These Are the 15 Best Hotel Getaways in New England

New England is brimming with historic grande dames, design-minded boutique hotels, wellness retreats, and glamping getaways.

A hotel lobby with boldly patterned wallpaper, potted tree, chandelier, mirror and artwork on the walls, and a patterned area rug

The Mayflower Inn & Spa features bold decor by designer Celerie Kemble.

Courtesy of Mayflower Inn & Spa

Few parts of the United States have as long-running a connection to hotels and leisure travel as New England. In fact, there are some historic taverns and inns in this region—comprising Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine—that predate the Declaration of Independence. During the Victorian era, the area really hit its stride as a magnet for summering industrialists (and their workers) who hoped to escape the rigors and heat of the big city for a few months of relaxation on the coast. Grand seaside resorts popped up everywhere along these shores; many remain unchanged, while others have been transformed with bold designs and luxurious new amenities.

As part of Afar’s Hotels We Love series, we’ve chosen the top getaways outside of major cities that speak to the area’s history and culture: wellness resorts in the Berkshires, grande dame hotels along the Rhode Island coast, glamping getaways on the rugged Maine shore, adventure-minded inns hidden in the Vermont mountains, beach resorts on tony Cape Cod. These 15 hotels, many a quick drive from New York, Boston, or Montreal, show off the best of New England—where, depending on the season, you might find yourself eating lobster rolls poolside, leaf-peeping from your window, or warming up by the fireplace after a day on the slopes.

Blair Hill Inn

Pine needles and tree branches fill the top of the frame with a beautiful scene underneath of mountain reflections on Moosehead Lake at Lily Bay State Park in Maine on a cloudy, calm autumn day.

Blair Hill Inn is a lovely jumping-off point for exploring Maine’s rustic Northwoods and Moosehead Lake.

Photo by Dan Lewis/Shutterstock

  • Location: Greenville, Maine
  • Why we love it: A historic inn that offers a window into a less-explored region of Maine
  • Loyalty program: Always Be Expected (Relais & Châteaux)
  • Book now

If your only image of a Maine vacation is lobster rolls on the coast, you’re missing out on vast swaths of the interior. One of two Relais & Châteaux properties in the state, Blair Hill Inn is in the secluded North Woods, three hours north of Portland, and it overlooks the majestic Moosehead Lake from its location atop a 20-foot-high fieldstone wall.

The 1891 mansion features 10 guest rooms that showcase the personalized design touches you’d expect in a historic inn without any of the matronly preciousness or chintz: Some have mahogany dressers and antique armoires, others wood-burning fireplaces and deep soaking tubs. The surrounding 79 acres include a trout pond and plenty of hiking trails to scenic overlooks, and the hotel can also set you up on a “moose safari” ($375 per couple), during which you might also see bears, beavers, deer, loons, and bald eagles. Don’t miss Slate Restaurant, where the seasonal tasting menu might include dishes like foraged mushroom risotto and balsam fir–cured gravlax. From $429

Chatham Bars Inn

Exterior of a cottage at Chatham Bars Inn  with several white Adirondack chairs behind low picket fence

Feel like a true Cape Codder while lounging in the garden of your cottage.

Courtesy of Chatham Bars Inn

  • Location: Chatham, Massachusetts
  • Why we love it: Beachfront living with a restaurant that highlights farm-fresh produce
  • Loyalty program: I Prefer (Preferred Hotels & Resorts)
  • Book now

One of the most legendary addresses on Cape Cod, the historic Chatham Bars Inn opened in 1914 as an exclusive hunting lodge right at the “elbow” of the cape, about a two-hour drive from Boston. Today its 217 guest rooms are split between the main inn building and 30 Cape Cod shingle–style cottages, each with a subdued palette of neutrals and such cozy touches as cushioned window seats. During the summer, the private, quarter-mile sandy beach along protected Aunt Lydia’s Cove is the place to be, thanks to cabanas stocked with Yeti coolers and complimentary boat service to North Beach Island.

The retreat’s nearby eight-acre farm produces more than 100,000 pounds and 125 varieties of vegetables each year, using techniques like hydroponics and traditional Slovenian beekeeping. In addition to providing produce to the inn’s five restaurants, the bounty makes its way to a seasonal farm stand that’s open to the public and to a series of dinners hosted either in the fields or in the greenhouse. Around the property, keep your eyes peeled for historical details, such as model clipper ships in the lobby, special weather vanes atop buildings (a codfish, a tennis racket), and even an original Norman Rockwell painting above the mantle in Stars restaurant. From $374

Faraway Martha’s Vineyard

A lobby with low couches, patterned chairs, a sweeping curtain, chandelier, and a large floral installation creeping up a built-in bookcase

The bohemian decor at the new Faraway Martha’s Vineyard is inspired by Carly Simon’s laid-back musician vibes.

Photo by Matt Kisiday

  • Location: Edgartown, Massachusetts
  • Why we love it: Bohemian design, a cozy pub, and a new saltwater heated pool
  • Book now

There’s an exuberant eclecticism to the design of Faraway Martha’s Vineyard, a 58-room boutique hotel that opened last year in the 1742 Kelley House. While the shingled exterior is classic Georgian from when Edgartown was a whaling hub, the interiors draw from a very different muse: musician Carly Simon, whom the hotel’s new owner used to watch perform on the island when he summered here as a kid. The lobby has a SoCal-inspired, laid-back vibe, with low-slung gold-hued couches, boho tchotchkes, floral installations, and patterned textiles—the kind of place where you want to sit by the fireplace with an acoustic guitar and dream up your next hit.

Guest rooms skew midcentury as well, with graphic wooden room dividers and bold wallpapers (palm fronds, fish), and families will love the double bunk suite. Outside, under fringed umbrellas, order ceviche, sashimi, and slushies at the Pelican Club, or head into the cozier Newes from America, a tavern where you get a wooden nickel for every draft beer you purchase. Collect enough and you’ll get a custom tankard that’s kept behind the bar for you to use when you visit. From $404

Mayflower Inn & Spa, Auberge Resorts Collection

A guest room with modern art on the wall and small triangular pedestals holding up objects, a striped area rug, an old-fashioned sofa, and a bed with a canopy

The refreshed guest rooms pair traditional silhouettes with modern art and bold hits of color.

Courtesy of Auberge Resorts Collection

  • Location: Washington, Connecticut
  • Why we love it: A thoughtful, modern redesign by Celerie Kemble
  • Book now

The classic Yankee ideal of stone walls, spectacular old barns, and winding lanes reaches its crescendo in Connecticut’s Litchfield County, about two hours by car north of New York City. Against that backdrop, the Mayflower Inn & Spa grandly rests. Bought and converted from a boarding school to an inn in 1920 by a former student, the cozy hotel inspired the bed-and-breakfast in Gilmore Girls, the Independence Inn. In 2018, luxury hotel group Auberge Resorts took the reins and brought in Florida-born, Manhattan-based interior designer Celerie Kemble to reinforce the “new” in Mayflower’s New England vibe.

Four-poster beds, gleaming wood floors, and chintz remain, but you’ll note an energy and wit to the handmade furniture, artwork, and color combinations. Auberge also imported the Well, a New York spa that combines Eastern and Western sensibilities. Be sure to have a meal at the country-chic Garden Room, which overlooks the Shakespeare Garden and has a menu that changes with the seasons, including dishes like turnips à la bourguignon, kale gnudi, and fried quail. From $679

Miraval Berkshires

A row of tan lounge chairs next to outdoor pool with white umbrellas and buildings in the background

The new Miraval outpost is helping cement the Berkshires as a wellness getaway destination.

Courtesy of Miraval Berkshires

  • Location: Lenox, Massachusetts
  • Why we love it: Gorgeous grounds by Frederick Law Olmsted and wellness amenities right in your room
  • Loyalty program: World of Hyatt
  • Book now

The Berkshires in Western Massachusetts have been a high-end spa destination since Canyon Ranch Lenox opened its doors in 1989. In 2020, that bastion of wellness got a worthy rival with the debut of the new Miraval Berkshires Resort, an outpost of the Tucson original. Set across 380 acres originally designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the 121 rooms and suites are divided between the Gilded Age Wyndhurst Mansion (where accommodations are named after period creatives like Edith Wharton and Herman Melville), new-build cottages, and larger carriage houses that are designed for groups. In-room amenities aim to please serenity seekers and include Tibetan singing bowls, meditation cushions, and spa-like cotton robes and slippers.

The daily schedule here is packed with complimentary activities—tai chi, hiking, Pilates, farm tours, pottery—to entice all types of travelers. Guests also can enjoy the swimming pool or splurge on a treatment at the Balinese-inspired Life in Balance Spa. While alcoholic beverages are not included, there’s a rotating menu of chef-prepared meals and snacks made with locally sourced seasonal ingredients, some straight from the property’s gardens, beehives, and chicken coops. From $787

Newport Harbor Island Resort

A guest room with two gray beds, wood paneling, and views of water outside glass door leading to small balcony

The newly redesigned rooms at the Newport Harbor Island Resort feature locally made art and decor items.

Courtesy of Newport Harbor Island Resort

  • Location: Newport, Rhode Island
  • Why we love it: Refreshed guest rooms decorated with notable local crafts and art pieces
  • Book now

Newport may be known for its Gilded Age glamour, but you’re getting a different side of the Rhode Island resort town at the Newport Harbor Island Resort, a less fussy coastal hideaway that reopened this spring after a $50 million transformation. Located on Goat Island on the site of a former torpedo factory, the reimagined hotel has 257 rooms and 18 suites; all feature clean lines and a calming palette of sandy beiges and Atlantic blues, with design pieces by local artists and New England weavers’ guilds.

Public spaces nod toward sustainability in works like a whale carved from salvaged driftwood and Sarah Swift’s wavelike installation, woven together from upcycled raw fibers, plastic bags, straws, and netting. As lovely as the new interiors are, you’ll want to spend much of your time outdoors, whether that means slurping down raw oysters at the Pineapple Club, sipping sunset cocktails around the outdoor firepits, or strolling to the 1842 lighthouse at the northern tip of Goat Island. From $459

Ocean House

A pale yellow grand hotel behind a manicured croquet lawn with the ocean in the background

The Victorian-style Ocean House has a croquet lawn so precisely manicured that it’s leveled by laser.

Photo by Allard One/Shutterstock

  • Location: Watch Hill, Rhode Island
  • Why we love it: Reconstructed Victorian elegance (plus: croquet on the manicured lawn)
  • Book now

A quintessential Victorian seaside retreat, the original Rhode Island Ocean House opened in 1868 and later served as the filming location for the Douglas Fairbanks silent film American Aristocracy. By the early 21st century, the property—known for its striking yellow facade—was in a sorry state and had to be demolished. But it was too iconic to simply go the way of the dodo. It was quickly reconstructed at a cost of $146 million, complete with its 247 windows intact and more than 5,000 pieces of salvaged antiques and furnishings.

Sitting atop a bluff overlooking Block Island Sound and Montauk beyond, the hotel comprises 49 guest rooms and 20 suites, which include early New England artwork, Matouk linens, and goose-down pillows. While in these far western reaches of Rhode Island, about an hour by car from Providence or Newport, you can sail on the French-built yacht Dandy, golf, fish, surf, or sunbathe, but the can’t-miss activity is six-wicket croquet on the impeccably manicured lawn, where guests are asked to wear traditional croquet attire (white collared shirts and white or khaki shorts or pants) for their complimentary lessons. From $470

Omni Mount Washington Resort

Distant view grand white hotel with a red roof surrounded by green hills

Omni Mount Washington sits in the shadow of the highest mountain in the Northeast.

Courtesy of Omni Mount Washington

  • Location: Bretton Woods, New Hampshire
  • Why we love it: Mountain views and four-season outdoor adventures
  • Loyalty program: Omni Select Guest
  • Book now

History buffs will know this palatial Spanish renaissance revival hotel as the site of the Bretton Woods Conference in 1944, during which the Allies established the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. But things are decidedly less serious these days: A weekend away in the country—in the shadow of Mount Washington, the highest peak in the Northeast—is all about embracing the four-season pleasures of the surrounding countryside, whether that means ziplining over hemlock trees, teeing off on the century-old golf course, or trail riding with horses from the stables.

The 269 guest rooms and suites are divvied up between the original hotel (construction began in 1900) and the newer Presidential Wing; depending on the room category, you’ll find stately design touches like striped wingback chairs, floral curtains, and bold plaid wallpaper. Come wintertime, the resort is also an ideal jumping-off point for alpine and nordic skiing in the adjacent Bretton Woods Ski Area. From $318

Twin Farms

A wooden treehouse on stilts surrounded by trees

The new Treehouse suites at Twin Farms add a dash of chic ruggedness to a property known more for its history and art collection.

Courtesy of Twin Farms

  • Location: Barnard, Vermont
  • Why we love it: A historic home with an impressive art collection and stunning new treehouse accommodations
  • Loyalty program: Always Be Expected (Relais & Châteaux)
  • Book now

The former home of Nobel Laureate Sinclair Lewis and famed journalist Dorothy Thompson from the late 1920s to the mid-1950s, Twin Farms, a member of Relais & Châteaux, is a collection of unique cottages and suites that has been preserved and enhanced as one of the top retreats in the Northeast. The home’s most recent owner, philanthropist Thurston Twigg-Smith, decided to open up the property to paying guests in 1993, and he turned to Andy Warhol’s partner and acclaimed interior designer Jed Johnson to help transform it into a resort, with much of his outstanding art collection (David Hockney, Cy Twombly, Jasper Johns) displayed throughout the estate.

In fall 2023, Twin Farms opened eight Treehouse accommodations among the area’s thick birch forests. Hovering between 14 and 20 feet above ground, these 800-square-foot hideaways on stilts are designed with the Japanese principle of wabi-sabi, or the celebration of imperfection in nature. The rustic materials, floating fireplaces, and floor-to-ceiling glass windows are meant to call nature inside. Read Afar’s in-depth review of Twin Farms. From $2,600

Under Canvas Acadia

Aerial view of distant tents along a path surrounded by trees near the coast

The first outpost of Under Canvas in the Northeast sits on 1,200 feet of coastline in Maine.

Photo by Bailey Made

  • Location: Surry, Maine
  • Why we love it: Its proximity to a gorgeous national park and its summer camp feel
  • Book now

Known for bringing glamping to national parks around the country, Under Canvas made its East Coast debut in 2021. Its Acadia location is situated on 1,200 feet of Union River Bay coastline with views of Cadillac Mountain, the highest point on the North Atlantic seaboard. About a half-hour-drive from the park entrance, the seasonal Under Canvas Acadia (open May through mid-October) comprises 63 safari-style canvas tents, but the experiences is far from roughing it: Think coastal-inspired West Elm furnishing, en suite bathrooms with organic bath products, and wood-burning stoves with free firewood. Some suites include a stargazing window above the bed; others come with a separate kids’ tent outside. At night, guests make like summer campers and head to the communal area for s’mores, live music, and dinner that might include lobster or other fresh catches. From $299

Wentworth by the Sea

A grand coastal hotel with a red roof and boats in the harbor in front

The storied Wentworth by the Sea celebrates its 150th anniversary this year.

Courtesy of Opal Properties

  • Location: New Castle, New Hampshire
  • Why we love it: A Gilded Age grande dame that’s been going strong for 150 years
  • Book now

New Hampshire only has 18 miles of Atlantic coastline, but on a little island just off that stretch of land between Massachusetts and Maine you’ll find this Gilded Age grande dame that celebrates its 150th anniversary this year. A member of Historic Hotels of America, the legendary retreat has hosted such famous guests as Shirley Temple, Herbert Hoover, and even the delegates who helped to end the Russo-Japanese War.

The 161 guest rooms and suites are done up in shades of pale blues, grays, and whites, subtly evoking the maritime views you’ll see from many windows, with some featuring fireplaces or balcony rocking chairs. From here, guests can play on the 18-hole golf course or clay tennis courts, book charter boats from the marina, or indulge in classic New England seafood dishes (like lobster bisque), stone-oven flatbreads, or handmade pastas at Salt Kitchen + Bar. From $209

White Barn Inn & Spa, Auberge Resorts Collection

A living room with two old-fashioned painted portraits, a blue couch, red patterned chairs, and a zebra hide rug

The newly redesigned White Barn Inn combines preppy heritage with quirky design choices like this zebra hide rug.

Photo by Noe DeWitt

  • Location: Kennebunk, Maine
  • Why we love it: Surprisingly quirky design in a historic space, with a lobster tasting menu at the restaurant
  • Book now

Only about a three-mile drive from the Bush compound, the White Barn Inn & Spa recently underwent a major overhaul at the hands of New York–based designer Jenny Wolf. And while the results are still appropriately preppy in this seaside village known for its old-money charms, there’s a subtle quirkiness to Wolf’s choices: You might find, for instance, a zebra-hide rug beneath two traditional portrait paintings; tiny mounted antlers above the beds in some of the 23 rooms and four stand-alone cottages; a framed painting of a big eye resting on the bookshelf by the lobby fireplace; and colors and patterns that are turned up a bit brighter and bolder than you’d expect.

The centerpiece of the hotel is the fine-dining restaurant in the eponymous, 1860s-era barn, where one of the tasting-menu options is wholly lobster focused, with dishes like a lobster caviar roll, tempura lobster, and tandoori lobster. The decidedly more casual Little Barn, a new tavern-like space, features a 60-foot-long mural by Maine artist Dean Barger that echoes the 19th-century landscape paintings. From $382

White Elephant Inn

A minimalist statue of a white elephant in front of a gray-shingle hotel with a porch and balcony

A mascot named Trunket stands guard outside the White Elephant Nantucket.

Photo by EQRoy/Shutterstock

  • Location: Nantucket, Massachusetts
  • Why we love it: Seaside cottages with a modern aesthetic and a robust artist-in-residence program
  • Book now

Originally opened as a collection of rustic seaside cottages in the 1920s by local socialite Elizabeth T. Ludwig, the White Elephant has become Nantucket’s most luxurious place to stay. Last year, the property reopened after a multimillion-dollar renovation that refreshed its 54 rooms and suites and 11 garden cottages. Accommodations have sky-blue ceilings, grass cloth wall coverings, and rattan textiles—plus playful pachyderms that show up everywhere from door knockers to needlepoint pillows.

One of the first things you see when you walk into the reception area is a mural of a woman in a rowboat by pop artist Orit Fuchs. It’s a colorful introduction to the hotel’s artist-in-residence program. Elsewhere around the property you’ll see works by printmakers, photographers, and painters, like Mary Chandler, who created watercolors of native Nantucket flora. Beyond the resort, guests can wander to the Nantucket Whaling Museum, the Brant Point Lighthouse, or the Lightship Basket Museum to fully embrace the historic maritime vibes here. From $325


A bed with tree trunk–style posts under a canopy of branches, with a beaver statue

Among the whimsical cottages on offer at Winvian is this rustic accommodation inspired by a beaver dam.

Courtesy of Winvian

  • Location: Morris, Connecticut
  • Why we love it: A unique and playful cottage design, with menus featuring produce grown on site
  • Loyalty program: Always Be Expected (Relais & Châteaux)
  • Book now

When you book at Winvian, a Relais & Châteaux wellness retreat in Connecticut’s Litchfield Hills, there’s a bit of a choose-your-own-adventure selection of accommodations: Each of the 18 cottages and one main suite are done up in a unique style by one of 15 architects. The five-person Helicopter cottage, for instance, was built in and around a restored 1968 Sikorsky chopper, while the bed in the Beaver Lodge cottage sits underneath a dam-inspired canopy made from branches.

For something more traditional, consider the Hadley Suite, which is located in the 1775 historic family home and decorated in a Regency Era–style reminiscent of Bridgerton. At the on-site restaurant, chef Chris Eddy sources many of the seasonal ingredients from the property’s greenhouses and gardens. And while you can spend your time here happily doing next to nothing (perhaps a couples massage in front of a crackling fire?), there are plenty of on-site activities on offer, including stained-glass workshops, fencing lessons, and cooking classes. From $825

Woodstock Inn & Resort

A white inn with dormer windows behind a green lawn with pairs of white Adirondack chairs

Hotelier Laurance Rockefeller is responsible for the Woodstock Inn & Resort as we know it today.

Photo by jenlo8/Shutterstock

  • Location: Woodstock, Vermont
  • Why we love it: A historic retreat offering plenty of mountain adventures
  • Book now

This storied stretch of real estate in the heart of Vermont’s Green Mountains has been a beacon of hospitality since 1793, when a tavern opened on this site. The current incarnation of Woodstock Inn & Resort dates back to 1967 when conservationist and hotelier Laurance Rockefeller tore down the previous Woodstock Inn (built in 1892) and constructed a new one.

Its 142 rooms and suites exude a timeless elegance, with furnishings handcrafted by area artisans, cherry- or mahogany-wood bed frames, and playful details like wind-up alarm clocks and gingham accents. While on site, you can take part in a falconry or owl meet-and-greet experience, unwind in a Scandinavian cedar sauna at the LEED-certified spa, or play a round at the Robert Trent Jones, Sr.–designed course at the Woodstock Country Club. Also worth checking out are the Kelly Way Gardens, one mile south of the inn, where master gardener Benjamin Pauly offers guided tours, tastings, gardening classes, and special dinners in the historic red barns. From $320

Additional reporting by Lauren Dana Ellman, Ann Shields, and Greg Sullivan.

Nicholas DeRenzo is a freelance travel and culture writer based in Brooklyn. A graduate of NYU’s Cultural Reporting and Criticism program, he worked as an editor at Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel and, most recently, as executive editor at Hemispheres, the in-flight magazine of United Airlines. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, New York, Travel + Leisure, Condé Nast Traveler, Sunset, Wine Enthusiast, and more.
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