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“An outdoor vacation without the work of camping”
Review of Attean Lake Lodge

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Attean Lake Lodge
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“An outdoor vacation without the work of camping”
Reviewed 18 July 2010

Attean Lake Lodge is on an island in the middle of a gorgeous lake far, far away from anything in Maine. The lake is big, dotted with islands, and improbably scattered with lovely little sandy beaches.

The cabins are simple and rustic but spottlessly clean - the housekeepers (thanks Elise!) keep an eye out for you to head to breakfast and they go in and clean while you are in the dining room. Cabins have no electricity, but they have woodstoves (your woodbox is kept stocked) and karosene lanterns for evenings. They are all right at the water's edge, and all have front porches which we loved hanging out on, watching birds, reading, etc.

You get breakfast (you order - pretty basic eggs, pancakes, cereal and usually a delicious homemade pastry of some kind) and dinner (choice of three entres) in the lodge dining room and the pack up a lunch for you to take with you on your day's adventures. The food is not fancy, but really tasty. It's good old American 3-square meals style - the lunches are like your mom used to make you. This is definately the best food north of Brunswick.

The people and the service are terrific. This has been the Holden's family business for three generations; and generation #4 is at work too. Everyone is very friendly. You have the same waitress most of the time, so it really feels like you get to know people a little, which is nice (thanks Michaela!). We felt like they really took care of us - Bennet (the Holden's son) picking up some bait for fishing when he went into town, Andrea giving the kids some bubble wands on a rainy day to play with - that kind of thing was great.

Things to do are all of the outdoorsy variety - swimming (the lake was really swimable, even in June - refreshing for sure, but I thought it would be frigid and it wasn't!) boating, fishing, hiking, looking for wildlife (we saw 9 moose!) It is perfect for a family who wants to be active and has kids that like to get out there and play and have adventures. Every day we'd wake up, go have a nice hearty breakfast, pick up our picnic lunch, and head off on the adventure of the day. We'd come back just before dinner, have a nice hot shower, enjoy some wine with dinner (often sending the kids outside to play while we lingered over dinner/drinks and relaxed) chitchat with other guests, and then put the kids to bed. Evenings we'd maybe read a little and then crash nice and early - I haven't gotten so much comfortable perfect sleep in years. There is nothing to do at night except relax, and the air is so fresh and crisp - makes me sigh just writing about it. The whole week was just what my family needed and wanted - relaxation with none of the usual high-tech distractions; just relaxing, being together, getting lots of fresh air and exercise, great food, and restorative sleep. We may have to go every year.

This is not a budget vacation. If you compare it to camping, it seems incredibly expensive, and if you are just as happy sleeping in a tent and cooking your own food over a camp stove; then think about one of the (fabulous) campsites on the lake. If you compare it to renting a house almost anywhere though, this comes out even or ahead when you consider that all your food and activities are included - and there is nothing "extra" here to spend your money on.

If you are looking for a place to relax, get outside, and make your life easy for a while, this could be it.

  • Stayed June 2010, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank khgmd01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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31 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
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English first
Massachusetts
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 March 2010

I think 2010 will mark our 11th year in a row for coming to Attean. The prior posters all described Attean very well. What's funny is seeing first timers come. There's the rare ones who you know will never come back. Attean's not hard to figure out, but some people just don't get how to relax, or at least channel their energy by kayaking or hiking. We love coming back every year and seeing the same faces, young and old. Every year feels the same, but there's always something new to experience. Some of my favorite times are very early boat rides in search of moose. Persistence pays off every year or two in seeing moose. The times we've watched the beavers have been amusing. We keep discovering the secret spots on and around the lake. Brad, Andrea and Barrett run a great show. We know we're in safe hands in a remote spot.

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank FoxCape
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ocean, nj
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 10 March 2010

I almost don't want to tell you about the Attean Lodge, so that I can keep it to myself. Just booked my second trip there today. Most families come back year after year. Very friendly, in a gorgeous location, with lots to do, if you like the outdoors. Boating, fishing, hiking, kayaking, swimming, moose watching, beach bonfires. Perfect for families with young children. The cabins are beautiful, rustic only in the sense that they have no electricity - which is a welcome relief in our wired world (the lodge has internet access and phones). Very good food, and extremely helpful hosts. The lodge has puzzles and games for the kids, and there are nightly events - cook outs, sing-alongs, even a poetry contest. I've never slept better in my life. I recommend it highly.

  • Stayed August 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank lbpwayside
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2009

My husband grew up going to Attean in the summers throughout the '70s and early '80s. We started going there as a couple around 1990, honeymooned there, and then started going back when our children were old enough to handle the rustic environment. This is truly one of my favorite places on the planet. There is no other development on the lake (there are a few private 'camps' on the island and a neighboring island), so you are in the middle of as pristine a wilderness as you can get without truly roughing it. You get satisfying meals in the lodge at breakfast and dinner, and a packed lunch for going off and exploring during the day. Hiking, kayaking/canoeing, fishing and lounging about are the activities; do not come to Attean for nightlife (other than the call of the loons), shopping (there is a general store in Jackman that sells basic food supplies, fishing gear and beer), or gambling (I suppose you could bet on which member of your party spots the first moose). The cabins are comfortable and clean and have porches with marvelous views of the lake through the pines.
We've experienced Attean as a young couple (it's lovely in early September when the leaves are starting to turn and there are fewer people staying), and also as parents of young children (and now one who's a teenager). This is the kind of place where you can sit in the lodge and finish your leisurely dinner while the kids run down to the beach to play Capture the Flag before it gets dark. Then, if it's not too windy, you can have a bonfire and make s'mores down on the beach before heading back to your cabin by flashlight to light the kerosene lamps and read before falling asleep to the call of the loons.

Stayed August 2009, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank JKMorgan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dallas
Level Contributor
25 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 September 2008

We've been spending a week each year for the past 12 years, and we're shorttimers. Many have been coming for over 30 years.

Owned and operated by the same family for over 105 years, Attean Lake Lodge is one of the true gems of America. Featuring a dozen or so rustic cabins on an island in a lake in the backwoods of Maine, the lodge is still thorougly civilized. Open only for the summer months and a few weeks in September, there is no electricity in the cabins. But not to worry there's gas light, hot water, and a Franklin stove. You'll share a beautiful main lodge and dining room with fellow guests, a chef from 'away", and the owners.

  • Liked — The rustic comfort.
  • Disliked — It's so from Texas.
  • Stayed September 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank DallasSun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Attean Lake Lodge

Property: Attean Lake Lodge
Address: Attean Road, PO Box 457, Jackman, ME 04945
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Maine > Jackman
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 10 Speciality Lodging in Jackman
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Escape into the beauty of nature. Spend your days un-driven by schedules or agendas. Enjoy breathtaking views of mountains and the lake, warm hospitable staff, delicious food and charming, 15 comfortable cabins where you fall asleep to the sounds of the loons. Spend your days relaxing leisurely in the lodge or by the lake or fill your days with adventures, exploring the numerous hiking options, or seeing the beauty of the lake and rivers using one of the many boating options available to you. Either way you can truly unwind at this wonderful all-inclusive, island retreat. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Attean Lake Lodge Maine/Jackman

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