Captain Visger House



Step back in time to the 1000 Islands’ Guilded Age, recalling when Captain Elisha W. Visger, creator of the first island tours, lived here with his family when the house was first built in 1856. This fully restored Victorian home combines gracious antiques with 21st century conveniences. Plush queen mattresses, luxurious cotton linens and optional specialties like chocolate, flowers and something bubbly are available to make your stay even more memorable.

The 1000 Islands

As you enter the town of Alexandria Bay, you’ll notice a sign welcoming you to the “Heart of the 1000 Islands.” This affectionate nickname also serves as an apt description of the town’s location…

The Captain Visger House sits a few yards from the U.S. banks of the St. Lawrence River, which connects the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean and forms part of the boundary between Ontario, Canada, and the state of NY. By boat, it’s a mere 2 mile journey North West before entering Canadian waters. By car, you can access the Canadian border at the T.I. Bridge, less than 5 miles from Alexandria Bay.

There is much to do on both sides of the river. Before visiting, we recommend looking into activities and attractions both in Alexandria Bay and its surrounding communities. This is an international community (so don’t forget your passport!!!)

 The 1000 Islands region is among the most beautiful in America.  Nearby cities and towns include WatertownClaytonGananoqueSyracusePotsdamKingston, Ottawa, and Montreal.

The 1000 Islands

The Owner


My Journey To The Captain Visger House Is One Of Loss, Love And A Lot Of Hard Work

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Growing up in southern California, everyone knew me as Cathy (Cathryn). After the death of my mother when I was ten years old I moved to Alexandria Bay with my Aunt Evelyn and her husband Bud Petrie. I was given the nickname of “Sam” to distinguish myself from the many “Cathy’s” in my class (not to mention my new sister Kathleen). It was the beginning of a new chapter in my life.

The towering maple trees; the Victorian architecture; the change of seasons; and of course, the Saint Lawrence River – with it’s magnificent power and beauty – were among the new discoveries that helped me to mend.

Fast forward through twenty-five years in San Francisco and Indianapolis, to the 1990s and another loss – that of my beloved husband John. Widowed, with two phenomenal daughters I found myself at another fork in the road. Where did my compass lead me? Back home to Alexandria Bay and the healing energy of the 1000 Islands.

Up to this point I had worked in the field of education. At the age of fifty I decided that I wanted to be the master of my destiny. In other words, own my own business.

How else was I going to incorporate my love of food, my very social nature, and have some fun?! Thus began the transformation of The Captain Visger House, a process I would describe as magical, painstaking, life-changing…and a few other choice words not suitable for print.

Visitors are amazed at the craftsmanship, the attention to detail and the commitment to authentic restoration of this beautiful 1856 Italianate Victorian. The thousands of feet of moulding, all original profiles; the original doors; the restored wide plank pine floors. I could write volumes about the hard work and attention to detail that went into the restoration and rebirth of this place but I think it best you come see for yourselves!

I Am Committed To Serving Food That Is Fresh, Local And Organic

I love food, and I love feeding people. Our menu changes based on what’s being harvested each week. 

Most of the food prepared at The Kitchen comes from nearby farms or our own garden. I am proud to work with local farmers and producers in order to create our farm-to-table inspired menu so that you can savor the tastiest and cleanest ingredients we can find prepared with the utmost care. These farmers and producers include...


Our Suppliers:

Black River Cattle Company

Better Farm

Worth Gold Farm

River Rat Cheese

Indian River Organic Garden and Farm

1000 Islands Cruet

Local, family-run Amish Farmers

Local, family-run 1000 Island Fisheries


All guests of the Captain Visger House receive a delicious complimentary breakfast at our in-house farm to table restaurant The Kitchen. Food is my greatest joy in this endeavor and I am passionate about locally grown, sustainable organic ingredients in the food I prepare with love.