Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Saratoga Springs, "The City in the Country"

My sister and I had a lovely three day visit over to Saratoga Springs in New York. It's only an hour and a half from our home in Vermont and a pretty drive. We detoured a bit to drive along some of the Lake George water front. The down town is really honky tonk compared to Saratoga Springs but it's a beautiful lake.
We stayed at a Best Western as my sister is in a wheel chair. Most of the beautiful old Inns and Bed and Breakfasts are not accessable. The rest of the city wasn't generally a problem. We found the ramps down to the handicap seating at the Saratoga Performing Center very steep but luckily the ushers were very helpful. They arranged for us to be picked up after the performance by a golf type cart and returned to the parking lot. We saw the NYC Ballet perform Balanchine's "Jewels" and it was spectacular.
Gracious old Inns line the main street. A wide swath of
lawn, flowers and benches separate the sidewalk from
the street.

A large variety of stores and restaurants fill every available
storefront - unlike many down towns like our own in
Rutland, VT

Another view of the mini parks that line the streets

Horses are the city's mascot and
beautifully painted ones decorated
the streets and parks

The Adelphi Hotel is one of the oldest remaining Inns in
the city. An example of High Victorian it was built in 1877.

Congress Park in the heart of the city. Laid out and built in
1822 around some of the springs. Frederick Law Olmsted
did the landscape design in 1876.  It was neglected and fell
into disrepair in the 1930's and renovated beginning in 1976.

Two of the pavilions surrounding the still working springs

Great lawns and paths surround the ponds, streams, statues and fountains 

Part of the Italian gardens in a corner of the park. 

The city is really beautiful and luckily we had perfect weather. As you can see from the photos, it's a great place to walk around. We enjoyed all our meals there as well. Before leaving we stopped in at the Saratoga Race Track which was opening the following weekend. Scott and I hope to get over there in August for the early morning breakfast to watch the horses work out. I've done it before and it's amazing.

Looking back at the statues of Pan and the Meneads placed
around the sundial. In the back left is the path and stream
seen above.

The former casino known as The Clubhouse was built in
1870 and is now home to the Saratoga Springs History

Shakespeare in the Park - almost every night for two weeks
in July. This year it was Merchant of Venice

You can ride for free on this beautiful carousel carved by
Marcus Charles Illions.

The Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC) is host to
the NYC Ballet and the Philadelphia Orchestra as well
as a number of popular musical performers during the
summer months

There is a huge variety of retail stores downtown. I found
some elegant clothing here at Lifestyles on sale.

The Bread Basket Bakery is a great way to start the morning!

We had our first night's dinner at the Lake Ridge Restaurant
in Round Lake, NY around 15 minutes from Saratoga -
very good food, nice atmosphere and service, expensive

Forno Toscano Bistro at 541 Broadway, right
downtown was a fun, lively place with
very tasty food, moderate to expensive prices.
 You can eat outside too.

The Karavalli Regional Restaurant at 47 Caroline St., also
downtown, had good Indian food at moderate prices
with attractive decor

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