Skip to main content

The Suzannah Flint House at The Hawthorne Hotel

While perusing status updates on Facebook Friday evening I came across one from the Hawthorne Hotel which read, "Do you love history, and patriotism too?! Come to Salem on Saturday (tomorrow) to witness the Commemoration of the 374th Anniversary of the First Muster of the National Guard." Well, gee, I love history and patriotism! I also have a soft spot for men in uniform and seem to have a love affair going on with Salem, too, so it was like that status update was speaking just to me. Hmmm, should I or shouldn't I?

As I sat mulling over whether a trip north to photograph the Muster and take Amanda to lunch might be a good idea, I received a message from Juli (the sainted woman who saved the day when Amanda was having roommate problems at Montserrat) making the prospect even more tempting in the form of an invitation to dinner at her house.  Amanda had absolutely raved about meals at Juli's house as well as how funny Juli's husband Walt is so couple that with the chance to spend more time chatting with Juli herself and my decision was pretty much a done deal.  It really locked into place when I was offered the chance to stay at the Hawthorne again as you know what a sucker I am for that place! Alright then, Jamie and I were heading to Salem bright and early on Saturday morning! A few messages back and forth had my plans all set so the only thing left was to get to bed so that I could get up at 6:00 in order to be out the door at 7:00 being that the Muster began at 10:00 and I wanted to make sure we were there in plenty of time.

Fortunately the weather was bright and sunny when we left (even though we're still looking for more spring-like temperatures) and with it still being fairly early and traffic not being bad, I decided to take an alternate route to my usual drive up to the North Shore and drive up through Boston via Interstate 93 rather than taking the Mass Pike which gets real old real fast! As we approached Boston itself I asked Jamie to take a couple of pictures which she grudgingly did.  I don't get it ... if I were a passenger I'd probably be snapping pictures all the time but alas neither of my two kids seems to appreciate it when I ask them to take a few shots! Probably because it takes their attention away from changing the song on the stereo!

Driving Through Boston
Approach to the Tobin Bridge

With four new tires on the car, I practically sailed to Salem (Memo to Self: it's too easy to drive too fast on new tires so watch it!) and we arrived in town before 10:00 a.m. First Muster would eventually wind up on Salem Common which is directly adjacent to the Hawthorne Hotel so I decided that parking there would probably be my best bet however, being that the lot is reserved for guests of the hotel and a parking permit is required to be displayed I decided I'd pop into the hotel to see if I could get my permit early so that it would be okay to park there.

Suzannah Flint House Sign
Much to my delight, not only was I able to get my parking permit but I was also able to check in early as our room was ready.  You have got to love a hotel that will let you check in before 10 a.m.- a good six hours before the usual 4 p.m. check-in time!

Being that the Hawthorne is doing some major renovations with their bathrooms and forty rooms are currently under reconstruction, for this visit Jamie and I were going to be doing something completely different and spending the night at the Suzannah Flint House which is a historic Bed & Breakfast-style property located to the rear of the Hawthorne's parking lot. The Hawthorne acquired the historic 1807 property that once belonged to Salem Schoolmaster John Gray in 2003 and offer it as an alternative to the main hotel for guests that like a more intimate feel. If you'd like to read more about the house's name, please follow this link over to the Hawthorne Hotel's blog for more information. It does make me wonder why it's still called the Suzannah Flint House and not the Fidelia Bridges house though.

View of the House
Historic Salem House Marker
Main Front Door
A View From a Side Window
Jamie At the Door to Our Room

The house has four rooms for guests - two upstairs and two downstairs; Jamie and I would be staying in the "Garden Room" located on the first floor of the house. Our room was quite lovely as well as sunny and bright - I loved all the windows! - and trimmed in one of my favorite colors, a soothing green. The antique wide pine floors are covered in Oriental rugs and each room has a decorative fireplace along with a queen-size bed and a sofa sleeper and are quite roomy.  There's also free internet and cable television for those that can't go without the modern conveniences. We never turned the TV on but Jamie wasted no time in making sure that the internet worked!

Room 1-1 Suzanna Flint House
Collage of Pictures of Room 1-1 at the Suzannah Flint House

On a small table next to the sofa bed, there was a journal available for guests to leave a message for those who came after them and even though I forgot to write a passage myself, I did enjoy looking through to see what others had written. One of the latest entries was about four pages long and quite interesting!

A Journal for Guests to Sign in Room 1-1 at the Suzannah Flint House

The World's Tiniest Bathroom Sink! As I've found from my previous stays in the main hotel, the bathrooms at the Hawthorne definitely add to the uniqueness and charm of staying at a historic hotel but they may not be exactly what a lot of people appreciate (which is probably one of the main reasons that they're undergoing major renovations right now). The bathroom at the Suzannah Flint House was no exception as it was divided into two "water closets" as it were.

The shower closet was pretty small - so small in fact that there was no way that I could even take a picture! - but the shower itself was great as I found out on Sunday morning. Lots of hot water and really good pressure so even though it was probably akin to taking a shower in a phone booth, I didn't really mind it. The rest of the bathroom was in another "closet" and had what is probably the smallest sink I have ever seen! The term "Doll's House" came to mind several times in regards to the bathrooms but considering that when the house was built indoor plumbing was right up there with space travel, it's understandable that the bathrooms are as tiny as they are. For me, it adds to the charm and they're certainly more than functional but again, that may not be everybody's cup of tea.

Hawthorne Hotel Across the Parking Lot

Guests that stay at the Suzannah Flint House are welcome to use all of the amenities of the main hotel which is not far away at all - I'd say a stone's throw if you've got a good arm! - but with the exception of taking Amanda to lunch at the Tavern on Saturday afternoon, I only popped in and out long enough to check in and check out.  Even for just those short transactions, though, the staff was its usual friendly and helpful self and I felt like I was visiting family and not just spending the night at a hotel.  I know I've said this before but it bears repeating that part of the big draw for me at the Hawthorne is the way the staff makes me feel when I'm there.  They go out of their way to make sure that everything is as close to perfect as it can be.  The Hawthorne is one of the most guest-friendly hotels I have ever stayed at and I'm not just saying that because the General Manager has become a friend, I'm saying it because it's true!

As always, I had an excellent night's sleep with no disturbances whatsoever (rats, still no ghosts to write about!) and it seems that Jamie did, too ...

Jamie really is there somewhere ...

Honest - she really is under there somewhere!  She had told me Saturday night that she wasn't too sure how comfortable the sofa bed was going to be so if I woke up to find her sleeping next to me to not be surprised but it turns out that the pull-out bed was quite comfortable and I had to nudge her awake around 9:30!  

All in all I had yet another wonderful stay in Salem thanks to the Hawthorne.  I really think I'm getting spoiled for any other hotels, though!  

Popular posts from this blog

The Tale of Indian Leap at Yantic Falls in Norwich

Long before English settlers purchased the 9-mile square of land upon which the City of Norwich, Connecticut sits, the land was owned and occupied by the Mohegan Tribe of Indians. They made their homes near the Great Falls of the City of Kings and were led by the great sachem, Uncas.

One of the more popular and famous stories of Chief Uncas involves The Battle of the Great Plain that took place on September 17th, 1643 between the Mohegan Tribe and the Narragansett Tribe from neighboring Rhode Island, some of which took place near what is now known as "Indian Leap".

As the story goes, Miantonomo, Sachem of the Narragansetts, led 900 of his warriors in what was to be a surprise attack on the Mohegans at Shetucket, the Mohegan capital near the City of Kings. The night before the battle, Mohegan scouts in the area observed the advancing enemy and carried the intelligence back to Uncas who formed a plan.

Uncas knew he didn't have enough warriors to battle Miantonomo but he…

Triple-Sheeting Defined

In a recent post on the beautiful Inn Victoria in Chester, Vermont, I mentioned "triple-sheeting" and a commenter asked, "What's triple sheeting? Is that the same as being 3 sheets to the wind??" Uhm, no, Sarah, it isn't! Though I can certainly appreciate the humor in your comment!

Triple-sheeting, a style of bed-making that uses multiple layers of sheets, blankets, and duvets or bedspread-like covers, is something that a lot of upscale hotels, inns, and bed and breakfasts are starting to do as it's not only an easy way to change the design of the room should that be desired but it's also a lot more hygienic for guests.

If you stop and think about it, chances are really good that the bedspreads and/or duvets that are used in guest accommodations don't get washed very often and they most definitely don't get washed in between every guest.  Think about how often you wash your own bedspread and the light probably goes on, right?  Uh-huh ... Do…

A Virtual Visit to Salem's House of the Seven Gables - Part Two, The Turner-Ingersoll Mansion

"Halfway down a by-street of one of our New England towns stands a rusty wooden house, with seven acutely peaked gables, facing towards various points of the compass, and a huge, clustered chimney in the midst. The street is Pyncheon Street; the house is the old Pyncheon House; and an elm-tree, of wide circumference, rooted before the door, is familiar to every town-born child by the title of the Pyncheon Elm." - Chapter One, The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne, 1851
Whether he meant it to or not, the dwelling that took on the life of the "rusty wooden house" in Hawthorne's second novel, and which became popularly known as The House of the Seven Gables, began its story in 1668 as the house of a prominent Salem resident before almost 240 years later taking on the role of a social reform-based settlement house and museum.

John Turner, the son of an English-born shoemaker and hat merchant of Boston who died when Turner was seven, moved to the No…