The Best of New England: Inns
COPPER BEECH INN With its carved mahogany four-poster beds, thick tapestries, and comforters that call to mind the interior of a fine Parisian hotel, this Connecticut River country house sets the gold standard for New England inns. There are even two French-inspired restaurants to match – and it’s all conveniently located about 45 minutes from historic Mystic and the casinos. 46 Main St., Ivoryton, CT, 860-767-0330, copperbeechinn.com.
HARRASEEKET INN Despite the sprawling size of this family-friendly Maine oasis, staffers here have a knack for remembering guests’ names when they reappear for second visits. Located across the street from L. L. Bean’s Freeport outlet, the inn offers a range of outdoor excursions to test both your new gear and your mettle, from windjammer sails on Casco Bay to fishing trips to the North Woods. 162 Main St., Freeport, ME, 207-865-9377, 800-342-6423, harraseeketinn.com.
INN AT CASTLE HILL Channel your inner Victorian by taking tea or cocktails on the sweeping veranda that overlooks the salt marsh and dunes of Ipswich’s coastline. Preserved by the Trustees of the Reservations, this elegant inn is located on the 2,100 sea-sprayed acres of the Crane Estate. At night, waves are the only sound for miles and miles. 280 Argilla Rd., Ipswich, MA, 978-412-2555, thetrustees.org/the-inn-at-castle-hill.
THE INN AT THE ROUND BARN FARM A restored circular barn is the centerpiece of this beautifully converted farmhouse, which is framed by Vermont’s mountainous Mad River Valley. The estate includes a maze of delightful orchards and ponds, along with organic gardens, from which the on-site chef sources many meals. Rooms are plush but unpretentious, and the inn’s resident chocolate Lab is all too happy to give guided tours of the nearby hiking and snowshoeing trails. 1661 East Warren Rd., Waitsfield, VT, 802-496-2276, theroundbarn.com.
THE PORCHES INN This Northern Berkshires spot was converted from row houses formerly occupied by mill workers. The hipster sensibility is unmistakable, though some of the original down-home charms are retained by room service that arrives in lunch pails, an on-site bonfire pit, and the souvenir auto-touring plates that decorate the walls. There are also plenty of modern comforts, including down duvets and a swanky lobby bar. And that mill next door? It’s now the celebrated Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. 231 River St., North Adams, MA, 413-664-0400, porches.com.
WAYBURY INN It doesn’t get more iconic than the Vermont inn used in the opening credits of Bob Newhart’s television show. But this is no mere set piece; 13 antique-filled suites and an intimate restaurant create an air of romance that’s accentuated by an attentive staff. What’s more, the grounds are ready-made for sunset strolling. 457 E. Main St., East Middlebury, VT, 800-348-1810, 802-388-4015, wayburyinn.com.