Lake George–loving brides have a new reason to say “I do” on the shores of our Queen of American Lakes: Weddings are now being booked at the historic Fort William Henry’s stunning Carriage House, which will open following renovations this spring. The $3 million project is part of a $9 million overhaul of the beautiful 18-acre resort that’s the oldest in Lake George.
Fort William Henry, on the lake’s southern basin, already does weddings in its White Lion space—which opens as a year-round restaurant in May—and a conference center that can hold a 200-person wedding. The Carriage House not only can hold a wedding for up to 400 guests, but it can also do lake-view ceremonies year-round thanks to two sets of enormous windows that were put into once-opaque walls on the north and east sides. The post-pandemic project came about after executives learned that larger weddings were back in style after Covid lockdowns.
“When we realized we wanted to have a larger place for weddings we knew that this was the place to do it,” says Fort William Henry Chairwoman and CEO Kathryn Flacke Muncil. “It’s really taking this gorgeous old building that’s four stories and open to the rafters, and opening it up to look at the lake. I nearly cried when they cut the walls to put in the windows and I could see that view.”
The building has a long history. First it was, as the name suggests, where carriages and horses were sheltered for guests of the original hotel that opened in 1865 (the carriage house opened about 10 years later). Over the years, it was used for staff housing, a dinner theater and even a Jamaican dance bar. And now it is helping Fort William Henry become one of the largest meeting spaces in the Capital Region.
Weddings have already been booked for the Carriage House for this year and next—beginning in May, which puts extra-pressure on BBL Construction Services to finish the renovations on time in April. Muncil says they’ve had bookings “sight unseen,” thanks to the soaring ceilings, post-and-beam construction and wraparound patio and deck overlooking Lake George. Part of the renovation includes bringing in wooden doors that were in style when the building was used as an actual carriage house.
“It’s a barn concept without any barn problems,” Muncil says. “You can see the 1865 shiplap ceiling, so you can dress it up or dress it down. We give brides the shell and they bring in whatever they want.”
Nearby on the property, the hotel has 195 rooms and plenty of parking for a big wedding. The Carriage House has its own liquor license (one of the oldest in the state of New York!), and earlier renovations ensured that Fort William Henry has enough kitchen space to put on a large wedding while its restaurant stays open, too. “The Carriage House incorporates the lake and the mountains, which is what we are,” Muncil says. “It’s absolutely gorgeous.”