Originally built as a private home in the 19th century, the luxurious Wheatleigh has since been transformed into an elegant retreat in the Berkshires with just 19 guest rooms. We spent two fabulous days here, and the warm welcome began right at check-in, with glasses of Champagne for us and a selection of juices for our son. Sipped our drinks on the terrace, we enjoyed the views of the lawn and the mountains beyond — a perfect New England setting.
Located in Lenox, Massachusetts, Wheatleigh is close to the famed Tanglewood music venue, as well as other activities in the Berkshires. Families are particularly welcome in summer and fall, when child-friendly activities abound.
Family-Friendly Review and Highlights of Wheatleigh
We had a spacious Deluxe room, while our teenage son was given his own cozy room nearby. It was reminiscent of a cabin on a ship, with several steps downfrom the doorway. While his room was not large (designed for one person), it had all that he needed, including a CD player with an assortment of music, a DVD player and a TV, all of which he could watch while ensconced in his snug double bed. He adored both the space and the privacy teens crave.
Although the hotel has only one connecting suite, an additional bed can be added to the junior suites. It also caters to multigenerational families, with ground-floor accommodations available for those who might have difficulty navigating the stairs leading to the upper story.
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The Library is the more relaxed of Wheatleigh’s two restaurants, and although we did not eat there, we saw families dining comfortably. The Dining Room offers exquisite tasting and four-course menus in a formal setting, more appropriate for Mom and Dad. Whether or not you dine at the hotel, s’mores are available by the fire pit every night.
In addition, Wednesday is barbecue night, with a festive assortment of food served out on the lawn overlooking the Berkshire hills. Breakfast is offered in the glass-enclosed loggia and features a healthy selection of à la carte dishes, with enough variety to satisfy my picky eater as well as his parents.
During our stay, a badminton net was set up on the lawn, where I was soundly beaten by my son. The heated pool is a short stroll away, out of sight. While compact, it’s comfortable to play in. Afterward, my son had eyes for the hammock while we relaxed in lounge chairs nearby. When I inquired about board games, the staff presented a long list and delivered our choices to us by the pool, where we set up to play.
In addition, there is a lake where canoes, kayaks, paddleboards and more are available. It’s a bit of a long walk down the hill on the property, so the staff drives guests on request. Families also can hike on the wide choice of trails at different levels, visit the aerial adventure parks, or partake in an outdoor concert at Tanglewood (movie night is usually a big hit with kids, with the Boston Symphony Orchestra accompanying films such as E.T.). In autumn, “sugaring” the maple trees is a popular pastime, as well as the many fall festivals amid the spectacular changing leaves.
Editor’s Note: Photos by Wheatleigh.