What We Love
- Locavore menus: Vermont-made cheddar cheese and maple syrup, chicken that was raised one town away, produce fresh from a nearby farm
- The 700 acres are made for walking; entire resort is a Certified Audubon Sanctuary
- Incredible sunset views over Lake Champlain toward the Adirondacks
What To Know
- Many activities, including biking and boat rides, are an extra fee
- No TVs in the rooms
- The scene here is low-key and relaxed, though the bar at the Red Mill restaurant stays open ’til midnight
- Free WiFi
- Golf Course
- Handicap Accessible
- Kids Club
- Parking On Site
On a winding road that ends at Lake Champlain, Basin Harbor Club is a sprawling resort of cottages and guesthouses clustered around a harbor. With tennis courts, a championship golf course and a private airstrip, it’s a preppy scene — we’re talking coats and ties each evening for men 12 and over in the main dining room — without a stuffy attitude. Visitors bring their dog, their kids or both and relish the only-in-Vermont air of refined chaos and downright cheerful surroundings.
Bed & Bath
The 74 cottages provide a true Vermont home-away-from-home, with pattern-loving bedrooms (or two or three), a living room, kitchenette and deck or porch. Each one is unique, from the layout and the furnishings to the lake views and size of your screened-in porch. In the main lodge, Historic Guest Rooms are on the small side at 200 square feet, but have expansive views of Lake Champlain, the Adirondacks, the award-winning flower gardens or the golf course.
Most guests stay and play at the resort all day. Each morning a list of activities is handed out near the main dining room, cruise ship–style. There are exercise classes at the gym and guided hikes, pampering spa treatments, boat rides, bonfires, bingo games, bike rentals and much more. The kids area is wildly popular, keeping campers busy with scavenger hunts and crafts and swimming. And then there’s the water. A diving board dares you to jump in the lake, and a big floating trampoline makes it fun to stay out there all day. You can rent paddle boats and kayaks, go waterskiing or take a banana boat ride. On the dining front, choose from hearty meat-heavy entrees in the main dining room; the more casual Red Mill restaurant for burgers and grilled dishes; or bumper buffet fare in the seasonal Ranger Room.
In the Area
For a dose of retail therapy and city action, head due north to Burlington, also on Lake Champlain, or get away from it all on a self-guided hike along any of the lakeside paths. Kids love the trip to Shelburne Farms, a bucolic working farm where you can milk a cow, collect eggs, watch cheese being made and buy fresh produce. Or, since the entire resort is a Certified Audubon Sanctuary, stay onsite and attend one of the frequent talks and classes at the nature center.
How to Get There
We drove to Basin Harbor just to see it. Right on Lake Champlain, lake front places to stay, boat docking. Nice community that I could imagine coming for a family vacation. Nice, peaceful, quiet place to spend time with family. If we lived closer, we would consider vacationing here.
This was my second week-long trip to this resort. This place was built over a few hundred years so there are some very old buildings, quite a few mid-century era buildings and some newer ones. Lots of little cozy cabins. The view of the harbor and marina is the main attraction! Gorgeous on a fall day. Staff is nice and helpful. Great place to relax.
We were here a few years ago, and given the price we didn't think we would return. However, we received an email flash sale and took advantage of an incredible rate for their final weekend! We stayed in Whitecaps 1, a lakefront one bedroom with an incredible view. Make sure you call to make a reservation vs. reserving online as the agent will help you pick the exact kind of cottage you want. We enjoyed the included breakfast and kayak rentals, as well as the Saturday evening reception on the lawn. We also used the heated pool and it is possible we may have been the last guests to use this in 2019. As an added bonus there was an incredible fireworks display to celebrate the end of the season. This place is a class act. Be sure to sign up for their mailing list to take advantage of last minute deals.