Last week Darren and I decided we wanted a little weekend getaway to recharge our batteries. I spent hours scouring the internet for possible locations but most of the ideas we came up with didn’t work for one reason or another. Then our good friends Shari & Steve recommended Turning Stone Resort & Casino, located 30 miles east of Syracuse. We were very fortunate to find a room at The Lodge, the most exclusive accommodations at the resort, only days before we wanted to arrive. With the downturn in the economy, the gaming industry has been hit hard and thus, we were able to secure a reservation only days before our arrival.
The Turning Stone in my opinion however, is more resort than casino. Golf galore, two amazing spas, a pool, fitness center and over half a dozen restaurants, you really don’t feel that the casino is at the heart of the complex, especially when you stay at The Lodge.
Darren hit the links twice and I spent two days pampering myself with a spa experience. He was impressed with the two 18-hole courses and thought they were challenging. So, while Darren was off perfecting his swing, I had a massage, facial and mani/pedi. I thought the spa was very nicely done, had all the amenities one would look for including a hot tub, sauna and mineral pool. The technicians were very professional and the services were quite good. I would definitely recommend Skana to anyone going to Turning Stone.
The restaurants were better than expected. Most of the restaurants are in the main tower/casino area but there is one restaurant, Wildflowers, in the lodge. We ate breakfast there both mornings and each time there was a wide selection of breakfast treats to choose from and everything was extremely fresh. The waiters were ultra attentive and everyone aimed to please. For dinner we dined at Forest Grill, the steakhouse, which was not the caliber of a New York steakhouse but it was still more than adequate and the prices were relatively moderate too. We also dined at Pino Bianco, the Italian restaurant that had a wide variety to choose from. The hotel is BYOB so if you plan on going, be sure to bring whatever alcohol you wish to consume. The casino and hotel only serves water, coffee, tea, juice and soda. If you do forget to bring a little vino, don’t fret, there is a liquor store just outside the premises where you can get most anything you are looking for.
The grounds at the Lodge were beautiful. The blue stone patio in the rear of the lodge overlooks the gardens which are adorned with fresh flowers. There are many chairs and a few cushy lounge chairs to relax on and enjoy the scenery. Inside the lodge are several fireplaces, comfy chaise lounges and couches that you sink into. It makes for a very homey and relaxing atmosphere. They even serve free coffee and cookies for you to munch on while you curl up with a good book or just admire the view.
All in all, it was a wonderful getaway and we really enjoyed the experience. Even the 4 hour drive didn’t seem so bad. I guess it was because of the amazing company that I had :)