Facilities at Gell: A Finger Lakes Creative Retreat

Gell: A Finger Lakes Creative Retreat is closed during the winter months, and re-opens in early April for another exciting year to  host your event!  Reservations are based on space availability.  To make a reservation, please contact Kathy Pottetti at kathyp@wab.org 

Writers & Books has four facilities located at Gell: A Finger Lakes Creative Retreat — the Gell House, the Gleason Lodge, the Tree House, and the Thoreau Cabin.


The Gell Housep1040596-2

Overnight guests will stay in the Gell House, a completely furnished hillside house surrounded by a landscaped yard and acres of woodlands.

This charming space has two furnished suites each consisting of a bedroom, sitting room/workspace, and bathroom. The suites share the common space of a dining room and fully equipped kitchen. Several large windows overlook the yard, which slopes down to a brook and valley beyond.

This quiet retreat is the perfect setting for study, writing, reading, discussion, and reflection.

Gell House RatesHOUSE

  • $50/night for one guest
  • $100/night for two guests
  • $150/night for three guests
  • $200/night for four guests
  • $15/night for each additional guest, 8 maximum
  • Daytime group rate: $150 per day


  • No charge for guests age 16 and under when accompanied by adult.
  • No pets on premises at all, and no smoking indoors.
  • Guests must be members of Writers & Books.
  • Fees include full use of facilities and grounds.
  • Linens and kitchen utensils are provided.
  • Guests must provide their own meals.

The Gleason LodgeIlodge

The Gleason Lodge is located on a secluded hillside with a magnificent view of the Bristol Valley. The Great room of this building provides an elegant and spacious meeting place, with its stone fireplace, high ceiling, and bookshelf-lined wall.

It can accommodate up to 74 people for social gatherings and 50 people for day-long meetings, seminars, or workshops. The Lodge also includes a dining area that seats up to 25 people and a commercially equipped kitchen. The Gleason Lodge is equipped with an accessible path and bathrooms.

Surrounded by fields and woods, the Gleason Lodge provides the ideal environment for groups seeking a unique and refreshing experience.


Cloudburst Retreat Friday, May 19th – Sunday, May 21st, 2017  

http://www.foothillspublishing.com/2017/cloudburst.html – link to Cloudburst’s Anthology.

Upstate Artist Forum Gathering, Friday, October 28th, 2016 on the deck of the Gleason Lodge.



Gleason Lodge Rates

  • Kitchen1 –  35 people  $250.00
  • 36 – 45 people  $350.00
  • 46 – 75 people  $500.00
  • For groups of 75 people or more, an additional group fee of $250 will be charged


  • For groups consisting of 35 people or more, a $100.00 security deposit is required.
  • For groups of 75 people or more, an additional group fee of $250.00 will be charged, &
  • We require an outdoor tent to be set up to accommodate larger groups.
  • No pets on premises at all, and no smoking allowed indoors.
  • At least one guest must be a member of Writers & Books for any group rental.


Gleason Lodge Testimonials – 2016 & 2017

Rochester Veterans Writing Group held a half day writing retreat at Gell: A Finger Lakes Creative Retreat – This lodge provided a welcome respite for our group from the normal routine our writing workshops by listening to our guest speaker, Jen Case as an outside voice, engaging with one another, and gazing out on the radiant beauty of the surrounding hills.  In Hemingway’s words ” this clean, well-lighted place” was ideal, and met all of our needs. Many thanks for maintaining such a gem in the midst of the Finger Lakes Region!

Rochester Veterans Writing Group| June 2017| Tim Hansen, Co-Founder.

FLCC’s Board of Trustees held an all-day retreat at Gell: A Finger Lakes Creative Retreat – The Gleason Lodge is situated in a beautiful and peaceful setting – perfect for a retreat! Kathy Pottetti and her staff were wonderful to work with and graciously accommodated all our needs and requests. The Gleason Lodge is easy to access, has plenty of parking, and boasts a full kitchen, large dining room, and a great room with stone fireplace and fantastic views off the deck. If you seek a quiet location where your group can truly relax and unwind without the distraction of technology, Gell is a great choice.

FLCC’s Board of Trustees | October 2016 | Janet Carabell, Executive Secretary to the President.

Great location, clean and bright, comfortable and an absolute must for those planning a gathering/seminar/meeting especially amidst the fall foliage.

Just Poets Group | October 2016

We have used the Gell Center the past two years for our board of education summer retreats. The space is the perfect place for thoughtful reflection and conversation, and we plan on returning in the future.

Matt Frahm, Superintendent | Naples Central School District | Naples, NY

The location was great – so peaceful, surrounded by nature.

Kc Rossi | Big Tree School of Natural Healing                            

This was our third year using the Lodge for our women’s retreat. As       usual, It was wonderful and a huge success! We love the large open space and views. It’s always very clean and comfortable.

What a beautiful and relaxing space at an affordable price.

Thank you!                                   

Tracy Austin | Artisan Women

Another Ontario Summit Trail Races is in the books, and like last year, it was a great success. We want to thank you again for your generous permission to utilize the Gell Center and its trails for the race. Our event would not be possible without the generosity of Writers & Books.

Rob Feissner | Goose Adventure Racing

Great location, clean and bright, comfortable and an absolute must for those planning a gathering/seminar/meeting especially amidst the fall foliage.

Bart White | Just Poets

Given the gorgeous vista and lovely space, my friends and I were awe-struck upon arriving at Gleason Lodge. It was a wonderful home away from home for a few hours. We could take advantage of several different experiences — wandering the grounds, sitting on the deck, and enjoying the cozy living room space. A well equipped facility.

Joyce Herman | Birthday Celebration                                      

The Canandaigua Area Chamber of Commerce held its September after hours mixer at Gell: A Finger Lakes Creative Retreat.  The rural retreat hosted over 25 Chamber member representatives who enjoyed the breathtaking views and touring through the woods, the tree house and cabin.  The Gleason Lodge, perfectly nestled into the natural landscape, was very welcoming and provided the perfect backdrop for our networking event. 

Kelly Rotter | Canandaigua Chamber of Commerce                                           


The Treehouse – currently under construction,  is unavailable to rent at this time.C24A6EA6DE88E853A607EF04405962D1

The Treehouse, 200 square feet in size, can be used as “a classroom-in-the-sky”, and as a writers’ cabin. With an outside deck providing beautiful views of the nearby stream and surrounding woods, the house is nestled in a cathedral of trees of many sizes and species.

There is a desk on which to sit and write, and built-in benches and a table with space for a group to assemble and eat. There is no plumbing or electricity available in the Treehouse, but facilities are avilable nearby in either the Gell House or the Gleason Lodge.


The Thoreau CabinThoreauCabin

Dr. Kenneth Gell was a great admirer of Henry David Thoreau, and so when he and his wife Geraldine first bought the property in the Bristol Hills and needed a place to stay when they visited on weekends and throughout the summer, he designed and built a small cabin built to the exact dimensions of Thoreau’s cabin at Walden Pond.

In later years the Gells would build a more permanent house on the property in which they would live for the remainder of their lives, but that original cabin still exists and is now, after some minor renovations, once again available for daytime and overnight use.

Nestled between a pair of grand, old-forest pine trees, the Thoreau Cabin provides a rustic and inspiring setting for writing and reflection, as well as close-to-nature overnight accommodations for one person or a couple. There is no plumbing or electricity available in the cabin, but guests will have access to either the Gell House or Gleason Lodge for kitchen and bathroom usage.

Thoreu Cabin Rates

  • $35/Day use and/or overnight


  • Two guest maximum

2 Responses to Facilities at Gell: A Finger Lakes Creative Retreat

  1. Kerry Robertson June 22, 2015 at 2:41 pm #

    A group of teachers from around Monroe County are developing a summer institute for teachers. We are looking for a place to host us on Monday, August 17th. There will be about 70 teachers in our group. We would like to reserve the Gell Center for that day if possible. Please let us know as soon as possible if it is available, or if you have another location that could host 70 on that date. Thank you for your prompt attention.

  2. Chris Fanning June 30, 2015 at 2:37 pm #

    Hi Kerry. Thanks for your note. Please e-mail Kathy Pottetti, Director of Programming at The Gell Center at kathyp@wab.org. She handles all books. I am also forwarding your information to her.

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