In just a few weeks, my boyfriend, Adam, is turning the big 3-0! I wanted to make this milestone birthday one he will remember, so I decided to gift him with an experience. I did some sneaky planning and booked us a little country getaway about two hours out of NYC in Tivoli, NY. I found a cozy, beautiful little home on Airbnb, bought our train tickets, and researched the area for fun places to eat. Then I counted down the days… for months! It was so hard to keep it a secret from Adam for so long, but I did it! Last week the moment I had been waiting for finally arrived. We packed our overnight bags and headed off on his birthday adventure.
Check out the photos from our Airbnb below. To book it for yourself, just search for Modern-Boho Cottage. I’ve also included some restaurant recommendations at the bottom of this post! The home was perfectly bohemian and I obsessed over every room. Every detail was so well thought out and visually pleasing. We loved playing Scrabble by the fire at night while sipping drinks and napping in the hammock during the afternoons. I even took a bath (which I rarely do) and the natural light from the bathroom's skylights made it feel extra special. The space made us both feel so relaxed and inspired, and we had an amazing and memorable time! Happy Birthday, Adam!! <3
WHERE TO EAT:
The village of Tivoli is extremely small and quiet. You can walk through it in under ten minutes. But, I'm guessing because of its proximity to Bard College, the main street is home to some delicious food. Check out where we ate below:
The Corner at Hotel Tivoli – Our first night in town, I treated Adam to a special birthday dinner at the mediterranean restaurant inside the Hotel Tivoli. We were a little apprehensive to go in at first – the menu and location seemed a bit fancier than what we are used to and we were wearing jeans – but it turned out to be a memorable and delicious meal! The restaurant was small, intimate and beautiful, and the staff were extremely friendly and helpful. It was also nice that, although the menu was sophisticated and the location was beautiful, the people inside were diverse, down-to-earth and casually dressed. We didn’t feel at all out of place! Adam started with a round of oysters. They were presented beautifully and so tasty he ate them all in about 60 seconds! They also gave us a delicious, fresh loaf of bread, which we dipped in olive oil and sea salt. For the main course, I had chicken tagine – it was full of flavor and the chicken was so tender it fell right off the bone. Adam had one of their specials that evening – I can’t remember what it was called, but it was a spicy curry chicken. He wolfed it all down! Their drink selection was great, with wine, specialty cocktails, and beer (it would also be a great place to come just to sit at the bar). I had two glasses of Finger Lakes Dry Riesling, which were amazing, and Adam had a few local beers. To finish our meal, we shared an ice cream sundae topped with pecans and hot fudge. It was the perfect size and was soooo creamy and good. Everything about our experience here at The Corner was perfect, and I’ve been finding myself daydreaming about this meal almost every day since. It was the perfect, special location to ring in Adam’s 30th year!
Murray’s – Murray’s is a café located in the bottom floor of a beautiful old church in Tivoli. We visited on our second day for breakfast and coffee. The space was quiet and peaceful – full of people writing and reading, and some artsy Bard students visiting with friends. We both ordered the biscuit with eggs and sausage, and it was sooo fresh and good. We also ordered lattes and they were beautifully presented and tasted great. We were bummed that this place was closed on our last morning in Tivoli, because we both wanted to go back a second time! If you need a simple, easy breakfast spot, this is it.
Sante Fe – For our last dinner in Tivoli we stopped at this Tex-Mex restaurant. It’s really cute on the inside, with a giant papier-mâché dragon hanging from the ceiling and a cute bar area. They also have great outdoor seating options! The waiter gave us free chips and salsa to start with, which were delicious, and, on the advice of a cab driver, I ordered a margarita, which was so good I had to have a second. Our food hit the spot! It wasn’t the best Mexican food I’ve ever had but it was still definitely tasty. We both left the restaurant feeling very full (and slightly tipsy).
My name is Abby Formella and I'm a 26 year-old working girl living in the lovely borough of Brooklyn, New York.