While the coastal town of Kennebunkport, Maine—perhaps best known as the summer home of the Bush political dynasty—draws visitors in every season, its intimacy (the 2010 census recorded less than 3,500 residents) makes it perfect for a romantic weekend getaway. The town sits along the Kennebunk River and, to the northeast, its quaint, coastal village of Cape Porpoise is sweetly littered with small town fixings like a lone grocery store and a single art gallery that enhance its escapist appeal. As Valentine’s Day approaches, consider trading the hustle of everyday life behind for a fairytale weekend with bae in Southern Maine (only five hours or so by car from New York City), using the following itinerary.
Friday night: Check-in to The Kennebunkport Inn, a former tea merchant’s mansion in the heart of Dock Square (the town’s commercial center). Today, the inn boasts 35 comfortable rooms that blend its classic New England architecture with contemporary furnishings, which means each accommodation is perfectly cozy without sacrificing any modern luxuries (including a personalized concierge experience, which, in February, is particularly devoted to lovers—more on that later).
Saturday morning: Wake-up and smell the coffee after a short stroll to Mornings in Paris, an authentic European-style bakery that brews up sweet treats like a red velvet latte and a pink passion mocha all month long. After breakfast, visit Abacus Gallery for its curated selection of prints, jewelry and metal works. Serious shopaholics shouldn’t miss Minka, a boutique recognized for its selection of luxe handmade jewelry and other accessories, or The Hut KPT, known for its nautical, artisan-made souvenirs.
Saturday afternoon: Why grab a quick bite when you can make an experience out of lunch? Throughout February, on Saturdays from 3-5:00pm, Ports of Italy offers a “Meet the Brewery & Pizza Making Class,” where participants will learn to make wood-oven pies as they sample a selection of craft New England beers. It’s a hands-on session that’s bound to bring you and any significant other even closer (and if all else fails: pizza!).
Saturday night: End your long day on a cozy note with dinner at Salt & Honey, a New England-style (read: fresh seafood-focused) eatery that offers an $89 prefix three-course dinner for two all month (bottle of wine included).
Sunday morning: Sleep in and schedule a late morning, in-room couples massage via the Kennebunkport Inn’s Cupid Concierge, which, as we noted earlier, offers the same personalized service the property’s regular concierge provides, with a special focus on romance. Those looking to leave Kennebunkport even more committed to one another than they were upon arrival should particularly consider the concierge’s “Put a Ring on It” package, which can curate an entire proposal experience—from sourcing a ring to hiring a photographer—while you’re in town.
Sunday afternoon: Before heading out, take one more opportunity to savor Kennebunkport’s coastal charm over brunch at David’s KPT, inside the Boathouse Hotel. Residents and visitors alike flock to the restaurant for its contemporary, locally sourced fare (and the town’s only raw bar). If the cuisine isn’t filling enough, patrons can feast their eyes on the restaurant’s other draw: magnificent views of the Kennebunk River.