Country Home, Woodstock, N.Y. (Vrbo): There are many beautiful places to visit in the world, but there is a special magic being spun in the Hudson River Valley. Maybe the calming and enchanting vibes resonate so deeply in relation to the frenetic pace of the Big City to the south; maybe the magic comes from the delightful series of little towns that each have their own character; or maybe it is a product of the mighty Hudson River that carves a path through the area. But figuring out what creates the Hudson River Valley’s secret sauce doesn’t matter as much as your ability to book a trip there ASAP, and we have the perfect home in which you can unwind from the year’s stress: a streamside country house in the well-heeled wilds of Woodstock.
Woodstock is charming during every season, but summer and winter each have their own special perks. If a last-minute winter vacation is what the doctor ordered, plan to hunker down in this cozy living room. If the fire is roaring, the wine is flowing, and you have welcome company of either the friendly or literary varieties, then it doesn’t matter what antics Old Man Winter is getting up to outside your windows.
There are tall ceilings, and then there are tall ceilings. This dual living room has two unique features: a three-story ceiling and a ping pong table that serves as a divider between the two sides. Walls are so last year—it’s pong tables’ time to shine as Susan Sarandon and her ping pong obsession know all too well.
The large, airy living space is filled with a whole lot of light thanks to double decker windows, all the better to see the fresh and creative decor. This is also the playing field for our new favorite game: can you spot the deer in interior design camouflage?
Balconies overlooking the living room from the other two floors gives this space some fun, architectural flare. It also allows you to spy on your housemates below while you decide whether you want to join the party or continue holing up in one of the home’s many nooks and crannies with a glass of wine and a good book.
Despite what MTV may have tried to tell us in the 90s, everyone knows that the magic really happens in the kitchen. That sorcery doubles if you carefully curate your travel crew to include a chef and someone who gets their kicks out of doing the dishes. (“Can I help? Are you sure you’ve got it? Ok, fine, if you insist I’ll go enjoy an after-dinner hot tub soak instead.”)
Vacations are made for feasting… as is this table. The home sleeps 10 and is perfect for an intimate crowd, all of whom will fit around the stately dining room table for those formal family meals.
Like all good vacation homes, this country house has two master bedrooms, but only one has a chandelier worthy of the Plaza Hotel. There are four additional rooms for your guests to spread out among when they head off to get their bucolic beauty rest.
We are sensing an antler theme here. Speaking of the residents of the great outdoors, staying here puts you within walking distance of the center of the town of Woodstock. From there, it’s an easy trip to Overlook Mountain just north of the city for a vigorous hike with views.
Former guests like to talk about the home’s “hidden bedrooms,” the feeling of “endless” areas to explore, and the constant delight of discovering new nooks and crannies. This American country home is starting to sound a little bit like Hogwarts.
The more artsy details in the architectural and interior design, the better, in our opinion. We are definitely here for stained glass windows in the bathroom.
The home is located on the Sawkill creek, which serves as a natural noise machine all year long. Lay your head down and slip into slumber with the comforting sounds of running water as your backdrop.
This home is chic—just look at the statuary and hanging greens in this distinguished room—but it’s also filled with fun and games by way of closets loaded with board games and craft materials that will entertain your crew, no matter their ages.
In the backyard, there is a separate building with a bunkroom, small kitchen, and (drum roll please) the project screen for movie nights. You didn’t think we’d send you to a vacation home without your own private cinema, did you?
Thanks to its heater, the large saline pool isn’t just for summer fun. But if you do choose to visit during the slightly warmer months, your kindreds and kiddos can also take advantage of the in-ground trampoline and zip line.
It’s no wonder that the reviews of this house use words like “charming” and “wondrous” and “like a fairytale.” Light up the outdoor fire pit, bundle into your coziest sweaters and scarves, get your s’more fixin’s ready to go, and settle in for a night that will have you trying to top these glorious reviews. We warned you—the Hudson River Valley is magic.
Book Your Stay: Country Home, Woodstock, NY: $2,000/night via Vrbo