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Hotel Highlights

  • Water-view private decks for every room
  • Minutes from the beach
  • Buzzing restaurant and bar scene

Overview

Overlooking Montauk's Fort Pond, the Surf Lodge hotel blends chill surf retreat with Sixties-inspired beach-party. You can rock away the days in a hammock or catch a ride with your board on the hotel's vintage truck to the nearby beaches to catch some serious waves. At night and on weekends, both the driftwood bar and the massive deck overlooking the water are packed with partiers at all hours.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking The Surf Lodge with us:

Free stand-up paddle board and bike hire

Special offers

Exclusive rates, packages and special offers at The Surf Lodge

Smith summer: 15% off midweek stays

Facilities

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The Surf Lodge - Hamptons - USA

Need To Know

Rooms

19, including one suite.

Check–out

11am. Earliest check-in, 3pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $295.00, excluding tax at 11.63 per cent.

More details

Rates include Continental breakfast.

Also

After hitting the waves, stretch out during a Vinyasa flow yoga class, held every weekend morning on the back decks. Catch a free ride on the Pinzgauer military truck shuttle to Ditch Plains Beach on weekends from 10am to 5pm. Catch some waves vicariously in the Den where surf movies are flickering across the big screen 24 hours a day.

Hotel closed

Late September to mid-May.

At the hotel

Surf Bazaar boutique, library of books, DVDs and board games, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: iPod dock, minibar, Frette linens and Caudalie bath products. Bikes, canoes and paddle boards are available to rent.

Our favourite rooms

We love Room 2, the two-bedroom suite with blue and white gingham couches that double as day-beds, a kitchenette and driftwood details. An enormous plaster whale tail tops the dresser in the bright, white bedroom. Room 10 is airy, sweet and ideal for a duo. The bed faces Fort Pond, and the hanging chair in the room makes a perfect reading nook. Each room has a private deck and a hammock big enough for two. If you’re looking for quieter nights, pick a lower-numbered room, as they’re furthest from the restaurant and bar.

Poolside

No pool, but you’re surrounded by the fresh-water Fort Pond where you can swim, stand-up paddle board and canoe, and the lodge is a five-minute car ride from the miles of sandy beaches both private and popular.

Packing tips

Forget bejewelled beach frocks: wet suits, breezy cover-ups and flip-flops will get the most wear–along with sweaters and hoodies for night-time chilling, fireside. The hotel is a scene at night, so light sleepers should bring ear plugs.

Also

In-room spa treatments such as massages, manicures or facials can be organised – just ask the concierge. Pets 40lbs and under are welcome for a $100 fee. No smoking throughout.

Children

Welcome, although we wouldn't bring the little ones on weekends, when a boozy party atmosphere pervades. There are high-chairs and a kids’ menu at the restaurant.

Food & Drink

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The Surf Lodge - Hamptons - USA

Hotel Restaurant

Seafoodie Australian chef Chris Rendell makes fresh beach fare at Byron at the Surf Lodge. Lobster rolls, diver scallops and fresh-from-the-surf raw bar options are must-trys. Whitewashed and rough-hewn wood tables and wall-spanning windows make for a breezy, relaxed setting. For al fresco dining, take your pick of picnic and round-top tables sit out back on the distressed wood deck. A simple Continental breakfast is served in the restaurant daily just for hotel guests.

Hotel Bar

Cocktails are served from Surf Lodge’s weathered yellow driftwood bar. Settle into one of the turquoise chairs with a Montauk Storm (rum, ginger beer and lime) and soak up the rock and reggae soundtrack. The second bar is on the big deck overlooking the pond, with low wicker tables, striped chairs and vintage lanterns. A roster of DJs rock the turntables at weekends, which are virtually one extended party.

Last orders

Dinner is served until 10pm on weekdays, 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays; brunch is 11am until 2:30pm on weekends. The bar is open daily, and the party goes on as late as 2am on Fridays and Saturdays.

Room service

No traditional room service, but the hotel can provide menus for local restaurants with late-night delivery. Byron also offers take-away.

Smith Insider

Dress code

Flip-flops, Technicolor bikinis, board shorts and a floaty sundress or two.

Top table

Under the shade of upturned woven baskets, the corner table on the back deck is worth fighting for.

Local Guide

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The Surf Lodge - Hamptons - USA
Eat, drink, see, do: local favourites and more…

Worth getting out of bed for

The hotel is one non-stop party on summer weekends, but there's plenty to keep you occupied the rest of the time, too. Learn to hang 10 from resident pro Dustin Franks in a private surf session (US$120; just sign-up with the concierge). Rent stand-up paddle boards for US$20 an hour or canoes for US$30 an hour, and take to Fort Pond. Need some retail therapy? Shop Christiane Celle’s island-centric boutique, Calypso, at 99 the Plaza (+1 631 668 4999; www.calypsostbarth.com). Explore the historic Montauk Lighthouse on Turtle Hill in Montauk Point State Park (+1 631 668 2544; www.montauklighthouse.com). Head for, Hither Hills State Park off Old Montauk Highway for hiking and biking trails (+1 631 668 2554).

Local restaurants

Montauk's The Restaurant at Ruschmeyer’s is helmed by the crew behind the NYC’s famed Fat Radish. Fabulous fresh seafood and locally sourced produce are complemented by craft beer and creative cocktails (+1 631 668 2877). Navy Beach (+1 631 668 6868; www.navybeach.com) is a nautically themed, family-friendly beachside dining den with its own private stretch of shore at 16 Navy Road. This local favourite opens at noon for lunch and at 5.30pm for dinner during high season. Coffee-rubbed NY strip steak lashed with bourbon and served with creamy garlic mash, as well as salmon tartare and pan-seared scallops are the big crowd-pleasers. On South Emery Street, Harvest on Fort Pond’s herb and vegetable gardens lend leafy views and fresh flavours to the inspired Italian cuisine crafted by chef Jake Williams (+1 631 668 5574; harvest2000.com). Duryea’s Lobster Deck (+1 631 668 2410; duryealobsters.com) on Tuthill Road serves tasty crustaceans and has a market hawking fresh catches to cook up at home. Be sure to BYOB. Known for their blackened fish ‘montacos’ topped with mango salsa, and a rocking music line-up, 668 the Gigshack at 782 Main Street is worth a visit (+1 631 668 2727; www.668thegigshack.com).

Local bars

Made famous by the Rolling Stones track, Memory Motel off Montauk Highway is the divey, after-hours hotspot of Montauk scenesters (+1 631 668 2702). A salty sea-dog joint on the marina, Liars' Saloon on West Lake Drive is packed with lively locals, seasonal staffers and thirsty tourists (+1 631 668 9597). Snag one of the picnic tables out back at Montauket (+1 631 668 5992) at 88 Firestone Road with panoramic views of the Fort Pond Bay, one of the best places to catch the sunset.

Local cafés

Locals get their morning coffee and house-made pastries (including baseball-sized scones) from Montauk Bake Shoppe on the Plaza. Chicken curry empanadas and quiche Lorraine are on the lunch menu (+1 631 668 2439; www.montaukbakeshoppe.com). Naturally Good Foods and Café on South Etna Avenue serves organic eats and freshly squeezed juice blends including carrot, kale, parsley and celery. Our favourite sandwich is the ‘Veggie Walkabout:’ a wrap packed with avocado, tomato, carrots, cabbage and sprouts with sesame vinaigrette dressing (+1 631 668-9030; www.naturallygoodfoodsandcafe.com). Joni’s (+1 631 668 3663) at 9 South Edison Drive is a go-to for smoothies, breakfast burritos, sandwiches and salads.

+ Enlarge
Hip Montauk

The Surf Lodge

183 Edgemere Street, Montauk, New York NY 11954, United States

Planes

Montauk Airport (+1 631 668 2484) is three miles from the centre of town, and East Hampton Airport (+1 631 537 1130) is 19 miles away in Wainscott; both allow private aircraft. The closest commercial airport is Long Island’s MacArthur (+1 631 467 3210; www.macarthurairport.com), about an hour and a half away, which carries domestic services to Chicago and the east coast. New York’s trio of airports are the best bet for international. Call Lindy’s Taxi (+1 631 668 8888) for a lift to the lodge, it’ll cost about US$18 from Montauk Airport; US$75 from East Hampton; and US$250 from MacArthur.

Trains

The Long Island Railroad (LIRR) takes three hours from NYC. The local station is located at the intersection of Edgemere Street and Fort Pond Road (+1 718 217 5477; mta.info/lirr), a minute from the hotel by car.

Automobiles

The Hampton Jitney will get you to Montauk in about three hours, depending on traffic. For a cushier trip, reserve a seat on the Hampton Ambassador, offering fewer passengers, more legroom and free WiFi (+1 631 283 4676; www.hamptonambassador.com). It’s handy but not necessary to have a car here unless you plan on exploring Shelter Island, Amagansett or the Hamptons. During high season, from June to September, you will face traffic on Interstate 495 East and Montauk Highway (Route 27A). If you’re staying put, the best mode of transportation is a bike. Rent one at the Surf Lodge for US$10 an hour or US$50 for the day. If they’ve all been snapped up at the hotel, try Montauk Bike Shop (+1 631 668 8975; www.montaukbikeshop.com). Get a car at Enterprise at 32 Star Island Road (+1 631 283 0055; www.enterprise.com), about five minutes from the hotel. You can park for free at the Surf Lodge.

Reviews

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The Surf Lodge - Hamptons - USA

Anonymous review

by Carolyn Hsu , Style obsessive

Manhattanites move fast. That’s why every year around, say, New Year’s Day one of our main orders of business is figuring out which friends are getting a house Out East for the months between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Summering in the Hamptons may be the oldest cliché in the book, but we take our seasonal weekend vacations seriously. A certified New Yorker for six years, I&rs…
Read more

The Surf Lodge

Anonymous review by Carolyn Hsu, Style obsessive

Manhattanites move fast. That’s why every year around, say, New Year’s Day one of our main orders of business is figuring out which friends are getting a house Out East for the months between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Summering in the Hamptons may be the oldest cliché in the book, but we take our seasonal weekend vacations seriously.

A certified New Yorker for six years, I’m no stranger to the mass migration East. Mr Smith, new to the city, isn’t convinced. I know that as soon as the asphalt begins heating up in the concrete jungle, he too, will crave being closer to the water… Sure enough, as temperatures start to rocket, he hints at reasons to flee NYC. While friends’ houses are great for drinking parties, they can be a little awkward for romantic getaways. Hello, Montauk’s Surf Lodge…

The streets and shores of Montauk convey a sense of small-town calm and community, mixed with a swaggery seaside cool that its neighbours lack. Montauk, immortalised by Andy Warhol as ‘the little at the end of Long Island,’ has long had a reputation of casual cool, a welcome respite from its polished neighbours. People spend that extra hour on the Jitney bus to get there, but it’s worth it for the laidback vibe, great food, and slower pace of life. (Can you really relax at a Hamptons charity gala wearing your evening finest?)

Fronting the shore of Fort Pond, the Surf Lodge is one extended beach party. Outdoor daybeds, a huge fire pit and a stage on the deck set the scene for grown-up good times. We’ve heard that after dark, the joint jumps with house-rocking DJs, reggae bands and rock ’n’ roll. It’s a four-minute cab ride from Montauk centre to the Surf Lodge. As we hop out onto the gravel parking lot, I know for sure we ain’t in the Hamptons proper. One: the entrance of the hotel is lined with bikes and canoes for rent. Two: the receptionist is a super friendly, bubbly Irish gal dressed in a romper, drawing on a chalkboard.

Woven baskets festoon the patio and driftwood abounds, ratcheting up the beachy appeal. Repurposed boat lanterns illuminate the turquoise-floored den, where you can float in a wicker chair suspended by a thick braid of rope, or grab a book and collapse into coral and cream cushions. Flippers dangle from the rafters, sprays of white coral dot the shelves and a surfboard adorns the ceiling. Massive screens inside and out feature 24-hour summertime sea-centric favourites that tempt you to grab a board and re-enact iconic Sixties surfer flick, Endless Summer. But even if you can’t stand up on a board yet, you’ll be stoked about this laid-back lair.

The guestrooms are off to the side of the carpark, concealed behind a row of leafy trees. Slate grey doors with large black numbers line the façade, lending a whiff of military chic. Step inside and it’s a different ball game. Each boudoir, complete with a private porch, glass-encased shower, and bamboo hanging chair (which Mr Smith fondly calls the ‘birdcage’), opens onto the pond; a wall of windows gives a succinct space a bright, airy feel.

Facing the water is its Frette-clad centerpiece, a queen-size bed with an orgy of fluffy pillows. Beside a mirror (seemingly, ‘strategically angled’), the bed even has a complimentary bar of Sex Wax within grasp. Don’t say that I didn’t warn you sizzling romance is nigh-on mandatory here. Sighing with pleasure, we flop onto the mattress and Mr Smith whispers ‘Let’s put this Sex Wax to use’. Next thing he’s leaping out of bed, grabbing our stuff to go.

Eager to hit the waves, Mr Smith yanks me onto the Surf Lodge Jeep for a ride to Ditch Plains, the town’s famous lighthouse-studded beach beloved by surfers. We learn on the way that Montauk boasts some of the best breaks on the East Coast. Mr Smith, surfaholic, is soon hurtling into the water sans wetsuit. Me? I go for some low-gear sunning on the beach.

Hungry after a day of tackling waves (him) and catching rays (me), we are pumped to hear the Surf Lodge houses one of the most talked-about eateries in Montauk, from chef Sam Talbot. First thing to grab us as we hit the deck there? A Bob Dylan tribute artist is playing one of my favorite tunes: ‘Visions of Johanna’. ‘Isn’t it just like the night to play tricks when you’re trying to be so quiet…’ Second thrill? The drinks menu. Well, you can take the girl out of Manhattan… I like my cocktails and the Surf Lodge’s selection of summer libations, from coconut concoctions to seasonal fruit sparklers, does not disappoint. As for couldn’t-be-fresher seafood – that is a given.

After dinner, Mr Smith and I head for a Strawberry Fields (Moet Ice, St Germaine, apricot, orange, strawberries) and a Lake Side Punch (rum, peach, pineapple, coconut water, agave syrup) on the private beach. The waterside bonfire is just starting and we snuggle up on one of the roomy beach beds to watch the stars come out. At night, the Surf Lodge is definitely a ‘beautiful people’ scene – but this is après-surf without the attitude.

Don’t think for a moment we neglect dessert. Sharing a peanut butter gelato and blueberry butter cookie ice-cream on our private balcony, it is hard to believe that hours earlier we were hot in the city. The moon is glistening over the lake and we are swinging in a hammock luxuriating in a quiet, cool breeze. We needed a break; so we set our antenna to find a place where sunsets are long, time slows to a lovers pace, and the only lights flickering are fireflies. I told you we Manhattanites move fast. 

The Guestbook

Reviews of The Surf Lodge from Smith members

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