York Harbor Inn
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Historical Traveler Reviews York Harbor Inn
My daughter's wedding reception was held at the York Harbor Inn Aug, 2004. We had many out of town guests who stayed at the Inn. The day of the wedding was the hottest, most humid day of the entire summer. The A/C in our room was okay but still a bit warm. Didn't complain. The A/C in the function room was nearly non-existent! We complained several times to no avail. After the wedding I contacted the person in charge of functions & lodged a complaint. She never got back to me. A couple of months later I wrote a letter to the Innkeeper. He finally replied after 6 wks and gave me a long explanation of how he knew it was a problem & what he did to fix it. Considering that upwards of $25,000 was spent that weekend from the wedding and our guests it was a rather limp response to a very real problem. So if you ever think you might want to stay at this Inn AND have an expensive function there don't expect much satisfaction if something goes wrong.
I stayed in a luxury room at York Harbor Inn in June 2005. The grounds around the inn are well manicured, and you generally get the "Maine" feeling when you pull in. There's a nice view of the ocean, but unfortunately you have to look across route 1A to see it.
Our luxury room rate was $259 a night - pretty steep for pre-season. I was disappointed with the size of the room which was very small, but it was very well apointed. The furnishings and decor were tasteful and looked well cared for. The king size four poster bed was great, as was the gas stove. The bathroom was absolutely spotless, and featured marble countertops and a jacuzzi spa. Overall, the room was cozy and classy - a difficult balance to strike.
My interaction with the staff was minimal but pleasant. We ate lunch in the cellar bar, which is decorated in a ship them. The decor was very unique and created an interesting atmosphere. Service was prompt, and the food was above average for a pub. Prices were about average.
Overall, the York Harbor Inn is a nice, but expensive retreat. I feel like I got my money's worth.
All that glistens is not gold...
On a trip to Boston at Easter 2004 husband and myself decided to explore further afield to Maine. On the way we stumbled across the Kittery Outlet Centres and stopped for a browse. If you can put aside the strange layout of the outlet centres which are spread out on either side of the busy main road for about a mile and a half you should enjoy some excellent bargain hunting. Don't even attempt to cross the road from one side to the other, just drive across and in and out of each individual outlet, the road is far too busy for pedestrians!. The usual suspects are represented there, RL, Tommy Hilfiger, OskKosh, Etienne Aigner, Old Navy, Timberland, etc. The best bargains to be had were in the OshKosh shop (if you have kids although they do have some good bargains in the adult section), Timberland and the Coach shop if you have a penchant for expensive purses or wallets (like me!).
We decided to go to York Harbor after browsing a guide book at a Kittery book outlet which said it was a great place to visit and it sounded nice. Having no maps we stopped at the first two hotels we came across, the York Harbour Inn and the Stage Neck Inn. How did we choose between the two? The Stage Neck Inn is more modern with uninspiring architecture outside and the York Harbor Inn looks like something out of Peyton Place. There lies the clue to why we picked the York Harbor Inn. All I can add is don't judge a book by it's cover!
We did a walk in and were told it was our lucky day as there was a special discount on the current rates with 50% off. Even with the 50% off the rate was in the region of $170 plus taxes. We were offered a choice of different rooms and rates in the main motel and the house they own next door. The receptionist was very helpful and had no problem allowing me to view the rooms before deciding even though some had not yet been cleaned from the previous occupants (when doing a walk in, always ask to look at the accommodation on offer before deciding, if any hotel refuses to let you see the rooms before checking in, don't stay there).
After dismissing the house next door (too creepy), I looked at a couple of rooms in the main building and we plumped for an attic room which was one of the more expensive rooms and we were told had it's own "private" balcony. The room was probably the best of the bunch, the other rooms were a tad dissappointing and although the room I chose was quite small the others were even smaller. The room which was decorated in traditional victorian style was at the front of the hotel and very near the busy road (Route 1). However upon walking out onto the decked balcony we discovered it was not quite as private as we had been lead to believe. The room next door also had access to the "private" balcony and the occupant of that room who was having a siesta, got the shock of his life when I loomed up outside his window. Needless to say we did not venture out there again.
Fortunately it was out of season so the noise from the traffic was bearable but in the summer it must be horrendous. The bathroom probably needed some refurb but was reasonably clean and sufficient for a weekend break. The TV in the room was unwatchable due to the poor reception. As it was pretty cold at the time of our stay the room felt quite damp and the heating in the room made a lot of noise when in operation.
There were at least two flights of very narrow, steep stairs leading up to the room so if you were infirm or disabled it would be completely inaccessible. As the Inn is old there was a lot of noise from the creaking boards etc, and I think if you were on a lower floor underneath other guests it would be quite noisy and claustrophobic.
The breakfast dining room is very nice and looks out onto the street, it is very bright and cosy. Breakfast which was self service was a slight dissappointment, the hot drinks were dispensed from flask like jugs and were always lukewarm or cold. At the time of our visit there appeared to be a problem with staffing levels. The breakfast could have been better for the room rate paid.
On the first night we visited the Stage Neck Inn for dinner. Immediately it was obvious just from walking into the lobby that our first impression gleaned from the outside of the hotel was wrong. The inside of the hotel far surpassed it's exterior. The lobby and common rooms were delightful. We ate in the more casual dining room and had a lovely table near the open fire which was crackling away and had a beautiful view out of the georgian style windows onto the water. The meal was absolutely yummy, my lobster sandwich was served with french fries and was the tastiest lobster I have ever eaten. My husband had a burger and fries which was just as delicious. Whilst the meal was relatively expensive, it was worth every penny. We felt that our initial dismissal of the Stage Neck had been a grave error and that it was far superior to the York Harbour Inn and there was no difference in the price, in fact the Stage Neck Inn was probably $10 dollars cheaper at that time of year for a walk-in.
On our last night my husband wanted to eat at the Stage Neck Inn again as our meal had been so delicious the night before. Unfortunately, fooled by the framed review from a newspaper about the "wonderful & innovative" award winning resident chef hanging on the wall of the York Harbor Inn and seduced by the glossy description of the refurbished bar which looked like the interior of a yacht in the basement of the Inn, I persuaded my reluctant husband who was less impressed with the Inn than me to eat there. Big Mistake. Whilst the bar looks very inviting when you first go down the steep wooden stairs, the clever decor in the main part of the bar deceives you into believing you are going to enjoy a unique culinary experience.
It was unique alright, upon ordering we began to think we had made a bad decision, the gentleman who served us was surly and uninterested. The beer was served in a wet glass so consequently was flat. My bowl of clam chowder was gloopy, salty and powdery and was very clearly either from a tin or a powder mix, the salt crackers served with it were stale. This was followed by the worse lobster sandwich I have ever encountered. The lobster was still icy and had obviously been hastily defrosted in the microwave and the lettuce and tomato it was served with had clearly been fresh at some time in the last 2 weeks. My husband fared no better and his burger was lukewarm and virtually inedible. The gentleman who served us was so surly and intimidating we did not feel that we could complain and meekly paid up and made a hasty exit. The price for such a mediocre meal was exhoribitant and worked out about $5 cheaper than the Stage Neck Inn which was far, far superior and more than justified the small extra cost.
The owner Gary Dominguez was very helpful and friendly as were the reception staff on the day we checked in. As the room was not ready, they took our bags for safekeeping and upon our return had helpfully lugged our fairly heavy suitcases up the two difficult flights of stairs to our room. Although the staff were very friendly and helpful on the day we checked in they were not quite so interested when I mentioned the appalling meal we had there and the not so private balcony upon check out. My polite complaint was totally ignored. We felt so upset by the experience in the basement restaurant that upon our return I sent an e-mail which was never replied to.
We would probably not stay at the Inn again. I think like all establishments that become popular and have no trouble attracting tourists (especially true of the York Harbor Inn as it is one of the first Inns you come when approaching York Harbor) they eventually begin to rest on their laurels and standards slip. We thought it was an average B&B for the price charged and would have been very unhappy if we had paid the full rate (although I still have serious doubts about the discount being 50% off normal rates, let's face it, it was out of season and the Inn was not full by any means). The Stage Neck Inn would probably be a much better choice even if a little more expensive. Whilst the York Harbor Inn looks very quaint and picturesque, appearances can be deceiving.
York Harbor was very peaceful at the time of our visit, we drove to York Beach which was very quiet at that time, there are some nice shops there and some of them had just reopened for the coming season. For anyone who likes silver jewellery there is a great little silver shop there where you can pick up some nice rings and earrings at very reasonable prices. Some of the shops are a bit touristy and the town is like many seaside resorts, slightly shabby and down at heel in some areas. A visit to the Cape Neddick lighthouse known as the Nubble lighthouse is worthwhile. It is easily found and is signposted off of Route 1 approximately halfway between York Harbour and York Beach. A visit at dusk is a must and at the time we were there due to the brooding weather it was very atmospheric. Would visit York Harbor again but not the York Harbor Inn.
A wonderful time at York Harbor Inn
My sister and I just came back from our trip to York Beach, Maine and stayed at a wonderful inn - York Harbor Inn. We loved the attention to every request, the cleanliness of the inn, the friendliness of the staff and the absolutely fabulous meals in the dining room. We enjoyed our evenings in our lovely room with our private fireplace and the sound of the ocean. A very nice continental breakfast was available each morning and when we said we had to leave before breakfast was served, we were offered a packaged breakfast to take with us. A very lovely place to stay.
Relaxing retreat . .
Stayed here after a busy week exploring new york and boston. It was the perfect place to relax - a romantic inn set across from the beach in the small sleepy town of york harbor. We were lucky to have explored the hotels website before visiting and got amazing value with $99 internet special room rate (midweek) including breakfast. Our room was charming with four poster bed and ensuite. The best thing about this place is the atmosphere - staff are very friendly and drinking and eating in the cellar pub (which by the way serves excellent food) made us feel almost like locals. The hot tub on site was a bonus - especially as the ocean was too cold for swimming (in june!). Shopaholics watch out as you are only 5-10 mins drive from kittery outlet village and also near fox run mall, newington (NH - therefore tax free shopping).
We love it...
We have been going to the York Harbor Inn for 15 years and love the Inn, its staff and its amenities! If you're looking for a hotel, this is not it. If you're looking for charm, friendliness and great service, I don't know of any place better.
Our large "superior" room with a water view turned out to be a small converted attic space. The view was of route 1a and a tree filled park, beyond which we were able to "hear" the ocean. We were staying in the Harbor Cliffs House of the York Harbor Inn. With a name like that you might expect the hotel to be right on the water. On the website and in the brochure there are photos taken from this building that clearly show the ocean, but they were taken in the winter when the trees are bare.
The tiny bathroom was missing pieces of molding on the ceiling and the queen bed sagged in the middle. This is all the more disconcerting when you are paying $300 a night. Which, by the way, was $10 more than the rack rate that was printed on the bathroom door. A big no-no in Maine.
We left after 1 night and ended up staying down the road at the Stageneck Inn. A great hotel on the water that was also $50 a night cheaper.
On the plus side, the staff at the York Harbor Inn were friendly and helpful.
Loved the York Harbor Motel
We Loved the York Harbor Motel. We stayed in Building A, had private balconies! They also allowed smoking although the room did NOT smell like they did! We spent most of the weekend on "our" balcony watching the waves roll in. We chose the third floor because nobody would be walking over our heads, and the view was Fantastic! Beds were comfortable, the room seemed clean, and we will be back!
The Perfect Place to Stay in Maine
We spent two night at the York Harbor Inn, in a beautiful suite with a seperate living room, bedroom, indoor jacuzzi, kitchen facilities, and private outdoor deck. We also had full use of the big outdoor jacuzzi.
The beach was just a short walk down the hill, through the garden path - not bad unless you have trouble walking down or up a hill. The service was superb, with complimentary bottled water being left in our suite each day, a comp newspaper each day, and free coffee in the lobby whenever you wanted it. The continental breakfast was very nice, and you can see the ocean from their dining room! We were pleased with the location of the Inn in York Harbor - sort of a quiet, upscale town, compared to crowed Ogunquit just north... I'd definitely recommend this place, oh, and don't miss the Nubble Lighthouse, just a short drive away or the Lobster Trip right from York Harbor's Docks!
Nicely appointed rooms. We stayed in the crowe's nest which was a bit of a challenge to get too. A bit disappointed that the Inn is seperated from the ocean by Route 1. A great little pub and had an overall nice time.
TripAdvisor Reviews York Harbor Inn
Travel Blogs from York Harbor
... Shirt and leather vest, gassed up and headed south on I 95 to Arundel ME to speak at Bentley's and have a great $15.00 lobster and beverages. Thank you Hanna and Lisa for your great hospitality. The Music and crowd were great!! Tomorrow night It's a Meet and great at Loui'Bs in Southwick MA. Looking forward to riding in the Sunshine and warm ...
... Maine toll booth another $10.50 charge. Arrived in Kennebunk, Maine at 3:30 this afternoon. What a beautiful park it is. Alot of bikers come here! Alot of space and nice trees. We are not close to the water but there are beaches close by. A little too chilly for the beach anyway. After a little feed of Maine Lobster spent the rest of the evening planning for the next day ...
We spent a few hours this morning doing what one does while in Portland....shop.
Sarah got a jacket for $30 that had a regular price of $160 so great buy for sure. We headed over to the Amtrak/Bus terminal at noon and are now en route to Logan airport in Boston. This bus is pretty wild we are watching Kung Fu Panda ...
... in my shoes. So that's the man part. Pretty scary right?
And now for nature. I realized that took forever to explain the last story so I'll make this part short and sweet. Not long after the Walmart incident I still wanted to save money but sure as hell wasn't going to another Walmart and thank the lord I come across the the White Mountian National Forest in New Hampshire. I honestly felt like I was home again! I LOVE NATIONAL FORESTS! They are all the same, ...
... and we could be bothered messing around. I guess we are spoiled in Australia. another thing that is great are the strawberries which you can buy direct from the farms.
There is also a lot of art in the area and just outside of Kennebunk is probably the best art glass shop we have ever seen. We kept saying to each other "How are we going to take that home?"
We only saw the lower part of Maine but rest assured we will be doing the lot pretty soon.