About Our Guesthouses

Both the Ashland and Vera are owned and operated by Julie Ponkow from Buffalo, New York. Julie,
her husband Dave, and the four children: Sara, Andrew Jeffrey and Gregory first came to
Chautauqua Institution in the mid 1980's. It started with a week long vacation, that turned into two.
Soon after, the family began enjoying the nine week season each summer.

At the Ashland and Vera, we strive you make your experience
truly "Chautauquan". The open porches on each floor are
available to all guests for reading, socializing or catching an
afternoon snooze. The central locations allow for watching the
many visitors stroll past, and often you will find yourself waving
to new and old friends.

- The Ashland and The Vera
About Our Guesthouses

"Welcome to the Ashland (circa 1901) and the Vera (circa 1880),
two gracious Chautauqua Guest Houses. You may be surprised
to learn that these are not “hotels,” in the formal sense of the
The Ashland and The Vera reflect the heartbeat of Chautauqua;
the warmth, the civility, the tradition of a time barely discernible
in a modern day hotel. Though we are open for only nine weeks
a year during the Chautauqua Institution Summer season, we
spend much of the rest of the year painting, freshening,
repairing, and replacing the worn with the fresh and new. When
you enter your room, you will find the fruits of our labor of
love…clean, comfortable rooms with a vitality that comes with the
careful blending of the old and new, tradition and modern know-

Your Chautauqua home is blessed with tall, shading trees, lake
breezes and wonderful bird song. We provide a large, well-
appointed kitchen, and porches that offer friendship when you
seek it, and quiet when you need it.

Please come often to share with us this blending of past and

Thank you.                                          

- As written by a long time guest and friend
The Athenaeum