Published on: December 7, 2020

Gondola dining at Cottage Cafe

LAKE PLACID – When Whiteface Mountain in Upstate New York replaced its gondola cabins this fall with a brand-new fleet, the Olympic Mountain announced that the originals would be available for sale. That’s all the Mirror Lake Inn had to hear as it recently purchased two such units and placed them at its hip Cottage Café.

The lakeside pub offers indoor and outdoor dining in the warmer seasons, but with these heated cabins now in play, diners will enjoy a very unique experience in a socially distanced manner on the deck of the establishment. The concept has opened to rave reviews – the cabins are perfect for families and parties of up to eight guests who can remove their jackets in 72-degree indoor comfort. Complete cleaning and sanitizing processes follow each use of the Whiteface/Cottage Café gondola cars.


How popular have they been? Here are a few comments from our Facebook page:

  • “What a terrific idea! AWESOME.”
  • “My husband and I experienced this yesterday! What a great experience it was.”
  • “Such a great idea! And a great restaurant!”
  • “Patio seating winter style”

Although Cottage Cafe does not take reservations, these cabins are available for rent. If interested, please call 518-302-3045 and make arrangements.

On the opposite side of The Cottage, a new heated tent offers guests comfortable outdoor dining with full views of Mirror Lake and the Adirondack High Peaks.

Visitors and diners should know that the Mirror Lake Inn, since last spring, has spent $500,000 on health and safety protocols in this COVID environment. We now employ hospital grade equipment such as ultraviolet C light emitting cleaners and electrostatic sprayers to clean and sanitize rooms and our amenities such as the restaurants and the spa.

We’ve even brought in large ceiling fans with UVC light above the fans to kill any virus. You’ll find these in common areas such as the library and living room. We take the safety of our guests and staff very seriously. If you are interested in our complete rundown of COVID protocols, please log on to our homepage for the informative Safety Is The New Luxury message and check out the video presentation.

In the meantime, we encourage everyone to wear masks, practice social distancing, avoid gatherings, wash hands frequently, use hand sanitizer and practice common sense. It’ll take everyone’s efforts to turn back this pandemic.