First off, the Chiltern Inn is not really an inn in the usual sense. It is a bed and breakfast, in the classic sense because they only rent three rooms. But, oh what rooms they are!!
It gives a very exclusive feel, because the house is so expansive that there is a great sense of privacy. The owners greet you at the door, show you around the entire building (and there is a lot to show), and invite you to wine and cheese for conversations in front of the fireplace before we went out to dinner. At breakfast the next morning, the owner spreads a beautiful full meal, in three courses, on heirloom china. She is a gracious woman, a young retired superintendent of schools, who keeps this mansion spic and span. (She hires help, of course). She is a wealth of knowledge about what to see in Acadia National Park, the best places to dine, and the history of the village of Bar Harbor. She has maps to lend. Her son was the actual Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, and there are pictures and clippings to prove it in her theater room. Yes, there is a theater, with raised seating in recliners, a stage, and a projector for watching DVD's. There is also a beautiful indoor pool, spa, and sauna, with fireplace at the end of the pool. There is also a gallery of tastefully selected paintings around the grand piano.
The inn is magnificent, kind of like what a grand home should be, if we had the money to buy our dream home, but the conversations are what make it magical. The owner, Joan, makes everyone feel at home, then she encourages coversations, and before you know it you're like old friends with the other guests. Joan has a knack for getting people to talk about the interesting things they have done.
If you want to get lost in the crowd, go to a motel. If you want to feel connected, and have someone to talk to when you come back from a whale watch trip or a hike in the mountains, then I recommend the Chiltern Inn. It is great.
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- Also Known As:
- Chiltern Inn Bar Harbor, Maine