Kennebunk + Kennebunkport
It’s been four years since my last 48HRS in these seaside towns. That was pre-parenthood; this time my husband, Steve, and I will have our three-year-old daughter with us. I’m looking forward to some quality family time in a place that’s both familiar and constantly changing.
4:45 p.m. @ Huston & Company Through my work on Maine Home+Design, I’ve been a longtime admirer of Huston’s handcrafted wooden furniture. Sales and marketing manager Kate Mastrangelo takes me on a tour of the showroom; the new Balance table’s lines are a work of art. In the workshop, dozens of tables and chairs are being built for a library at Princeton as part of a multi-year project with the university.
5:15 p.m. @ Captain Fairfield Inn We check in to our B&B, which is housed in an 1813 Federal-style mansion. Now owned by Lark Hotels, the inn has been renovated with a chic, modern vibe—think bold wallpaper patterns and vibrant accents. Our room has a gas fireplace and a zebra-print headboard. We are graciously welcomed with glasses of wine.
6:00 p.m. @ David’s KPT The three of us get a table near the raw bar, overlooking the Kennebunk River. I’m a fan of anything chef David Turin puts his name on; this location is no exception. Before our entrees, I savor a half-dozen oysters by myself (lucky for me, Steve doesn’t eat seafood).
8:00 p.m. @ Roma Pizza One of us is begging for ice cream and with Rococo not yet open for the season, we walk up the steps of this pizzeria looking for dessert. What we find is even better than ice cream: the last cannoli given to us by owner Luca Pizzuti!
9:00 a.m. @ Captain Fairfield Inn The tapas-style breakfast spread downstairs is decadent: overnight pumpkin oatmeal, Mexican chocolate scones, baked eggs, prosciutto and brie, fresh fruit. We help ourselves to seconds (and thirds).
10:20 a.m. @ Becoming Jewelry We head over to Main Street in Kennebunk because I love Tracey Graves’s jewelry— each collection tells a story. I see a necklace with two delicate rings linked—a small one and a large one— representing mother and child. I leave with a hand- hammered brass cuff but drop some serious Mother’s Day hints.
10:45 a.m. @ Hurlbutt Designs I can never go to Kennebunk without visiting Louise
and Ralph Hurlbutt’s lovely home decor shops. (Their Portside location is closed for a few more weeks.) Designer Ilyse Sandler shows us what’s new, including a beautiful mirror encircled with paddles by artist Maralyn Menghini. Louise introduces me to her client, Jane Garvey, who was the first woman to serve as Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration. We have a fascinating chat before Louise sends us home with a handful of white starfish and seashells for our daughter’s room.
11:30 a.m. @ Distinctive Tile & Stoneworks I head over to check out Larry Stoddard’s newest tile showroom and am greeted by Mary Blum, an artist whom I had interviewed for Art Collector Maine. She gives me a tour of the beautifully designed space with walls upon walls of tile in every pattern, texture, shape, size, and color imaginable.
12:00 p.m. @ Mornings in Paris Caffeine is calling, so we stop into this cute European-style cafe for coffee and macarons.
12:15 p.m. @ Beach Grass As I walk through the screen door I find a group of customers browsing beachy home decor, including mermaid bookends and signs with sayings like “Seas the Day.”
12:30 p.m. @ Benoit’s Inside Jeff and Heidi Benoit’s Dock Square shop, I spend some time looking at an amazing collection of Native American jewelry.
12:45 p.m. @ Daytrip Jr. Our daughter has fun exploring every nook of this adorable kids’ boutique, filled with books, clothes, toys—even a coin- operated ride-on whale.
1:00 p.m. @ Stonehome Estate Jewelers Rochelle Clinton greets us warmly and explains that in addition to buying and selling antique and estate jewels, she and Paul Duchesne do custom design and
sell contemporary pieces. Everything Rochelle takes out sparkles in the light, including a stunning Victorian moonstone and diamond ring. The range of prices surprises me—many of the items I see are quite affordable. I like thinking about the past life of each of these heirlooms and how they’ll become part of someone else’s story.
1:30 p.m. @ Home Ingredients Owners Mark Brunell and Steven Sousa are getting the shop set up for the season as I browse the lovely home decor, including ceramic pitchers, garden wares, and fine soaps.
1:45 p.m. @ JAK Designs This shop, owned by Tanya Alsberg and her partner, Jennifer Armstrong, features gorgeous knitwear that the two create by hand using a bed of 200 needles. I find luscious linen capelets, wool fingerless gloves (a bestseller), and lightweight scarves in a rainbow of hues.
2:00 pm. @ King’s Wharfe In the window of this Ocean Avenue boutique, I spot a black and white polka dot dress that would be perfect for the Kennebunkport Festival.
2:15 p.m. @ Market Day We grab some sandwiches to go and head back to the inn for naptime, stopping in the dining room to grab a couple (okay, three) homemade salted chocolate- chip cookies.
5:00 p.m. @ Federal Jack’s We enjoy some yummy pub fare and a porter overlooking the river. The atmosphere is lively—the energy of a seaside town on the verge of summer. Outside, the boats are still shrink-wrapped, but they’ll be shedding their skins soon enough.
8:00 p.m. @ Alisson’s Restaurant I haven’t been here since the renovation by architect David Matero and interior designer Jeanne Handy. Booths now line the perimeter and light wood makes the space feel more open. It’s packed but thanks to accommodating staff, we are allowed to order dessert only, a chocolate-chip cookie pie that I’m reluctant to share.
9:00 a.m. @ Captain Fairfield Inn We wake up to surprise spring snow and eat another delicious breakfast downstairs.
10:00 a.m. @ Gallery at the Grand The gallery is closed but I peer through the windows at a beautiful Jane Dahmen painting of birches. Outside, Dick Alden’s granite Great Stone Flowers are topped with a light blanket of snow.
10:30 a.m. @ Snug Harbor Farm The greenhouses are like saunas, a welcome antidote to this cold, wet day. We spend time inside each one, checking out the succulents and topiaries and breathing in the scent of things growing in soil. In the barn, the miniature horses are a big hit.
12:30p.m. @ Ocean Avenue We drive along Ocean Avenue, past the famous Mabel’s Lobster Claw, which is going into its sixty-third year of business. The ocean is a dreamy turquoise.
1:00 p.m. @ The Ramp Bar & Grill The last time I was here I was pregnant, so drinking a Bloody Mary and sharing shoestring onion rings with our daughter while overlooking Cape Porpoise harbor is pure joy. On our ride home, she won’t stop talking about “Kennebunkheart.” We decide not to correct her; she’s clearly got this place figured out.