The sweltering heat in the City this week has us desperate to escape town for the beach for a few days. Our favorite summer escape, and now wildly groovy hipster mecca, is Montauk. We’ve been going there for years and forever it was our little secret, suddenly it’s exploded to become the ultimate destination in the Hamptons. The beaches there are beautiful with great surf spots and a totally laid back beach vibe.
WHERE TO STAY
The Best New Place: The best new place to stay this season is Ruschmyers. Built in the 50s and renovated a year ago, their old school cabins have been given a gorgeous modern makeover. Set around a central field with a rope swing, a teepee, ping-pong table and outside rugs, the entire vibe is a chic grown up summer camp for adults.
The restaurant has the same name as the hotel, is run by the folks behind the Fat Radish on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. The food is yummy, seasonal and very fresh. Lovely seafood dishes and salads make this one of the best places to eat in Montauk. The bar has a swinging scene too, but we love popping in for their delicious breakfasts and sitting out back in the yard, it’s quiet and relaxing and breakfast here is a well kept secret.
The Best Old School Place: The East Deck Motel has been lodging hipsters since the 1950s. The simple hotel rooms don’t seem like they’ve been renovated since the day they were built, but this somehow adds to the charm. The rooms are wood-paneled and all open on to an enormous deck that runs around the entire place. Alice, one of the owners (it’s been in the same family since the beginning) gives yoga lessons in their huge yard most mornings. All the locals ride their bikes here to catch this wonderful class. The magic of this place is the location, it can’t be beat. It’s the only hotel right on the beach at Ditch Plains, which means that when all the revelers leave the beach at the end of the day, the beach belongs to you alone, quite a wonderful feeling.
The best beach in town is where all the surfers head, Ditch Plains. A long stretch of rugged coast, this little community is the epicentre of all that’s cool in Montauk. Grab a towel and walk to the far end of the beach where you’ll run in to people like Terry Richardson, Bruce Webber and the painter Julian Schnabel, all who have houses in this little beach community.
DAY TIME EATING
The cool crowd leave the beach at lunch time and head to Joni’s for take out. Fresh squeezed juices, healthy salads and sandwiches, it’s also a great spot to pick up breakfast. Be warned, the lines on the weekends are crazy. Those in the know call in their order half an hour before they want it, then go by to pick it up.
If you can’t face leaving the lovely beach, then walk up to the car park and grab some grub from the Ditch Witch. An old school caravan that’s been serving the local surfers for years.
We’re coffee snobs and the only good espresso drink in town can be found at Coffee Tauk. They also serve great snacks to grab and take back to the beach.
The New Hip Spot – The Crows Nest is the cool restaurant and bar of the season. Owned by Sean McPherson, one of the owners of The Bowery Hotel in Manhattan, he brings the happening scene to Montauk. If you’re looking to be right in the middle of “the scene” then this is the place for you. People drive through hours of traffic in the Hamptons to eat here.
The Oldie But Goodie – Duryeas Lobster Deck on the bay side of Montauk, this view can not be beaten. The best sunset you’ll see on the East Coast coupled with freshly caught seafood makes this the winning casual spot for dinner. They don’t serve wine or beer so bring your own.
Ruschmyers Restaurant at Ruschmyers Hotel
THE BEST ICE CREAM
After dinner head down to Gosman’s Dock and pull up at the Ben and Jerry’s store. Grab a cone and walk over to the water and watch the fishing boats come in as you eat your ice cream.
Swing by Surf Bazaar in the Surf Lodge Hotel. They sell a wonderfully curated selection of sexy summer dresses, bikinis, sunglasses, jewelry, you name it. It’s a fantastic tiny one stop shop to get your Montauk look on. We love their own Surf Bazaar label which features lighter than air cover ups which look so right on to walk around town or cover up back on Ditch Plains.Ruschmyers. 161 Second House Road. Montauk. NY. 11945 The East Deck Motel. 40 Deforest Road. Montauk. NY. 11945. Tel: 631 668 2334 Jonis.9 Edison Drive. Montauk. NY. 11954. Tel: 631 668 3663 Coffee Tauk. 83 S. Elmwood Ave. Montauk. NY. 11954. Tel: 631 668 7007 The Crows Nest. 4 Old West Lake Road. Montauk. NY. 11954. Tel: 631 668 2077 Duryeas Lobsters Deck. 65 Tuthill Road. Montauk. NY. 11954. Tel: 631 668 2410 Ben & Jerrys. West Lake Drive at the Harbour. Montauk. NY. 11954. Tel: 631 668 9425 The Surf Bazaar At The Surf Lodge. 183 S. Edgemere Road. Montauk. NY. 11954. Tel: 631 668 8131