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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Besties 2017: All the People and Places Category Winners

CRL reveals all of the top places in the Capital Region voted on by you!


Bold-Denotes Winner
Italics-Denotes Runner-up

Afternoon Anchor
Kelly Lynch
Kelly Lynch anchors NewsChannel 13 Live at Noon as well as co-hosting the “Chuck and Kelly” show each morning on NewsRadio 810. Kelly grew up in the Capital Region and has played a successful part in local media for a number of years now. Congrats to one of the hardest working media women, juggling a media career on two broadcasting vehicles and a wonderful family to boot.

Evening Anchor
John Gray
Each year John Gray seems to capture the “Bestie” for Broadcasting as Evening Anchor but each and every day he captures the hearts of those who read and watch everything John focuses his multi-talents on. As always, so proud of you, John.

Steve Caporizzo
If it isn’t enough to be a talented on-air personality and weather forecaster, Steve also is this area’s biggest champion for our four-legged family community members. Steve’s Pet Connection is a must-see each week for those of us who care about animals. Compassion, heart and talent—what a combination.

Morning Anchor/Team
Channel 13 – Phil Bayly, Subrina Dhami, Paul Caiano
Multi-year winners for the multi-talented team that wakes so many of us each and every day. The reporting is always spot on but I doubt that is why the Capital Region Living Magazine readers love this trio so very much. I believe it is the affection they have for each other resulting in just plain fun to witness.

Music Radio 
Fly 92.3
Driving down the road each day in warm weather when sound can be heard from different cars, you can be assured many will be roaring Fly 92.3. Music, contests, latest celebrity news and entertaining.

News Radio 
Dr. Alan Chartock, the President/CEO of WAMC, is professor emeritus at the University at Albany and leads this most informative news channel through listener support. Those who contribute annually in fund drives and other appeals appreciate, as do our CRL readers, everything offered in programming each and every day, 24 hours per day.

Radio Personality 
Brian Cody and Chrissy Cavotta
Brian Cody and Chrissy Cavotta have been the “FLY Morning Rush” morning team for many years now. They were both born and raised here in the Capital Region and have a keen sense of what make the Capital area tick. Bravo to these multi-year winners of the CRL “Bestie” poll.

Print Journalist 
John Gray
It is certainly hard to be objective when it comes to John’s many wins in the CRL Magazine readers’ poll as John writes our “Last Page” each month for CRL. Wit and heart shine through everything John writes and we are so happy to hear that our readers love his writing as much as we do.

Rodger Wyland
Since 1986, Rodger has been captivating the Capital Region with his enthusiasm and coverage of sports locally and nationally. Rarely without opinion and never without knowledge, Rodger is another of our dream team of multi-year winners.


Art Gallery
Albany Center Gallery 488 Broadway, Albany
In January, the Gallery celebrated a grand reopening at its new location in the Arcade Building on Broadway. The move to this new bright space creates new opportunities for the Gallery, which, for four decades, has been exhibiting the contemporary work of artists of the Mohawk Hudson region, and, as this “Bestie” choice shows, continues to build an appreciative and knowledgeable audience.
The Hyde Collection
161 Warren Street, Glens Falls
Clark Art Institute
225 South Street, Williamstown, MA

County Fairs
The Altamont Fair Route 156, Altamont
Going to the Altamont Fair is on many CRL readers’ summer plans. The comments of one recent visitor capture the essence of this “Bestie” selection: “For a small-town fair, the Altamont Fair has a lot to offer! Nice selection of clean and bright kiddie rides for our grandchildren (and the attendants were very kind, polite and helpful.). Great food–lots of options! Loved the farm animals and the giraffes! 4H building was a nice calm spot for the kids to relax a bit. We are grateful to have this fair so close-by!”
Saratoga County Fair
162 Prospect Street, Ballston Spa
Schaghticoke Fair
69 Stillwater Bridge Road, Schaghticoke

Children’s museum
miSci (Museum of Innovation and Science)
15 Nott Terrace Heights, Schenectady
miSci is again the “Bestie” for children’s museums. As visitors comment, there’s something interesting for everyone that captivates attention, from the stars and space, to butterflies and bugs and much more in exhibits, interactive events, educational sessions and shows. A recent visitor with children from ages 3 to 11, reported, “They are all into different things and they each found stuff to keep them entertained for hours. I love this place and they want to go back again.” And it’s enjoyable for young at heart, too.
CMOST (Children’s Museum of Science and Technology)
250 Jordon Road, Troy
The Children’s Museum at Saratoga
69 Caroline Street, Saratoga Springs

New York State Museum
222 Madison Avenue, Albany
A repeat “Bestie” in this category, the State Museum has a mission of serving the lifelong educational needs of New Yorkers and visitors through its collections, exhibitions, scholarship, programs, media and publications in science, history, anthropology, and art. There’s always something new in exhibits and activities, while maintaining presentations that have been enjoyed by generations. Established in 1836, it’s the oldest state museum in the country. That’s an activity shared by members of family trees.
miSci (Museum of Innovation and Science)
15 Nott Terrace Heights, Schenectady
Albany Institute of History & Art
125 Washington Avenue, Albany

Concert Hall 
Troy Savings Bank Music Hall
30 Second Street, Troy
CRL readers know what a gem we have in the Troy Music Hall, a repeat“Bestie” in this category. Performers and concert-goers alike appreciate this acoustical wonder as well as the intimate feeling of the hall where artists and audience make a connection. Managers of this 19th century venue have been successful in bringing contemporary upgrades while retaining the historic atmosphere and likewise have broadened the variety of performance offerings that has attracted a wider audience (and fans) of the Music Hall.
108 Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs
The Palace
19 Clinton Avenue, Albany

Fund-raising Event
Whiskers Auction Event
A ‘purrfect” event. That’s how CRL readers described the auction for the animals of the Whiskers Animal Benevolent League. On the theme Feline Navidad, the event included a buffet dinner, silent auction and live auction, all for a great cause.
Trending 4 Fashion
Find us on Facebook
Dancing in the Woods

Live Music Venue
108 Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs
Although we’re just on the verge of springtime, we are eagerly checking on the plans for rock, jazz, classical (and more) artists slated to take the SPAC stage this summer. There is something for everyone and what a super venue, our readers exclaim, to relax, to enjoy, and be part of the performances. Audiences have been going to SPAC for 50 years and look forward to another half century.
Troy Savings Bank Music Hall
30 Second Street, Troy
The Egg
Empire State Plaza, Albany

Movie Theater
Spectrum (a Landmark Theatre)
290 Delaware Avenue, Albany
Going to the Spectrum makes seeing a movie something special. That’s what our readers tell us year after year in awarding the top spot in this category. The theater continues its tradition of showing a variety of best of Hollywood, first-run independent and foreign movies in an Art Deco atmosphere where you also can enjoy its gallery of local art and munch on baked goods and other treats. And don’t forget the special events with conversations from filmmakers.
Scotia Cinema
117 Mohawk Avenue, Scotia
Crandell Theatre – Chatham
48 Main Street, Chatham

Outdoor Summer Venue
108 Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs
In addition to “Bestie” for live venue, SPAC takes first place in outdoor summer venue. Along with enjoying the performances, you can bring a picnic to share with friends, grab a beverage or bite from one of the vendor tents, and stroll the historic grounds, creating many memorable summer evenings.
Park Playhouse
Tied with:
Music Haven – Schenectady
500 Iroquois Path, Schenectady

Seasonal Event
Victorian Stroll – Troy
“Experience the holiday magic” is the Troy Victorian Stroll’s wish for us and our readers say that they do, indeed. This event has become a must-do year after year for so many Capital District residents. Each year they introduce newcomers to this fun way to ring in the season as Troy and its arts and business communities get all decked out.
Saratoga Race Track
267 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs
Tulip Festival – Albany

Albany Symphony
Encore! Encore! It doesn’t surprise us that Albany Symphony has returned to the top spot in symphonies by the applause of CRL readers. We continue to say bravo to the symphony’s programming, from the classics to new works, to musical collaborations in the community and guest artists, to American music festival, to family concerts and education that builds new generations of admirers of this area treasure.
Schenectady Symphony Orchestra
Glens Falls Symphony

Theater Plays/Musicals
Proctors 432 State Street, Schenectady
Proctors received the “Bestie” ovation in this category again this year. That’s no surprise, given the variety and innovation of this theater, offering major musicals fresh from Broadway, musical and theatrical performances of all dimensions and sizes appealing to audiences of all ages and interests. Then there are Proctors’ ties to the community and educational activities. Remember the play “Man for All Seasons”? Well, CRL readers say Proctors is a theater for all.
The Palace
19 Clinton Avenue, Albany
Park Playhouse – Albany


Animal Hospital
The Animal Hospital – Slingerlands
2 Rocking Horse Lane, Slingerlands
CRL readers presented the Animal Hospital in Slingerlands with a “Bestie” for its dedication to providing home-town value and state-of-the-art medicine. Clients praise its “homey atmosphere”; “the relationship the staff members develop with your pets” treating “everyone like family”; and the “top-notch quality of care.”
Guilderland Animal Hospital
4963 Western Turnpike, Altamont
Sand Creek Animal Hospital
130 Wolf Road, Albany

Appliance Store
Marcella’s Appliance Center
560 Broadway, Schenectady
15 Park Avenue, Clifton Park
“Marcella Appliance Center does try harder to please,” is this store’s slogan and we think it is an important part of being selected by our readers as the “Bestie.” Family owned and operated for more than a half century, the business offers a knowledgeable staff ready to help customers and a wide selection in its large showroom. Green’s Appliance
1207 Central Avenue, Albany
Cocca’s Appliance & Home Electronics
158 Railroad Avenue, Colonie

Auto Service 
329 Delaware Avenue, Delmar
Customers’ comments say it all as to why Gochee’s has so much repeat business and why it is a repeat “Best” for auto service: “Top notch service and great friendly staff that go out of their way to help you.” Family-owned and operated since 1929, Gochee’s emphasizes high-quality work and attention to detail.
Gil’s Garage
817 Saratoga Road, Burnt Hills
219 Guideboard Road, Clifton Park
New Scotland Auto
1958 New Scotland Road, Slingerlands
Tied with:
Lia Group
Various locations

Pioneer Bank
Various locations
Our readers like Pioneer’s belief that its customers, its employees and the community should come first. They appreciate that decisionmaking is done by employees who live in the community and that the branches are customized to the needs of the community.
Trustco Bank
Various locations
1st National Bank of Scotia
Various locations

Mazzone Hospitality
Mazzone Hospitality wants to know about your vision. Then they offer their expertise and experience in planning, creating delicious food and beverages and providing service, from concept to packing away the last plate, and helping you create memories, whether for weddings, family, corporate or other events. Mazzone offers unique venues as well as the flexibility for catering elsewhere, to meet your needs.
Old Daley
2Shea Catering

Credit Union 
Various locations
SEFCU works to put its members and member service first and CRL readers once again say thank you in this repeat “Bestie.” Personal and friendly service, are among the comments and their love for our region is always apparent.
CapCom Federal Credit Union
Various locations
Sunmark Federal Credit Union
Various locations

Customer Service
CapCom Federal Credit Union
Various locations
Congratulations to CapCom for its selection again for “Bestie” in customer service. The credit union notes, “We will never lose sight of our roles as an advocate for your financial needs – someone who is here to help you reach the goals you have set for yourself at any stage of life.” Customers agree and describe CapCom as “very user friendly” where staff “treats you like family.”
Various locations
Shelley Salon and Day Spa
2 Greenbush Avenue, East Greenbush

Cutting Edge (Original Business)
Moisture Salon
158 Barrett Street, Schenectady
This is a curly hair salon, with expertise and dedication solely to all kinds of curls, waves and super curly hair where the focus is on you – you won’t be surrounded by other clients and stylists. Education comes with style and creativity. You’ll also learn how to do your curls at home.
Liv Effortless
Troy Kitchen
77 Congress Street, Troy
Find us on Facebook

Day Spa
Kimberley’s Day Spa
982 New Loudon Road, Latham
Relax, indulge, replenish. Those are some of the results from Kimberley’s day spa service, as customers step away from their hectic lives to bring the well-being of mind and body into sync. That’s why CRL readers have again awarded Kimberley’s a “Bestie” in this category.
Complexions Spa for Beauty & Wellness
221 Wolf Road, Albany
Serenity Day Spa and Salon
1523 Columbia Turnpike, Schodack

Dry Cleaners
Best Cleaners
Various locations
“You’re too busy to worry about laundry,” says Best Cleaners. So from delivery, to customer service, to attention to detail in the dry cleaning, use of technology and green techniques, Best Cleaners has you in mind, to save you time and ensure you and your clothing are looking good.
Stena Dry Cleaning
451 Albany-Shaker Road, Albany
Hartz Family Cleaners
1714 Union Street, Schenectady
Find us on Facebook

Kimberley’s Day Spa
982 Loudon Road, Loudonville
In addition to day spa and mani/pedi, Kimberley’s received the “Bestie” for its facial services. There’s a facial for each season and the pampering and skill to go along with it. To that, customers say “ahhhh.”
Complexions Spa for Beauty & Wellness
221 Wolf Road, Albany
White Sands/ Spa Broadway
453 Broadway, Troy

Fitness Center
Vent Fitness
Various locations
Readers gave thumbs up to Vent as a fitness center that is dedicated to individual clients’ workouts with an emphasis on educating, exercising and energizing that give results. They like its strong programming and facilities and small class sizes. “Helpful,” “always available to answer questions,” “fun to work with” are among additional observations.
Capital District YMCA
Various locations
365 Fit
10 Hallwood Road, Suite A, Delmar
Tied with:
Anatomie Fit
43 Mall Way, West Sand Lake

Lark Street Flower Market
262 Lark Street, Albany
Empire State Plaza Concourse, Albany
CRL readers enjoy going to the Flower Market. It’s a place for arrangements for all occasions created by experienced florists who note that the joy, precision and detailed work that they put into each creation are the aspects that make that visit and that floral design so special.
Enchanted Garden
243 Delaware Avenue, Delmar
169 Ontario Street, Albany Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany

Furniture Store
The Old Brick
33-37 Warehouse Row, Albany
2910 Campbell Road, Schenectady
2 River Street, Troy
CRL readers appreciate the customer service and selection at Old Brick – from greetings when they come in the door, to knowledgeable staff who help meet their needs, to delivery that goes above and beyond.
Huck Finn’s
25 Erie Boulevard, Albany
1960 Central Avenue, Albany
121 Ballston Avenue, Saratoga Springs

Hair Salon
Christopher Brian Salon
90 Fourth Street, Troy
Plaudits again this year to Christopher Brian for “Bestie” in hair salon. Clients say yes to the skill, professionalism, passion and service that meet their needs – whether for a daytime or special event, whether color, long or short hair. As one customer noted, he “goes out of his way to make you look and feel like a million bucks!”
Ambiance Salon Day Spa
579 Troy-Schenectady Road, Latham
Tied with:
Choices Hair Studio
180 Delaware Avenue, Delmar
626 New Loudon Road, Latham

St. Peter’s Health Partners
315 South Manning Boulevard, Albany
St. Peter’s is a repeat “Bestie,” representing an increasing array of preventive, urgent care and related services in the community, in addition to the hospitals. In those facilities are 12,500 doctors, nurses and staff to care for you. Albany Medical Center
43 New Scotland Avenue, Albany
Ellis Medicine
1101 Nott Street, Schenectady

Kimberley’s Day Spa
982 Loudon Road, Latham
The benefit of taking care of your hands and feet is enormous, medically and, of course, stunning. Kimberley’s takes the time to make your experience equally pleasurable and purposeful. Heck, I can get relaxed just looking over the service menu for manicures and pedicures.
Complexions Spa for Beauty & Wellness
221 Wolf Road, Albany
268 Broadway, Saratoga Springs
Rainbow Nail Spa
1170 Central Avenue, Albany

LaBerge Massage Therapy
204 Delaware Avenue, Delmar
A repeat winner in our annual Bestie readers’ poll. Lauren Laberge pays great attention to giving you an individualized therapeutic massage to meet your massage goals and desires. Whether what brings you to Lauren is to relax totally or to do body work on a particular issue, your purposes for your massage session are always met.
Complexions Spa for Beauty & Wellness
221 Wolf Road, Albany
Tied with:
Sanctuary Medical Spa & Laser Center at Jeffrey Ridha, MD P.C
72 Railroad Place, Saratoga Springs 268 Broadway, Saratoga Springs
48 Hudson Avenue, Delmar

Free Movement Pilates
500 Kenwood Avenue, Suite 2, Delmar
Pilates improves mobility, decreases pain, restores function, improves your life and, I would add, aids in balance. The Free Movement studio has programs for all levels and promises that you will see a difference after a series of classes.
The Pilates Principle
578 New Loudon Road, Latham

Real Estate Company 
Coldwell Banker
Multiple offices
Fulfilling the “dream of home” since 1906 Coldwell Banker’s mission never waivers to deliver the treasure of home ethically and honestly. Buying or selling a home is an all-encompassing focus so you do need one that feels the way Coldwell Banker does. RealtyUSA Multiple offices www.realtyusa.com Keller Williams Capital District 935 New Loudon Rd. Latham kwcapitaldistrictny.yourkwoffice.com

Wedding Photographer 
Dave Bigler
Just one look at Dave’s website can convince you of his amazing work. Choosing a wedding photographer is such a personal choice and all about the quality. No concerns on that with our top “Bestie.”
Elario Photography Inc .
1084 Madison Avenue, Albany
Dino Petrocelli Photography
872 Old Albany Shaker Road, Albany

Yoga Studio
Heartspace Yoga Healing Arts
Albany location, 747 Madison Avenue, Albany
Troy Heartspace
10 Second Street, Troy
Heartspace is a community-oriented studio that offers yoga and healing arts from a range of traditions. This studio takes pride in providing a safe, supportive and tranquil setting with excellent instruction to help improve overall health, reduce stress, and invite a peaceful and calm mind through the practice of yoga. Sign me up! Anatomie Fit 
43 Mall Way, West Sand Lake
Hot Yoga Spot
Various locations


Apple Orchard
Indian Ladder Farms
342 Altamont Road, Altamont
In addition to having wonderful apples, the scenery for picking or stopping by to buy apples is just spectacular. Operated by the fourth generation of the Ten Eyck family and a team of experienced managers and staff, Indian Ladder has it all. Beautiful and historic!
Golden Harvest Farms
3074 U.S. 9, Valatie
Goold Orchard
1297 Brookview Station Road, Castleton

Bike Shop
Mad Dog Bicycles
561 Delaware Avenue, Delmar
Local bike shops are great because biking is a very personal sport. Fitting, riding potential, skill level can be communicated in person to a professional. At Mad Dog bikes, add in the fact that there is love of the product. From collecting, selling new and used and following a passion, Mad Dog is where you need to go to start or expand on your bike appetite.
Plaine and Son, Inc.
1816 State Street, Schenectady
Steiner’s Sports
Various locations

Book Store (TIE)
I Love Books
380 Delaware Avenue, Suite A, Delmar
Find us on Facebook
I love Books – An unpretentious haven for book lovers or book lovers in training. Someone is always willing to help with the perfect purchase and a friendly face.
The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza
1475 Western Avenue Stuyvesant Plaza, Albany
This locally owned independent bookstore offers recommendations, book of the week, and reading group information. If you are a bookaholic, this is the place to fall off the wagon and indulge.
Open Door Bookstore
128 Jay Street, Schenectady
Northshire Bookstore
424 Broadway, Saratoga Springs
4869 Main Street, Manchester, VT

Bridal Shop
Angela’s Bridal
126 State Street, Albany
Janet, the owner, has over 22 years of experience in gown design and tailoring. She is a graduate of PSU with an MFA in costume design and the variety of gowns at Angela’s validates her talent. In a marble floor-to-ceiling setting, with spacious fitting rooms, surrounded by stunning bridal gowns and a welcomed philosophy of listening first, advising second, there is no reason to doubt why Angela’s Bridal is number one this year.
3991 NY 43, West Sand Lake
Bridal Gallery by Yvonne
895 New Loudon Road Latham

Car Dealer
Keeler Motor Car Company
1111 Troy Schenectady Road, Route 7, Latham
Keeler Motor Car Company in Latham treats the needs of each individual customer with paramount concern. The staff is amazing and attentive. There seems to be nothing they cannot assist with when buying a new or used car. A pleasure to deal with.
Lia Auto Group
Various locations
Goldstein Auto
Various locations

Clothing Boutique
Truly Rhe
1 Broadway Troy
I could wax poetically about Truly Rhe. Friendly staff and outstanding choices in clothing that you will probably not see anywhere else. Rhe chooses her clothing lines both personally and with great passion. If you have not gone to Truly Rhe’s and you wear stylish women’s clothes, you have no choice—you must go.
W Couture Boutique
365 Feura Bush Road, Glenmont
Find us on Facebook
Muslers Clothing and Apparel
1726 Union Street, Schenectady
[email protected]

Consignment Shop
Polka Dot Consignment Shop
10 New Karner Road, Guilderland
A consignment shop for the entire family with clothing, toys, home goods, accessories sportswear, DVDs and much more. You can make money and spend money at Polka Dots. What could be better than that?
Something Olde, Something New
1969 New Scotland Road, Slingerlands
Trendy Tots
906 Woodland Avenue, Schenectady


Honest Weight
100 Watervliet Avenue, Albany
Honest Weight boasts and delivers the best year-round selection of organic foods that are locally grown and responsibly sourced. The organic produce here is worth the trip alone. The market is member-owned but open to the public. Honest Weight also offers a large selection of food specialty diets, including gluten free, vegetarian, vegan, local and so much more.
Fox Creek Farm CSA
182 Fox Creek Farm Road, Schoharie
Niskayuna Co-op
2227 Nott Street East, Schenectady

Farmers Marke
The Troy Farmers Market

Now synonymous with farmers market in the Capital Region in a general sense, who doesn’t run to Troy on Saturday mornings for great veggies and artisan products? The Troy Farmers Market has just grown and grown and with each growth spurt—better and better!
Schenectady Green Market
105 Jay Street, Schenectady Winter market inside Proctors (November-April)
Delmar Farmers Market
At Bethlehem Central Middle School

Garden Nursery
Hewitt’s Garden Center
Various locations
At each of their eight locations, you will find knowledgeable staff (with a combined over 250 years of experience), a full selection of gardening tools and supplies and plants and nursery items to meet your every need. Hewitt’s is also the home of the Lifetime Nursery Guarantee so you can plant with confidence. Bring your questions and your plans!
Faddegon’s Nursery Inc.
1140 Troy Schenectady Road, Latham
Gade Farm
2479 Western Avenue, Altamont
Tied with:
Samascott’s Garden Market
65 Chatham Street, Kinderhook

Gift Shop
The Cross Eyed Owl
3143 U.S. 9 #8, Valatie
Unique is the word to define what you should expect when visiting this beautiful shop located just a few miles from Albany. Home, garden and gifts are featured with a flair for the creative and special. Quality is critical when selecting the merchandise for this store and there are many one-of-a-kind items as well. Just a short drive—but an adventure.
Wit’s End Giftique
Parkwood Plaza, 1762 Route 9, Clifton Park
Ten Thousand Villages
Stuyvesant Plaza, 1475 Western Avenue, Albany

Hardware Store
Phillips Hardware
Various locations
Everyone looks for a hardware store as the place to find all you need for home repair, improvements and care of home and garden. Phillip’s is known as the place, featuring all you would expect from a hardware store with small engine repair, sharpening services and a very knowledgeable staff to help you tackle any problem. There are six locations to serve you (check the web site above for the location near you.
Robinson’s Ace Hardware
1874 Western Avenue, Albany 1
900 New Scotland Road, Slingerlands
Ace Hardware of Brunswick
831 Hoosick Road, Troy
Find us on Facebook

Health Food Store
Honest Weight Food Co-op
100 Watervliet Ave, Albany
Celebrating its 40th year anniversary this year (and a new web site, too), this Co-op is the favorite choice of our region. When you enter, you will be greeted by staff—many of them members—who are committed to local, international and global resources and they know their products. You will also find the best year-round selection of organic foods that are locally grown and responsibly sourced. A trip to the café should be in your schedule as well.
Delmar Health Hut
282 Delaware Avenue, Suite 5; Delmar
Find us on Facebook
Uncle Sam’s Good & Natural Products
77 Fourth Street, Troy

In-Store Pet
(Head to Tail Pet Wellness)

1604 Union Street, Schenectady
Marie DeBrocky, owner of Head-to-Tail pet wellness center, has always known what we all know now. Bella, the gorgeous golden retriever that makes her life and those of her customers happy everyday, stands out as friendly, adorable and an asset to her business as well as her life.  Congrats Bella. Now that calls for a great treat or two or three!

Joyelles Jewelers Ltd.
318 Delaware Avenue, Delmar
At Joyelles Jewelers, the emphasis is on service and selection in this full-service store. There are two expert jewelers on staff for repairs or custom designs. They pride themselves on having a selection to meet every budget and need. You will find a wide range of inventory ranging from glassware, candles, scents and lotions to sterling silver, gold, diamonds, colored stone jewelry and one-of-a-kind work.
Hannoush Jewelers
112 Wolf Road, Albany
1750 U.S. 9, Clifton Park
Northeastern Fine Jewelry
1575 Western Avenue, Albany
1607 Union St, Schenectady

Empire Wine & Liquor
1440 Central Avenue Albany
Once again, Empire was the choice of our readers. They feature a huge selection of wines from all regions of the world in all price ranges in their warehouse-type store fully staffed for customer convenience. There are special events and tastings at the store, and every staff member is knowledgeable on their selection. Local delivery is available, as well as shipping and ordering advance pick-up. It’s all about selection and convenience!
Exit 9 Wine & Liquor
9 Halfmoon Crossing, Clifton Park
Upstate Wine & Liquor
180 Delaware Ave, Delmar

Men’s wear Shop
Simon’s Men’s Wear
1671 Union Street, Schenectady
Since 1963, Simon’s Men’s Wear has been outfitting gentlemen with the finest in clothing from their extensive selection. Basic alterations are included with every purchase and can even be done the same day. Simon’s outfits all sizes as well, with a wide selection of big and tall clothing. Tuxedo rentals are available. When it comes to suits, designer suits are offered and, for truly the best, Simon’s will build a custom suit to your distinctive taste. Mark Thomas Men’s Apparel
Wolf Road Shoppers Park, 5 Metro Park Road, Albany

Music Store
Parkway Music
1777 U.S. 9, Clifton Park
When you walk in the store, you will be amazed by the selection of all musical instruments for every musician, from beginner to seasoned performer. Parkway specializes in new, used and vintage instruments, as well as any other gear and accessories you can think of. Music lessons are also offered and the store has a full-service repair service.

Sporting Goods Store
Goldstock’s Sporting Goods
98 Freemans Bridge Road, Schenectady
Winter, spring, summer or fall, Goldstock’s has what you need. They are also famous, known to be the oldest ski shop in the US—established in 1896. The motto says it all: Where People Just Know About Sports. This is the tradition of quality and knowledgeable service from their experienced staff that sets them apart from others. Rental programs are available, which are very popular, especially the season-long ski program.
Steiner’s Sports Ski & Bike
Various locations
Play it Again Sports Peter Harris Plaza,
952 Troy Schenectady Road, Latham

Shopping Mall/Center
Colonie Center
Colonie Center was voted as top choice by our readers. Over 100 specialty stores are featured including the first-in-NY L.L. Bean store. If you want just a bite to eat, a complete meal or just a cocktail, there are restaurants and the food court to please. If it’s a movie you want, there is a 13-screen movie theater. Plenty of lounging space, too (and an iPad station, as well).
Crossgates Mall
1 Crossgates Mall Road, Albany
Stuyvesant Plaza
1475 Western Avenue, Albany

Hannaford Supermarkets
Various locations
Hannaford Supermarkets was the top choice by our readers this year. Hannaford features its To-Go program where you can order online, pull up outside a store and your groceries are loaded into your vehicle. What could be more convenient when you are in a rush? They are committed to our community as well, participating in supporting several worthy organizations in our region.
Price Chopper/Market32
Various locations
Shop Rite Supermarket
Various locations

Travel Agency
Empress Travel & Cruises
1711 Union Street, Schenectady
Every travel agent should be your assurance for having a great trip. At Empress, they believe your vacation should be exactly that—days or a few weeks of time in which the stress of your day-to-day life is forgotten. They also believe and work with you on the three parts to a vacation—the planning and anticipation of it, the vacation itself, and the memory of it. Now that is a travel agent deserving of the “Bestie.”
AAA Hudson Valley
618 Delaware Avenue,
Various locations
Loudon Travel, LLC
260 Osborne Road, Loudonville


Adirondack Inn
Mirror Lake Inn
77 Mirror Lake Drive, Lake Placid
Spectacular in every way. The setting is magical, the service is consistently named one of the best in the country. It is no wonder at all why our readers year after year vote the Mirror Lake Inn the best of the Adirondack resort properties. Excellence should always be rewarded and our readers agree.
The Sagamore
110 Sagamore Road, Bolton Landing
The Whiteface Lodge
7 Whiteface Inn Lane, Lake Placid

The Inn at Erlowest
3178 Lake Shore Drive, Lake George
Escaping to Erlowest, enticed by the beauty of the setting high upon a hill located on beautiful Lake George, in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains.  The beauty of this remarkable inn is only matched by its history. This is a place to dive into with a cocktail or a good book with your favorite person.  Our readers have great taste! The Friends Lake Inn
963 Friends Lake Road, Chestertown
American Hotel
192 Main Street, Sharon Springs

Bike Trail 
Helderberg-Hudson Rail Trail
The rail-trail follows the path of the former Delaware & Hudson (D&H) Railroad, later the Canadian Pacific Railway, which was abandoned in 2003. Along the way, trail goers can access Veterans Memorial Park in Delmar and Fireman’s Park in Slingerlands. Much of the trail is quiet and wooded, and part of the trail offers views of an adjacent creek.
Mohawk Hudson Bike Trail
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Zim Smith Bike Trail, Saratoga County
Tied with
The Lake George Bike Trail, Lake George

What can we say? The Big Apple offers everything and it is only a few hours by car or train to enjoy everything. Opera, ballet, Broadway shows, museums, great restaurants—and historical to boot.
Lake Placid

Golf Course (private)
Albany Country Club
300 Wormer Road, Voorheesville
Robert Trent Jones, the dean of American golf course architects, designed and built the Albany Country Club course. This course is designed to challenge the experienced golfer, yet welcome the novice or less skilled. Shaker Ridge Countrty Club
802 Albany Shaker Road, Albany
Pinehaven Country Club
141 Maple Road, Route 85A, Voorheesville
Tied with:
The Colonie Country Golf & Country Club
1151 Siver Road, Guilderland

Golf Course (public)
Normanside Country Club
1 50 Salisbury Road, Delmar
The course was designed by William Harries. During its 83 years of play, it has hosted many New York State Golf Association and United States Golf Association events. Normanside is considered a semi-private golf course. Orchard Creek Golf Club
6700 Dunnsville Road, Altamont
Winding Brook Country Club
2839 Route 203, Valatie

Hiking Trail
John Boyd Thacher State Park

1 Hailes Cave Road, Voorheesville
With nearly 25 miles of trails and just 15 miles southwest of Albany, this New York State park preserves six miles of limestone cliffs, woodland and open fields—perfect for picnicking, hiking and just enjoying the great outdoors. You can discover waterfalls and one of the richest fossil-bearing formations in the world at this scenic park. Albany Pinebush Preserve
195 New Karner Road #1, Albany
High Falls Gorge
4761 NY 86, Wilmington

Hotel – Capital Region 
Desmond Hotel and Conference Center
660 Albany Shaker Road, Albany
The Desmond is conveniently located at the entrance of the Albany International Airport, which is perfect for escaping to or out of Albany. This independent, family owned and operated property has been providing superb accommodations, outstanding service and a unique guest experience for over 40 years.
The Sagamore
110 Sagamore Road, Bolton Landing
The Pavilion Grand
30 Lake Avenue, Saratoga Pavilion Grand Hotel

Hudson Valley Inn 
Mohonk Mountain House
1000 Mountain Rest Road, New Paltz
The ride to the Mohonk Mountain House sets the scene with great anticipation. On my first visit, I remember thinking, how can this be anything but spectacular? And right I was. When you combine a historical castle, award-winning spa and great food, your expectations will always be met, as well.
The Caldwell House Bed & Breakfast
25 Orrs Mills Road, Salisbury Mills
The Arnold House
839 Shandelee Road, Livingston Manor

Kids Camp
YMCA Camp Chingachgook
1872 Pilot Knob Road, Kattskill Bay

After many years of claiming “the Bestie” for kid’s camp, there really isn’t much more we can say that has not been said about Camp Chingachgook. It is amazing for kids to experience. Summer camp can be one of the most meaningful experiences in a young person’s life and they are memory angels to provide the camp fun for a lifetime.
Camp Fowler
P.O. Box 131, Speculator
Camp Pinnacle
621 Pinnacle Road, Voorheesville

Windham Vineyard & Winery
11 Mt View Estates Road, Windham
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From awesome wines that our readers loved to a very generous tasting experience, the Windham winery has it all. Beautiful scenery and a great Malbec, raves one Windham fan, while another echoes the wine love and also adds that the winery dog makes the trip worth the visit. Dogs, beauty and great wine sound fantastic to me. Hudson-Chatham Winery
1900 NY-66, Ghent
Altamont Vineyard & Winery
3001 Furbeck Road, Altamont
Tied with:
Oliva Vineyards
240 Excelsior Avenue, Saratoga Springs

John Boyd Thacher State Park
1 Hailes Cave Road, Voorheesville
Located along the Helderberg Escarpment, just 15 miles southwest of Albany, this New York State park preserves six miles of limestone cliffs, woodland and open fields, perfect for picnicking, hiking and just enjoying the great outdoors. Discovering waterfalls is not on the average park list but it is here, as well as one of the richest fossil-bearing formations in the world at this scenic park.
Saratoga Spa State Park
19 Roosevelt Drive, Saratoga
The Crossings Park
580 Albany Shaker Road, Loudonville

Picnic Spot 
John Boyd Thacher State Park
1 Hailes Cave Road, Voorheesville
Once again, John Boyd Thacher State Park claims a top spot and this time it for the best place to have a picnic. With some of the best views in the Capital Region, is there any wonder? Pack a picnic, eats lots, walk the food off in a little slice of heaven. Now that is a picnic!
The Crossings of Colonie
580 Albany Shaker Road, Loudonville
Saratoga Spa State Park
19 Roosevelt Drive, Saratoga Springs

Place to Entertain Kids On A Summer Day
Grafton Lakes State Park 
100 Grafton Lakes State Park Way, Cropseyville
Grafton Lakes State Park, on the forested plateau between the Taconic and Hudson valleys, includes six ponds and nearly 2,500 acres. Swimming, rowing, fishing, trail hiking and—don’t forget—great picnicking are all available. Long Pond has a large, sandy beach, which is a popular summer attraction.
The Crossings of Colonie
580 Albany Shaker Road, Loudonville
Tied with
The Great Escape and Splashwater Kingdom Route
9P, Lake George
Moreau Lake State Park
605 Old Saratoga Road, Gansevoort

Place to Spend a Rainy Day
Bethlehem Public Library
451 Delaware Ave, Delmar
The library will always hold the answers to your question, the satisfaction to your travel lust, the adventure to your children’s imagination and so much more. The Bethlehem Library is just the best place on any day but rainy days…well…that is even more to dream about with a book in your hands.
miSci (the Museum of Innovation and Science)
15 Nott Terrace Heights, Schenectady
New York State Museum
222 Madison Avenue, Albany

Rcepetion Hall
The Century House
997 New Loudon Rd, Latham
Unique wedding packages are available as The Century truly works with everyone on their reception wishes. From a conventional style of entertaining (whether wedding, retirement or any celebration) to a more contemporary feel of a party, they will do it all. The group at The Century House is absolutely what we need when planning. Leave it to them and they will follow your direction and make you look great! Our readers have attended and thrown many receptions at The Century House and they know who deserves the “Bestie”. Congrats Collin and team.
Franklin Plaza Ballroom
Four 4th Street, Troy
The Glen Sanders Mansion
1 Glen Avenue, Scotia

Romatic Getaway
Mohonk Mountain House
1000 Mountain Rest Road, New Paltz
Some would say that anyplace is romantic when you are with the one you love but having a gorgeous setting both inside and out is really the answer to perfection. That’s why the Mohonk Mountian House can make romantics out of us all.
The Mirror Lake Inn
77 Mirror Lake Drive, Lake Placid
The Sagamore
110 Sagamore Road, Bolton Landing

Ski Area 
Jiminy Peak
11 Corey Road, Hancock, MA
When you are convenient to the Capital Region and have an elevation of 2380 feet with 1150 vertical rise spread over 167 acres and some state-of-the-art lifts, there is little doubt that the readers of CRL Mag will vote you a “Bestie” winner. Congrats to our friends to the east!
Gore Mountain
793 Peaceful Valley Road, North Creek
Whiteface Mountain
2634 Main Street, Lake Placid

Saratoga Inn/Hotel
The Mansion Inn
801 Route 29, Rock City Falls
The Mansion Inn of Saratoga offers a sophisticated mixture of extravagances from a bygone era, combined with modern conveniences, without detracting from the original ambiance of this country villa home.
The Gideon Putnam
24 Gideon Putnam Road, Saratoga
Longfellows Hotel, Restaurant and Conference Center
500 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs
Tied with
Pavilion Grand Hotel
30 Lake Avenue, Saratoga Springs

Vermont Inn 
The Norwich Inn/Hotel
325 S Main St, Norwich, VT
Established in 1797 and located in a beautiful rural setting near Dartmouth College, the inn sets like a dream in a movie. A gorgeous welcoming building with a porch that screams, “good book and cocktail.” This Inn is chock full of everything a get-away needs—awesome food, local brews, and rooms you will never wish to leave.
The Equinox
3567 Main Street, Manchester Village, VT

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