Upscale B&B in Historic Cape Cod Village
When Beth Colt and her husband left the entertainment industry in LA to open the Woods Hole Inn on Cape Cod, it was a homecoming of sorts—Beth grew up in Boston and spent her summers on the Cape as a child. The seaside village of Woods Hole, an academic community with small-town charm directly overlooking the harbor, was a major draw for the two, and upon their arrival, Beth took over the mid-19th-century inn on the corner of School Street and Water Street. “We like to say that we left the red carpet in Hollywood to roll it out for our guests here,” she says with a laugh. Today, the boutique hotel looks every bit the Cape Cod retreat, with navy-blue shingle siding and whitewashed balconies.
Recently, Woods Hole Inn underwent a renovation; Beth explains that she wanted to preserve all the great parts of the old inn while updating it with 21st-century flair. To do so, she filled the space with midcentury-modern furnishings and added private guest-room decks that face Eel Pond. If you look closer, you’ll notice bits and pieces of the home’s storied past remaining, from the restored vintage wood floors to a wallpaper fashioned from old guest register cards. Guest rooms—smartly decorated like a spread out of Dwell magazine with subtle nautical accents—are equipped with flat-screen TVs, iPod docks, and many with glassed-in rain showers.
Each morning, the inn’s private chef prepares an all-you-can-eat gourmet breakfast spread of homemade croissants, quiches, muffins, cakes, fruit, greek yogurt, and homemade granola. Afterwards, take advantage of the complimentary bicycle rentals to explore the village. Woods Hole Inn is just steps from the Martha’s Vineyard ferry, which shuttles passengers on a 45-minute ride to the iconic island, where you can explore quirky shops and pop into The Black Dog tavern for a cup of fresh Quahog chowder. Two roundtrip ferry tickets are included with your stay.
Woods Hole, Cape Cod: Marine-Biology Institutes and Seaside Scenery
The southwestern swath of the Cape is a renowned marine-biology research hub, bustling with scientists, researchers, and students from all over the world. At Great Harbor, you may glimpse research vessels trolling in and out from places like the Marine Biological Laboratory and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Right around the corner, the Woods Hole Science Aquarium houses 140 marine animals native to the northeast and mid-Atlantic. You might see marine biologists feeding the seals in the aquarium’s only outdoor enclosure.
Though Cape Cod is popularly known as a summer retreat, the area charms in colder months as well. The 11-mile Shining Sea Bikeway winds just outside the inn’s front door. Hop on the path to pedal alongside Buzzards Bay, through a bird sanctuary and cranberry bogs, and past the marsh where scientist Rachel Carson filmed music videos and conducted research for her groundbreaking book Silent Spring. Just 3 miles up the road, Falmouth maintains a robust year-round population, and thus has plenty of top-notch restaurants.
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