Best Reason to Stay at The Point: It's an Incredibly Deluxe Nature Getaway
The Point provides an unforgettable getaway. This sumptuous, rustic lodge, set in the Adirondack Mountains, is an exclusive Relais & Châteaux hotel in New York State, with only 11 accommodations.
The Point wins constant awards and accolades, and has a very high repeat guest rate. It is extremely high-end, exclusive, and pricey. Its room rate -- includes everything: room, food, drink, activities, gratuities. The Point is one of the most upscale all-inclusive hotels in existence.
Once you've ponied up, you can indulge to your heart's content in all The Point's marvels:
• Beautiful, vintage lakeside lodgings in spacious, antiques-furnished rooms with fireplaces
• Exquisite tasting menus from an acclaimed on-site chef
• Connoisseur-level, expensive wines and spirits, with an all-day open bar
• Outdoor excitement like sailing in summer, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in winter
• Five-star hotel service
• All gratuities
Pedigree of The Point
The Point is a bucket list experience where guests live like Rockefellers. No surprise: the property was once the upstate getaway of tycoon William Avery Rockefeller. He founded the Standard Oil Company with his brother John D., and ranks as one of the richest Americans ever.
Where Rockefellers Romped
In the late 1800s and early 1900s, America's uncrowned kings were its "robber baron" families, industrial and financial magnates in the days before income taxes.
These potentates lived like kings in their many homes. One was likely to be a Great Camp, a lakeside mountain lodge where they (and their cousins and servants) could get away for the weekend or summer to live in splendor amidst nature.
The lake-dotted Adirondacks Mountains, just a few hours north of New York City, was a favorite Great Camp setting for these dynasties. The Point, perched on wooded Saranac Lake, was the Great Camp of William Avery Rockefeller and his family.
The Point Today
The Point has hardly changed since then. Nowadays, it is owned by Laurie and Pierre Lapeyre, longtime guests who bought the property in 2016. (Mr. Lapeyre is a founder of the Riverstone investment firm.)
The Point hosts today's high-net-worth individuals. Many are finance and real-estate moguls from Manhattan, who fly up aboard their own or chartered private jets. (The Point is within driving distance of New York, Boston, Montreal, and Philadelphia.)
The Rockefeller estate's wood-and-stone main building, the "Great House," is now the center of The Point. It contains four of the inn's 11 rambling guest rooms; plus the hunting-lodge-style Great Hall for dining and lounging alongside a massive stone fireplace; a bar; and the kitchen.
The estate's Boathouse is still used for its original purpose, and houses The Point's most-requested (and most expensive) room (photo on next slide). Two additional buildings shelter the remainder of The Point's lovely accommodations.
The Style of The Point
The Point's look is turn-of-the-century – the dawn of the 20th century, when Rockefellers ruled. The Point is built of Adirondack wood and stone, with soaring vaulted ceilings. Massive river-rock fireplaces are ubiquitous, and mounted hunting trophies dot the timbered walls. (Animal lovers, be prepared).
Rooms at The Point are richly furnished with Persian rugs, overstuffed couches, oil paintings, antique lamps, and mesmerizing Upper Saranac Lake views.
Only 11 Rooms at The Point Resort, All Exquisite
Guest Accommodations at The Point
I stayed in Morningside, one of four rooms in the lakeside Great Lodge. Morningside is spacious, with burnished golden wood walls and tall windows on three sides. A seating area surrounds the fireplace, and a small dining table overlooking of the lake. The bed is bigger than a king, with pillowy linens you can get lost in. The entrance foyer contains a capacious closet.
Like other rooms at The Point, Morningside has a good Bose sound system with an iPod dock. But there's no TV or wifi. (For those, you can hang out in The Pub.)
Morningside's vintage black-and-white bathroom is a retro marvel. It offers a huge claw-footed tub; a separate tiled rainfall shower; a handsome porcelain pedestal sink; and cabinets filled with good-sized lotions and potions (including lip balm) from Kiehl's pharmacy in Manhattan.
What Other Rooms at The Point Are Like
Some of The Point's other accommodations, all lovely:
• Mohawk was the Rockefellers' master bedroom, and royally appointed
• Lookout has a very private feeling; it perches in the trees, and has a secluded deck
• Sentinel is a two-room suite with two fireplaces, a dressing room, and a private deck
• Trappers feels like a cabin in the woods, with an arched ceiling and Navajo rugs
• Weatherwatch is vast, with a gigantic fireplace, a beamed cathedral ceiling, and black slate double sinks used by William Rockefeller to develop photographs
• Evensong was Mrs. Rockefeller's favorite room, with a fieldstone fireplace in a picture-window alcove, a cushy king bed, and a dressing table for Madame
• The Boathouse is The Point's most popular room, with panoramic views of lake and mountains, a fairytale canopied bed, spa bathroom, and wraparound deck
The lavish and delicious dining at The Point >>
Four-Star Dining at The Point, a Relais & Châteaux that Takes Food Seriously
Simply Exquisite Dining at The Point
Dining is a highlight of The Point, as is true of all Relais & Châteaux hotels (this is a French association, after all).
All food and drink is included in The Point's room rate. This food and drink is not only extremely high-end, it is never-ending. Guests should come to The Point ready for a steady stream of rich, delicious, gourmet dining. Luxury ingredients like foie gras, truffles, and caviar are served with abandon. Can you deal?
Chef Loic Leperlier's Knockout Kitchen at The Point
This hotel is deeply committed to its "F&B" (food and beverage). The Point's spacious kitchen and large staff would do justice to a large hotel, but their output is created for only 11 rooms.
All F&B is overseen by executive chef Lois Leperlier and his team. Chef Loic is a native of France with a CV of top international kitchen jobs. This gifted, committed chef aces the difficult trick of serving deluxe gourmet fare that is as hearty as it is upper-crust. Everything served is house-made, of supreme quality, cooked expertly to order, and served with consummate flair.
Dining-room service at The Point is the equal of any acclaimed culinary restaurant. Only here, you can have seconds (or thirds). Guests' tastes, preferences, and special diets are honored and made the best of.
A personal note: as a dining critic, I have reviewed hundreds of restaurants in and near New York City. And I'd rank The Point's dining up with the city's most elite restaurants.
The Endless Bacchanal at The Point
The Point's dining is so superlative, you can almost see your daily activities as a prelude to your next incredible dining experience. Chef Levy's kitchen is never closed. Regular meal service includes:
Breakfast, like all meals at The Point, is cooked to order.
• Guests may choose to enjoy their morning meal in the Great Hall, overlooking the dawn-sparkled lake
• Or they can opt for room service in their rooms: before their fireplace or on the deck
ˆ Breads and breakfast pastries are fresh-baked, juice fresh-squeezed, coffee strong
• Breakfast entrees include gourmet omelets and other egg dishes, venison sausage, seasonal pancakes, waffles, French toast, house-made granola, and much more
Lunch may be savored:
• At gaily set tables in the Great Hall
• In warm weather, on the Great Hall's lakeside porch
• In guestrooms or on the room's deck
• At a country-style buffet in the Great Hall, with dishes like crab cakes, ribs, roast pork, sausages, fried chicken, sliders, and more
• In a deluxe, creative picnic to go on a hike or on a boat on Saranac Lake
Dinner at The Point: Prepare to Swoon
Dinner is a grand occasion at The Point.
• The meal commences with drinks in the Great Hall: perhaps the cocktail du jour or The Point's bottomless Pommery Champagne
• In Great Camp house-party fashion, guests share one or two large round tables in the Great Hall, and relish one another's company
• The Point's dapper General Manager joins the festivities, acting as a host
• Daily printed menus detail the several-course chef's tasting menu, similar to a tasting menu at a three- or four-star restaurant
Saturday dinner menus are the most extensive and deluxe. My five-course Saturday dinner served:
• Wild mushroom consommé with foie gras
ˆ Bluefin tuna belly tartare with scallops and caviar
• Salt-grilled giant shrimp with melted pork belly
• Colorado lamb loin with black truffle-lamb jus
ˆ Valrhona chocolate with sea-salt caramel
Black-Tie Dining at The Point
Just as it was when The Point was a Rockefeller estate, Saturday evening dining is black-tie. Make that black-tie optional: formal wear is requested, but not required.
• Most of the gents pack a tux for The Point, but a sober suit will do
ˆ Ladies don chic cocktail dresses or elegant gowns, and their special-occasion diamonds
The Point's Wine and Liquor is the Working Definition of Top-Shelf
Connoisseurs of wine and liquor will be amazed by the quality of the freely-poured wine and hooch
• Meals are carefully wine-paired
• Expect top vintages of mellow Bordeaux; lush Meursault from Burgundy; good German Rieslings and Japanese sakes; esteemed California Cabernets, Chardonnays, and Pinot Noirs; rich Chiantis; and more
• Liquors are chosen for their quality as well as their pricetag. On my visit, I made the acquaintance of rare Scotch whiskeys, boutique Caribbean rums, and Russian buffalo-grass vodka
• If you know your wine and booze, you will be impressed. Or if you simply trust your palate, you will be delighted
Hunger, Begone! Snacks and Drinks are Available on Demand• In the Great Hall or right in the kitchen...pull up a chair• In your room, day or night; just call the kitchen or walk over to see what's cooking
• Rooms feature fresh fruits and a lovely bottle of wine to enjoy. When I visited, it was Martha's Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon from Heitz Cellars in Napa Valley
• Guests gather in the Pub, a cabin that is a combination game room, Internet cafe, snack bar, and (most of all) a bar
• In late afternoon and evening there's a bartender on duty, but at other times the place is open, and you pour your own
• Anywhere at The Point, guests are not far from a delicious bite and quaff
All the great things to do between meals at The Point >>
The Wonderful Things to Do at The Point Resort
The Point Is a Natural Wonderland
The Point's estate rambles over 75 magnificent acres along Upper Saranac Lake in the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York. In this anointed spot, there's a plethora of outdoorsy things to do and enjoy.
• On the lake: boating, sailing, fishing, waterskiing, swimming
• A daily cocktail cruise on The Point's vintage wood cabin cruiser
• On The Point's grounds: tennis, badminton, croquet, hiking
• Nearby: golf, horseback riding, hunting, trout and bass fishing, antiquing
• On the frozen lake: ice-skating, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing
• Also on the ice: you, all wrapped up in a wool camp blanket, sipping hot mulled wine before a bonfire
• On The Point's grounds: hiking, photography, birdwatching, identifying animal tracks
• Indoors: conversation, movie screenings, pool, darts, games, wine tastings, kitchen tour
• Nearby, in Lake Placid (home of the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympics): downhill skiing, bobsledding, the USA's only public-access luge track
The Point makes it easy to enjoy the property. It is fully stocked with athletic equipment and outdoor clothing and gear. You don't need to bring even your hiking boots.
How good is the service at The Point? >>
The Point Resort's Caring Service
Enlightened Service at The Point
Yet one more way that The Point distinguishes itself is in its refined management and service. This is no-doubt-about-it five-star hotel service. At The Point, the main event is the guests, and not the hotel's legend and aura.
Guests at The Point can expect:
• Emails and letters in advance of checkin, with personal notes and questions pertaining to guests' dining preferences and so on
• A staff welcome and flutes of Pomméry Champagne at arrival
• A full tour of the room and, if desired, the grounds
• Staffers who know exactly how to act: warm and solicitous, but not fawning or stiff
• Complete privacy when you want it, and attention when you need it
• Non-intrusive housekeeping
• Blissful quiet (no leaf-blowers, chattering maids, kids)
• Extra-sensory staff awareness of your comfort (when my winter hike took longer than described, The Point dispatched two staffers to find me)
• Pitch-perfect dining-room and bar service
My recommendation: The Point's property is deliberately hard to find, and cell/GPS reception is spotty. Before checking in, ask the staff to email you a clear road map
Can you bring your luxury-loving critter to The Point? >>
The Point Resort Is Furry, Furry Pet-Friendly
Love You, Love Your Pets
The Point does not host youngsters under 18 unless the entire property is booked for a family or corporate event.
But The Point embraces pets with open...paws.
This is a truly pet-friendly hotel. Your lucky dog is warmly invited, and will be pampered along with you, at no extra charges.
Meowzer Is Invited with Bowzer
Not just canines can RSVP to The Point's pet party. Cats are welcome, too.
My Blue Point Siamese, Mingus (above), thoroughly relished his guest experience at The Point. He was welcomed with a tray of gourmet feline food, treats, and crystal-clear local Saratoga water. He snoozed before the fire in our room, Morningside, and on its impossibly plush bed. Mingus was one very happy camper in this Adirondacks Great Camp.
Will you like staying at The Point? Take the quiz >>
Is The Point Resort Your Style?
No matter how deluxe a hotel may be, it can't be for everyone. Here's a quiz to give you an idea whether you'd like staying at The Point.
Will You Fall in love with The Point?
The Point could be your Adirondacks getaway if:
• You're...somewhat spoiled hotel-wise, and can't stay anyplace that's not ultra-upscale
• You feel understood by Relais & Châteaux hotels
• You love a wild, natural setting
• You enjoy old-fashioned, rustic inns
• You like a hotel with a pedigree and history
• You pursue outdoor activities in summer and winter
• Outstanding hotel service is important to you
• You insist on a great restaurant right in your hotel
• And you're prepared to indulge in copious, fabulous food and drink
• Your vacation budget has quite a bit of leeway
• You love the freedom of all-inclusive pricing
• You also like hobnobbing with fellow guests
• Or you seek a quiet interlude with someone special
• You're traveling with someone else special: your pet
The Point may come up short as your ideal small hotel if:
• A country look and setting leave you cold
• Hiking and lake-swimming aren't enough fitness for you; you need a hotel gym
• You'll wither without wifi
• A TV in your room is a must
• You're a very light eater
• You want to hang with your companion, not with other guests
• You're in your twenties and prefer a young crowd
• Or you're looking for some nightlife
• You don't like sharing a dinner table with other guests
• You're watching your budget
ˆ• Mounted animal heads in a hunting lodge will bother you
• You'd want to bring your kids
Find out how to contact The Point >>
Connect with The Point & Start Planning an Unforgettable Visit
Find Out More about The Point & Plan a Visit
• The Point's website
• The Point by email
• By phone from North America: 800.255.3530 or 518.891.5674
• Here on Luxury Travel, why upscale travelers love Relais & Chateaux hotels like The Point
• The Point, Saranac Lake, NY 12983
• Note: The Point is closed from mid-March through the entire month of April for an annual spruce-up
As is common in the travel industry, the Expert was provided with a complimentary stay for the purpose of describing the hotel. For more info, see our site's Ethics Policy.