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Scott Varley’s Tips for Saratoga Summer Fun

Head to Saratoga Race Course

Considered America’s oldest-running sports venue, this venerable track boasts an amazing Grandstand, Clubhouse and grounds. It dates to 1863 and is beautifully maintained with lots of different areas to hang out, eat, people watch and, of course, bet on the ponies!

For six weeks a year, the New York Racing Association holds its summer racing meet in Saratoga. For the 2022 summer meet at Saratoga, racing starts July 14 and runs through Labor Day weekend. It is important to note that the “dark days” at the track are Monday and Tuesday, so prepare to attend the races Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Post time is 1 p.m.

The big day is the Travers, a big stakes race that draws upwards of 50,000 spectators. It’s a blast! In 2022, the Travers is on Saturday, August 27th.

Perfect Summer Daytime Strolls

Serious hikers can head to the Adirondacks, one of the world’s biggest protected parks in the world. Our goal here is to make sure you get your steps in while in Saratoga Springs while visiting some of our most engaging parks and preserves.

Saratoga Spa State Park: The centerpiece of Saratoga has to be SPAC. It’s a must-see for everyone with easy walking paths and some other more scenic trails. The Geyser Loop Trail and the Gideon Putnam Trail are all wonderful. You can Google the New York State Department of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and get trail maps.

Yaddo: This renowned artists’ retreat in Saratoga Springs spans 400 acres and boasts wonderful gardens. It is open from mid-June through mid-September, Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is a wonderful way to enjoy a tranquil hour – or three!

Congress Park: This park is the centerpiece of Saratoga Springs, home to lovely ponds, fountains, walking trails, sculpture, a carousel and the historic Canfield Casino. Grab your date for a romantic stroll, go solo or take the gang. It’s a great way to slow down and step back in time,

How To Pick A Place to Eat in Foodie Heaven Saratoga?

I’ll be honest: From Viennese to Italian to Spanish food, there’s just too much to choose from among Saratoga Springs restaurant, bar and market options. But I want to share some of my go-to’s.

Boca Bar Bistro: Located at 384 Broadway, I have to call this one of my favorites because it is RIGHT NEXT DOOR TO THE SCOTT VARLEY TEAM OFFICE at 382 Broadway. Great Spanish food, tapas, outdoor seating, sangria and specialty cocktails.

Mouzon House: You may not expect a New Orlean’s style seafood, Cajun, French and Creole restaurant in Saratoga, but this place is pretty special – and delicious!

Solevo Kitchen: This is one of Saratoga’s “newer” restaurants. It’s been here about five years and it has just been an incredible addition with some of the best northern Italian food in the city. Better call because reservations are hard to come by!

I also love Morrisey’s at The Adelphi for socializing or entertaining clients. It’s a pretty classic Saratoga place! For drinks or fun times, there’s a tiny, new champagne bar called Bocage, or Hamlet and Ghost which gets rave reviews. Max London’s is a place locals and visitors love equally for bistro-style dining and wood-fired pizza. I could go on … there is just so much to choose from here!

Relax – and Party – All Summer Long!

Saratoga is beloved because it has all things for all people! I am talking about lots of activities to get you relaxed. And lots of ways to let loose! Here are my faves.

Roosevelt Baths: Saratoga’s claim to fame, or one of them, are the incredible mineral springs that flow here. Hydrotherapy is alive and well at the Roosevelt Baths & Spa. It’s been a soothing tradition since 1935. So make a reservation through the Gideon Putnam or at 1-800-452-7275. Experience this amazing treatment.

Ballet, Orchestra and LiveNation Concerts at SPAC: We are incredibly blessed here in Saratoga to have such a world-class venue. The summer season is jam packed with concerts several times a week from June through September. Visit www.spac.org and pick from a crazy array of artists: Steely Dan, Chris Stapleton, The Philadelphia Orchestra, the New York City Ballet and more. Lawn seats are pretty cheap or … go VIP and check out the inviting Cap Com lounge.

 

Saratoga Lake, Lake George and Waterfront Fun

I’ll be honest, when I am not selling real estate – which is hardly NEVER – I like to take my boat out on Lake George. It’s a real luxury because it’s an incredible way to relax even for just a few hours. Here are ways visitors can get on the water.

Kayak Shak: This shop on Fish Creek that feeds into Saratoga Lake is a gem! It’s located about 5 miles east of Saratoga at 251 Route 67. It offers kayaks, paddle boards and classes – all great ways to get out onto the water.

Saratoga Lake access at Brown’s Beach Resort: To be honest, there’s not a lot of public access to Saratoga Lake, but this restaurant and marina offers a wonderful sandy beach at the southern end of the lake. Take a morning or afternoon and head down.

Lake George: It’s a ton of fun to ride one of the big steamboats or the Minne Ha Ha. It’s a sensational ride on one of the world’s most beautiful lakes. You can call and make a reservation, show up and relax on board with a beverage or sunset cruises. For more adventurous boaters, there are several great marinas north of Lake George Village in Bolton Landing. Private boat rentals aren’t cheap, but it’s really worth it. Lake George rules!

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