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Highlands Castle

Highlands Castle a unique vacation rental in the sense that guests can book a stay within a stone castle that is decorated with Renaissance-themed and middle age furniture and trinkets, yet also due to the fact that guests can rent out an entire castle if they would like. The three castles are called The Castle Cottage, The Castle Gatehouse, and Highlands Castle, which is both the main castle and the largest of the three. The two suites that are available for guests to rent out individually are located exclusively in the Highlands Castle, named The Royal Bedroom and King's Suite.

The property is found close to geographically prominent locations such as Lake George and The Adirondack Mountains, which consist of places like Siamese Ponds Wilderness, Hoffman Notch, Dix Mountain Wilderness, Pharaoh Lake Wilderness Area, and more mountains and parks.


Highlands Castle has three castles that are all uniquely decorated and may offer a different experience. Each castle stands separate from the other, so guests are likely not to have to worry about unwanted neighbors or interruptions.

The Castle Cottage is described as being a "mini-castle" and includes two bedrooms with two queen beds and a one-queen sofa sleeper. Amenities include a television, free Wi-Fi, an eat-in kitchen, a private bathroom that is equipped with a shower, private parking, and an outdoor terrace with a view of Lake George.

The Castle Gatehouse is significantly larger than The Castle Cottage and has access to the Highlands Castle terrace, which also has a view of Lake George. This castle has two floors and, dispersed between the two floors are two king-sized beds, one queen-sized bed, one twin-bed, two private bathrooms with showers that have been tiled, a full kitchen, a television, a dining area, a living room, and free Wi-Fi.

Finally, Highlands Castle, the physical castle, includes an eat-in kitchen, library, family/TV room, free Wi-Fi, a half bathroom on the first floor, and The Great Hall. There are also terraces that visitors can use and get a view of Lake George and the mountains in the area. In the King's Suite, guests will have things like a king-sized bed, a queen-sized bed, a queen-sized sofa sleeper, a bathroom with a shower, a table with a few chairs, a place to park, and access to a covered terrace. The Royal Suite contains amenities such as a queen-sized bed, a private bathroom with both a bathtub and a showerhead, private parking, and access to the upper outdoor terrace, which provides a view of the Adirondack Mountains, as well as Lake George.

The property is located a short distance away from the town, as well as the lake, with the castles built on their own mountain top. This makes the structures much closer to nature and is able to help guests feel a greater sense of privacy. Highlands Castle is above the majority of the town and gives visitors a good view of the city, mountains, and Lake George.

The town of Bolton is smaller than most, but is still known for being a tourist destination. Between Lake George and The Adirondack Mountains, there are an abundant amount of outdoor recreational activities that visitors can experience The lake offers water sports like boating, fishing, swimming, kayaking, canoeing, jet-skiing, and more. There are also a variety of hiking trails that guests can take to see the mountains and other areas of rural New York. Visitors can go horseback riding, biking, play golf, basketball, and tennis, and in the winter months, there are options to go skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing, among other things. One company called Lake George Steamboat is a company that can provide boats for scenic tours of Lake George.


Highlands Castle is found in a more secluded area with very few buildings nearby. This seclusion allows visitors the chance to find peace and quiet. That being said, the time it takes to get to the heart of the town is only a few minutes' drive. There is a broader expanse of trees that separate Highlands Castle from the rest of Bolton, as well as the fact that it is on a hill above the rest of the buildings in the town. The owner says that when the trees begin to change colors in the fall, it is usually a busy time for the establishment. That being said, he says that the most popular time for guests to come to Highlands Castle is during the summer months when its warm and sunny, which allows for visitors to more fully take advantage of Lake George and The Adirondack Mountains.

The goal of Highlands Castle is to create a space where anyone who stays at one of the castles can relax from their everyday lives and create new memories with family or friends. The owner, whose name is John, had the castles built to give visitors something new, unique and "give them something that they'll talk about for a long time." He says that he wants people to have good memories of this place and hopes that they will share it with their children so that they can make memories here as well.

The property has received a number of reviews regarding the buildings and the quality of the visitors' stay. One guest who stayed at Highlands Castle wrote a review that reads, "This Castle is one of a kind and provides breathtaking views of Lake George. My fiancé and I stayed in the king suite and had an unforgettable time."

Highlands Castle is also able to help guests celebrate special occasions and events. John says that they often host honeymooners and couples who are celebrating their anniversary reserve a location with Highlands Castle. He also says that "there have been a number of guests who have proposed here and, so far, everyone has said yes." This all started when John's son was married on the property, which John wants to be able to share with others so that they may have an enjoyable place to have an important event in the same way that he was able to provide for his son.

John has owned the Highlands Castle for a total of 11 years, and one thing he says that he really enjoys about his job is that he's able to get to know people from all around the world. He enjoys swapping stories with travelers and getting to know things about them and places they've been. He hopes that Highlands Castle will be a story that they take with them and share with others when their stay on the property is finished.

Since the castles are rented out privately by reservations, tours are unavailable to be given to those that want just to see the place. John emphasizes that people are only allowed on the property unless they have reservations for one of the suites or castles.


The story of Highlands Castle begins in 1978, when the owner, John, made a promise to his three-year-old son. That day, he promised his son, "Someday I'll build a house where we both will live. A place where you can bring your friends and create special memories. Someday Jason, I will build you a castle." Five years later, he found the mountain top where the property stands now. It would be about 38 years after he made that promise that the castles were finished, with the stonework alone taking up a majority of that time. Unfortunately, before he was able to open them, there was an accident that resulted in a shattered right ankle that put him in a wheelchair and crutches for almost a year. Once he gained full use of his leg sometime in 2010, he decided to open the Highlands Castle.

He mentions that he had no intention of opening the Highlands Castle doors to the public until his son volunteered to make a website about the property. People began wanting to visit, so he made space for their stay at the castles and turned it into a vacation rental. For the last 11 years, John has continued allowing people to come and stay in the castles and see what the city of Bolton has to offer.

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19 Skyline Dr
Bolton, New York 12814
United States


Bed and Breakfast


John & Yvonne Lavender

Owned Since
4.8 (58 Reviews)
4.8/5 58 Reviews
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