The hike from the east that traverses a bunch of minor summits, Rocky Peak, Rocky Peak Ridge and then Giant is one of the classic Adirondack hikes. I did that hike as far as Rocky Peak a couple of years ago. The trailhead is new New Russia, but I don't think there are many places to stay there. If you're going to do it from the north (which I haven't), your choices are basically Keene, Keene Valley or Elizabethtown. If I were you, I'd stick with Keene Valley ... the entire village is built around the climber/hiker mountain culture. Easy enough to get to any of the access points for Giant from there. Have fun.