Getaway Guru: Weekend Getaway To Saratoga Springs

June 23, 2012 6:00 AM

Photo Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Going to the races is a terrific experience, but there is so muchmore to this town, all of which can be accessed easier and a good deal cheaper during the off season. Only 140 miles and less than two and a half hours from Hartford, it is an excellent choice for a getaway.

Getting There
The most popular and quickest, albeit uncreative, route from Hartford is I-91 to I-90 to I-87. For better scenery head west to the Hudson river and wind north along the shores of the famed waterway until reaching Troy. Take Route 7 to Route 9 to Saratoga. Taking a train from Hartford or New Haven offers a little bit of the history of how knickerbockers traveled to this popular getaway generations ago.

saratoga springs Getaway Guru: Weekend Getaway To Saratoga Springs

Photo Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Saratoga Race Track 
267 Union Ave.
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
(718) 641-4700

Price: $3 to $10

When race season begins, Saratoga Springs will become one of the hottest destinations in upstate New York. While not the most renowned, the track here is acclaimed as the oldest sports venue in the country and the place where thoroughbred racing began.  The 350-acre racetrack has a capacity of 50,000 and runs races until Labor Day. The most popular day at the track will definitely be August 25 during the 143rd running of the Traver’s Stakes.

adelphi hotel Getaway Guru: Weekend Getaway To Saratoga Springs

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The Adelphi Hotel
365 Broadway
Saratoga Springs, NY12866
(518) 587-4688

Price: $130 to $550 per night

The 135-year-old Adelphi Hotel, located in downtown, is more than just somewhere to lay your head after a day of sightseeing. It is a sight to be seen in its own right. This landmark is a throwback to the Vanderbilt era’s opulence and luxury. Reminiscent of a villa on the Mediterranean, its décor and classically themed rooms are absolutely gorgeous. Be sure to stroll the piazza for its views of Broadway and the stunning area architecture.

thespringwaterinnfront Getaway Guru: Weekend Getaway To Saratoga Springs

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The Springwater Bed & Breakfast and The Springwater Inn
139 Union Ave.
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
(518) 584-5051

Price: $120 to $335 per night

The recently built B&B and adjacent 19th-century inn is a terrific blend of modern and historic, both casual and elegant. Built green with impeccable taste and finely appointed rooms, the Springwater is an excellent choice for families or a romantic getaway.  Its proximity to local attractions is also a huge draw. Perhaps the best part of the staying here is that guests only have to walk downstairs to enjoy one of the best dining experiences in town. The inn has options for any appetite in a variety of atmospheres, including the Turf Club’s assortment of small plates. Others may enjoy local libations and live music at the Bucktrout Tavern. Those in the know, however, leave time and room for both.

Related: Family Day Tripping to New Haven

pjs bar b qsa Getaway Guru: Weekend Getaway To Saratoga Springs

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PJ’s Bar-B-Q
One Kaydeross Ave.
Saratoga Springs, NY12866
(518) 583-2445

Fashioned as a 1950scpicnic-style drive-up, PJ’s is the ultimate summer spot for nostalgic dining. The road side gem serves up barbecue styles from all over the country. Reasonably priced and unbelievably fun, it promises good times for all. Get ready for hula hooping, retro music and depending on the evening, a classic car cruise night.

saratoga state park Getaway Guru: Weekend Getaway To Saratoga Springs

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Saratoga Spa State Park
19 Roosevelt Dr.
Saratoga Springs, NY12866
(518) 584-2535

 Price: $8 per vehicle

Although the race track is obviously the big draw these days, many forget that this town’s initial popularity was built on the springs that it is named  after. The best place to experience these springs, and much of Saratoga’s other attractions, is at the Saratoga Spa State Park. The park contains nine active springs, including those at the world famous Roosevelt Baths and Spa. The park is also home to the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, where those in search of culture can take in a ballet, jazz festival, or Def Leppard concert.  In addition, the more than 2,000-acre National Historic Landmark also offers hiking, pools, museums and golf.

Related: Best Scenic Drives Within 60 Miles of Connecticut

grant cottage1 Getaway Guru: Weekend Getaway To Saratoga Springs

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Grant Cottage
28 Mount McGregor Rd.
Gansevoort, NY  12831
(518) 584-4353

Price: $5 for adults/$4 for seniors and kidsaged 6 to 18/free for kids younger than 6

Those coming to Saratoga its wartime history are most likely headed to the site of the battle of Saratoga, which marked a decisive moment in the Revolutionary War. The town also offers quite a bit for Civil War enthusiasts. While no battles were fought here, it is the location of the home where former president and victorious general Ulysses S. Grant finished his memoirs and spent his final days. The cottage has been well maintained and contains  some of Grant’s personal affects, the bed he died in and an assortment of Civil War memorabilia.

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Charles Daniels grew up in Connecticut and after several years working and traveling around the country and world he has returned home for good. He lives in Hebron with his wife and daughter. While he wears many hats, he considers “part-time stay-at-home dad” his primary and favorite job title. His work can be found at