bed and breakfast blog

Inn Featured in The Examiner

March 7th, 2013 by englishmeadows

living-room-alt

On February 28, 2013, The Examiner featured The Inn at English Meadows in an article in their travel section. The theme of the article was that women need not despair during the basketball fueled frenzy of March Madness. Our inn is one of several properties mentioned as great destinations for a Girl’s March Madness Getaway.

We are always happy to custom tailor a stay to include elements that will personalize and enhance the experience of escaping to Kennebunk / Kennebunkport and the beauty of southern Maine. To read the complete Examiner article click here

We will be announcing a March Madness special soon but in the meantime, be sure to check out our Cabin Fever Special. The rate discounts for March are sure to cure your cabin fever and offer an attractive opportunity to plan that Girl’s Weekend getaway!

March Events

February 25th, 2013 by englishmeadows

Whether you are interested in delicious food, gardening, or boats, some wonderful events are coming up in Southern Maine during the month of March. As an added incentive to come come experience these great happenings, we are offering our Cabin Fever Special which features big savings on all rooms throughout March (rates are $129 – $199).  Also, stay tuned for our March Madness Special which will be revealed soon.  Check out all of our specials and packages by clicking here.

2013 marks the 5th year for Maine Restaurant Week. Over 70 restaurants are offering special prix fixe three-course dinners and some are also offering special $15 prix fixe lunches. Maine Maple Sunday is another upcoming event that is sure to please anyone who has affection for all things maple. The Portland Flower Show is a showcase event for anyone interested in gardening or landscaping. Rounding out the events in March are the Portland Boat Show and the Maine Boatbuilders show. The Inn at English Meadows is the perfect place to use as a base to take advantage of all of these great happenings. We have compiled details about each of these events below: maine-restaurant-week

Maine Restaurant Week – March 1 -10, 2013 – Maine’s reputation as a foodie destination is well deserved. Maine Restaurant Week celebrates the ingenuity and innovation of our favorite independent, locally-owned restaurants. More than 70 restaurants are participating this year, offering customers three-course prix fixe dinners priced at $22, $32, or $42. Customers love it because dining on special 3-course menus at these prices feels downright decadent. Some restaurants are also featuring prix fixe lunches for $15. Through annual fundraising, local non-profit organizations also benefit from Restaurant Week. For 2013, the target is the United Way. Check out the lineup of fantastic restaurants at the Maine Restaurant Week website.

maple-sunday

Maine Maple Sunday – March 24, 2013 – The Maine Maple Producers Association welcomes you to join Maine’s Maple Syrup Producers, statewide, as they celebrate Maine Maple Sunday. Most sugarhouses offer free maple syrup samples and demonstrations on how pure Maine maple syrup is made. Many farms offer games, activities, treats (including pancakes, maple sundaes, maple coated nuts, maple whoopie pies, maple butter, maple baked beans, and maple candy), sugarbush tours, music, and much more. This is a great opportunity to indulge your sweet tooth while peeking into the interesting process that syrup producers undertake to create their delicious amber product. The Maine Maple Producers Association has a great, interactive map that details the sugarhouses that are participating in Maple Sunday: Maple Sunday Map.

portland-flower-show

The Portland Flower Show – March 6 – 10, 2013 – Northern New England’s only annual flower show. The event features spectacular garden themed exhibits, vendor booths and informational seminars. This year’s theme is “Timeless Gardens.” Check out the Portland Flower Show website.

portland-boat-show

Portland Boat Show – February 28 – March 3, 2013 – For boating enthusiasts, people interested in checking out the latest boating accessories, or folks looking to jump into purchasing a new boat, this event features the largest display area of any of the local boat shows, with exhibits including center console & walkaround fishing boats, bowriders, cuddy cabins, cruisers, pontoon boats, wakeboard boats, and tournament ski boats. For details, visit the Portland Boat Show website. Boating season is right around the corner.

maine-boatbuilders-show

Maine Boatbuilders Show – March 15 – 17, 2013 – The Maine Boatbuilders Show brings the best in Maine marine craftsmanship together with some of the most discerning boat enthusiasts. The show includes everything from a 50-foot day sailer displayed by Brooklin Boat Yard to Rangeley Boats’ rowboats, as well as all the equipment and components in between – with each booth manned by a company owner. The show draws exhibitors from around the country and customers from around the world. Check out the Maine Boatbuilders Show website for more information.

The Power of Chocolate

February 3rd, 2013 by englishmeadows

Glorious chocolate

Glorious chocolate

To celebrate the idea of romance that many people tie to chocolate, this month we have shared a recipe that creates rich, decadent hot chocolate. The recipe came to Liz from a French chocolatier. The story behind the recipe is that we were researching opening a chocolate cafe and found a French chocolatier who wanted to open in the U.S. We studied the French chocolate business for a while but couldn’t find a location that was quite right so we decided on opening a B&B instead. That turned out to be a wonderful decision, but we are still are quite passionate about the chocolate cafe idea….you never know.

From a delicacy for kings to everyone’s favorite treat, from a sacred and revered heath food to a modern scientific wonder, the history of chocolate is rich, varied, and never boring.

Chocolate has long had a reputation as an aphrodisiac, starting with the Spanish conquistadors who assumed the emperor Montezuma was said to consume the bean in copious amounts to fuel his romantic trysts. Casanova, the famous lover, considered it his “favorite breakfast dish.” His memoirs reveal that he used chocolate as a bribe for the chaperones and guardians of the women he loved as much, if not more, than as a love potion.

The two elements in chocolate which scientists ascribe the aphrodisiac qualities of chocolate to are tryptophan and phenylethylamine. Tryptophan is a building block of serotonin, a brain chemical involved in sexual arousal while phenylethylamine is a stimulant related to amphetamine, which is released in the brain when people fall in love.
Despite the persistence of the myth that chocolate is an aphrodisiac, most researchers believe that the amounts of these substances in chocolate are too small to have any measurable effect on desire. However, numerous studies have reflected what many researchers believe: if chocolate has any aphrodisiac qualities, they are probably psychological, not physiological.

The health and science worlds are abuzz about chocolate’s antioxidants which support good health. All plant foods contain antioxidants, some more than others. Cacao is especially rich in them, and antioxidants can be found in abundance in dark chocolate and natural cocoa. As more health studies come out, there seem to be more and more reasons why the Mayans, Aztecs and early physicians were right in believing in the health value of chocolate.

With all of these benefits, who can deny that chocolate is more than just something delicious that appeals to our taste buds? So go ahead, indulge, you can feel good about eating something with proven health benefits and who knows, it might also help set the mood for romance.

Martin Luther King Day

January 5th, 2013 by englishmeadows

The Martin Luther King Memorial

The Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington, DC

The Martin Luther King memorial in Washington, DC celebrates a man of conscience; the freedom movement of which he was a beacon; and his message of freedom, equality, justice and love. Liz and I were very moved and inspired by our visit to the memorial last year. In honor of the upcoming Martin Luther King Day holiday we should all remember that freedom and liberty are priceless gifts.

Martin Luther King Day Special

Celebrate Martin Luther King Day weekend with a relaxing getaway in our luxurious and cozy inn. Stay with us January 18th and 19th and receive the 20th for free! Escape the winter doldrums. Visit our quaint waterfront village. Slip off to snowshoe, cross country ski, or ice skate. Walk the dramatic shoreline. Attend a wine tasting on January 18th at Bel Cibo da Cherie. Or maybe just snuggle into one of our plush robes and read by your in-room fireplace. Maine is spectacular any time of the year no matter where your interests lie. Take advantage of our three nights for the price of two offer over Martin Luther King Day weekend by calling us today!

The cozy Sunset Room

The cozy Sunset Room

Winter Wonder In Maine

November 20th, 2012 by englishmeadows

Maine is a true winter playground, offering myriad ways to get out and explore the beautiful landscape, but also packs plenty of indoor ways to enjoy the season. The Inn at English Meadows is the perfect place to use as a base for your winter adventures, whether they involve sliding through wooded glades on cross-country skis or learning new cooking techniques in a cooking class. Afterwards, return to the Inn to relax by the fire with a mug of hot cocoa or a glass of wine. We have compiled a sampling of some of the many ways to enjoy Maine in the winter below:

Cross-country skiing in Maine image

Cross Country Skiing – In southern Maine you can cross-country ski alongside the ocean, across golf courses and through scented pine forests. Check out the trails at Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farm or the lovely Bridal Path. L.L. Bean Outdoor Discovery Schools offer inexpensive “Walk-On Adventures” in cross-country skiing and snowshoeing right from their retail store in Freeport. Some other resources for cross-country skiing include:

  • Harris Farm XC Ski Center - Dayton, (207) 499-2678, www.harrisfarm.com – This 1,000-acre center has 40 kilometers of trails for novice, intermediate and advanced skiers, with skating lines. Snowshoeing also available. Amenities include a day lodge with woodstove, snack bar, rentals, and ski shop.
  • Smiling Hill Farm - Westbrook, www.smilinghill.com – 34 kilometers of trails for novice, intermediate and advanced Nordic skiers and snowshoers, as well as marked nature trails. Amenities include rentals, a farm building with snack bar, woodstove, changing area, gift shop and dairy store.
  • Five Fields Farm - Bridgton, (207) 647-2425, www.fivefieldsski.com – This 70-acre orchard offers 27 kilometers of trails for novice, intermediate and advanced skiers and snowshoers. Of special note is the unlimited backcountry terrain to the top of scenic Bald Pate Mountain and the surrounding 450-acre land preserve. Other amenities include a warming house and rentals.

Ice skating in Maine image

Ice Skating – Close by, the Park at Crow Hill in Kennebunkport offers a skating pond and a former gas station in downtown Kennebunk has been transformed into an outdoor community ice skating rink. West Brook Ice Rink in Biddeford is also a popular outdoor skating destination. When the conditions are right, the pond in the middle of the beautiful 52-acre Deering Oaks Park in Portland is considered by many to be one of the best ice skating spots in Maine. City crews make a special effort to keep the ice cleared and its surface well groomed for skating. Up for a bigger challenge? The ice goes on for miles at Sebago Lake and other lakes of the nearby Lakes Region.

Skiing in Maine image

Skiing – Some of the finest skiing in the east is to be had at Maine mountains. Located less than two hours away are Shawnee Peak in Bridgton and Lost Valley in Auburn. Sunday River in Bethel is close enough for a day trip, as are numerous ski areas in the White Mountains of New Hampshire like Cranmore Mountain ResortBretton Woods, Black Mountain, Wildcat and Attitash.

Snowmobile in Maine image

Snowmobiling – Northeast Snowmobile Rentals, with locations in Gorham and Fryeburg can set you up with everything you need for an adrenaline-filled adventure over miles snow-covered trails and open fields. (800) 458-1838 or www.northeastsnowmobile.com.

Horse-Drawn sleigh image

Go for a sleigh ride – Enjoy snow sprinkled pine trees and frost tipped fields while you glide leisurely in a horse-drawn sleigh. Rockin’ Horse Stables offers horse-drawn sleigh/carriage/wagon rides. 245 Arundel Road, Kennebunkport 207-967-4288.

Bowing in Maine image

Bowling – The classic indoor sport is a favorite of young and old alike! Vacationland in Saco is a quick drive away, offering candlepin lanes and a billiard room. At Bayside Bowl in Portland’s revitalized Bayside neighborhood, you can bowl in an intimate, upscale alley and enjoy excellent food served right at the lanes.

Ice Hockey in Maine image

Catch a game – The Portland Pirates tear up the ice at the Cumberland County Civic Center in Portland – look for their home games all winter long as well as those of Maine’s D-league basketball team, The Maine Red Claws.

Spas in Maine image

Relax in a spa – What better way to unwind in winter than by pampering yourself at a day spa. Treat yourself to massage, a facial and aromatherapy; it’s the perfect antidote to the mid-winter blahs. Cottage Breeze Day Spa is right around the corner and numerous other spas are mere minutes away.

Cooking classes in Maine image

Take in a cooking class – Schedule a personal cooking class here at the Inn at English Meadows. Alternatively, at Stonewall Kitchen’s company headquarters in York, classes are held almost daily on such savory topics as bread making, holiday menus, ethnic specialties and seafood delights. 877.899.8363 or www.stonewallkitchen.com. Wine lovers can often find a tasting at Down East Wine Imports in Lower Village Kennebunk or at Browne Trading Company or LeRoux Kitchen in Portland’s Old Port.

Fiery Foliage

October 11th, 2012 by englishmeadows

The Kennebunk River in Fall

The Kennebunk River dressed in its fall finest

New England is famous for its glorious foliage as billions of leaves change from green to a kaleidoscope of colors. The air is crisp and cool – perfect for hiking, biking or a classic drive along back roads, where farm stands are piled high with crunchy apples and orange pumpkins.

The leaves started turning colors in the northern regions of Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire around late September and will probably peak around mid-to late October. Along the coast of New Hampshire and southern Maine, color starts later and often lasts up until November.

Maine’s official tourism website has put together a particularly interesting driving route that begins in Kittery and loops up along the southern coast through York, Ogunquit, Wells, Kennebunk, Kennebunkport, Saco, Old Orchard Beach, Scarborough, CapeElizabeth, Portland, and Freeport. After checking out the iconic L.L. bean flagship store, the route heads west through the Sebago Lakes Region and includes a covered bridge and an historic Victorian village before looping back to Kittery. The route offers myriad vistas of woods, water, and mountains while pointing out great opportunities to take in some of the most interesting cultural, historic, and scenic spots in Southern Maine. To check out the route, click this link: Antiques and Boutiques.

For those more inclined to explore on foot some excellent spots to get in a quick hike are listed below:

  • The Kennebunkport Conservation Trust preserves tracts of land that have helped maintain the scenic and idyllic charm ofKennebunkport Maine and the surrounding areas.  The Trust maintains large parcels of land with excellent trails. In particular, the Smith Preserve is well known for its trees and unique wildlife.
  • Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farm features seven miles of easy to moderate trails that cover a variety of habitats and offer rich opportunities for discovery.  Take the beach trail down to the ocean, passing trees and grasses reaching their peak of color.
  • The North Loop Trail at Wolfe’s Neck Woods State Park in Freeport presents an exceptionally bright yellow display that normally peaks in mid-to-late October.
  • Bradbury Mountain State Park in Pownal provides views of surrounding forests and Casco Bay’s Calendar Islands. The foliage color peaks usually occur in late September to mid-October.

Regardless where your interests lie, Maine in Autumn offers a beautiful destination rich with tradition and endless entertainment opportunities. We will gladly offers suggestions to help you tailor the perfect visit to Maine and Kennebunk / Kennebunkport.

Fall Fun

August 27th, 2012 by englishmeadows

Image for the Great Gatsby at On The Marsh

September is a perfect time to visit Southern Coastal Maine. The beaches are less crowded and the weather tends to feature warm, sunny days and evenings with cool breezes. Ideal conditions for sitting by the ocean or exploring everything Kennebunk and Kennebunkport have to offer. September is also a great time to take advantage of fairs, festivals, and events. An upcoming special event that promises delicious food, distinctive cocktails, and an opportunity to mingle and dance in a picturesque setting will be held at On The Marsh Bistro on Saturday, September 15, 2012. On The Marsh will present “The Great Gatsby” to benefit The Food Pantries of York County tented in the meadow outside their restaurant. 6pm Cocktails and hearty Hors d’oeuvres will be followed by 7pm Dinner and dancing to the ever popular “Straight Lace Band.” Dress for Prohibition times, and be prepared for an evening of surprises! $110 per person all inclusive, Cash Bar. Limited seating. Reservations for the event have begun. The phone number for On The Marsh is 207-967-2299. Download a PDF flyer for more information here. Come for a weekend getaway at the Inn at English Meadows and remember the Roaring 20’s at a fun event that also supports a worthy cause.

Some other events of note:

SCHOOL AROUND US SUMMER CRAFT FAIR

School Around Us 37th Annual Summer Craft Fair is Saturday, September 1st, 2012 from 9am to 4pm, on the Green, Ocean Ave, Kennebunkport, Maine. Featuring 70 juried artists and artisans, live music and food. Rain date Sunday, September 2nd, Info: (207) 967-3143, www.schoolaroundus.orgsaucraftfairs@yahoo.com

ANNUAL CAPRICCIO & FESTIVAL OF KITES

A celebration of the Arts! in Ogunquit. Festival of Kites to take place on September 8, 2012. Rain date: September 9, 2012. Directly on Ogunquit Beach. Sponsored by Ogunquit Rotary Club and Ogunquit Performing Arts. Info: (207) 646-2261.

UNITED MAINE CRAFTSMEN’S FALL FESTIVAL OF ARTS & CRAFTS

A show and sale of unique handcrafted products, made by over 100 Maine Artisans, on the grounds of Smiling Hill Farm. Exhibitors will be selling, locally handcrafted Pottery, Fused & Stained Glass, Jewelry, Baskets, Folk & Fine Art, Wood Products, Specialty Foods, Fiber Arts, Soaps, Candles and much more. Ample Free Parking, Food Vendors, Rain or Shine.

Smiling Hill Farm
781 County Rd
Westbrook, ME 04092
September 8th, 2012
10am – 4pm
$2.00 at the gate. Children under 12 free.
www.unitedmainecraftsmen.com/
Contact: Laurie Kelley
(207) 621-2818

SHAKER HILL APPLE FESTIVAL

A beautiful old Shaker village in Alfred, Maine, comes alive on Sat. Sept. 22, & Sun. Sept. 23, 2012, from 10-4. Juried arts & craft fair, Shaker Museum exhibits & demonstrations, book & yard sales, silent auction, apple & pumpkin picking, wagon rides of Shaker village, live music, children’s activities, antique car rides, farm & food booths, Museum shop, continental breakfast, Giles Family Farm Store, pie sales, chili & chowder lunches, Bakery at Notre Dame, Brothers’ Apple Store, apple crisp. Free Parking & Free Admission. Proceeds benefit homeless children of York County Shelter Programs, Friends of the Alfred Shaker Museum, and Giles Family Farm.

York County Shelter Programs
Shaker Hill Road
Alfred, ME 04002
September 22nd, 2012 — September 23rd, 2012
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Free admission, free parking
www.shakerhillapplefestival.org/
Contact: Mary Doyle
(207) 324-1137

CELLARDOOR WINERY VINFEST 2012

Vinfest 2012, our annual fall harvest celebration takes place Saturday, September 29th and includes a full day of family-friendly fun! Grape-stomping, food and wine pairings, BBQ, music, winery tours, demonstrations and much more. $10 per person. Check out our website for many more events, classes and tours. http://mainewine.com/events/special-events/

Cellardoor Winery
367 Youngtown Rd
Lincolnville, ME 04849
September 29th, 2012
10:00 A.M-5:00 P.M.
$10 per person
www.mainewine.com/
Contact: Jasie Costigan
(207) 763-4478

CAMDEN INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

Located on the rugged coast of Maine, the Camden International Film Festival will return for its eighth season. Recognized as one of the top 25 film festivals in the world for documentary films and filmmakers, the festival highlights work that show dedication to craft and a unique and artistic approach to telling a darn good story. Films are selected because of their ability to arouse discussion on documentary film as an art form, a catalyst for change and as an outlet for the independent voice. For information on the festival, the purchase of passes, our film selection or the Points North Pitch forum, visit http://www.camdenfilmfest.org/

Theatres in Camden, Rockport and Rockland
September 27th, 2012 — September 30th, 2012
www.camdenfilmfest.org/
Contact: Lara Sitruk
(617) 817-5376

FRYEBURG FAIR

Maine’s Blue Ribbon Classic! The largest agriculture fair in Maine! Eight days of entertainment and education for the whole family – A variety of livestock, draft show horses and ponies, pulling horses and oxen, a forestry research center, an agricultural exhibition center, crafts, a flower show, educational exhibitions and demonstrations, sheep dog trials and a huge parade on Saturday. A thrilling midway with amusement rides and delicious food. Live music all day, and nightly entertainment. The Fair attracts upwards of 300,000 visitors each year.

1154 Main St
Fryeburg, ME 04037
September 30th, 2012 — October 7th, 2012
Gates open at 7 – Buildings open 9-9
General Admission – $10 every day; Includes Night Shows; Children under 12 always free; 65 & over – Senior Citizen Tuesday – No Charge
www.fryeburgfair.org/
Contact: Jane Lounsbury
(207) 935-3268

Select Registry

August 10th, 2012 by englishmeadows

Select Registry Blog Image

The Inn at English Meadows is now a member of Select Registry

We are proud to share the news that Select Registry announced that the Inn at English Meadows has joined its portfolio of celebrated B&Bs.

“Only 330 properties throughout North America have qualified for the Select Registry designation,” explains Will Carlson, the association’s executive director. “Each property must pass rigorous, unannounced inspections to attain and then maintain its membership. We set the bar extremely high. Our goal is to give guests the assurance that when they check into a Select Registry inn, they’re in for an exceptional experience.”

Select Registry properties combine the charm of B&Bs with modern comforts like free Wi-Fi, flat-screen televisions and complimentary breakfasts featuring contemporary gourmet cuisine, according to Carlson. He says the 22 new member inns offer a range of getaways, from adventure travel to romantic escapes. They are located in the countryside and in major cities, from Washington’s Cascade Mountains to Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks and Florida’s sunny shores. We are pleased to join this distinguished group of properties, offering a chic and relaxing getaway in Southern coastal Maine.

How Green Does Your Garden Grow?

August 1st, 2012 by englishmeadows

The fullness of summer is upon us and our gardens are in full bloom. Pockets of green with punches of color are sprinkled around our property creating mini oases that invite rest and relaxation. Some of our favorite blooms include the showy Lacecap hydrangeas, which love the soil in Maine, and the intensely yellow Asiatic lilies. We’ve created a pallet that mixes cool purples and blues with riotous reds, sunny yellows, and punchy fuschias. We invite guests to stretch out in these tranquil spots and experience the full beauty of late summer in Maine: warm, languid days punctuated with cool, star-filled nights.

Going Green

July 13th, 2012 by englishmeadows

It’s no secret that inns and hotels can be bastions of wastefulness, with the average guest discarding about two pounds of paper, plastic, cardboard and cans each day. Pat Maher, the green consultant for the American Hotel and Lodging Association, states “Right now, half a million of those little bath product bottles end up in landfills every day.” Most are only 1/4 to 1/2 used, which sends a shocking amount of unused chemicals into our groundwater supply.

Another item that contributes to the amount of waste generated by the lodging industry is bottled water. “Each year, people are drinking 30 billion throwaway bottles of water,” said the Sierra Club’s Ruth Caplan. “If you put them end to end, it would go around the world more than 150 times.” Four out of five plastic water bottles end up in landfills, but even before they get there, they’ve taken a toll on the environment.

In an effort to be more green and waste less, the Inn at English Meadows is implementing some new eco-friendly practices – water carafes have been added to each room, which cuts down on the number of plastic water bottles needing to be recycled.

Image of New Water Carafes

In an effort to be more green, the Inn at English Meadows now supplies rooms with reusable water carafes filled with ice and filtered water.

To reduce the number of individually sized bath products that would contribute to the waste stream, the Inn is now using full-size pump bottles of (MALIN+GOETZ) rum hand (+ body) wash and neroli hand+body lotion. When guests leave, the pump bottles are refilled so nothing is thrown out. It is a wonderful marriage of offering luxury bath products while keeping an eye towards being good stewards of the environment.

Image of Malin-Goetz Hand Soap and Lotion

To help reduce the number of plastic bottles that end up in landfills, the Inn at English Meadows is now using refillable containers of hand soap and lotion.

Another green practice in which English Meadows participates is the soap recycling program managed by Partners In Development, Inc. Each year, a staggering number of children die from hygiene and sanitation related illnesses. Partners in Development works to prevent those deaths and improve community health, by recycling used hotel soap and turning it into new bars that are distributed to vulnerable populations in Haiti. With 4.6-million hotel/motel rooms in theUnited States, an estimated 2.6-million soap bars are discarded every day. By participating in the recycling program, tons of waste are diverted from the landfill. We feel that small steps can have a large impact.

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