Skaneateles — with its pristine lake, locally made wine and 19th-century restored buildings — comes startlingly close to replicating a quaint European hideaway. The small Finger Lakes village is home to Mirbeau Inn and Spa, a 12-acre estate modeled after impressionist painter Claude Monet's famous gardens in Giverny, France. Mingle on its outdoor aqua terrace, which features a 15-person Jacuzzi and bar, or indulge in one of its 50-minute spa treatments that incorporate grape elements. Its crushed cabernet scrub, for example, is a blend of grape seed, honey and brown sugar, and stimulates microcirculation, while the honey and wine wrap moisturizes dry skin. A five-minute drive from the inn is Anyela's Vineyards, a winery overlooking Skaneateles Lake that hosts daily wine tastings ($5 for five samples). Try Overlay, Anyela's popular red wine — a smooth blend with berry characteristics and spicy bite. Until Oct. 5, Mid-Lakes Navigation offers daily boat tours of Skaneateles Lake, renowned as one of the cleanest lakes in the country. Choose to sail past Skaneateles' stately 19th-century homes, or embark on a three-hour dinner cruise at dusk.
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August 22, 2014