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Hampton Terrace Innkeeper Blog: Deals and Things to Do in Lenox and the Berkshires

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Tanglewood Season Midweek Discount Hard to Beat in Lenox

  
  
  

Tanglewood Season Discount

Guests are used to paying from $300 to $2,000/night for accommodations in Lenox during Tanglewood Season.

How about $199/night?

For anyone who calls between now and June 20th and asks for $199/night...you will get it - from Sunday through Thursday, with a multiple night stay.

This is a savings of $100/night compared to our weekend rates.

Hampton Terrace is centrally located in Lenox, one mile from Tanglewood.   We include full breakfast buffet and have an outdoor heated pool.   All rooms have private baths and are air conditioned.   There are 5 rooms in our main inn, 6 rooms in our carriage house, and we have 3 king suites with private entrances.

We are top-rated on TripAdvisor.

Call 800-203-0656 and ask for $199...

Bradley Cooper and the Berkshires to Broadway Connection

  
  
  

Bradley Cooper

Bradley Cooper is headed back to Broadway, and the path started in the Berkshires.  The Elephant Man will run from November 13 to January 18.   Previews start October 18.

In today's "Berkshire on Stage and Screen" post, the incomparable Larry Murray tells the tale of this journey to New York City.  Click through to the full article...but in summary, the project was conceived in 2012 by Cooper, Tony nominee director Scott Ellis, and Academy Award nominee Patricia Clarkson for Williamstown Theater Festival.

The collaboration went so well that all conversation centered on taking it to Broadway, where the original play won the Tony.

Bradley Cooper

There is a long track record of Berkshire-based experiments making it to Broadway.   Currently, Hampton Terrace frequent-guest John Douglas Thompson is starring in Satchmo at the Waldorf, which premiered at Shakespeare & Company.   The Putnam County Spelling Bee won two Tony's and started as experimental theater at Barrington Stage Company.   Just two recent examples.

Many world-class theater companies operate in the Berkshires.   Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, Berkshire Theatre Festival in Stockbridge, Williamstown Theater Festival in Williamstown and Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield are the most profile.

Hampton Terrace Bed and Breakfast is located centrally to all local theater, and we are very happy to help our guests learn of the varied offerings.

 

 

Hampton Terrace Earns TripAdvisor "Certificate of Excellence" Again

  
  
  

TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence

TripAdvisor is the #1 website in the world for accommodation reviews.

Only the top 10% of reviewed hotels, inns and b&bs earn a "Certificate of Excellence."

Hampton Terrace has earned this award every year of TripAdvisor's existence.  We have to thank our wonderful guests, many of whom are enthusiastic enough about their experience to write a review.   To date, more than 650 couples have reviewed us, with more than 600 of them giving us a 5 out of 5 score:  "Excellent."

It is possible to do a TripAdvisor search for Lenox hospitality properties, as well as Berkshire properties.   In both cases, Hampton Terrace ranks #1.

A very important point, from our perspective:   This is a survey of "guest satisfaction" in various categories, such as location, rooms, service, value, etc.   Susan and I go the extra mile to make sure our guests receive the best possible experience here.

We don't pretend that Hampton Terrace is the "best" hospitality property in the Berkshires.  With Canyon Ranch, Wheatleigh, Blantyre, Cranwell, Red Lion, and more than 100 other resorts, hotels, inns and b&bs, we KNOW that there are many terrific places - in every price range.

But once again, we want to thank our guests for recognizing our efforts to please them with the 2014 TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence Award.

Why Does Hampton Terrace in Lenox Have A Pool?

  
  
  

Hampton Terrace Pool

There are 28 inns in Lenox.   Four have pools.   Beyond Lenox, there are 120 inns and b&bs in the Berkshires.   An even lower percentage have pools.

So why does Hampton Terrace have a heated 20 x 40 pool with natural rock waterfall?

Actually, there are NOT a lot of good reasons.   We open the pool on Memorial Day Weekend and close it at the end of September.   During that four month period, only July and August offer consistently warm days and marginally warm evenings.   June and September evenings are very cool and breezy - making it questionable whether we should keep the water heated 30 degrees above the air temperature.

No wonder most innkeepers pass on the option of adding a pool.

HOWEVER... we are so glad we did it.  Not only does the sound of water falling in our backyard offer an ambiance that is unmatched for our nine rooms which front the pool, but we are told time and time again that our pool is one of the reasons 70% of our summer guests are repeat.

Early morning... exercise for some of our guests.   Throughout the day...people quietly reading books or newspapers.   Early evening... couples enjoying a glass of wine and quiet conversation with new friends.   After the sun goes down.... 85 degree water and a lighting system that very slowly changes the water color from blue to green to red.   And the sound of the waterfall...

And since we are an adult-only property (occasional teenagers), our guests do not have to deal with the constant "Marco Polo" chants of hotel and resort pools.   Our pool stays open 24/7, as we are all adults....so why not?

We went out of our way, when designing our pool, to try to make it a natural addition to our yard.   No concrete pool deck:  brick pavers.   A natural, grotto shape.  The waterfall was made from large boulders, unearthed during construction.  More grass in the pool area than pavers.

AS OF TODAY.....OUR POOL IS OPEN!   We are prepared for a full Memorial Day Weekend and beyond.   Come enjoy Hampton Terrace's HEATED pool and let us show you why so many of our guests consider us their home away from home.

 

 

 

 

Shakespeare & Company's 2014 Schedule and Casting Finalized

  
  
  

Shakespeare & Company

A short stroll from Hampton Terrace is Shakespeare & Company, one of the world's longest-running and most prestigious Shakespeare presenters.   Founded by Royal Shakespeare veteran Tina Packer more than 36 years ago, the company has been presenting simultaneous performances on their multiple stages for years.

Many of the founding actors/administration are still around and involved, including Tina herself.  The company has remained vibrant by mixing things up every year.   They don't limit themselves to Shakespeare, and even when they do a play by the Bard, they frequently change the setting and time period - a testiment to the timelessness of Shakespeare's themes.  Beyond that, expect dramas, comedies, Edith Wharton shorts, even live radio broadcasts like "War of the Worlds" or "It's a Wonderful Life." 

Local theater blogger extraordinaire Larry Murray published a very clear listing of this summer's performances and times on his "Berkshire On Stage and Screen" this morning.

Click the link to also learn about ticket purchase options.

And speaking of casting, notable summer leads include Johnny Lee Davenport, Malcolm Ingram, Nigel Gore, Josh Aaron McCabe - all of whom have stayed at Hampton Terrace recently.

Edith Wharton's "The Mount" is Now Open in Lenox

  
  
  

The Mount

Many small towns have a significant mansion.   Lenox has about 5,000 residents, but it has 80+ significant mansions - all called "Berkshire Cottages."  The term "cottage" is tongue-in-cheek as many of these homes have dozens of bedrooms.   Hampton Terrace is one of the smaller ones - and we have 14 original bedrooms.   The owners of these estates established and hosted the Lenox social season, which was a two-week period in early September.

These mansions were built mainly between 1880 and 1920, and some of the names are recognizable:   Morgan, Carnegie, Westinghouse, Vanderbilt, Tappan, Proctor, Sloane...

Significantly, one of the homes was built by Edith Jones Wharton, and its construction did not go unnoticed - mainly because as the home was being built, Edith was writing a book about it.   Called "The Decoration of Houses," Wharton was setting herself up to be the Martha Stewart of her day, establishing a template for those Gilded Age industrialists whose new-found wealth had to be put on display.

Edith Wharton famously divorced her American husband (of the Philadelphia Whartons) and moved to Europe, after living just 12 years in her showplace.   She never returned, but her legacy in the home lives on.   Renovations began in 1997 and after tens of millions invested, the place is a showcase once more.  Her original library collection, which moved with her to London, remained intact and has been returned to her library shelves.

Obviously, the greatest thing about leaving a chronical about the construction of your home, is that you give renovators a guide to putting it back together.  Additionally the house was well photographed back in the day.   So the renovation is as authentic as you will find in a restored historic home, and the gardens contain the same plants in the same places as the original.

The Mount is open daily from early May through October each year.   The tour of the home and gardens can be self-guided, but there are also group tours several times per day.

Hampton Terrace is located within a 2 minute drive, and many of our guests head to The Mount as part of their Lenox "must see" tour.    They also have a cafe on their back porch, a gift shop, and constant programming.

Lenox Motorcar Classic - June 13, 2014

  
  
  

Lenox Motorcar Classic

Not that Lenox needs additional reasons for people to visit....what with Ventfort Hall, Shakespeare & Company, The Mount, and numerous restaurants, shops and galleries.

Same thing with Hampton Terrace.   Our pool is now open, and the yard is quickly developing into its splendid mid-summer form.   New roofing throughout.   Refinished oak hardwood floors in all of our common areas.   New HD TVs, fresh paint in many rooms....

So how about a leisurely stroll down Main Street and enjoy MANY dozens of classic cars.  Friday, June 13th from 6 pm until 9.

Then check into your romantic room at Hampton Terrace, featuring a fireplace and Jacuzzi.   Let us help you plan your weekend with our restaurant and activity recommendations.

Out of the Ordinary: Haunted Happenings in the Berkshires

  
  
  
Exploring the haunted houses and supernatural settings of the Berkshires is a great break from the everyday getaway. If you are searching for something extraordinary, engaging, and genuinely entertaining to include on an adventurous weekend getaway to the Berkshires, unwrapping the historical secrets behind any of the haunted houses in the Berkshires is the perfect plan.

Here are a few of the most popular haunted destinations in the Berkshires:
 
  • describe the imageThe Hoosac Tunnel – During its construction in the late 1800s, a great many of the Hoosac Tunnel workers lost their lives using nitroglycerine to blast through two million tons of granite beneath Hoosac Mountain. In modern times, hikers in the tunnel area have reported experiencing the eerie presence of wailing ghosts and the unoiled squeals of swaying lanterns. Use caution entering the tunnel area. 
     
  • The Mount – Novelist Edith Wharton was no stranger to the supernatural. As a child she feared “a dark, undefinable menace forever dogging my steps, lurking and threatening.” While touring the Mount, many visitors claim that menacing force still hauntingly lingers throughout the estate. Open May through October, click here to plan your visit. 
     
  • Venfort Hall – Located in the heart of Lenox, Venfort Hall has long been considered to be one of the area’s most haunted houses. Having attracted haunted house hunters from around the world, this famous mansion’s haunting voices and spooky screams have been featured on the SyFy Channel’s Ghost Hunter television program.
     
  • Haughton Mansion – The first mayor of North Adams, Albert C. Houghton, and his family called this Church Street estate home in the early 1900s. Most of the ghost stories haunting this house arise from a pivotal 11 days during which four deaths were associated with the Haughton mansion. The Berkshire Paranormal Society entertains the curious; click here for more information.
     
The Hampton Terrace Bed & Breakfast is pleased to be the safe place you call home while you explore the haunted houses and supernatural secrets of the Berkshires. To discover more about what The Berkshires and our bed & breakfast have to offer, subscribe to our blog or visit our website. And be sure to contact us for a personal quote the next time you plan a trip to the Berkshires!

 

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Craft Beer in the Berkshires

  
  
  

Craft beer breweries are thriving in the Berkshires. What comes to mind when you consider craft beer in Western Massachusetts? Award-winning, excellence, and availability ought to be at the top of the list as several of the best craft beer breweries in Massachusetts are situated on the main streets and back roads west of the Quabbin Reservoir. 

Malt Washing MachineWhether you are just starting out in pursuit of malt beverage excellence or you have shaped a lifetime out of chasing the perfect pint, touring the craft beer breweries of the Berkshires is a fantastic way to experience the local craft beer culture. From delicious stouts and lagers to savory steaks and sandwiches, each of these five craft beer breweries are within a short drive from the Hampton Terrace Bed & Breakfast:

  • Brew masters Bill and Christine Heaton have more than a decade of experience brewing craft beers in the Berkshires and now operate the Big Elm Brewery at 65 Silver Street in Sheffield MA.

  • Chuck full of award-winning brews, the beer found on the list at John Harvard’s Brewery & Ale House will satisfy the brew connoisseur. John Harvard’s is located along the slopes of Jiminy Peak at 37 Corey Road in Hancock, MA.

  • Serving pints and flights of their own solar-brewed craft beers, the impressive selections of the Barrington Brewery & Restaurant are located at 420 Stockbridge Road in Great Barrington, MA.

  • Right around the corner in the heart of the Berkshires is brewer Bert Holdredge, who won the 2011 “Brewers Choice Prize” in the 2011 NYC Homebrew Competition. The story of his Wandering Star Brewery was featured in an edible Berkshires article, and is located at 11 Gifford Street, Pittsfield, MA. Wandering Star is not a brewpub, so you’ll need to bring your growlers.

  • Located at 169 College Hwy, Southampton, MA, the beer, beverage, and steakhouse dining specials offered by Opa Opa Steakhouse & Brewery are qualified to satisfy the whole family.

Please keep The Hampton Terrace Bed & Breakfast in mind when planning a craft beer brewery tour or any other getaway to the Berkshires. If you’d like to discover more about what our bed & breakfast has to offer, subscribe to our blog, or see what others have to say about their experience with us on TripAdvisor and Yelp. Hampton Terrace is committed to making our guests’ stay memorable. Contact Us with any needs you may have in planning your trip and we’ll be happy to accommodate!

Spring Upgrades at Hampton Terrace in Lenox

  
  
  

Hampton Terrace Hallway

We have owned Hampton Terrace for fifteen years, and not a year goes by when we don't inplement a major project, or orchestrate a series of property upgrades.  This Spring is no exception.

Now that we have returned, I can share that Susan and I spent a couple of weeks away from the inn - celebrating our 35th anniversary at a beach, and visiting our kids and grandkids in Texas.   While we were gone, we had most of the main house floors completely refinished.   This is the kind of project that is best done behind one's back, although we had a really busy several days putting things back in order upon our return.   We chose to have the original, natural oak tone highlighted, and we are very pleased with the result.

Also taking advantage of our absence was Bob, our loyal painter.  We have been wanting to repaint our dining room for a while, and now it is done.   Further, I left him several cans of white semi-gloss and instructed him to freshen every trim and door he desired.   As a result, he pretty much hit everything:  the front door and all floor, ceiling and door trims, plus inside windows and closets.   I love people who self-motivate, and he even repainted our creamy yellow front hall and second-floor landing.   Then as he always does, he walked me around the property upon our return and showed off everything he did....like a proud Papa.   And left me a bill that always seems too low.   Bob is like a member of our family.

Other improvements:  new carpets in Carriage House rooms 1 and 2 and in several of our suites.   And a new furnace and hot water heater.

For those who have not been here in the past year....ALL new HD TVs, and a vastly upgraded WiFi system.   Both sorely needed and DONE.

We've also been asked to consider extra shelf space in some of our bathrooms and Susan and plan to spend the month of April working on that.

Everyone who stays at Hampton Terrace is asked, in a follow-up e-mail, to suggest improvements.   We take that feedback VERY seriously, and plan to address as many upgrades as possible over the next several months.

 

 

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