Just a drive away in the mountains of upstate New York, is a place where dreams come true, the picturesque town of Lake Placid. Yes, the 1980 Olympics have come and gone, but, the atmosphere lingers of world class athletes and the glory of miracles on ice. The ski slopes, hockey rink and trails remain in place for annual Nordic events and for you to tromp and fantasize about gold medals. Ride to the top of the ski jumps to experience the view you have only seen on TV. You can feel the butterflies in your belly, riding the gondola to the top. If the weather is clear, take the Veterans Memorial Highway to the peak of White Face Mountain. You have a clear and breathtaking view of the surrounding New England states along with the lakes below. At over 4800 feet, the weather can be cool, even in the summer. For the ultimate exhilarating thrill, you can even take a four man bobsled ride down the original Olympic run. Experience the G force of the curves as you drop over a mile in 45 seconds. Watch out for the last turn. You may think the ride is ending when it takes a final 90 degree curve.
There are lots of lodging choices in and around Lake Placid, but if you can swing it, don’t miss the Mirror Lake Inn with its view of the village and lake. This 5 Star resort with its 4 poster feather beds deliver the comfort and relaxation fit for a king. As soon as you open the door, you know it will be a great stay. It smells like the most soothing combination of mountain fresh water and spa oils that instill an instant sense of well being. Spa treatments, outstanding service and world class restaurants are part of the amenities of this great hotel. The Cottage Inn has a wonderful lakeside patio with daily drink and culinary specials. Just across the road, its side parking lot turns into a skating rink in the winter.
Golfing in the Adirondacks is exemplified by the White Face Resort course. J. Peter Martin has been the golf professional at this course for over 32 years. An accomplished author on the history of Adirondack Golf, Mr. Martin also has a renowned golf school. His wife coordinates the flowers and landscaping like only an artist could. The course is not long, but tightly carved out of the woods of White Face Mountain. Accurate tee shots are a must to set up birdie or par opportunities. Big hitters need not apply as towering pine trees protect the turn to the greens.
After your round, consider the The Lodge for a drink or meal. The second story terrace, overlooking the real Lake Placid, is both rustic and cozy with every table and chair, designed with a different shape of wood or twig. The price reflects the magnificent view and the flavors are worth it. When the breeze through the trees brings on a chill, a woolen blanket is provided and the fireplace is lit. This is alpine fresh air dining.
There are many other places to eat in the village, but, none better than the Great Adirondack Steak and Seafood Company. It has its own micro brewery noted for fine ales and pilsners. They are served in glasses with fun sayings, such as “Teach a man to fish and he will stay in a boat and drink beer all day”. As their name implies, they have great steaks with Prime Rib one of their specialties. The servings are larger than life. The seafood is fresh and can be added as a side item to any main course. We recommend the King Crab legs for this and split the entrée or you may not be able to enjoy the rest of the evening as putting the fork down is a ludicrous option. Located downtown on Main Street, you have the opportunity to shop the authentic Adirondack shops featuring many moose and bears.
When summer gives way to winter, check the schedules for world class alpine events held on the original Olympic sites. No matter what the season, you can find relaxation, competition, great adventures, and a distinctive taste of the Adirondacks right next door. Many Europeans come to Lake Placid and having traveled to the alps, we know why. It is the best place to breathe fresh air and have your breath taken away by the beauty at the same time. Maybe you will even see a moose.