Relax at the River in Northern New York
By Katie DeTar
When I was a kid, family trips to New York state’s Thousand Island Region centered around fishing. We’d stay at a simple lakeside motel, spend early mornings on the bass boat, and enjoy cookout lunches of pan-fried “poor man’s shrimp”—hand-filleted bits of fish dipped in cocktail sauce.
Some of the best fishing in the east can be found in the Thousand Islands, a charming region of small towns and nearly 2,000 islands extending along the St. Lawrence River between New York and Canada. And while I still love to fillet a fresh catch, the option to stay in the new 1000 Islands Harbor Hotel in Clayton, N.Y., was a welcome change.
The AAA Four Diamond-rated hotel hearkens back to the Gilded Age era of summer fun at grand hotels along the river. At the turn of the 20th Century, 11 passenger trains terminated daily in Clayton, carrying the wealthy from New York City and Boston to summer resorts and cottages. Now you can experience modern summer splendor as the Thousand Islands Harbor Hotel ushers in a new era of tourism and hospitality.
The 105-room full service hotel opened in 2014 in conjunction with a revitalization of the town of Clayton. The once industrial river town is now brimming with dining, shopping, and recreation options. The hotel, which is located at the eastern end of the town’s historic district, sits on a prime location for relaxation. Grab an Adirondack chair and watch for the surprise regional entertainment: gigantic-yet-elegant shipping vessels carrying cargo from the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean.
The hotel’s waterfront suites and rooms have expansive views of the water. And on the main floor, the Riverside Patio is the perfect spot to grab a cocktail and watch the famed river sunsets. The brilliant hues of orange and red melt into the waterway and create an exceptional show. After dark, the patio is ablaze of fire pits, welcoming friends to gather and chat a while into the evening.
The main dining room offers something for everyone, from seafood to steaks. Watch for special themed dinners and wine events throughout the year. And in February, the outdoor patio turns into a weekend of fun during the annual Fire and Ice event. An ice bar, ice sculptures, specialty cocktails, and demonstrations highlight the region’s largest winter festival.
- Located within walking distance of town attractions, dining, and shopping
- 105 rooms and suites; suites offer separate bedroom and living area, refrigerator, wet bar, microwave, and Jacuzzi tubs
- Hotel is 100% non-smoking
- High-speed wireless internet service throughout the hotel
- Full service dining: breakfast, lunch, dinner and room service
- State-of-the-art fitness center
- On-site concierge services
- Nightly turndown service
- Indoor heated pool
- Business Center
- No Pets Allowed
- Ballroom, meeting, and conference space
- Boat docks available nearby
- Odds of Encountering Children: Medium to low, depending on the season. Hotel is open to all ages, however the atmosphere and room options cater to adults. Opt to stay during shoulder seasons or winter for a quieter experience.
About Clayton, New York…
Located along the St. Lawrence River in the heart of the Thousand Islands region, Clayton offers arts and cultural activities, a beautiful riverside park and promenade, creative local dining options, breweries, wineries, and distilleries. The Antique Boat Museum houses a world-class collection of racing, leisure and historic boats, and the Clayton Opera House offers a full calendar of performances and events.
1000 Islands Harbor Hotel
200 Riverside Drive
Clayton, NY 13624
– Photos by David Lalley
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