Myer’s down-to-earth warmth has made the place a beloved home away from home for visitors from all over.
Just three and a half miles from Rhinebeck’s epicenter is an oasis of tranquility, a rambling ranch-style home atop a gentle hill that’s been welcoming travelers as a B&B since 1985. “You can’t help but leave the city pressures behind as you drive up the fence-lined driveway to this farm where horses graze,” says a review on Fodor’s.
“I called it WhistleWood because when the wind blows, the fences sing,” says owner Maggie Myer, who grew up in the Tannersville mountain country. “I’ve always been a country girl; the only thing I ever wanted to do was ride horses.” As a young adult, Myer studied art at Ulster County Community College and worked at the Holiday Inn in Kingston before moving across the river to the farm, where renting rooms emerged as a logical way to use her hospitality skills and make some extra income.
“A girlfriend of mine who was in the real estate business said, ‘You should do a bed and breakfast, the way they do in England,’” says Myer. “It wasn’t really here yet. So I started making coffee and baking Bundt cake and muffins to put out. Then people kept asking if I could do eggs and more, so I started doing a country breakfast, nothing fancy.”
Thus was WhistleWood conjured into existence. The Bundt cake and muffins have become a tradition of all-day baked goods, desserts, and fresh fruits mentioned in review after review. And Myer’s down-to-earth warmth has made the place a beloved home away from home for visitors from all over. The Main Lodge offers two queen and two king rooms, and the Carriage House is a vacation rental now that sleeps four guests comfortably and features a full kitchen with all you need to cook your own breakfast. Antiques in cherry and bird’s-eye maple are blended with Myer’s favorites and finds for a cozy, eclectic elegance. ”
There are multiple places to sit and chill, as well as decks and porches where you can savor the sunset over the Catskills.
“I grew up in the northern Catskills and you can see the Adirondack influences from my childhood,” she says, “and I’m a lover of the rich colors you find in Pendleton blankets and Oriental rugs. I also love collecting Northwestern American Indian articles, and cowboy paraphernalia, and what I collect goes up on the walls.
There are multiple places to sit and chill, as well as decks and porches where you can savor the sunset over the Catskills—the view, Myer points out, is “why all the millionaires built those mansions over here on the east bank.” Another of Myer’s hobbies, gardening, has helped shape the lush, mature landscaping over the years.
There are miles of trails to walk, and lots of critters to befriend. A flock of free-range chickens provides your breakfast eggs, and you’re welcome to visit with the horses: WhistleWood is an active horse-boarding operation. Once specializing in foaling out Thoroughbreds, Quarter Horses, and Morgans, WhistleWood now welcomes all breeds—there are natural-gaited Tennessee Walkers, Quarter Horses, a Rocky Mountain Saddle Horse, and a Danish Warm Blood to admire. Myer herself owns a “frisky” 6-year-old mare. Thirty-year-old donkey Tigger and Myers’ two dogs all thrive on being loved on by guests.
“I called it WhistleWood because when the wind blows, the fences sing.” - Owner, Maggie Myer
Myer thrives on offering decades of local knowledge and laid-back welcome to visitors. “Some have been coming back for twenty years and are like family,” she says. “I love it when people come back. I’ve had people from everywhere; there’s a couple from Scotland who come three or four times a year, and many others from Europe as well. “One of my dreams, when I was young, was to travel the world as a flight attendant, or stewardess as they called them in the ‘70s. Never did that, but it really does feel like the world has come to me.”
WhistleWood Farm Bed & Breakfast
52 Pells Rd, Rhinebeck