The Kennebunks are often thought of as a playground for the wealthy – former President George H.W. Bush famously has a compound here – but Kennebunk’s Lower Village offers a vibrant alternative to this upper-crust impression and stands on its own as a separate, attractive destination.
Kennebunk means “long cut bank” in the language of the Abenaki people, likely in reference to the Great Hill at the mouth of the Mousam River. Native Americans knew the area for the abundant fishing and hunting they discovered here as they cruised the coast in their ocean-going canoes.
Europeans settled the area in the early 1600’s as a ship-building and trading port, sailing countless five-masted ships and schooners down the Kennebunk River and out to sea. Ship captains and other aristocracy built fine mansions here, many of which can still be seen today, their antique charm pervading much of Kennebunk’s Lower Village.
Originally part of Wells, ME, the village of Kennebunk incorporated as its own town in 1820. After the shipping industry died away, the area became something of an artist’s enclave before evolving into the resort destination, “the place to be all year,” that it is known as now.
Kennebunk’s Lower Village and Dock Square have retained much of their old world charm. Historic buildings are spaced apart along the quiet and gently hilly roads, housing independent restaurants, unique shops, and funky galleries. A close-knit community of locals helps Kennebunk’s Lower Village neighborhood maintain this warm and friendly atmosphere of the old mixed with the new.
Best of all, Kennebunk’s Lower Village and Dock Square are within walking distance from downtown Kennebunkport, putting virtually all the Kennebunk’s best urban attractions within easy reach.
Inn at English Meadows is proud to be a part of Kennebunk’s Lower Village. Our historic, Greek Revival home was built in the 1860’s by a local dairy farmer, Asa English, who rented out rooms in the house even then. The dairy barn was later converted to a carriage house with seven rooms, while the former barn’s hayloft has been transformed into our large and comfortable Carriage House Suite. The Bungalow on the property’s back meadow is an intimate and private cottage.
Like Inn at English Meadows, much of Kennebunk’s Lower Village has maintained the warmth and humanity of a seemingly distant past while simultaneously providing the best of modern amenities. This friendly mix of the historic and the contemporary creates a truly unique area to visit and explore – come discover Kennebunk’s Lower Village and Dock Square!