Where do you Live? Rockland Maine
Why did you choose the city / state you now live in? My husband and I fell in love with the Rockland area and the Rockland community when we were looking for a coastal Maine town to start our B&B inn. Rockland has a large historic area comprising the vibrant downtown, working harbor, nearby residential neighborhood and many interesting small businesses. It has been described as “salty with just the right amount of sophistication” and this is a very apt tagline. It is a working town with a large working harbor yet the downtown is home to over 26 art galleries, 20 restaurants and several museums. Maine is still an old-fashioned State. People take pride in hard work, value family and playtime, care about nature and conservation and people tend to not need to drive or wear their money. No business survives year round unless it caters as much to the locals as to the visitors. I love how the small businesses, city and residents take pride in their hometown and work together to keep this a great place to live and visit. It is a wonderful walkable town, geographically centered in the mid-coast area of Maine with friendly people who are helpful and actually will wave to you when you cross the street.
What do you love most about where you live? I love how much Rockland and the surrounding area has to offer guests year round. There is just so much to do – great museums and theaters; tons of outdoor activities on both land and sea; and the food – wow! The local Strand Theatre in town shows live telebroadcasts of the MET Opera, London Theatre, American Ballet and a few Broadway shows in addition to live shows and film. There are small farms, five wineries, six lighthouses, four museums, the ocean, lakes, trees and the beautiful rugged coast of Maine. Rockland has recently been named as one of the Top Best 9 Small Towns for Food by TheDailyMeal.com, one of the Top Coolest Small Towns in the US by Budget Travel, the Lobster Capital of the World and one of Maine’s best Adventure towns by National Geographic Traveler. The downtown area is walkable and we have cabs too. Rockland is also the geographic center of Midcoast Maine so it makes it easy to travel to visit LL Bean in Freeport and Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor.
What is your favorite restaurant in your town? We have too many great restaurants to name just one. We have over 20 restaurants in our downtown area alone and I visit them all depending on what I feel like eating. Primo Restaurant is the most recognized in the area as the chef, Melissa Kelly, has won the James Beard Award for the Northeast for 2 years. Her restaurant epitomizes the “farm to table” concept as she is one of the first chefs to raise and slaughter her own animals on premise and her goal is to raise 80% of all of the food that her restaurant serves. What I love about the food scene is Rockland is that most of our restaurants are small and chef owned. The owner is cooking every night or most nights so they care what is coming out of the kitchen and they care what the guest experience is. Also, most of the restaurants are committed to sourcing as much of their food locally as possible and many have their own gardens or farms. The combination of being chef-owned and using the best local seasonal ingredients makes for an exceptional dining experience from our local diner to our Four Star restaurants.
What is your Age Group: 46-59 – Hmmmm how did that happen?
What is your favorite All Time Movie? To hard to choose.
Do you have any Pets? Captain Nemo is our rescue cat that lives on premise. He prefers the great outdoors but does have “a chair” in the inn that is his. He is a black short-haired cat with a small frame. I have to say that I have never worked so hard for the affection of an animal as we have worked with Nemo over the years. He was a stray cat that had been feral for a year (guesstimate) and had been abused by humans. He definitely likes structured in his life and “tolerates” guests adoring him when his is napping on the porch.
What is your favorite thing to do in your free time? As an innkeeper, free time is not something that I have a lot of. I guess I enjoy reading a book, taking a nap, going for a walk and being a tourist in my own backyard enjoying all of the activities that I send my guests to all year round.
What is your favorite season and why? I love late spring/early summer. You can literally see the flowers, trees and grass growing before your eyes. Everything smells fresh. This time of year brings out the “happiness” in most people.
If you won the lottery, what is the first thing you would do? Set up trusts to make sure all of our parents will
be comfortable in their golden years; make a donation to our local animal shelter, food pantry and domestic women shelter; buy my husband an antique Packard car and me a Volkswagen Bug and take a long vacation to visit all 50 states.
If you could learn to do anything, what would it be? Learn to have a poker face – I show all emotions.
If you could witness any event past, present or future, what would it be? When there truly is peace on earth.
Which celebrity do you get mistaken for? I cannot say that it has ever happened.
Where do you work? Berry Manor Inn
What is your title? Owner and Innkeeper
How long have you worked there? Just started our 15th year in business (2013).
What do you love most about your Job? Making an ordinary day an extraordinary day for a guest by helping them discover the Rockland area and experience the beautiful coast of Maine.
What is your Experience and Background in the Travel Industry? Innkeeper for 15 years.