For the final installment of my Maine-iacs Series, I present to you: KENNEBUNKPORT!
Context: This summer, my husband and I went on a “last hurrah” vacation before we put our noses to the grindstone for a while with work and life stuff, and Maine totally lived up to our dreams.
You can read about the first stops on our Maine-iac Adventures here:
We chose Kennebunkport as the cherry on top of our Maine vacation because it’s an adorable place with unique charm — not because that’s where Taylor Swift filmed the “Mine” video, if that’s what you’re thinking.
This part of the trip was planned and booked much later than the Portland and Bar Harbor portions for a simple reason: We didn’t know where we’d go. We played with the idea of pushing further north to Nova Scotia (didn’t have enough time this go round…); we thought about ending the trip in Cape Elizabeth; we thought about only staying in Kennebunkport for one night … but in the end, we decided we do better when we have a chance to settle into a place and relax/explore there, versus a whirlwind tour of many places.
Once I did exhaustive research on places to stay in the area, I landed on The Colony Hotel — a decision made with total confidence. I played with the idea of staying in a more humble accommodations about a ten-minute drive away from everything to save money, but in the end, that didn’t make sense. The on-site amenities, location, proximity to restaurants, free parking, breakfast, activities, and — let’s face it — comfort of The Colony Hotel was well worth every penny.
And it was an absolute dream.
These pictures hardly do this grand resort justice, but I was too busy sipping my complimentary rosé on the veranda to care much at the time.
We spent one afternoon lounging by the pool, soaking in the sunshine and letting the salt air waft us into a dreamy haze. This is definitely a family-friendly resort, so it wasn’t exactly silent, but we were too absorbed in our books to care.
The only thing as magical as the outside of the hotel was the inside! Our room was so cute, I squealed upon entering.
I’m not saying I chose this hotel due to the pink nightstands, but I’m not, NOT saying it.
There is plenty to love about The Colony Hotel, for sure. A delicious full breakfast is served in the waterfront dining room each morning (and was included in our stay). Sitting in a little corner table with views overlooking the water, slowly sipping coffee and chatting about the day ahead is my kind of paradise.
The staff was so incredibly warm and friendly, and waited on us hand and foot as if I’d stepped out of the car and into the year 1912. We remarked that this is a holiday of “olden times,” where a fella can get to know his surroundings and have a decent time, see, (yes, picture me wagging a cigar stub and saying that in my best Groucho Marx voice).
The rooms, the breakfast and the staff weren’t the only picture-perfect things in Kennebunkport! The whole place is just crawling with cuteness.
One morning after breakfast, we easily rented bikes from the hotel and pedaled our way up and around the road along the waterfront. We waved hello to the Bush family at Walker’s Point, and continued biking past summer house after summer house. Lots of pristine gardens. Lotttss of money. Lotttttttttttssss of Lilly Pulitzer. ;)
Once our legs were sufficiently jelly, we went back to the room and freshened up, then walked a few minutes into town to a small, somewhat grubby local seafood market — the kind you know isn’t there to just please the tourists. There, we picked up an fresh lobster roll, clam chowder, a six-pack of New England beer, and some crackers. We took our little picnic to the shore and made ourselves at home on the rocks.
(The Colony offers private beach access. The beach itself is not private, but the end of the beach where the resort is has an exclusive path, so it was much less crowded over here).)
Best food. Best views. Best company.
My crazy husband went swimming — as in, he went all the way under. My delicate, Southern, warm-water-loving constitution simply wouldn’t allow me to partake in that nonsense. 83 degrees for me, please.
Later on, we got pre-dinner drinks on (yes, on) a boat in the water that is somehow permanently fixed there. The “main” part of Kennebunkport (I don’t think you can quite call it a downtown) was charming, as expected, and offered some gorgeous sunset views.
We were more into this view, though:
The best part was that all these little restaurants and pubs were walkable to our hotel, so know need to bother with taking the car and finding parking. Almost as if I’d planned that or something.
The only time we did take the car, actually, was to drive about 15 minutes north toward Cape Porpoise to go to The Ramp — a bar and grill which came highly recommended by a friend. Since there was a wait inside, we cozied up at an outdoor table for a cocktail. They ended up serving us outside, and we had the most magnificent sunset view. The whole thing — the atmosphere, the more relaxed vibe compared to Kennebunkport, the way an inlet can make any meal taste better — reminded me a great deal of Charleston, actually.
But with just enough Maine charm to make its mark.
Have you ever been to Kennebunkport? What else would you recommend to readers who’d like to visit? I hear the lighthouses in the area are cool, but we didn’t try to see them. Let us know in the comments below!
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