Located just southwest of Saratoga Springs, the village of Ballston Spa is the county seat of Saratoga County. Named after Rev. Eliphalet Ball, a Congregationalist clergyman and an early settler, Ballston Spa lies on the border of two towns and is partly in the Town of Ballston and partly in the Town of Milton.
In 1803 Ballston Spa's Sans Souci Hotel, at the time the largest hotel in the United States, was built by Nicholas Low. Presidents, senators and governors stayed there, as well as many wealthy private citizens. At one time the village was the 11th most populated region in the future United States. It was once served by four railroads; Delaware and Hudson Railway, The Ballston Terminal Railroad, Schenectady Railway Company, Hudson Valley Railway.
Ballston Spa is famous for its mineral water spring used for healing in sanatoriums, including the Hawthorne and Lithia springs. The effervescent water, tonic, and cathartic from this city is also known as Ballston Spa. The liquid contains common salt and carbonates of magnesium and calcium.
Ballston Spa boasts a real sense of community. Residents enjoy being in the middle of everything; whether it's a cafe or restaurant, the library (or post office), or just a walk in the park or along Front street.
Ballston Spa today includes businesses that have been around for decades - O'Brien pharmacy, for example. Front Street and Milton Street (and side streets) contain shops in buildings erected well over a hundred years ago. A park or town square (Wiswall Park) complements the shops and restaurants with century oaks and benches. This gives the Village a unique blend of old and new. Downtown offers restaurants ranging from casual to fine, antique shops, tea houses and coffee houses, a growing artist community, health food purveyors, and a spa & Healing Arts center. Even the National Bottle Museum resides downtown, and its mission is to preserve the history of our nation’s first major industry: Bottle Making.
But there’s more to downtown than shopping, antiquing, or dining. Downtown businesses themselves, under the umbrella of the Ballston Spa Business and Professional Association, participate directly in creating and sustaining village life: Parades, Farmer’s Markets, Car Shows, Concerts in the Park, First Fridays and Sidewalk Sales, are among a few of these. The Village in turn sponsors community events like Family Fun Day, and the Winter Festival.
New York State Route 50 (Milton Avenue), a north-south highway, passes through the village and intersects New York State Route 67 (West High Street). County Road 63 (Malta Avenue) leaves the village to the east, connecting it to U.S. Route 9 and Interstate 87 (The Northway).