By Jeff & Stephanie Sylva
Nestled in the Northeast Pocono Mountains lake region, in one of the Keystone State’s “Best Small Towns,” this classic country inn beckons visitors to discover simple pleasures of life. Located in Hawley, The Settlers Inn is a historic lodge showcasing authenticity and high quality in its lodging and dining options.
In 1980 Grant and Jeanne Genzlinger purchased The Settlers Inn, originally a small-community hotel that had experienced several incarnations. Under the Genzlingers, restoration would produce one of the finest examples of English Arts & Crafts-style lodging. The Arts & Crafts movement dates to 1860’s England. It reflects the desire for a more humanized, personal influence on design and style, as opposed to the heavy ornamentation of the high Victorian era. For the Genzlingers, this idea fits naturally with their goal of providing a “hands-on” approach to hospitality.
It is the artful simplicity of The Settlers Inn that is its charm. From the selection of hand-made bread and desserts and a menu offering farm-to-table dining at its best to the cane-woven dining chairs and wealth of hand-crafted products and materials that adorn the Inn and its 23 beautifully appointed guestrooms, “authenticity” is the guiding principle.
Enjoy the simple pleasures of alfresco dining on the Inn’s terrace, sipping a cocktail at a table set in Muriel’s Garden, or toasting marshmallows over a campfire at the Inn’s private spot on the picturesque Lackawaxen River. Tours of the gardens are offered during the summer months. The Inn’s beehives produce honey used in some of the chef’s recipes.
Find respite in front of the large fireplace in the comfy living room, sipping a glass of wine from the Chestnut Tavern or in a game of Scrabble at the Inn’s giant Scrabble board. Browse the Potting Shed, the Inn’s unique gift shop, for that perfect gift. Most of the Inn’s rooms have fireplaces and Jacuzzi tubs, offering further opportunities to enjoy the simple pleasures of The Settlers Inn.
Dining at Settlers Inn is a treat. Innovative menus offering regional Pennsylvania cuisine are shaped by the seasons, farms, pastures, and producers of the region and the availability of fresh herbs from the Chef’s Garden. Great choices include the Pan Roasted Fennel Rubbed Pork Tenderloin and the Pan Seared Blooming Grove Trout. A full breakfast is included with each night’s stay. The Dining Room and Chestnut Tavern offer a warm ambiance. A nice touch to a weekend dining experience is the piano player, creating a perfect atmosphere for dinner. The Settlers’ weekend brunches offer an a la carte menu. Pair your dinner with a wine from a list that has been recognized by Wine Spectator Magazine for more than ten years.
Several special dining events are offered year-round at the Grant’s Woods entertainment area. Located behind the Inn’s gardens, the recently constructed area is an outdoor dining oasis that includes an elaborate outdoor kitchen, a commercial-sized smoker, tables and chairs for dining, hammocks for relaxing, and fire pits for ambiance. Looking for private time: You can book one of three picnic cabins, each accommodating up to 10 friends/family. Other special dining events have included the Chef Demo Wood Fire Dinner and the Rose Wine Dinner with various rose wines paired with farm-to-table cuisine.
During the summer months, the Inn invites guests to Jazz on the Deck held every Wednesday evening as you enjoy an alfresco dinner. The Jazzy Wednesdays lodging special includes a welcome glass of wine and a $125 food and beverage credit. Other special packages are available, including the Riverside Retreat and Wellness at the Inn. Check the website for details.
WHAT TO SEE & DO
Settlers Inn offers daily activities such as afternoon wine tasting, guided river and canal path walks, and historical tours of the Hawley Silk Mill. Guests of the Inn can participate in any of the activities offered at Settlers’ sister properties, Ledges, and Silver Birches. Be sure to check the Resort Activities Calendar.
Hawley is at the northern end of Lake Wallenpaupack, so numerous water sports like boating, kayaking, canoeing, and fishing are available. There are multiple hiking and biking opportunities (complimentary bikes are available from the Inn). You can jump on the Hawley Trail right at the Inn and walk the River and Canal Trail along the Lackawaxen River. (Be sure to keep your eyes open for eagles.) Or head out in the opposite direction on the Hawley Trail and walk to Ledges and the Hawley Silk Mill. The Mill is a wonderfully repurposed silk factory that houses shops, galleries, a salon, Lake Region Fitness (complimentary to Settlers’ guests), Hopping Eagle Brewing Company, and Cocoon Coffee House & Bakery.
For more information on The Settlers Inn, visit thesettlersinn.com