right in the centre of town and just a few streets from the beach. Rooms are pared-down and stylish and some have freestanding tubs. Days can be spent lounging by the pool with a lobster roll and locally brewed ale.

Under a three-hour drive from New York City. 

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The Mayflower Grace, Washington

In a time-forgotten Connecticut town so television-perfect it inspired the fictional Stars Hollow of Gilmore Girls fame, lies this country manor which seems transplanted from the old England to the new. The Mayflower Grace is a 58-acre retreat, enveloped by thousands more acres of preserved lands, and the realm of recreational opportunities includes hiking, kayaking, golfing, lake swimming, cycling and cross-country and downhill skiing. Choose from 30 rooms spread across four buildings, all generous in size and uniquely decorated in traditional New England style. Mahogany and marble bathrooms are equipped with walk-in showers and soaking tubs, while feather-top mattresses, Frette bedlinens and five pillow options ensure snuggly sleeping. In the morning, don't miss the buttermilk pancakes and later in the day go all-American with a comforting bowl of truffle mac and cheese.

Under a two-hour drive from New York City. 

Read the full review: The Mayflower Grace

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Delamar Greenwich Harbour, Greenwich

The Delamar overlooks the Harbour in Greenwich, Connecticut's trendiest town. This luxury hotel has a complimentary car service within a three-mile radius, but in just a five-minute walk, you can be on a New York City-bound train or at the start of Greenwich Avenue: the famous shopping thoroughfare often compared to California's Rodeo Drive. A private dock opens up another avenue: sightseeing aboard the hotel’s private yacht. Beaches beckon on both sides of the Connecticut-New York State line: Rye Playland – a beachside amusement park – is a 13 mile (21km) trip. Back at the hotel, Standard rooms have either town or – for a worthy upcharge – water views and balconies. Either way, you’ll have far more space than at a similarly priced Manhattan hotel.

Under an hour on the train from New York City.

Read the full review: Delamar Greenwich Harbour

Rhode Island

Ocean House, Watch Hill

This lavish Victorian hotel, once a summer retreat for the rich and famous, sits on Watch Hill commanding gorgeous views of Montauk, Block Island and the Atlantic Ocean. Amenities abound at the 57-room Realais&Chateaux property, which boasts several restaurants, a world-class spa, and its own private white-sand beach. Driving up to Ocean House, with its wide wraparound porches and rolling lawn, seems like stepping into an extremely glamorous past. Once at the property, many guests tend to stay put because of all there is to enjoy, although if you venture into the centre of Watch Hill (about a 10-minute walk away), with its quaint shops, art galleries and restaurants, you might spot Taylor Swift, who has a huge Kennedy-style compound close by.

Under a three-hour drive from New York City.

Read the full review: Ocean House

•  The best hotels in Rhode Island

New Jersey

The Asbury Hotel, Asbury Park 

The historic seaside resort of Asbury Park in New Jersey has been enjoying something of a renaissance of late. The formerly faded town, an old stomping ground of a young Bruce Springsteen, has recently welcomed a clutch of cool cafés, bars and spruced-up its live music venues, but the new jewel in its crown is The Asbury Hotel. With stripped-back rooms, exposed brick and plaid sofas it feels reminiscent of the Ace Hotel brand, but still has a New Jersey style, serving up classics such as the ‘Jersey roll’ (a huge pork and cheese sandwich) in its restaurant, The Counter. Don’t miss the hotel’s outdoor cinema or extensive music library, but make time to stroll along the nearby boardwalk or cycle (the hotel has bikes available to hire) to some of the landmarks referenced in Springsteen tracks.

Around a 90-minute drive from New York City.

Contributions by Juliet Kinsman, Kim Knox Beckius, Alice Vincent, Kim MacKinnon and Tracy Kaler and Lucie Young.


This article was written by Emma Beaumont and Telegraph Travel experts from The Telegraph and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to [email protected]

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