Nestled between the Long Island Sound and Connecticut River, the Saybrook Point Inn & Spa in Old Saybrook Point, Connecticut, is perfect for a fun-filled family break or a quiet romantic weekend with good food, sailing, fishing, biking, shopping and most importantly, relaxation.

Three Stories guest house – photo Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

Its classic New England atmosphere, replete with rugged coastline, bustling marina, historic lighthouse, colonial-style architecture and panoramic views of the water, is ideal in any season.

Old Saybrook History

As one of the original 13 colonies, Connecticut is loaded with history.  The Old Saybrook colony was established in 1635 and shortly thereafter became the battleground for a dispute between the native Pequot tribe and the British colonies in what is now known as the Pequot War.TMOM Travel Disclosure

Today, the area is a veritable historic home lover’s paradise. Hundreds of historical houses dot the landscape around Old Saybrook and the surrounding towns. There are two districts on the National Historic Register: North Cove (a stone’s throw from the hotel) and Fenwick Historic District, which boast homes from the early 1700’s. Many of the homes are private residences but they can be identified by a plaque with the name of the prominent local personage who owned it and the year it was built.

You can tour the Revolution era General William Hart House at 350 Main Street from mid-June until Labor Day. If you are in the area on July 11th be sure to stop by to see the free Civil War re-enactment with period costumes.

Old Saybrook Inn lighthouse

Old Saybrook Inn lighthouse

What Works for Families

  • The main inn is welcoming for families and hosts many weddings, parties and family reunions
  • Property is immaculate and elegant but not stuffy
  • Heated indoor and outdoor pool provide fun during all types of weather
  • Offers a wide variety of room sizes and price points
  • The one bedroom Lighthouse suite is a kid pleaser

What Doesn’t Work for Families

  • The Three Stories guest house is an adult-only accommodation (but this could work on a multigenerational trip where grandma and grandpa stay at the Inn with the kids while mom and dad enjoy the calm at Three Stories!)
  • During wedding season the hotel common areas and spa have the potential to be very crowded
  • The closest public beach is about a 10 minute drive.

The Rooms

The hotel offers three types of accommodations:

The Inn has 82 rooms in varying sizes from standard to one bedroom suites.  All the rooms are elegantly furnished in a traditional New England style (the kind that inspired Disney’s Yacht Club) and some include luxuries like water views, balconies, wood burning or gas fireplaces and double jacuzzi tubs.  Rooms start at $269 and $299 during peak summer season.

The Lighthouse is a comfortable one bedroom suite that is situated on the edge of the marina.  It has stunning views of the water and would be especially fun to stay in during a storm while reading Treasure Island. It’s only available in the warmer seasons (May-October) and includes a queen-sized bed, dining area, kitchenette and living room with a double pull out sofa bed.  This room starts at $619 in peak season.

Lighthouse room

Photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Travel Mom

The Three Stories guest house was built in the 19th century for William Vars, a train engineer responsible for transporting passengers from Hartford to the Shoreline (I guess this was a high paying job back then).  It was renovated from top to bottom before it opened in 2014.

This adult-only accommodation has a Southern-style exterior with wrap around porches that are perfect for sipping lemonade or something stronger with your sweetheart on a hot summer night.

It has eight uniquely designed rooms that honor local historical figures. The Katharine Hepburn suite, actually dedicated to the film star’s mother of the same name, is one of the larger suites with a large bathroom, sitting area and balcony.  Another is dedicated to Anna Louise James, the first female African American pharmacist in the state.

Amenities include luxury linens and bath products from the Sanno Spa, radiant heated floors in the bathrooms and some have gas fireplaces and jacuzzi tubs .

photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

Three Stories – photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

The elegant New England-style interior has several common areas for relaxing and socializing, including a dining area, a parlor area with a fireplace, a roof deck with a fire pit, and a sophisticated recreation area with two large flat-screen TVs and an adjoining billiards room.

It’s ideal for getaways with friends or the whole house can be booked. Even though it was fully booked during our stay, we only crossed paths with guests occasionally and it felt like we had the place to ourselves most of the time.

Styled as a B & B, it has a house matron, Mrs. Pratt, who is there to welcome you and answer questions. She also makes sure there is hot coffee, tea and delicious brioches for a morning snack before you get the energy to head over to the Fresh Salt restaurant in the main hotel for the complimentary breakfast. These rooms start at $319 during peak season.

The hotel also offers a number of two bedroom villas for weekly or monthly rental that are located across from the main building.

Photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

Photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

Amenities 

The recently renovated pool area is a big attraction for families and is also conveniently close to the Sanno Spa. The area has both indoor and outdoor heated saltwater pools, jacuzzi, deck chairs, steam room, sauna and a family restroom.

TIP: guests must bring room towels with them to the pool—a must for Three Stories guests to remember because you don’t want to find yourself without one during the colder months.

historic home essex

photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

The hotel has complimentary teen to adult-sized bicycles for guests to explore the area. Cycle or walk the 4 or 6 mile “loop,” on the scenic waterfront along highway 154 and around North Cove Road and you’ll see many beautiful, historic homes, with serene views of the river and muted marshlands that are stunning during any season.

The Details

The Sanno Spa, fine dining at Fresh Salt, marina, nearby golf course and mini-golf make Saybrook Inn & Spa a destination hotel.

Just a 20 minute walk or a five minute drive and you are in Old Saybrook Village, where you can shop, eat or see a concert at The Kate Theater.

Check the hotel’s website for current packages like its Chillin’ & Grillin’ weekend (June 12-14th), a hands-on culinary weekend where visitors learn grilling techniques from the chefs with fresh farm to table ingredients then enjoy a craft beer tasting.

  • Driving, it’s about 2.5 hours from Manhattan and 2 hours from Boston and there is on-site parking for guests.
  • No car, no problem, you can travel there by Amtrak from NYC’s Penn Station to the Old Saybrook Station or use Metro North and transfer at New Haven to the Shoreline East line to Old Saybrook Station and be picked up by the hotel’s complimentary shuttle (call ahead).
photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

Dining

Fresh Salt

The hotel boasts the area’s only waterside dining experience with its restaurant, Fresh Salt. The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch (try the homemade salt & vinegar kettle chips) and has a happy hour that serves tasty bites & flights. However, the dinner menu is why visitors come to the restaurant. Seafood lovers will not be disappointed with the raw bar, shore-inspired salads and the Day Boat special offerings as the sun sets over the marina. Only regret: we didn’t get to try the truffle fries.

Old Say Brook

Photo: Angela Tiffin, History Buff Traveling Mom

In Town

The town also has some great restaurants including Liv’s Oyster Bar and Tissa’s Le Souk Du Maroc, a casual dining Moroccan restaurant located in the building that housed the original James pharmacy owned by Anna Louisa James.  It also sells homemade chocolates and ice cream.