Just steps from your guestroom, suite or villa are The Shops at Water’s Edge. Convenient, practical and especially suited to brides and grooms and other event planners hosting events on property. Michele Bridal, a relaxed, yet chic bridal shop offers high-end gowns for brides, moms and bridesmaids – Tulips at Water’s Edge is a floral design studio with years of experience in designing Water’s Edge weddings – Marsal Studios, a husband and wife photography team – and there’s so much more. . . all right here.
Take a stroll through Connecticut’s very own Wine Country. Your first stop is just 10 minutes away. Nestled in the quaint shoreline town of Clinton, Chamard Vineyards produces award-winning estate wines offered in a pristine tasting room that overlooks the entire vineyard. As you make your way up the shore, the local wineries are plentiful, each with its own personal charm – Saltwater Farm Vineyard and Stonington Vineyards, both in Stonington; Jonathan Edwards Winery in North Stonington, Maugle Sierra Vineyards in Ledyard, Priam Vineyards in Colchester. . . and many more.
Take some time to spoil yourself at the local outlets! Just down the street is outdoor shopping at its finest. Whether you’re looking for an outfit to wear during your visit or casually browsing for home goods – these shops have you covered. All of your favorite high-end brands, with deeply discounted prices – from J. Crew and Loft to Williams Sonoma – and everything in between.
Clinton Crossing, a charming outdoor shopping area just a 10-minute drive away, offers many high-end stores including Calvin Klein, Dooney & Bourke, Kenneth Cole, Saks Fifth Avenue and Tommy Hilfiger. Open daily at 10am, treat yourself to a little something special while away from home.
Hop aboard the Essex Steam Train – day or night – to experience ‘sightseeing with all the bells and whistles’! With a number of excursions to choose from – your ride through history will not disappoint. Dinner Train Rides and Cruises, Themed Days with Thomas and Friends, Sunsets along the Connecticut River and holidays with St. Nick on the Polar Express. Imagine travel as it existed during the late 19th century.
The Thimble Island chain is a cluster of twenty-five small, wooded islands, adorned with beautiful summer cottages built during the Victorian era. Just off the coast of Branford, a boat tour of the islands is a great way to spend an afternoon or an entire day. With a number of tour companies including Captain Bob’s Thimble Islands Cruise and Sea Mist Thimble Islands Cruise, you’ll enjoy cruising the ‘Waterworld’…in the village, find a slice of quintessential New England living – a small deli to grab a snack, art galleries, a museum, and many antique shops.
Stand face-to-face with New England’s only Beluga whales, marvel at the African Penguins as they splash, waddle and flap their wings, dare to touch the slippery sting rays as they swim around their tank. . . Mystic Aquarium offers a unique sea-exploring experience that is one-of-a-kind, interactive and unforgettable. Experience science come alive.
A world-renowned maritime museum, a place to stroll along the Mystic River where you’ll find a wealth of knowledge and a glimpse into the cultures of our seafaring ancestors, a family or group attraction with hands-on activities that offers the opportunity to climb aboard tall ships, discover a re-created 19th century village and stargaze under the Planetarium. Just a short drive away, Mystic Seaport will inspire your mind.
Mohegan Sun, located just 30 minutes up I-395, is made up of three of the world’s most amazing casinos, with more than 5,000 slot machines, over 300 table games and a state-of-the-art Race Book. The arena and Wolf Den welcome top name artists! Home to five-star dining and high-end shopping. . . there’s excitement for everyone.
One of the largest casinos in the world, just 45 minutes away. Foxwoods Resort Casino has it all, including the only $1 Blackjack table in Connecticut! With over 250 tables and 22 types of games – Foxwoods offers gaming, high-end shopping, golf, dining and live entertainment.
On the outside, it’s a medieval fortress, but once you step inside the glorious 24-room estate of Playwright William Hooker Gillette, you’ll be blown away with the detail. Located just up the road in East Haddam, the grounds span 184-acres and are open to the public year round. The castle is open from Memorial Day to Columbus Day, from 10am to 5pm.
Travel just twenty minutes to East Haddam and arrive at one of the area’s most acclaimed golf courses. Set upon 530 acres of rolling hills, dense forest, open pastures, and stone walls, Fox Hopyard gives you the feeling of playing through the mountains of Vermont, the lowlands of Kiawah and the links of Scotland all in one round. After your round, enjoy a drink, delicious meal and breathtaking views at On the Rocks Restaurant.
Travel just 25 minutes north up the Connecticut River to East Haddam, and arrive at the historic Goodspeed Opera House – where musicals have come to life for over 50 years. Rich in culture and deep in history, listen to the stories on the births of Man of La Mancha and Annie during an Opera House Tour, or stay for a performance and enjoy the artistic innovation.