For weeks we’ve focused on the fabulous Hallmark experiences the Distinctive Inns of New England (DINE) offer to those seeking that quintessential New England holiday setting. We started with the beautiful experiences offered by inns in Maine. Next we directed our attention to the holiday happenings and gorgeous surroundings among inns in Massachusetts. Today, we’ll take a look at all the wonderful holiday getaways and events at inns in Vermont, New Hampshire and then seaside in Connecticut. This is the perfect way to recreate your own Hallmark movie, sealed with a kiss by the fire or a twinkling Christmas tree!
At the Grafton Inn in Grafton, VT
Our friends at the Grafton Inn tell us that the holidays are the most wonderful time of the year, filled with the smell of fresh evergreens and crackling fires. A years-old holiday tradition continues in the lobby of the Grafton Inn once again this year with their Giving Tree. All are invited to stop by and take a tag identifying the wishes of a local needy person. Then, fill your hearts by shopping locally. On December 11, don’t miss Christmas in Grafton, focused on supporting local businesses. Shop, dine, play, and support local this year! The day is filled with something for everyone – crafts, wagon rides and of course, a visit from Santa. Click here for the full schedule. Then, return to the inn for a relaxing handcrafted dinner at the dining room or in Phelps Barn.
At the Rabbit Hill Inn in Lower Waterford, VT
Whether you prefer a scene right out of a Norman Rockwell painting or from a Hallmark movie, you’ll be convinced, you’ve just stepped into it when you arrive in the tiny town of Lower Waterford, home to the Rabbit Hill Inn. Enter the inn and smell the fresh pine trees. You’ll be mesmerized by the beautifully decorated mantles and the white lights twinkling in glass ornaments and icicles. Here’s one inn where you won’t want to leave once you’re here. The lure of the holidays, plus the amazingly relaxing vibe here offers everything you might need for the perfect Rabbit Hill Inn romantic getaway. Nearby, Vermont farms and specialty food purveyors offer up everything from ice cream to syrup, jams and more. Take the self-guided “food tour” suggested by innkeeper, Leslie Mulcahy, and you’ll fill holiday bags with locally made gifts. Then, visit the Rocks Estate in nearby Bethlehem, NH (save your Christmas cards and mail them here for a Bethlehem postmark) to cut your own Christmas tree. Return to the inn for afternoon tea, some time around the game board in the Snooty Fox Pub, or tackle one of the Stave puzzles, so well loved by inn guests.
At Chesterfield Inn in West Chesterfield, NH
You know you’ve walked right into a Hallmark movie when you arrive at the Chesterfield Inn and are greeted by Yoda, the cat, awaiting guests at the front desk. The wood stove and beautifully decorated Christmas tree in the lobby cast a holiday glow that gives a sense of “ahhhh…now I can relax.” Start with a hand crafted cocktail or mocktail, then enjoy dinner in the beautifully decorated dining room. Get ready to explore the local shops either in Brattleboro, VT – just five miles away or nearby Keene, NH. Both offer up special locally-owned shops filled with everything from unique crafts to delicious homemade foods. When you return to the inn after a day of shopping, enjoy the decorations with a decidedly natural flair and sit by the fire in the dining room or privately in your own room and toast the wonder of the holidays.
At Inn at Harbor Hill Marina in Niantic, CT
The town of Niantic, CT is filled with the wonder of the holidays and the lure of a seaside holiday season. Within an easy stroll of the Inn at Harbor Hill Marina, take in all the holiday events offered in Niantic, one of the most beautiful towns along the Connecticut shoreline. Visit on December 11th and you’ll get in on all the holiday happenings including the Niantic Jingle Bell 5K in the morning and the Niantic Light Parade in the afternoon. Stroll hand in hand back to the inn to take in the beautiful views of the bay and enjoy wine and cheese in the living room or your own private toast in a room with a private fireplace. Nearby Mystic, CT offers up even more specialty shopping and a Mystic Christmas.
Note: The Manor on Golden Pond in Holderness, NH is closed for the winter. However, they are taking reservations for stays starting April 1st and selling gift certificates throughout the holiday season, which make the perfect holiday gifts. Simply call the inn directly at 800-545-2141.
Don’t forget, each of the Distinctive Inns of New England sell gift certificates, which make the perfect gift for that person who has everything but time to get away and relax. Contact the DINE inn of your choice to request your gift certificate for that special person. Travel along with them, and it’s a gift to yourself too!
In Connecticut: Inn at Harbor Hill Marina in Niantic