Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
A special year-round resort that may help guests embark on digital detox
Guests here include, families, romantic couples, and even New York politicians, and many have been coming for years. The property is well-suited to anyone looking for an authentic place to unwind in an upscale, lodge-like environment and enjoy the nearby outdoors. It started as a seasonal resort attracting wealthy guests from around the state and eventually became a year-round destination. In fact, during the Lake Placid Olympics of 1932, the Norwegian team rented the entire property. Over time, Mirror Lake Inn has expanded and evolved; more cottages were added, and the main section of the resort was rebuilt after an unfortunate fire in 1988. This newer hub does not take away from the historical charm, and current owners, Ed and Lisa Weibrecht, have kept the warm hospitality and air of comfortable elegance in tact.
The classic white exterior is easily spotted from the road -- it is arguably the prettiest and most picture-worthy place in downtown Lake Placid. During summer and autumn months, a colorful assortment of flowers bring a smile to the face, and at Christmas time, festive lights do the same. An outdoor staircase leads to the doorway, and another set of stairs indoors leads to the lobby with gleaming dark wood floors, chandeliers, and well-kept antique furnishings. (The lower lever leads to the spa and pool areas.) At the front desk, there are fresh baked chocolate chip cookies and awards proudly displayed for the owner’s son -- Andrew Weibrecht -- who won an Olympic medal for the Super G ski category. The extended lobby and library contains various rooms and nooks. Afternoon tea is served daily and staff members -- many who have been working here for years -- are often around to chat with guests. In the wintertime, roaring fireplaces provide ambience for reading and playing chess, while in warmer months, guests can enjoy lake views from lobby balconies, or head across the street where Adirondack chairs rest on the dock.
Both guests and locals enjoy the two restaurants off the lobby and congregate at the bistro bar in the evenings, especially on Friday nights when there's live entertainment. They can also meander across the street for more casual food and drink. Since weddings (and cell phone calls) are not allowed in common areas, guests can count on a relaxed atmosphere, which is why many of them keep coming back.
A year-round lakefront resort with water and mountain views, as well as a location that's walking distance to town
Mirror Lake Inn is recognizable from the road by its cheerful white and dark green cottage exterior, located just off of Main Street in downtown Lake Placid. Guests can look for the congratulatory sign in honor of the owner’s son, Andrew, written in huge lettering along the entrance to the main building. Personal touches like these give the resort a genuine family vibe that attracts repeat guests as well as many locals. Several areas of the resort, including all three dining options open to the public, offer peaceful views over the lake with the picturesque Adirondack mountains in the background.
The inn is centrally located in the center of town, within easy walking distance of coffee shops, restaurants, and shops. Lake Placid is a small town known for hosting two winter Olympics. Winter activities include skiing, snowshoeing, ice skating, and hockey, while swimming and hiking are popular in summer months. It is central to Olympic Park attractions, and most destinations are within short driving distance from each other. Adirondack Park is the largest in the lower 48 states and has 3,000 lakes and 2,000 miles of hiking trails to explore. A well-kept path around Mirror Lake offers a brisk 2.7-mile walk or jog that can be accessed from the entrance in front.
Rooms have cozy Adirondack style and some modern amenities
There are 131 rooms and suites in several different areas of the resort. They range slightly in decor depending on the type (and how new the section is), and all have empty mini-fridges, bathrobes, and CD players (music is often playing upon guests' arrival). There are no coffeemakers in the rooms but coffee is served in the lobby every morning. Afternoon tea is offered for free, as well. Some bathrooms have heated floors for cold winters, and some have sliding glass doors that lead to balconies overlooking the lake. Decor typically includes lots of wood, wall-to-wall carpets, and lodge-style accents (such as plaid fabrics). Rooms with king beds are often family-friendly, with pullout sofas.
Rooms include Classic and Signature styles with one king or two queens, balconies or large windows for views, and tub/shower combos. These types include the Marcy, Cloudsplitter, McKenzie, Lookout, Cedar Run, Lake View, and Cathedral rooms. Signature rooms might have slightly more modern decor than Classic rooms.
Suites start at the Classic level with Ausable, which has a king bed, whirlpool bath, and a small seating area. Saranac Suites have two levels separated by a spiral staircase with a living area, two full bathrooms, and one whirlpool tub — great for families. Whiteface Suites are best-suited for couples with a king bed, separate living room and whirlpool tub. The Colden Suite has a king bed and separate seating area and is located in the Mountain View Building.
Signature Suites include the Cascade, which is in the main house and has a gas fireplace, spiral staircase, king bed, and whirlpool tub. The Skylight Suite serves bigger families with three bedrooms, a full kitchen, and a two and a half baths.
The resort's newer addition is called the Colonial House and includes four residential suites with Harden furniture, cathedral ceilings, black forest decor and Keurig coffeemakers. Bathrooms impress with special tiles from Turkey, teak wood from Southeast Asia, heated floors, and large jetted tubs. The Little Whiteface Suite fits a family with two bedrooms (one king, two twins), two full baths, and a large balcony. Placid and the High Peaks Suite are best for couples -- they're on the top floor and each has a king bed, fireplace, and huge bathroom as described above.
Guests should be aware that a gratuity will be added to the bill for housekeeping. The hotel states that this is merely suggested, and it can be removed from the bill upon check-out.
A spa and salon, free chocolate chip cookies, free afternoon tea, and Wi-Fi for a fee
This family-run inn remains a favorite for regular guests, including politicians. Standout hospitality-related features include the personal service from the family members and staff — many who have been working here for years. No weddings and no cell phones are permitted in the common areas, which helps maintain a consistent level of of peace and quiet. (Some private events may take place, however, such as corporate retreats.) Other thoughtful touches include trademark house made chocolate chip cookies, always at the front desk. In the afternoons, tea is served in the living room from 3:30 to 4:30.
A spa and salon with seven treatment rooms are located on the lower level underneath the main lobby. There is a men's and women's lounge with whirlpool tubs and a eucalyptus steam room. Treatments include body and skincare like facials, massages, micro-dermabrasians, and Asian-themed therapies. The salon offers haircuts, coloring and nail care.
For those who need to get work done, there is a daily fee for Wi-Fi.
Three restaurants, including a formal dining room with great wine list
The three restaurants and bars on the premise include fancy, trendy, and fun options. The high-end restaurant is The View — where fresh ingredients and wine are a priority. This more formal dining room overlooks the lake and serves breakfast and dinner daily. The restaurant is recognized by Wine Spectator for its cellar list. The a la carte dinner menu includes traditional cuisine that uses ingredients sourced from local and regional farmers as well items from the owner's veggie and herb garden, when possible. Breakfast is buffet style, and the Adirondacks Flapjacks are a guest favorite.
Adjacent to The View is a slightly more casual restaurant called Taste Bistro & Bar, serving cocktails and dinner. Food has French, German, and Italian influences, and the bar serves small-batch scotches, whiskeys, and bourbons. Live music attracts both locals and guests every Friday night.
The Cottage is across the street and is the most casual spot. The attached year-round deck has outdoor fire pits for use during winter months, making this a popular apres-ski spot. The ambience, and the views across Mirror Lake and the mountains, are the draw here, rather than the basic pub fare.
Two big pools, water sports equipment for the lake, and a fitness center
Activities are varied. On the lower level is the 60-foot indoor pool and large hot tub; both are better suited for families than couples (the area is a bit dingy and outdated). In warmer months, a 50-foot outdoor pool with kiddy pool faces the lake. Across the street is a small beach area with lounge chairs for sunbathing, and the lake is safe for swimming of all ages. A small hut offers canoes, kayaks, rowboats, and paddleboards, while a dock has Adirondack chairs for reading and enjoying the view. In the winter, the section of the lake becomes a skating rink for guests. A natural-lit fitness center includes weights and cardio machines -- a few with views of the lake. Tennis courts are also available during seasonal months.
The historic, family-owned Mirror Lake Inn, with beautiful views of its namesake, has been around for nearly 90 years. This charming property is bigger than meets the eye, and the 131 carpeted, cozy rooms have lodge-y decor in varying degrees of elegance, and are located in several distinct sections of the resort. Suites might come with gas fireplaces, jetted tubs, and/or private balconies. There are three dining options, including The View (with an impressive wine list) and The cottage (with an apres-ski atmosphere). Guests can walk to downtown Lake Placid for more choice. Meanwhile, the indoor and outdoor pools, tennis courts, fitness center, and seasonal skating rink provide opportunities to work off the trademark cookies in the lobby — just watch the bill for those pesky extra fees. Phone calls are not allowed in common areas, which enhances the relaxed vibe.
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