Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Year’s Getaway

Like I mentioned previously, we went up to Portsmouth, NH to celebrate the new year.  We don’t typically have huge plans for NYE since most of our close friends are usually busy and if we do plan something, it’s always last-minute.  I wanted to go away but not somewhere too far, so I thought of Portsmouth since it takes a little over an hour to get there from our townhouse.  I started searching for hotels and then focused on looking for something close to downtown, since I found a ton of bars and restaurants there. 

I think I did a Google search and the Ale House Inn popped up on the list as a hotel to check out.  I checked out their website, did a quick search on Trip Advisor (though, you always have to take those reviews with a grain of salt), and then brought up the idea to the hubby.  The only issue was that they were requiring a 2 night minimum stay since it was NYE weekend.  A couple other hotels in the area were not, but they weren’t as close to downtown.  We decided to splurge and do the 2 nights as a Christmas gift to each other.  We still gave each other small gifts this year, but for the most part, this weekend was our big gift.

ale-house-exterior-1 picture from Ale House Inn’s site

We both really enjoyed staying at the Ale House Inn.  It was recently renovated so the  design is very modern and has a loft-feel to it.  I loved the exposed brick in the lounge and on the insides of our window in our room.  The guide/information packet they leave in the room said the Inn used to be a brewery in the 1800’s and then shut down when Prohibition happened.     ale-house-interior-3


pictures from the Ale House Inn site

The room was small but not cramped – it was cozy and romantic.  The furniture fit perfectly in the room so there was no unnecessary space.  The color of our room was an icy blue and the rest of the color scheme included a lot of greys, browns, and whites.  It was masculine but it was a style I would totally think of using for our future master suite that we will hopefully have some day :)

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And my favorite part…they include an iPad in each room!  I loved figuring out how to use this thing and I’m pretty convinced I need one now.   There was also a nice flat screen and a Keurig.  Since it was NYE weekend, the inn owners even through in a bottle of champagne in the fridge for us.

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- Awesome location – close to Downtown and we walked to all the restaurants and bars in less than 10 minutes

- Close to the Kittery Outlets :)

- Modern, updated and clean, but also homey - felt like you were staying in someone’s guest room instead of a hotel room

- Very private since there are only 12 rooms

- Great amenities, including the Keurig and iPad


- The Inn doesn’t have its own parking lot, so the church across the street allows guests to park at no cost there.  However, you have to move your car on Sunday AM from 8AM-noon.  The Inn suggested to move the car after 7pm on Saturday because the meters stop running then and there’s no charge at all on Sunday.  We first moved the car to a spot a little further down the road when we went out around 7ish since there were no spots open right in front of the Inn.  When we came back at 11ish, there were plenty of better spots open, so we moved closer and ended up a few feet away from where we originally parked in the church lot.  Even though I listed this as a con, it really wasn’t a huge inconvenience.

- The Inn is a little pricey for what we usually spend on hotel rooms.  But I think it’s totally worth it and compared to other hotels in the area, they were all around the same price. 


I can’t wait to go back sometime in the spring, maybe with friends next time.  I didn’t realize how great Downtown Portsmouth is, as there are tons of options for bars, restaurants, breakfast places, shopping, etc.  And the spa that me and the girls got our wedding hair and make-up done at is right there, too, so it’s a good excuse to go back and get a massage! 

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