White Barn Inn | Kennebunk Beach, ME
Fall brings our nesting, comfort-dining instincts to the fore—which is why the friendly farmhouse inns of New England have such a magnetic effect. From the 5-diamond comforts of Relais & Châteaux to a homespun cottage on a working farm, these properties promise a warm welcome complete with fresh-baked cookies by the fire.
By Lena Katz
Photo Credit: White Barn Inn, Relais & Châteaux
Shamrock Farm Inn | Portsmouth, RI
This countryside charmer on the grounds of a working flower farm is run by a father and daughter team. It offers “One Hundred Thousand Welcomes” in the Celtic hospitality tradition that proprietor William Conheeny learned from his Galway, Ireland forebears.
Photo Credit: Shamrock Farm Inn
Blue Horse Inn | Woodstock, VT
Pets and people alike get the run of the house at Blue Horse Inn, and it’s always “wine hour” or time for an impromptu music performance somewhere around the property. In the summer and fall, the sloping backyard, with flower beds and a pool overlooking the river, is everyone’s unofficial chill spot.
Photo Credit: Blue Horse Inn
Mayflower Inn | Washington, CT
Billing itself as a “country house hotel,” this Relais & Châteaux property represents the most luxurious of New England inn lodgings—more manor than farmhouse, but still blissfully bucolic. With oversized soaking tubs and romantic canopied four-poster beds, the rooms are perfect for cozying up a deux during a winter storm.
Photo Credit: Mayflower Inn, Relais & Châteaux
Apple Hill Inn | Taftsville, VT
With a gamboling Goldendoodle greeting guests in the drive and acres of green pastures and orchards rolling in every direction, this property makes guests long to quit their city jobs and move to the most rural reaches of Vermont. The proprietress did so herself, and will share her story as she bakes batches of muffins or whisks around the sunny antique-furnished atrium. The large, empty but pristine old barn in back is a popular wedding site in warm months.
Photo Credit: Apple Hill Inn
Christmas Farm Inn | Jackson, NH
The name makes you wonder if this might be Santa’s own holiday getaway. And maybe--if Santa were rather sophisticated and enjoyed spa days and evenings drinking wine by the fire pit—it could be. A former working Colonial-era farmhouse, later doing turns as a church and a jail, the property first became an inn in the late 1800s. Since then, it’s gone through various ownership changes and has been added onto and been upgraded many times, most recently in 2010.
Photo Credit: Christmas Farm Inn
Warfield House Inn | Charlemont, MA
Farm stays are a popular way to experience rural Massachusetts. At this Berkshires property, guests can go on llama treks or horseback trail rides, in addition to “working” in the old-fashioned barnyard and/or the garden. Seasonal activities include maple syruping, cross-country skiing and leaf-peeping. Guest lodge in the main house or the “Bungalow,” which has less expensive rooms including three that are shared-bath.
Photo Credit: Warfield House Inn
Hartman’s Herb Farm | Barre, MA
There are as many greenhouses as guest rooms at this Massachusetts garden farm. Although the five guest rooms are quite modest, the beautiful display garden, 150-person dining room and formal gardens make this a popular wedding spot. The property also hosts popular holiday brunches and weekend open houses in May.
Photo Credit: Hartman’s Herb Farm
Inn at Valley Farm | Walpole, NH
Going “back to the land” doesn’t get more idyllic than at sustainable, family-run Walpole Valley Farm. Lodging choices include guest rooms in the “Inn,” the family-friendly cottages or the farmhouse (rented as one unit, by the week). With free-range chickens feeding freely and sheep and cows grazing in their pastures, the 105-acre farm is a tourist-friendly model of modern homesteading. Go on a farm tour to see just how much work it takes to keep everything looking so picture-perfect.
Photo Credit: Inn at Valley Farm
Cabot Cove Cottages | Kennebunkport, ME
Admittedly, this property’s coastal, not country. However, the collection of adorable little free-standing cottages, all gentle pastels and country-chic interiors, sums up everything an outsider wants from a New England getaway. The fall foliage right outside is spectacular, the nearby village is great for antiquing, and every guest cottage has its own private porch with Adirondack chairs.
Photo Credit: Cabot Cove Cottages
Blantyre | Lenox, MA
This classic New England country mansion was originally built as a great estate of the Gilded Age. The first owner modeled it after his ancestral home in Scotland—thus, the name and the turreted main house not pictured. Other much-beloved features, such as the “Snow Barbeques,” the specialty hot chocolate menu (pictured), the “mud baths” and the small spa housed in the former potting shed, have evolved during the Blantyre’s latest incarnation as a genteel country inn—now in its third decade, and going strong.
Photo Credit: Blantyre, Relais & Châteaux
Sachem Farmhouse Inn | Litchfield, CT
Jennifer and Jason King restored their 4-room farmhouse inn in 2007, so as to be able to welcome guests to the working farm that’s been in their family since the late 1700s. Of all the country charms that nearby New Yorkers and New Jersey refugees crave—the farm fresh breakfasts, the lakeside picnics, the peaceful gardens—the most popular feature might be the adorably woolly sheep. Pictured: mama Celeste with twin lambs Alabama and Alaska.
Photo Credit: Sachem Farmhouse Inn