Mountain Inn Set on 70 Acres of New Hampshire Wilderness
Sunset Hill House Inn has been attracting visitors since the late 19th century, when city dwellers would flee the crowds and coal-choked atmosphere of New York and Boston for the unhurried pace and pristine mountain air of New Hampshire’s White Mountains. Nearly 200 years after it welcomed its first visitors, the hilltop inn and its idyllic surroundings won the hearts of Alonzo and Nancy Henderson, who left their corporate jobs to take on innkeeping responsibilities full-time. Today, the couple and their four children continue to look after the inn, which serves as a mountain escape year-round.
Many of the guest rooms got a new look after the inn hosted a Decorator's Showdown in 2011. “I love to decorate," Nancy says, "but just can't seem to find the time to do what I know should be done." So she devised a contest in which interior designers were allowed to treat individual rooms as a blank canvas, with guests voting on the results. Room 302 was crowned the winner following a lengthy primary season and several runoffs. The design incorporates a bird motif and colorful accents from retailer Garnet Hill. Though each room is different, all of them offer spectacular views of the White or Green Mountains, along with the inn's views of 40 named peaks and 7 mountain ranges.
Mornings at Sunset Hill House Inn begin with a complimentary breakfast of cooked-to-order omelets, pancakes, and french toast. At Restaurant at Sunset Hill—one of two onsite eateries—chefs use herbs and produce from local farms as well as their own kitchen garden to craft prix fixe menus and à la carte options that include potato-crusted salmon. Restaurant at Sunset Hill is a Chaîne des Rôtisseurs property helmed by chef Brill Williams and is the winner of seven awards from Wine Spectator magazine, whereas the New Hampshire Tavern is a more laid-back alternative that serves burgers and locally brewed beers.
Sugar Hill, New Hampshire: Covered Bridges Nestled in New England Wilderness
Sugar Hill lies about 50 miles north of Concord and just two hours from Boston in an area home to 7 mountain ranges and 40 separate peaks. The town sits in the heart of the Franconia Notch, a state park inhabited by deer, moose, and black bears. Many of these animals can be spotted in the forest and meadows around the inn. You can take one of the nations oldest aerial tram ride to the top of Cannon Mountain, enjoy tax-free holiday shopping, or go on a cut-your-own Christmas tree excursion on weekends. Downhill or cross country skiing is available at Cannon Mountain, Franconia Notch State Park, Loon and Bretton Woods Mountains. To bring home a taste of the Granite State, simply head down to one of the quaint country stores for maple syrup, cheeses, and homemade jams.