The Highland Lodge
The Highland Lodge
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The Highland Lodge exteriorThe Highland LodgeDeep Winter 2001

Fall at the Highland Lodge beach
Location and history

The Highland Lodge is located at the east end of Fourth Lake with 220' of shoreline.  The house sits about 200 feet from the water with many old trees to provide privacy and protection from the wind. Built around 1895 by Dwight B. Sperry, it was purchased by Angeline Bailey, a 65 year old widow with an interesting history of her own.  Dwight Sperry used the money from this sale to finance the building of the Eagle Bay Hotel in 1896.  Sperry was a contemporary of W.W. Durant who built many of the Great Camps in the Adirondacks. Durant began building the Great Camp Sagamore at Raquette Lake in 1896.

With no roads or trains to Eagle Bay or Inlet, Angeline traveled from Utica by train to Thendara, by buck board to Old Forge, and then took the  ferry through the Fulton Chain from First Lake to the far eastern end of Fourth Lake.  The home site was next to the Hess Camp, built around 1896 by Fred Hess, founder of Inlet. It later became the Wood Hotel when it was purchased by Philo Wood. He eventually purchased the Highland Lodge in 1920.

The Wood Hotel was completely restored from July 2003 to June 2004. It reopened as The Woods Inn with the Laughing Loon Tavern on the lower level and the dining room overlooking the lake. It has 22 beautifully restored rooms, all with full baths.

Come rest on the porch

Come Rest on the Porch

The front porch was the original "front" of the house since the only access was by boat. It faces the lake and the prevailing breeze for a comfortable place to rest in a rocking chair.

The Adirondack chairs and the rockers provide a nice shady place for conversation or quiet reading of a favorite book.

Restored bedroom

Restoration 1995 to 1998

The house was restored by Craig and Sally Woods (no relation to Philo Wood) from November of 1995 to July of 1998.

During the restoration, the goal was to retain as much of the antique style of the house as possible, while unobtrusively including all of the features that make a vacation comfortable.

Fireplace with wainscot panelling

Wainscot interior

The entire interior of the house is finished in antique wainscoting, a style of the turn of the century, with more formal cherry wainscoting in the Parlor. The patterns on the walls were carried onto the ceilings in the Parlor and Dining Room with borders and recessed areas converging on the ceiling fixtures in the middle of each room.

Twin beds in upstairs bedroom

Four Bedrooms upstairs

There are four bedrooms upstairs. The one closest to the shore has twin beds.  The others each have a double bed.  All bedrooms have a dresser, chair, period pictures, stenciled borders on the floor, and an overhead fan for cooling. There is also a full tiled bath which has an antique claw foot bath tub with shower.

The Master Bedroom

Master Bedroom

The Master Bedroom is on the first floor. It has a cathedral ceiling with a fan for cooling.  It was originally a crudely finished  room off of the kitchen, probably for Angeline Bailey's maid, who traveled with her in the summer to maintain the household.  When it was restored, it was finished with the same wainscoting and finish as the rest of the house.  It has a small closet and a separate entrance into the main bathroom. There's a french door which opens onto the rear porch.

The Parlor


The Parlor is finished in cherry wainscot paneling and opens onto the wrap-around porch facing the lake.  The french doors replace the original single outside door to provide a better view down to the shore.  It has a cabinet which conceals the TV and VCR.  The lights are controlled by dimmers to set the mood for each use.

The Dining Room

Dining Room

The large Dining Room has a fireplace and a bay extension to give it a separate view of the lake shore.  The table seats 10 and the built-in china cabinet holds full china service settings that are more formal than the normal kitchen china.  The lower section of the cabinet holds various board games and puzzles which provide great entertainment for evenings or rainy days.

The Sitting Room

Sitting Room

The Sitting Room has another fireplace and an antique square grand piano.  It's a special cozy space that feels separate from the main rooms of the lodge. The book case has many volumes for quiet reading in front of the fire.

The Kitchen


The kitchen has been completely modernized while preserving the Victorian style.  The original pass-through window from the dining room was preserved.  This allowed the maid to clear the table without having to open the door into the kitchen.  The renovation was done with tiled walls, wainscot paneling, "tin" ceiling, and an inlaid wood floor.

It is equipped with a gas stove/oven, microwave, refrigerator, dishwasher, two coffee makers, a coffee grinder, blender, toaster, hand mixer, waffle iron, and a full complement of pots, pans, utensils, glassware, and dishes.

The Sun Room

Sun Room

The old porch off the kitchen has been enclosed as a Sun Room.  The view makes an ideal spot for breakfast on the enameled top table.  It catches the sun from the south, and the windows provide a nice breeze on a warm day.

Bifold doors open into a small laundry area with the washer, dryer, and built-in ironing board.

Sunset at the beach

Lake Front

The westward view is ideal for watching the sun set over the mountains.  There is over 200 feet of lake frontage with two beach areas. The beach to the left and around a point from the main beach  has a lovely view and great privacy.  The dock is located at the main beach immediately in front of the lodge.  There's a fire pit and plenty of chairs for evening fires.