Disclosure: I was invited by Saybrook Point Inn & Spa to spend a night in their new Tall Tales guest house and check out their facilities. While this is a sponsored post, all opinions remain my own. Thank you for joining me as I explore more of my home state!
The saying goes that everyone has a story.
At Saybrook Point Inn & Spa in Old Saybrook, Connecticut, they have 3, actually–plus a collection of Tall Tales, to boot! All waiting for you to make your own legends within.
I spent this past weekend as a guest of Saybrook Point Inn & Spa in their new guest house, Tall Tales, to get the inside scoop on why someone may choose to begin his/her adventures there. I learned that it goes far beyond a whimsical name and a dollhouse exterior. This is a very grown-up fairy tale…one I was disappointed I had to leave to return to the real world.
Saybrook Point Inn & Spa is located on Bridge Street in Old Saybrook, Connecticut, at the convergence of the Connecticut River and Long Island Sound. It’s a family-owned hotel that boasts 81 rooms in the main building, in addition to the 8 rooms in the Three Stories guest house and 6 rooms in Tall Tales, both conveniently located directly across the street. Adjacent to the guest houses are 24 villas, also owned by the Tagliatela family, most of which are long-term rentals, but there are 6 available for booking, as well. But wait! That’s not all!
At the end of the dock in the marina (also a part of the hotel) stands a lighthouse.
But this is no ordinary beacon. Inside hides a one-bedroom suite suitable for the most special of special occasions. It’s currently under renovation, but normally can be booked May-October.
Speaking of tales, Susan–who took care of us in Tall Tales–shared a fond memory of the lighthouse with us during our stay. When Susan first started working for Saybrook Point Inn & Spa in the fitness center, her first night on the job happened to be her anniversary–and her second? Her husband’s birthday. Understandably, her husband was quite disappointed when he learned she would be away both nights. But Susan…she’s a mischievous soul. It was October, near the end of the season, so she asked if she could book the lighthouse as a surprise for hubby–it was off-season then and a little more affordable. She lugged over her fine china from home, all the way across the dock, then asked the guys at the front desk for advice on how to prepare her husband’s favorite meal: steak. While she was well-versed in how to grill it at home, she’d have to use a frying pan in the lighthouse and wanted to ensure success. Friday night arrived and she suggested that they grab a meal at the hotel restaurant…but first, she thought a stroll on the dock would be nice. Her husband was surprised by this: did she have the right to be there? Of course, she assured him: she was, after all, an employee now. When they reached the lighthouse, she asked him if he wanted to take a peek inside. Again, her husband was shocked–she could get them in? Sure, she said, they give the key to a few of us. The jig was up when they stepped inside–he recognized their china from home. Talk about going the extra mile! (By the way, that night went so well, they stayed for his birthday, too! The lighthouse has that affect on people!)
For those of us who will not be lucky enough to be surprised with a romantic steak dinner cooked exclusively for us in our own private suite, there is Fresh Salt, the on-site restaurant. Don’t let the casual atmosphere fool you: it’s gourmet all the way. The lighting is beautiful, the view is of the marina, and the saltwater fish tank is an attraction for all. There are even scheduled feedings that patrons look forward to.
The people behind the bar are not bartenders–heck, no. They are magicians, conjuring potions that enchant and delight. On warmer nights, you can take your drinks around the fire table on the patio. We sampled several signature sippers, my favorite of which being what’s pictured above: Hot Karma. They infuse tequila with smoked chipotle chiles, then combine with Ripe Bar Juice margarita mix for a spicy twist on the classic cocktail. Add a rim of Hawaiian black lava salt for the perfect finishing touch. (I sampled the infused tequila sans mixer, by the way–the smoky perfume was rather addictive, and while there was a wallop of heat, it was quite enjoyable.)
We finished off the evening with samples of Anna’s homemade limoncello. Yes, homemade. It was poured from a jug with a skull and crossbones–quite comical, as far as I’m concerned–and was the perfect blend of citrus and creaminess. Others in the group couldn’t help themselves from offering a multitude of suggestions for other ways to enjoy it. At brunch on Sunday, we were lucky enough to meet Anna and when I praised her work, she poured us samples of her orangecello (arancello) as well. Imagine a creamsicle…with a kick…but not really a kick, because it’s all smooth and wonderful…and that’s just what you find. How wonderful would it be to savor a cold glass of either on the patio on a sunny summer day? I think I need to return to find out.
But back to Tall Tales…
Tall Tales is the latest addition to the Tagliatelas’ property. This pink confection is a Victorian-era, Italianate-style home situated such that amazing views can be had of the Connecticut River and Long Island Sound. Each of the 6 rooms in the guest house not only has its own unique personality, but they’re named for notable figures in early American history. Feeling feisty? Maybe you’ll want to stay in Lady Fenwick on the 3rd floor, with its bright corals and bubble tub. General William Hart–the gold room on the 3rd floor–is fit for royalty! Barbara Maynard has its own sitting room! And the creams and blues of Lion Gardiner remind me of dishes my mom had when I was a child.
I stayed in room #710, a luxurious space honoring the Dutch trader and navigator Adriaen Block, who is credited for naming Block Island, Rhode Island. This room is located in the front of the house, immediately off of the shared kitchen–a fortuitous spot for me. Even more “meant-to-be,” however, was the decor inside. To the point where I was wearing a teal dress for dinner that night and the paint in the bathroom was the same shade of lavender as my hair currently. How did they know?
The king-sized bed had me feeling like a princess, and the soft, squishy pillows were a dream to sleep on. I had a desk where I could work a little bit, 2 armchairs arranged around an electric fireplace, and a private porch off the side with a few chairs for lounging. The sun rises on the other side of the parking lot across the street, illuminating the lighthouse in such a manner that it nearly looks like it’s on fire. All of this can be witnessed from the pair of street-facing windows in this room.
On the first floor, guests share a combination living-dining room, where pastries and fresh fruit are delivered daily for the patrons’ pleasure. In the kitchen, you’ll find a Keurig with 6 different brewing options, including Breakfast and Green teas. (Check out the ice machine, while you’re at it–we couldn’t quite figure out what the shape of the ice cubes was, but it was rather entertaining in the process.)
On the second floor is the common game room, where you can shoot pool, play cards, or engage in a game of chess. It’s these common areas that make Tall Tales the perfect location for a girls’ weekend away or a family reunion. Heck, I’d love to host my next family gathering here instead of messing up my own kitchen. Just think–no cleaning ahead of time. Simply the perfect location where everyone can immerse themselves in the experience. (Do keep in mind, however, that the guest house is 18+ only; guests with children can stay in the main inn.)
While staying in the guest houses, you’ll have access to the amenities across the street, including the fitness center and two saline pools: one indoor, and one outdoor. The outdoor pool is heated to 80 degrees, even in the winter! Be sure to book a treatment at the renowned Sanno Spa during your stay. The spa menu includes manicures, pedicures, facials, massages, and more. Sadly, I was not able to experience the spa for myself on this trip, but my friends have recommended it.
Of note is the new Cuisine Series. Themed evenings take guests on a gastronomic journey of discovery. I was lucky enough to attend the Homage to Fromage dinner paying tribute to France with a celebration of its wine and cheeses. We started with a selection of 15 cheeses from the local shop, Fromage Fine Foods & Coffees, and continued on through two courses, an entree, and Pear Clafoutis with Roquefort for dessert. Wines came from SeaSide Wine and Spirits and included 2 champagnes from Perrier-Jouët. The star of the meal was the Coquille Saint Jacques (scallops gratinee). Even I, who am not normally a fan of scallops, found them to be quite amazing. The texture … oh, my! I’m convinced all scallops I’ve eaten before were overcooked, because these were tender and fresh and fully worth of the accolades.
Interested in writing your own story on the shoreline?
Then you need to stay at Tall Tales at Saybrook Point Inn & Spa! Be inspired–and enjoy the history that surrounds you, in the process.
Two Bridge Street, Old Saybrook, CT 06475