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Originally from New Zealand, I now live in the beautiful Catskill Mountains with my 9 year old daughter. I am an artist who also creates living environments.
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Ian is a great host. He went above and beyond the entire weekend, including bringing by fresh fruit and milk. He also provided great information about things to do in the area that we couldn't have found elsewhere. Also, the location is phenomenal with its proximity to the stream and many of the surrounding sights. Tip: Kaaterskill Falls...go there.
I think Ian's listing on Airbnb could benefit from a little 'truth in advertising,' and note some things that might have affected our decision to stay there. First of all, it should be noted at the outset that the 'retreat' is in fact a basement apartment under his family's home. It seems a bit disingenuous NOT to mention that. Despite Ian's best efforts, we had A LOT of problems with noise (i.e. loud footsteps and sometimes a murmuring t.v.), and therefore did not find our experience at all restful. In fact, we ended up coming back two nights early because we were so exhausted from being woken up throughout the night and especially in the early mornings (5:30am - 7:30am). The property is beautiful and well-located, but the lack of privacy definitely undermined the feeling of it being a retreat. We also felt that the apartment could have been a bit cleaner and could definitely benefit from having a dehumidifier or two (anything we left on the floor would get wet!). That might also help the smell of mildew and mold. Ian is a gracious host, so nothing personal here--it just wasn't a good fit for us, since we were really hoping to have a more isolated and quiet retreat from the city. For these reasons, I wish the listing had noted more explicitly that it was part of his family home and that'd we be interacting with people pretty much every time we came and went.
Ian was a great host and was gracious enough to share with us some local spots that we would have never stumbled upon ourselves. Chichester is very closely located to Phoenica which has an amazing pancakes breakfast place and other shops. It is located close to many hikes and outdoor activities.
The property is lovely. You can hear the stream when you open the windows, and it's great to take a dip in and explore the area. We made use of the grill and enjoyed dinner outside a few nights which was quite relaxing. Overall, a great experience and would recommend to anyone looking for a relaxing vacation in the Catskills!
We had a great time at Ian's place. He let us check-in a bit early which was much appreciated, and the property is lovely--you can hear the stream from inside the apartment! There was a good amount of space for us, a stocked pantry, and we enjoyed using the grill. Totally serene, surrounded by nature, and a great location to explore the area. Would definitely stay again!
It was a great stay! Good area and clean!
Our quick winter get away to the Streamside Catskill Mountain Retreat was superb. The area was blanketed in white. Serene and peaceful with the babbling brook just out the door and the flowing stream just beyond. Ian had left fresh Maple in the fridge and fresh fruit for a delightful breakfast. The space is carved with love ever last crevice a well thought out masterpiece. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Streamside and the surrounding area with all the skiing/hiking opportunities and refreshing little Mountain towns. I really could notget enough of the beauty of the space and the surrounding area. Perhaps I am just a nature deprived city dweller who sincerely appreciated the architectural and design elements incorporated at Streamside. STAY HERE!
Really inspired, unique and peaceful space. Ian and his family were really helpful with printed out suggestions of places to explore in the area. They also had the kitchen stocked with food and fresh produce and even milk! We really enjoyed our stay and highly recommend.
Great location and fun, quirky place to stay. Loved watching the humingbirds feed just outside the window.
We really enjoyed our 3-day stay at Streamside, so much that we extended our visit. The location is excellent, in a valley a short drive to Phoenicia and within drive range of numerous hiking trails. With directions, we just came in at our own pace, without any check in, as if it was our own home. Streamside is an artistically designed studio apartment, incorporating some of the original rocks with a full kitchen, a separate bedroom, and a living room with a window wall that looks out on the lawn. The creek could always be heard in the background. Ian is a gracious and outgoing host, who even before we arrived provided detailed directions to several trails, all of which we enjoyed, a restaurant list for the nearby village of Phoenicia, and links to musical events. The apartment is underneath the home of Ian and his family, yet we had complete privacy and separate access; we did meet him and his wife when we asked to stay another day, and as we were leaving. It was a perfect contrast to our earlier experiences with chain motels and more expensive bed and breakfasts. At a reasonable price for the accommodation and the great location, we would stay there again as our base in the Catskills! Rob&Nancy
Ian's house is wonderful and unique. We had our own private apartment within the house with bedroom, kitchen, living room, closet and bathroom. Also grill, backyard, gazebo and the stream. We had more than enough privacy. I loved the fact house entrance is slightly removed from the road and our windows had a view towards forest.
Me and my boyfriend are from NYC and have no car. So our experience was sort of challenging, but nevertheless fun. We took a bus to Phoenicia and walked for about 45min to Ian's house. It's not a bad walk except in the sun, traffic is sort of sparse. Be aware that there is pretty much no food to buy in Phoenicia. We rented bikes -40 per day, and biked about 6 miles from Ian's house to farm stands and brought food in the bike baskets. We also realized some nice people will stop and pick you up if hitchiking. For hiking, there is one real 2 mile trail which is starting in Phoenicia and another one which starts about 1 mile towards Woodstock. Finally, you can take a bus to Woodstock and back.