Let me start off by saying that the Inn keepers Len and Gloria and their manager Pam are fantastic. They go out of the way to accomodate you and make sure you are enjoying your time. This aspect makes Applegate a worthy replacement to hotel.
Grounds/Location: The Inn is located in Lee, close to the town center. Location is ok, not much to do in Lee but everything else (mountains, Lenox, Stockbridge) are so close by that it doesn't matter. From my experience Applegate is very quiet and relaxing (I do live in Downtown Boston so it doesn't take much for me to think a place is quiet). We came on Columbus day weekend and the apples on the trees were ripe and the foligage was in bloom. The grounds are quite big so there is a nice area in the back for short walks. Their is a main house (where most of the rooms were) and a carriage house. We didn't spend too much time in the grounds as we were enjoying our time exploring the wonderful town centers of Lenox and Stockbridge as well as riding our bikes and hiking through the beautiful Berkshires.
Rooms: We actually stayed in both room #7 in main house and top floor in carriage house. The rooms are very cozy and very clean. They both had gas fireplaces and my carriage room had a whirlpool jacuzzi and room # 7 had a dual head shower and a external soaking tub. We made use of all of them and were very content. The carriage house room is dated but VERY comfortable and large enough for a big family. Room #7 in the main house made it completely worth it though. It was a very good mix of B&B and elegant decor. We also sneaked a peak into room # 8 and were blown away by the four poster bed and very large bathroom- unfortunately it was booked our weekend. Also, both rooms had a decanter with complementary brandy for a nightcap. On the negative side they could do away with the tacky tip recommendation (given their price tag) and pay a little more attention to details such as patched up moldings, old counter tops and some old furniture here and there...
Food: BREAKFAST was a little underwhelming. They try hard to make it "top notch" but I think the Inn Keepers just haven't kept up with time. They do a buffet to obviously not have to take breakfast orders but by the time you eat it, its cold and not that tasty. You actually have to flag them down to make eggs for you (and you feel ackward ordering it). I wish they modernize this because at that price tag, I was upset that on my second and last day I was forced to eat at a diner down the street to enjoy a decent breakfast. WINE AND CHEESE every afternoon at 5pm was wonderful. They keep the wine coming as the bottles empty out and they usually put out two types of cheeses. More importantly though, its a great time to meet people from around the world who come to New England and also to share experiences about the local area.
Price: At the time that I'm writing this review, the Inn has about 5 "poor" reviews. Most of them are nitpicky about mundane things (cheese being chunky, narrow driveway etc). But I totally understand why they are writing such things. At $300 anyone would expect 5 star hotel service and such type accomodations. Unfortunately, due to the lack of solid competition, all of the Berkshires is overpriced (the Weightleigh up the street is $1000 per night; I can get a private cabana on the water in Bora Bora for that much). Its almost impossible to find a room anywhere and you cant blame the owners for playing the "supply and demand" game. Therefore, for $300, you'll get $150/$200 worth of accomodations. Don't be angry like the other "poor" reviewers. I new I was booking a B&B and expected to get B&B (which I adored btw) but at Manhattan prices. If you are not ok with that then don't go to the Berkshires... or better, stay at the Quality Inn down the street.
Other: My wife and I took our bikes there and Pam let us keep them in their storage shed. Pam also lent us some books on bike trails in the area and was very helpful. Len also gave us some good trail tips and took great interest in us. You will never get that kind of treatment at a hotel.
All in all, I loved the Applegate Inn and would recommend it to anybody that wants a cozy B&B with great owners, doesn't mind the little antiquated things that you get by staying in a B&B and is ready for the price tag of the Berkshires.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to Applegate Inn located in the heart of the Berkshires region of Massachusetts. Applegate has a unique location - a country estate near Tanglewood, Jacobs Pillow, theatre companies, Norman Rockwell Museum, other cultural and natural wonders, with only a half mile walk to downtown Lee. ... more less
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