The Woodhouse Lodge dates to 1962 when the Catskills were the Borscht Belt (aka the Jewish Alps). Unlike so many neighboring resorts that went belly up decades ago, this modest joint—a welcoming A-frame with wings—carried on. But it had seen far better days when New York interior designer Megan Pflug and her artist husband, J. Penry, were tipped off by a realtor that the owner might be interested in selling. “We were looking for something like the lodge, but we weren’t thinking we’d end up with a sixties motor lodge,” says Pflug, who studied fine art at RISD before realizing she was “as interested in the spaces where art would live as much as the actual pieces of art.” She currently runs her own design firm and notes that she grew up in Missouri in a family of women with “pioneer resourcefulness,” by way of explaining that she and Penry took on the remodel of the establishment largely on their own.
It was, for the most part, a cosmetic job, but required an enormous amount of recasting and painting—plus the fabrication of “a zillion Shaker peg rails” (Pflug did that job; look for them in nearly every room). The makeover is newly complete and the establishment is back in business. Join us for a look around.
“I design pretty intuitively and one thing I knew going into this project was that I did not want it to be overly midcentury,” Pflug tells us. “The impulse with modern architecture is sometimes to decorate very literally with pieces from the era, but to me, that approach often feels cartoonish and ultimately doesn’t let the space evolve. I tried to honor the heritage while mixing it up. I used Shaker rails in most of the rooms—the Shakers were the original modernists, after all, and they lived in this part of the country. I also collected a lot of vintage and antique pieces from the area, so they’re regional and I think help the mix feel grounded.”
Formerly black, the cabinets are now painted a Behr semigloss called Night Club and have new knobs from Emtek. Snacks are on offer here, and plans are under way to expand the food and drink offerings. Photograph by Frank Frances.
Admiring the antique landscapes? We, too, are fans of art in the kitchen—see The New Gallery: 12 Favorite Kitchens with Paintings on Display.
For more details and reservations, go to the Woodhouse Lodge.
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