Let’s Explore Authentic Vermont

By Jeff & Stephanie Sylva

Southern Vermont has long been a favorite destination for many New Yorkers, whether it’s an opportunity to hit the slopes in winter, peep at the foliage in the fall, or enjoy the cooler weather and many outdoor activities during the warmer months. We recommend making Seesaw’s Lodge in the village of Peru your destination. Why? Because both Seesaw’s Lodge and Peru are so Vermont.

Seesaw’s Lodge is a charming, recently renovated 100-year-old inn located at the base of Bromley Mountain. The exciting aspect of Seesaw’s is how three families joined forces in 2015 to completely renovate and revitalize this historic property in a way that fully embodies the classic Vermont mountain vibe yet affords guests all the modern comforts they crave. In 2018, following a thoughtful re-imagination of what was once the Wonder View Log Pavilion, Seesaw’s Lodge opened with an invitation of “All Comers Welcomed.” 

Seesaw’s Lodge is a mountainside campus consisting of seven buildings—the Lodge, three Cabins, Johnny Seesaw’s Restaurant, the Event “Barn” building, and a Warming Hut built out of an old sugary house moved from a nearby farm. Every room and building incorporate preserved architectural elements, furniture, memorabilia, and wood salvaged from the original 1924 building. (Note Johnny Seesaw’s Restaurant with its awesome circular fireplace and wood ceiling beams.)

The main Lodge features six spacious suites with modern spa-like bathrooms, gas fireplaces, seating areas, and balconies with mountain views. A local tree inspires each suite and features that specific wood (i.e., Maple Suite, Birch Suite, etc.). Each suite has its own private outside entrance as well as indoor access. 

Rooms in the Lodge can be booked individually, or the entire Lodge can become an excellent place for a large family or group gathering. The main floor common area is a spacious, open-plan living area with floor-to-ceiling windows, a wood fireplace, a large dining room, and a fabulous chef’s kitchen. 

Each Cabin has three bedrooms, three baths, kitchenettes, useful mudrooms, and comfortable seating areas with gas fireplaces and fabulous mountain views. Individual rooms or floors, as well as an entire cabin, can be reserved. 

As comfortable and inviting as the accommodation is, you must go outside and enjoy what Seesaw offers. In the winter, the old tennis courts are transformed into an ice-skating rink, which serves as the bocce and corn hole courts in warmer months. Fire pits and cauldrons are ablaze in the late afternoon and evening, perfect for roasting s’mores. Enjoy the après frivolity at The Hut, a whiskey or wine tasting, or some live music in The Tavern. 

We have two recommendations that are sure to please. Johnny Seesaw’s Restaurant is much more than a re-imagined rustic eatery that was a traditional gathering place for many locals. The restaurant’s menu celebrates Vermont by elevating comfort food that incorporates local ingredients with a fresh twist. Try the Vermont Pork Schnitzel with Bavarian potato salad, Brussels sprouts in bacon vinaigrette, apple butter, and Beef Bourguignon.
Both were outstanding.

If you like pasta, you must dine at Mystic in Manchester. A selection of hand-crafted pasta made fresh in-house with the freshest ingredients is presented daily. The Spaghetti Alla Chitarra with Crab, confit tomato, Calabrian chili, lemon, basil, and Parmigianino was amazing. And the Tagliatelle with Bentley Farm Pork Ragu, fennel, and Parmigiano Reggiano was divine. Mystic also has a beautiful selection of fresh seafood entrees and appetizers.

Hiking is popular, as the Appalachian Trail is accessible right from Seesaw’s property and has numerous trails. Being in the center of the “Golden Triangle” of Bromley, Stratton, and Magic Mountains, as well as a short drive from Okemo or Killington, this part of southern Vermont is a mecca for skiers. The area also offers many opportunities for kayaking, biking, and leaf-peeping.

The town of Manchester, a short 15-minute ride down the mountain, offers a variety of activities and cultural attractions. The Lincoln Family Home, Hildene, comprises Robert and Mary Lincoln’s 1905 Georgian Revival summer home and the surrounding estate of 412 acres, which include 12 miles of walking trails, formal and productive gardens, a working farm and cheesemaking facility, and a 1903 restored Pullman railcar. 

A few unique experiences in Manchester are the Land Rover Off-Road Driving Experience and the Orvis Fly-Fishing and Wing Shooting Programs. Accompanied by an expert instructor, we drove the challenging—sometimes extreme—terrain of Land Rover’s private natural trails and were quite impressed with the Land Rover’s technology and off-road abilities.  

Manchester has many shops, boutiques, cafes, and restaurants. There are several factory outlets stores as well. But you can shop in those stores anywhere. While in Vermont, you should enjoy a more authentic shopping experience—the country store. One of the most iconic is the 8,000 square feet. Vermont Country Store in Weston, about a 15-minute drive from Seesaw’s. This is one of the “originals.” Three generations of Ortons have continued the family principle of selling products that are “useful, work, and make sense.” Their business motto is The Purveyors of the Practical and

For more information on Seesaw’s Lodge, visit 

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