Point Au Roche Lodge: The Barefoot B&B
Dorothy was wrong; there are a great many places like home. In fact, there are a great many places better than home. And there’s something magical about being welcomed into a space that feels like home even when you are on the road. That is exactly what happened to me this past weekend at Point au Roche Lodge in Plattsburgh, New York.
During my travels, I’ve stayed in more hotels than I can count, several B&Bs, and probably more cheap motels than I should admit (always while traveling, I swear!) But I can’t think of a single one where I’d be happy to kick off my shoes, saunter through the lobby, and curl up with a book (or, in my case, a Macbook). Yet that’s exactly what I did at Point au Roche.
After a long day of driving, I checked into Point au Roche Lodge and was welcomed by Karen, the co-owner of the lodge. She showed me the library, the ‘kitchen’–where I could store my wine, access wine glasses, even purchase wine if I wanted (assuming I hadn’t brought my own wine. Which, uh, I had…) and then pointed me toward the lovely window-lined dining area where breakfast would be served the next day. After giving a brief overview of the hiking trails in the area–more on this in a minute–and explaining my in-town dining options for the evening (with menus from almost every place in town) she showed me to my room and then left me to enjoy the peace and comfort.
I immediately felt at home. That is, if my home were super clean, unbelievably quaint, and featured wrap around decks and adirondack chairs–which sadly, it is not and it does not. Which, I suppose, is part of why I leave home as often as possible.
Because I rarely slow down (even when I am at home), after dropping off my things, I immediately headed out to Point au Roche State Park, which could not be more across-the-street from the lodge if it tried. My plan was a short-ish post-drive, pre-dinner hike around Lake Champlain. Fate, however, had different plans.
Thus, when I returned to the lodge covered in mud from nose to knees from an epic stumble/slide/splat into a huge mud puddle (note to self: do not attempt to hike in Birkenstocks; it will never end well) I was thrilled to recover in the gorgeous, spacious open bathroom in my room–the nautical-themed Spinnaker room–and even more happy that Karen and her husband were able to provide toothpicks and q-tips to attempt to salvage my severely mud-smeared dSLR camera (honestly, I was more upset about the camera than anything and, in fact, my mid-fall attempt to save it resulted in some hysteria-inducing laughter from my husband; picture me sliding on the mud, twisting and spinning and holding my camera in the air, all while saying ‘woah woah OH NO aaaah!’ As soon as he saw I wasn’t hurt, he laughed so hard he almost choked. And then he used his iPhone to take photos of me, covered in mud. No, I am not sharing those photos.)
After a brief trip into town for an early dinner, I returned to Point au Roche Lodge to try to catch a glimpse of the ‘super moon’ (sadly, it was overcast) and to get some work done. My husband, apparently exhausted from being a passenger in my car all day (and, perhaps, from laughing so hard at my misfortune), headed off to bed early, while I once again kicked off my (muddy) shoes and set up camp in the lodge’s gorgeous great room, Macbook on my lap, to enjoy the silence and solitude (and general lack of mud). From this vantage point I was able to observe a family returning from their own night out; it was clear to me from their demeanor and ease that they, too, felt at home at Point au Roche. It is a truly special place, and I’m honored to have been a guest for even one night.
Point au Roche Lodge is located on Point au Roche Road, directly across from Point au Roche State Park in Plattsburgh, New York. Did I mention the phrase ‘Point au Roche’? It makes a wonderful stopover point for a trip from the mid-Atlantic area up to Quebec City or any other point north. It would also be a great place to settle in for a few days and explore beautiful extremely-upstate New York. I sincerely wish I could have spent more time in the area. In fact, I’d love to return in the fall to enjoy the foliage (and knowing me, I likely will).
Disclosure: While I was hosted at Point au Roche Lodge, all opinions and thoughts are my own.