Even on a misty moisty morning, the Mohonk Mountain House and its acreage — both indoorrs and out — is a magical place. The movie The Road to Wellville was filmed there, exploiting both the natural and constructed opulence of what now is more than just a resort for the wealthy.
Although, I have to say that there were more Beamers and Benzs than I’ve ever seen in one parking lot, including several Mercedes-Benz $100K G-500 SUVs. .
Actually, there were a lot more less ostentatious vehicles from which folks of every age, many in hiking boots and gear, came and went. The grounds were almost overrun with kids, and as we walked along the path on one side of the lake, we noticed a cabin in which a nature program for children was underway.
My daughter and her family had to leave for home that afternoon, so we arrived in the morning and explored the grounds before heading in for the sumptuous (and expensive) Sunday brunch. ( It was just the four of us, since my mom was feeling too sick to come, and my brother stayed at home with her.)
The main dining room overlooks a range of the Catskill Mountains, and we were seated close enough to the huge windows to enjoy the view, fog and all. There were a number of young children (including ours) piling up plates of tasty buffet items, the most popular of which, of course, was the chocolate fountain in which they dipped strawberries and other fruits and fingers.
The two older women from New York City sitting by the window cooed over my grandson and offered to take our photo with my daughter’s camera if she would take one of them with theirs. They were up for the day as well and also making the most of what the brunch had to offer.
The hallways in the 19th century Victorian mansion that lead to the Mohonk House’s main dining room are lined with portraits of “rich old white men,” as my daughter commented. Actually we did notice a few colorful male faces, but those were few and far between and with names that looked Middle Eastern.
I’m hoping that my family will come visit again so that we can spend more time exploring Mohonk. Maybe not do brunch, but rather try the putting green, see the gardens in full bloom, take a paddle boat onto the lake. Maybe my grandson and son-in-law can fish, while my daughter adds to her collection of striking photos that she’s already taken of the unique surroundings.There’s a Picnic Lodge if we want to indulge our palates.
The website doesn’t say how much a day pass is just to roam the grounds (not hike, not with these knees) and luxuriate in the beauty of it all. It doesn’t even say if it has such a thing. Assuming that it does, I’m sure it will not be cheap. But it will be worth it to get out into that ear-popping mountain air and check out all the outdoor attractions that we couldn’t get to this time.
As long as it doesn’t rain.