Living in NYC, it may come as a shock to you that I have a serious thing for small towns. The barista at the (one) local coffee shop that knows your name and order by heart, gallery openings and book signings that the entire community comes out to support, and antique shops that still have antique prices…yep. These are definitely some of my favorite things, and what’s better yet is they can all be found 2 hours away from New York in the town of Hawley, Pennsylvania.
Where To Stay
A bit of trivia for you New Yorkers: you know Bohlin Cywinski Jackson? (Crickets, crickets.) Okay, you know the guy who designed the awesome Apple store on 5th Avenue that looks like a glass cube? (Ding, ding, ding!!!) Well, that same guy designed Ledges Hotel, which is apparently THE place to stay in Hawley. I could ramble on about the hospitality (phenomenal), the on-site restaurant (delicious), the natural beauty and serenity that overpowers you as you look out onto the picturesque waterfalls cascading into the river (unparalleled)…OR I could let the photos speak for themselves.
Seriously guys, even if you go to Hawley and don’t even leave the hotel for 2 days straight, you’re in for a treat. A serene one, at that. The Settlers Inn is the Ledges more traditional sister hotel just a few minutes drive away, which is also gorgeous. We went there for breakfast and ate about a million of their homemade fresh butter and mocha scones. They taste even better than they look, if that’s possible!
What To Do
Shopping + Entertainment
Right next to the Ledges is an old mill that’s been converted into a lovely entertainment and shopping complex, the Hawley Silk Mill. They have a gym and yoga studio (which, as a guest of the hotel, you can take full advantage of), the delicious Mill Market featuring locally sourced products, food, and craft beer, tons of local artwork presented in their gallery and co-opped artist boutiques, a spa, and even an intimate performance space which hosts music, theater, poetry, lectures, and workshops year round. Check out their schedule of events here.
Relax + Recharge
If relaxing with a book is more your speed, the Cocoon Coffee House is where you want to be. (And yes, there’s free Wi-fi!) Located right outside the Silk Mill, this quaint shop serves as coffee shop, lending library, and gallery space to local Hawley artists. It’s perfect amounts of both cozy and cheerful, the kind of place we New Yorkers wish we had on every corner!
The art is for sale, and is really, really good. We got swept away by a nature painting that is now hanging in our NYC bedroom!
Any antique/thrift lovers? Thrilled to say that Hawley is home to one of the best antique shops I’ve ever had the pleasure to walk into, the Hawley Antique Exchange. (With the best prices, too!) I could have spent days in this place…just look at all these goodies!
The Glass Wine. Bar. Kitchen, located on site at the Ledges Hotel, is the place to be, any night of the week. We went on a Friday to enjoy their live entertainment, which was only surpassed by the delicious small plates and spectacular service with a smile that you just can’t find in NYC. I was also very impressed with their under $20 a bottle wine list, and of course, that stellar view of the frozen falls!
If you have access to a car, it’s truly a lovely and very scenic drive. There is also Short Line bus service, powered by Coach USA, that can get you door to door for a roundtrip ticket cost of $58.
No matter the season, no matter the reason, small town charm awaits in Hawley. A mere 24 hours could be just the recharge you need…it certainly worked for me.
By: Jessica Tiare Bowen