Villa at Saugerties
A mountain retreat in Ulster County where less is more.

From the March 24, 2003 Issue of New York

When Richard Nocera, an artist, and Aimee Szparaga, a former magazine editor, set out to open a country inn, they had a different sensibility in mind. “We wanted to cater to a young, stylish audience and show them that coming to the country doesn’t have to mean they’re in the twilight zone staying with their grandmother,” says Szparaga. Mission accomplished. The Villa at Saugerties in Ulster County, opened less than a year ago, is a modernist delight. The barrel-tiled Mediterranean-style villa is filled with tasteful contemporary touches: a Knoll couch, Harry Bertoia chairs in the kitchen, and Jonathan Adler pillows. The four bedrooms are minimal but cozy. If you can pry yourself from the Egyptian-cotton sheets, the property has a 40-foot pool to sunbathe by and a mini-vineyard to wander through. Take a leisurely hike to Kaaterskill Falls or visit nearby River Rock Health Spa for a hot-stone massage. Cap off a hard day’s relaxation with a glass of wine at Ann Marie’s Cafe & Bistro in town, a casual, tasty local favorite.

-- Sarah Bernard

The Villa at Saugerties (from $95 until June 1, $110 thereafter; 845-246-0682; is a two-hour drive from Manhattan; Ann Marie’s (845-246-5542); River Rock Health Spa (845-679-7800).

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Photograph: Preston Schlesbusch