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“Beauty is in the eye of the Beholder!”
Review of Inn at Lake Joseph

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Inn at Lake Joseph
Ranked #1 of 2 Forestburgh B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Middletown, New York, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Beauty is in the eye of the Beholder!”
Reviewed 20 September 2012

My wife and I recently stayed at the Inn as a little romantic getaway and must say that as usual we were not disappointed....after reading some of the more recent reviews I did not want other readers to get the wrong idea of this place. We have to remember that we are in the Catskills and not downtown NYC, the venues are worlds apart.. Since our past visits were always in the winter months to celebrate our anniversary we changed it up and came during the tailend of summer to enjoy the scenery. The grounds are always well kept and the crew at the Inn always try their best to be as accomodating as possible. We stayed in a new room for us this time, the Hemlock..I must say that I slept like a baby in that bed with the rain beating on the windows that first night, the second day the wife and I went to the farmers market fair that was held in Bethel Woods and enjoyed drinks on the patio all afternoon and evening listening to music and nature..We were warned about the low levels of the lake but decided to take the trail anyway to enjoy what we could. In response to a previous poster the water's color is natural because of the trees that have been submerged into the water over the years, that tea color is actually the sign of a healthy ecosystem within the lake. Sitting lakeside and enjoyed a drink, or in my case a cigar is as peaceful and serene an environment you can get.

I guess the easiest way to describe the inn in a nutshell is like visiting grandma's house and staying a few nights. The decor may look older but in actuality its exactly the way it is intended to look..The buildings are not top notch construction of the last few decades..its an older building thats served generations of individuals as a home away from home....so are the stairs squeaky? Yes, they are but it gives that little child inside of me the feeling of trying to raid grandma's goodie jars and snack boxes when looking for a late night snack or beverage in the kitchen's help yourself section.

So I have to say to Ivan and Rue, thank you for your hospitality and good nature. There are not many places that have the owners as involved as the two of you are with the rest of your staff at the Inn. My wife and I look forward to our next visit and hopefully I won't miss the pancakes on the menu.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Anthony V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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English first
East Brunswick, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 September 2012

I made the enormous mistake of disregarding the negative reviews for the Inn at Lake Joseph. With so many glowing reviews, I took the leap and after hours and hours of searching for a place that would accomodate the needs of my mom, my puppy and me, I finally made a reservation here. My whole heart sank when I arrived at the main house. As written by a few others, the main house looked fine at a glance, but as I looked around while waiting for someone to check me in, I noticed leaks in the cieling tiles, the musty smell, and a general sense of dreariness that I tried to ignore. I traveled for 3 hours to get there and desperately wanted for it to be the right place, but it was not. "Help yourself lunch" was a minifridge with cold cuts and deli salads, a few loaves of sliced bread...the fridge and countertops felt slightly sticky to the touch...everything so worn down. The room? Cobwebs in the vents, an a/c wall unit with no buttons to adjust the temperature in the room or turn it on or off, layers of dust on every surface, a lumpy, musty-smelling sofa bed, small balls of blank lint on the floor, no lightbulbs in the cieling lights over the bed, windows so dingy that you couldn't see the details of the sky and trees outside. The list is endless. I have stayed in many, many places in my lifetime and know what over $400 looks like (and this is what it will run you for after NYS tax and the 10% gratuity). I wouldn't have chosen this place for $20. The pictures on the web site must have been taken when it was first renovated. I slept for maybe 20 minutes that night and the next morning, had the aweful experience of having to ask to leave and get my money back for the original 3 nights I had booked. My credit card had not been charged for the one night that I had stayed, and for that reason alone, I had not submitted a poor review. Over a month and a half later, my card has been charged, and I am disputing them because this place is not what it advertises. I don't know who all of these folks are who think that it's cozy and lovely. I could barely bring myself to sit down and touch anything. I only want to thank Debbie, who was lovely and very apologetic and was kind enough to complete a report of my complaints. She made a difficult conversation a little easier.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
8 Thank sergiaflo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ivan066, Owner at Inn at Lake Joseph, responded to this review, 19 September 2012
We are sorry this guest was disappointed with her stay and we would like to address some of her issues. On the day she arrived and was waiting to be checked in, a small leak in a water line did occur and indeed created a musty odor when the water combined with the original wood lathe and plaster ceiling. The repair was complete the same day. However this might have been the first impression that set the tone for this guest the rest of her stay. Two refrigerators are replenished daily with light lunch and snacks food including cold cuts, salads, pastas, breads, soft drinks and more. The setup 24/7, is casual and reminiscent of raiding the frig at home.

With regard to her description of the cleanliness of her room, on the housekeeping inspection report, there is a mention of a bird dropping and a tree sap stain on one of the skylight windows and a small stain on the carpet inside the door of the sundeck. In addition, there are no vents in the room, the a/c has exposed temperature controls, there are no nights in the ceiling over the bed and there are no sofa beds in any of the Inn guestrooms. With all due respect we honestly believe that this guest may be confusing a memory of an experience from another inn.

We would like to leave the reader with this thought: Although no destination is perfect, we have earned the reputation of being responsive to our guests’ needs and requests, in addition to offering one of the most desirable getaway destinations in New York State. For almost 30 years, this reputation has been reflected in dozens if not hundreds of impartial guest reviews, as well as many articles by experienced professional travel writers throughout the country. Again, we’re sorry these guests were disappointed, but perhaps they might consider a second visit to experience what we are really all about.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 September 2012

We went this past weekend and stayed in the Chestnut room. Upon arrival, we were shown the main house which is clean but quite dated. You are able to serve yourself lunch but if you want sodas you need to purchase from a vending machine. For $320 a night, we thought that this was a bit cheap. We then checked into our room which was clean but modest. The pictures on the website are MUCH nicer than the actual room. It was a small room. We could hear our neighrbors talk through the walls and heard their dogs barking all night long. I love dogs and dont mind that people are able to bring their dogs...but dont want to hear barking for hours at a time. We went to kayak in lake. We were warned that the water level was low due to maintenance on dam (which we can not blame the inn keepers for) but the water was the color dark rust and tree stumps were exposed. They should tell you that you really can not boat due to low water level. There were no kayak paddles so we had to take a row boat. We were literally hiting the bottom of the lake when we paddled out and felt like we were going to get stuck in sand. Also, we were not made aware that they just built a raceway next to inn. If the lake were filled, it would be scenic...but all you can hear is the the zooming of cars. its a REAL problem for the area. even when we went on hike around the inn grounds...all we hear was the race cars. Sounded like we were at nascar not the catskills. we had a pleasant dinner at Mr. Willy's (would recomend for casual pub food - onion soup was great) but when we returned home at 9pm, we wanted to turn on the gas fireplace. It was broken. When I called the inn keeper, she said that there was nothing she could do right then and that it would have to wait till morning. Well, we were checking out the next day. Seemed like she knew the problem existed and was hoping we would not try to light it. She suggested we go to fire pit. We were on a romantic vacation and there were 10 people around firepit with their dogs. The last thing we wanted to do was spend time with strangers. Overall, we were extremely disppointed with stay and will not be returning. The best thing about this inn was the website. Good marketing bc stay was not worth the money.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Emily W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ivan066, Owner at Inn at Lake Joseph, responded to this review, 23 September 2012
“We are truly sorry that this guest’s one night stay at the Inn was disappointing and we would like to address some of her issues.

With regard to the inn’s soda machine: We offer our guests complimentary hot coffee and tea, iced tea, iced coffee and country well water, as well as free bottled water. The fact that we have the vending machines with additional beverages available for purchase is much more a matter of convenience for our guests, since we’re more than a mile from the nearest store, than an attempt to increase our revenue.

With regard to barking dogs and loud voices: At check in, we tell all our guests to dial us 24/7 if they have questions or disturbances. If we had been informed of the disturbance (regardless of the time of day or night), we would have contacted those guests immediately. All guests who bring dogs are asked for their cell phone numbers so we can contact them if an issue comes up while the owners are out.

With regard to the color of the lake water: In our orientation packet, we tell our guests that Lake Joseph has a natural tea color that comes from the trees that were submerged over 100 years ago when the dam was built. It’s a sign of a pristine, healthy, flourishing and prosperous lake. (The movie On Golden Pond refers to the tannic acid that gave the pond its name.)

With regard to the lake water level: All guests were informed of the temporary lowering of the water level of the lake at the time they made their reservations; and that the kayaking and row boating are still in “full swing.” Of the hundreds of guests that have enjoyed their row boating experience this summer, with all due respect, these were the only guests that had concerns. In addition, we would have reminded them of the location of the kayak paddles if they had contacted us via the intercom from the lake phone.

The following were two complaints we felt justified a reduction in their room rate. The Monticello Motor Club is located about three miles from the Inn, beyond the North side of the lake. Once or twice a year the club has a special race for non-street-legal cars that produces noise that sometimes can disturb the pristine silence of the lake. But thankfully, it’s not that often. The second issue was that the guests couldn’t enjoy their gas fireplace, due to a faulty pilot light.

Although we are not perfect, we have earned the reputation of being responsive to our guests’ needs and requests. For almost 30 years, this reputation has been reflected in hundreds of impartial guest reviews, as well as many articles by experienced professional travel writers throughout the country. Again, we’re sorry these guests were disappointed, but perhaps they might consider a second visit to experience what we are really all about.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
York, Pennsylvania
Level 6 Contributor
123 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 September 2012

The Inn was lovely. We stayed in the Dogwood Room, and we had a lovely room with a little balcony to sit on, there was a Jacuzzi tub, a fireplace, a sitting area and a Sleep Number bed. The staff was froendly and accomodating. They had a lovely pool, a lake with boats and kayaks, hammocks, bikes to use... it was really fun. they serve a made to order breakfast each day and a self serve deli lunch. There is ALWAYS a snack in the kitchen! REally a positive experience!

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  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank HB1008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hackettstown, New Jersey
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 August 2012

Just returned from our second stay at the Inn in two years. My son and our dog were along for the trip, as we were visiting my daughter at Stagedoor Manor, a theater camp 30 miles away. The Inn is charming and rustic, with many outdoor activities that can take the edge off of 8 hours spent at a wonderful theater camp (if you know what I mean.) No drama, just peace and quiet, lots of trails to hike, bikes to ride, trips around the lake in the kayak. Breakfasts are generous and very good - the innkeepers keep a stocked pantry for lunch and snacks all day, and the evening campfire with s'mores is a hospitable touch.

If you like the idea of camping, but can't imagine "roughing it" without deluxe bathroom amenities or luxurious sheets, this is the Inn for you!

Also: my eighteen year old son commented that "everyone he meets, smiles." A good time was had by all.

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Margaret S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level 6 Contributor
550 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 226 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 August 2012

My husband and I come here to spend some time away from NYC.

We love this place. It is clean, the staff is friendly and they don't bother anyone with questions.

Last stay was at the Tudor room (I hope I am spelling it right). The room had 2 floors and the whirlpool tub was on the second floor, perfect for relaxing and looking at the snow.. simply beautiful.

They also have food in the main building at all times, so you can go and make a sandwich or have a muffin or whatever.

There is a swimming pool in the summer time. They also have a pool table and several games in the main building which can keep you entertained.

I don't see why anyone would say anything bad about this place.

  • Stayed January 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sara A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2012

My wife and I just got back from a two night stay and boy did we enjoy ourselves! The breakfast every morning truly was enjoyable, whether eggs or whatever else they had to offer. We spent most of our time relaxing by the pool which is what we prefer to do on our vacations. The "Deli fridge" was a nice touch for us as we only wanted sandwiches for lunch and it was nice to have something simple available.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Travellingfool2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Inn at Lake Joseph

Property: Inn at Lake Joseph
Address: 162 St Josephs Rd, Forestburgh, NY 12777-6230
Phone Number:
Region: United States > New York > Catskill Region > Forestburgh
Amenities:
Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 B&Bs / Inns in Forestburgh
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Inn at Lake Joseph 3.5*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Inn, with working fireplaces, whirlpool baths and private sundecks, is located in Upstate New York on a 250-acre private lake. Like resort lodging, Inn at Lake Joseph provides a variety of summer and winter recreational facilities, including access to a health and fitness spa. But unlike larger hotels, with just 18 guestrooms, a luxurious, yet informal, casual country retreat that assures guests a relaxing, private, rustic mountain lake environment awaits. Very much like the Berkshires, White Mountains, Adirondacks and Poconos, the Catskills surrounding the Inn offer spectacular scenes of lakes and rivers, as well as hiking trails with views of majestic peaks and isolated waterfalls. However, unlike these other regions, The Inn is no more than 2 hours from New York City. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Inn At Lake Joseph Hotel Forestburgh

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