This 19th-Century Victorian Became a Luxury Boutique Hotel
Located in Portland, the Francis boasts beautifully restored woodwork, uniquely decorated guest rooms, an onsite spa, and more.
Tony DeLois was sipping coffee at a café in Portland, Maine, when he noticed an abandoned house across the street. Empty for roughly a decade by then, the once grand Victorian abode—originally built in 1881 by noted local architect Francis Fassett—was in dire need of a makeover. Still, DeLois was intrigued. “I manage two hotels in Ogunquit and was looking to do something on my own,” the Yarmouth native says. “[I] took a walk through [the building], and it spoke to exactly what [I] wanted to do. The layout was perfect.”
15 rooms, starting at $199 per night
Come for: Impeccably restored woodwork and updated Victorian details
Stay for: The onsite spa and the made-in-Maine goodies
After eventually purchasing the property and working to get it listed on the National Register of Historic Places, DeLois and his business partners—who include his brother Nate—focused on restoring the 19th-century space. “[Our goal was to] take the historical elements and update them so [the hotel] didn’t feel like it was stuck in the Victorian age,” DeLois says. Opened as the Francis hotel in late 2017, the building features 15 revamped guest rooms, each uniquely decorated and furnished. Untouched moldings frame leaded glass windows, illuminating the house’s original woodwork. New additions include custom headboards and side tables, fabricated by Saco-based Pond Cove Millwork, and stocked mini bars, chock-full of locally made snacks and drinks. “Everything [in the hotel] is, as much as possible, local and unique to Maine,” DeLois says. “We wanted to bring a neighborhood experience to guests coming in.”