When owners Martin Torres and Joe Di Thomas first stayed at the Cobblestone Motel on Christmas Eve in 1996, it was the kind of no-frills motor lodge one would find off the small highways that wind through the Catskill Mountains—a welcoming place, but one outfitted with polyester bed covers, flimsy plastic showers and bric-a-brac. They never imagined that two decades and several lives later, they would own it—and it would easily be the most stylish place in town.
Six years ago, a group of Brooklyn designers bought the property and transformed it into The Graham & Co. The four-season boutique hotel is brimming with nostalgia for anyone who spent their middle-school years going to summer camp in the Catskills . . . but also might spend their weekends thumbing through design magazines or shopping at local farmers markets with their kids. Now what the new owners have playfully dubbed “The Graham 2.0” expands on that vision, but with an even sharper aesthetic.
Working with New York-based interior designer Joni Rentz of FØRM on their newest two-bedroom bungalow, debuting this summer, they took cues from the existing design, but refined it with Scandiboho touches—and nods to Donald Judd, an artist who left his imprint on Marfa, Texas, not far from where Torres grew up. The space features a full kitchen and a large dining table in the front room—ideal for getting into Hudson Valley produce—as well as a private backyard with plans for a s’mores-ready firepit.
Inside, you’ll find a beautiful layering of textures, from an oversize bouquet of dried magnolia branches to a Edison bulb-filled wicker lamp shade and a handwoven Mexican blanket casually draped over a leather butterfly chair. The spacious master bedroom has a barnyard-inspired sliding closet door made by local carpenter Joshua Byer with reclaimed wood, and the second bedroom has custom bunk beds with captain-style drawers.
Among these visual threads is a powerful tribute to the surround areas of Phoenicia, in vintage photographs of local fishermen and the sound of the Stoney Clove Creek across the street. The latter was also the inspiration for a new scent they collaborated on with Root and Resin that evokes the Catskills with notes of balsam fir, vetiver and Palo Santo, a wood burned in South America to cleanse your soul.
For those looking for that soul-cleansing mountain escape—and all the great farm-to-table restaurants of the Hudson Valley that come with it—the new bungalow and the other 19 rooms are where you’ll find it. The place celebrates simple design and simpler pleasures, including a nightly firepit and boardgames in the cozy, 24-hour den. And yes, there might even be room to recreate the (Catskills-set) iconic lift scene in Dirty Dancing on the back lawn.