Visit our Sister Resorts:
Sunrise over the golf course at Steele Hill

New Hampshire Resort Blog

New Hampshire Resort Blog


Tag Archive for 'New Hampshire Lakes Region'

Gold Medal for Best Hotel

New Hampshire’s Lakes Region is one of New England’s primary vacation destinations. Providing both lakes and mountains, there is never a shortage of activities throughout the entire year including hiking, skiing, boating or enjoying local eats. For the past two years, The Laconia Daily Sun has hosted a contest titled “Best of the Lakes Region”, where local businesses are nominated for specific categories to receive votes to decide the best of the best. Once the voting period is complete, there is a Best of the Lakes Region publication which is considered the most comprehensive guide to New Hampshire’s Lakes Region.

The results are in for the second annual Best of the Lakes Region Awards presented by Bank of New Hampshire, and we are honored to announce that Steele Hill Resort has received the gold medal for Best Hotel! This achievement would not be possible without the dedication of our hardworking employees and loyalty of our incredible guests and timeshare owners. As an organization, we take this honor seriously and promise to continue to provide the vacation experience you deserve for your next Lakes Region getaway.

A Message From The Manager


Although it was not our “normal” summer, we had a great season here at Steele Hill Resort. As we continue to do our part to combat the coronavirus pandemic, we are looking forward to the beautiful autumn season to come. We will continue to focus on the health and safety of our owners, guests and team members by following social distancing guidelines, concentrating on deep cleans and routinely sanitizing our high touch point surfaces, recommending face coverings to all of our guests and mandating them for our employees.

As we head into the fall, we are looking forward to many of the offerings the new season will bring. Local apple orchards will soon be opening providing a variety of apples, pumpkins, fresh apple cider and doughnuts. Even though a few of our local events have been cancelled this year, we continue to have a lot to offer at the resort. The foliage will begin to change (and peak) and we are looking forward to witnessing the beautiful phenomenon from our newly renovated tower providing 360-degree views of the entire Lakes Region. The cooler days will be great to take advantage of our extensive hiking trail network allowing us to observe all of the brilliant colors of the leaves up close. Once your day starts to wind down, relax in our over-sized Roman Spa Hot Tub or alternatively, warm up by one of our many fire pits with a delicious s’more in hand.

We hope to see you and your family at Steele Hill Resort this upcoming fall season,
Rob Robillard

Steele Hill Hiking Trails

Vacationing at Steele Hill Resorts is the perfect escape for a breath of fresh air. Now, more than ever, is the time to focus on your health and well-being. Why not do so in the pristine natural location of the Lakes Region? Set amongst 500 acres of land, Steele Hill is the ideal destination for guests looking to take a break and get away from the current stresses in life.

Encompassing the edge of the resort is a network of over five miles of gentle hiking trails which loop together giving you the option to choose one trail or to trek all three of our major trails. The trail’s terrain ranges from easy to moderate with fragments of some trails including slight hills with higher elevation. Our trail system is ideal for peaceful nature walks or trail running workouts and can be traversed by all skill levels of hikers ranging from beginners to advanced. The paths, as well as the surrounding areas, are maintained very well, cleared from brush and debris and are marked perfectly throughout.

Be sure to bring your camera as the trails feature many species of native trees and wildflowers as well as the chance to spot some New Hampshire wildlife on the way! Along the Yellow Trail, there is a large picturesque field with a beautiful open view of the Kearsarge Mountain Range in the distance. As you continue onto the Red Trail, you will find an adventurous connecting trail (named This Is My Song) to the Sanbornton Town Forest. The Red Trail also travels alongside a marshy area and leads to the Joseph Leavitt Burial Ground, dating back to the early 1800s. The Blue Trail, our longest trail measuring at 1.5 miles in distance, wraps around the lower half of the campus bringing you around the Resort and South buildings and the last five holes of our 9-hole executive golf course. Along the way you will find the ideal resting or snacking spots, either at one of our installed picnic table locations or along the perfectly situated rocks in close proximity to the path. Each trail within our diverse system is unique in its own way providing different scenery and terrain, making our network one of the best kept secrets in the Lakes Region.

If you are looking for some peace and tranquility, especially during these hectic times, hit the trails. There are numerous benefits from hiking including lowering stress levels, connecting with nature, getting a good cardio exercise in and either spending some much-needed time as a family, or taking advantage of some alone time. If you do plan on using our trail system, here are a few tips for an enjoyable excursion:

  • Check the weather forecast before heading out
  • Bring your trail map with you
  • Be sure to apply insect repellent and sun screen before you begin your adventure
  • Try to wear bright colors as well as proper footwear
  • Lastly, take time to appreciate the beauty of the nature surrounding you

A Message From The Manager


It’s the last week of February and winter is holding on. Guests are still enjoying winter activities in the Lakes Region and at the resort: skiing, skating, snowshoeing and sledding to name a few. It has been a busy winter season for our maintenance staff! We have made major repairs to the observation tower at Steele Hill West, so be sure to go to the top floor and check out the amazing 360-degree view through our brand-new windows. All the pools were resurfaced during our winter shut down and we have installed a new dehumidification system in the West pool area which makes the area much more comfortable to relax in, even if you are not swimming.

Winter will soon be coming to an end and we will transition to spring time activities such as golf, tennis, basketball, hiking on the trails and we will be stocking the fishing pond with rainbow trout in April. The ice will be melting from the lakes and the avid boaters will be launching their boats to fish and tour the big lakes. Our staff will now get busy completing spring cleanings and annual preventative maintenance in all units on property. The maintenance and grounds crews will start their spring cleanup, repairing any plow damage, planting new grass and flowers, preparing the golf course and getting the outdoor pool areas ready to open.

Spring is a transition time for the resort but it quickly changes from a white and brown landscape to a lush green with budding trees, flowers blooming and green grass growing on the surrounding fields. We hope you will join us to experience what the resort and the Lakes region has to offer during the spring months!

Sincerely,
Rob Robillard

Onsite Resort Cemetery

Construction at Steele Hill Resorts began in the year 1938 using felled trees from the Great New England Hurricane, considered to be the most destructive storm to strike this region in the 20th century. The hurricane was formed from a tropical cyclone developed in the Atlantic Ocean on September 10, 1938. Although construction began in the mid-1930s, the history of our property started long before the building of the resort began.

Steele Hill is set amongst 500 acres of unspoiled fields and hardwood forests. Within that land, we have three major hiking trails which include ponds, fields, possible animal tracks or sightings, and during this time of year, beautiful foliage providing various brilliant fall colors along the way. If you begin the Red Trail by the West outdoor tennis courts, you will find yourself curving through the woods on a slightly downhill hiking adventure that is a little over a mile long. Once you arrive towards the end of the Red Trail, there will be a wide-open field on the right with a stonewall tucked along the edge of the tree line still in sight. When you walk towards the wall you will notice there is a cemetery tucked in the back of the field behind the rock walls.

The Joseph Leavitt Burial Ground is the largest of two cemeteries located onsite at Steele Hill Resorts, which dates back to the early 1800s. The oldest headstone in this particular graveyard is over two centuries old with the date 1818 engraved upon it belonging to Abner Kimball. The majority of the headstones at the cemetery are legible with the youngest to be buried at the location being only three months old. A local man named John Douglas Crawford was sent to Germany in 1946 to be a liaison medical officer for the Office of Military Government. John unfortunately had to leave his pregnant wife, Caroline, home in the United States. After giving birth to their daughter Margo, Caroline had set out to visit John so he could meet his daughter for the first time. Unfortunately, he never got the opportunity to meet his daughter or the chance to see his wife again as their plane crashed into a ridge line on a windy night departing from Newfoundland. Both Caroline and Margo share a headstone onsite. The most recent headstone was added in 2014 and belongs to Lola Rose Cutillo. Her husband, Ralph Cutillo, former president of Steele Hill Resorts, has his tombstone sitting adjacent to Lola’s.

While some guests enjoy the peaceful solitude of the graveyard, others find the experience a little eerie especially during the twilight hours of these late fall nights. For those who appreciate a good scare and are looking for more, consider joining us at our second annual Haunted Hike taking place on Saturday, October 26th this year! Open to the public, the hike is $10 for adults and $5 for children with all proceeds donated to the Dartmouth Hitchcock Norris Cancer Center in memory of our dear friend and coworker, Jan McLaughlin. Included in the donation price for admission, visitors can enjoy a festive hayride up to Steele Hill’s haunted Yellow Trail. Brave the ghouls and goblins along the 0.8 mile trail of terror and finish off the evening with a variety of family-friendly activities including face painting, a warm fire pit, games, crafts, a make your own caramel apple station, and seasonal refreshments.

Apple Picking in the NH Lakes Region

Labor Day has come and gone and the leaves are beginning to change in the Lakes Region of New Hampshire which means the apple orchards are starting to open up for their 2019 autumn season. Many orchards in the area consist of multiple different types of trees which produce several varieties of apples including favorites like: Macintosh, Red Delicious, Cortland, Ginger Gold, and many more. Whether you are planning on a family outing or heading out for a date day to the orchard with your significant other, there are multiple “pick your own” traditional New England orchards in close proximity to Steele Hill Resorts. Take a look at the list below and let us know your favorite!

Surowiec Farm:
Surowiec Farm is located just fifteen minutes away at 53 Perley Hill Road right in Steele Hill’s hometown of Sanbornton. The farm is perched atop a hill providing an expansive backdrop of scenery overlooking the beautiful mountain foliage to the north and west. The farm opened on Labor Day weekend and their apple season extends through mid-October. Visitors can opt to grab a bag and head to the orchard to pick their choice of apples or visit the quaint farm stand which includes pre-picked apples along with many seasonal vegetables such as squash, broccoli, potatoes, carrots, onions and more! Don’t forget to visit their pumpkin patch which consists of pumpkins of all sizes great for carving, baking or decorating!

Stone Mountain Farm
Situated in our neighboring town of Belmont, just a twenty-minute drive away, Stone Mountain Farm is a family-owned high-density apple orchard with the primary focus on growing the fruit, not the tree. The trees use the support of posts and wires on a trellis which makes the apples much easier to reach for farm visitors. The orchard consists of 40 varieties of apples ranging from early season apples ready by August 25th, many mid-season apples ready between September 10th through September 20th and about a dozen late season varieties that are available through the beginning of November. There is also a farm stand located at the orchard which is open daily for visitors looking for some autumn decorations like corn stocks, pumpkins and gourds.

Smith Orchard
Smith Orchard, also located in Belmont New Hampshire, is the definition of a traditional New England apple orchard, with some apple trees dating back to the year 1929! The orchard’s trees produce apples that provide a taste that is both genuine and true to the variety with favorites like Cortland, Macintosh and Red Delicious apples. The orchard has over 2,000 semi-dwarf trees producing a wide variety of apples. In previous years the farm has hosted fun events such as Brunch in the Orchard and weekly alpaca features from Just a Dream Alpaca Farm. Keep an eye out for upcoming events at the orchard here.

Whether you are looking for a fun day-trip or plan to bake some pies during your next vacation, you may find a journey to any (or all) of the orchards listed above to be beneficial. It’s time to begin trekking into the orchards and start picking! Once you’ve picked as many apples as you can carry, unwind back at the resort in our over-sized Roman Spa hot tub while the children get the remainder of their energy out by swimming in our heated indoor pool equipped with an exciting water slide.

New Hampshire Maple Syrup in Sanbornton, NH


If you’ve ever driven up to Steele Hill Resorts, you may have noticed the farm on your right just before you enter the property. If you missed it, keep your eyes peeled during your next drive as you will often see cows grazing in the fields. You may not know this, but Steele Hill Resorts also owns this farm. It is important to us to support the agriculture industry and do our part to preserve and recognize how we can contribute to the economy by supporting local farmers and allowing them to use our farm to graze their cows and produce New Hampshire Maple Syrup.

Before Steele Hill purchased the farm from the Fitzpatrick Family years ago, it was a dairy farm that was owned by the original Innkeepers of Steele Hill Resorts. Since then we have let local farmers use the land to graze their cows over the years.

We are currently working with Tim Duval, a local farmer who runs Bickford Family Farm out of Belmont, NH. Tim has been grazing his heard of Belted Galloway Cows at Steele Hill Farm for the past several years. He also actively manages all of the hay harvesting and fertilization programs on the agricultural land owned by the resort.

Tim has extended a large piping network through a sizeable maple strand on the backside of Steele Hill (the side that faces Lake Winnisquam). The harvested sap is then transported back to his new sap house in Belmont and boiled off into a delicious, organic, locally crafted maple syrup product that is sold both at his sap house and in the Steele Hill convenience store. On occasion, the syrup is also incorporated into specialty dishes at the Hilltop Restaurant, you can also find it available during breakfast and Brunch.

Guests looking to bring home a unique product to remember their NH getaway are sure to love the Bickford’s Family Farm Maple Syrup or the Cow Fat Soap sold out of the market at the amenities building! What better way to enjoy your New Hampshire vacation than taking a little piece of the resort home with you?

Check out our New England Maple Savings Package that includes 20% off accommodations for two or more nights, enjoy a $10 gift certificate towards our onsite dining, The Hilltop Restaurant for each of night your stay, and receive a bottle of our pure New Hampshire Maple Syrup. This package is currently running through June 7, so take advantage of this offer today!