Hotel at a Glance: Hartstone Inn
Boston Globe correspondent Hilary Nangle summed it up best: “One doesn’t go hungry at the Hartstone Inn.” Well-fed guests can thank chef and co-innkeeper Michael Salmon, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. Salmon spent more than 25 years crafting gourmet fare for restaurants around the globe—including an award-winning stint in Aruba—before returning to the States. While he and his wife, Mary Jo, were vacationing, the pair fell in love with the coastal town of Camden. They decided to open an inn and restaurant in a Victorian mansion near the harbor.
- Historical inn: The AAA Four Diamond inn dates back to 1835. Be sure to take a stroll through its English-style gardens and admire the collection of live orchids in the living quarters.
- Prix fixe dinner: The head chef crafts a five-course meal each evening; recent entrees have included pan-roasted Maine lobster and grilled sirloin steak. This Groupon comes with a $55 credit you can use toward the cost of this prix fixe dinner.
- Heaps of praise: The Hartstone’s restaurant has been featured in Martha Stewart Living and Bon Appétit.
- Guest rooms: You’ll stay in one of the two buildings at the coastal estate. Guest rooms come with private baths, free WiFi, TVs, and homey touches including original artwork, plush robes, and fresh flowers.
- Gourmet eats: Enjoy a multicourse breakfast with freshly squeezed juices and entrees such as prosciutto baked eggs and belgian waffles with fresh fruit.
- Included perk: Nibble on artisan chocolates and sip wine, included with this Getaway.
- Cocktail party: Head down to the parlor in the late afternoon to enjoy complimentary hors d’oeuvres.
Camden, Maine: Coastal New England Village near Mount Battie
Located about 80 miles from Portland to the southwest and Acadia National Park to the northeast, Camden, Maine, is a charming coastal community. In Camden Harbor, a historical fleet of windjammers sits moored to the dock. You can sign up for a cruise on one of the vessels, or opt to explore the bay via kayak.
The windjammers typically start their season in May, but if you arrive before then, there are still plenty of local activities. Camden Hills State Park offers a network of hiking trails—and cross-country ski trails if there’s still snow on the ground—along the hilly coastline. You can either hike or drive to the top of Mount Battie, which offers bird’s-eye views of the harbor and the best sunset perspective in Camden. Another scenic option is to drive from Camden south to Damariscotta, following the coastline to pass by six lighthouses.