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5 Coastal Maine Hotels For A Summer Getaway

by Staff

As someone who has spent decades exploring the coast of Maine, I have stayed in properties up and down the coast. Here are four of my favorites and one new property worth considering for your summer getaway. Summer is a short season in Maine, and these are small boutique hotels, so the time to book is now.

The Claremont, Southwest Harbor

I love the setting of The Claremont Hotel on the quiet side of Mt Desert Island in Southwest Harbor, overlooking Soames Sound. It is so peaceful here that you wouldn’t know that Acadia National Park, which receives close to four million visitors a year, is just half an hour away. The Claremont is an excellent choice for those looking to avoid the summertime crowds in Bar Harbor. This restored 1884 Victorian seaside grand dame underwent a $20 million renovation a couple of years ago and now has 12 cottages, four suites, a three-bedroom waterfront property, and 34 guestrooms. The Botanica Spa and a heated infinity swimming pool overlooking Somes Sound are great additions. The hotel offers Harry’s Bar, Little Fern Restaurant, Buttercup Bakery, and Batson Fish Camp by the water, a great place for sunset.

Bluebird Ocean Point Inn

The Bluebird Ocean Point Inn is located in Boothbay Harbor’s Ocean Point community overlooking Card Cove. The former Ocean Point Inn, this seaside hotel had been a mainstay of the resort community for 124 years before it was bought and reopened by Lark Hotels in 2023. Boothbay is the essence of the Maine coast and the heart of the Midcoast Region, a haven for sailors and the gateway to Monhegan Island, which lies about 10 miles offshore. The town is filled with shops, boutiques, and restaurants and offers the Maine State Aquarium and the nationally acclaimed Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens. The interiors of the Bluebird Ocean Point Inn were designed by Elder & Ash and accommodations include king and double queen rooms in the nine cottages, suites, and multi-bedroom suites. There’s plenty of dining in town, but the hotel offers the Ocean Point Kitchen and OPK Bar on-site.

The York Beach Surf Club, York Beach

Maine surfing culture — yes, there is one, and it’s thriving —is the inspiration and design motif of The York Beach Surf Club, which inhabits the former York Harbor Motel and Cottages. It’s the project of Taylor Perkins, whose father, Sonny, started the original York Beach Surf Club in 1963. The hotel has 42 guest rooms and 10 bungalows, as well as a heated saltwater pool with a pool bar. The Pineapple All Day Café is oceanfront on the resort grounds and serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, while The Board Room Coffee & Cocktails is open all day. The walls of the guest rooms and public areas are lined with photographs depicting the sport’s evolution in southern Maine, and you’ll see original 1960s surfboards gifted by Sonny Perkins and other members of the original York Beach Surf Club. Guests can also access complimentary foam surfboards, weekend yoga classes, a fire pit, and the oceanfront lawn.

The Pentagöet Inn & Pub, Castine

Castine is one of my favorite spots on the Maine coast, a sleepy town filled with a cluster of white 19th-century Greek Revival homes looking out onto Penobscot Bay. There’s not much to do here except slow down and admire the beauty. You can readily do that at the town’s oldest summer hotel, The Pentagöet Inn & Pub. This Queen Anne Victorian from 1894 has a welcoming porch, a three-story turret, and a lovely perennial garden. The bed & breakfast is now run by Matt Powell and George Trinovitch, who’ve retained the hotel’s charm and history and offer weekly events like Jazz on the Porch, which spotlights a live combo that plays every Tuesday. They’ve also added plenty of decorative touches and made Mister’s Pub one of the coast’s most atmospheric bars. “Supper,” as they prefer to call it like traditional New Englanders, is served most nights in season. Rooms have an old-fashioned charm, with antique wood-carved headboards, vintage lithographs, and fine linens. It’s an excellent base for exploring Acadia National Park, just an hour’s drive away.

The Longfellow Hotel, Portland

The Longfellow Hotel, originally scheduled to open in 2023, will finally debut this April in Portland as a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World. The first independent, full-service hotel to open in the city in decades, the boutique hotel will have 48 rooms and a spa inspired by Nordic traditions, focusing on mind and body wellness. Maine-based, family-owned hospitality group Uncommon Hospitality is behind the Longfellow Hotel, named for Portland-born poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, one of America’s most-beloved bards. The Congress Street location is in Portland’s historic West End neighborhood, one of the city’s finest areas, with some of the most striking 19th-century Victorian and Italianate architecture in the Northeast. The hotel is within walking distance to areas like the Old Port, East End, and the Arts District. Dining options will include the Twinflower Café, a wellness-focused restaurant serving wholesome breakfast and lunch offerings. The Five of Clubs is the name of the bar. The 1,800-square-foot spa will be called Astraea, inspired by Nordic spa traditions and focusing on whole body and mind wellness.

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