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Classic Maine Resort

Relax and rejuvenate at the Tides Beach Club in Kennebunkport

Written by Clara Haneberg
  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth

    Make your summer memorable by escaping to a newly renovated boutique hotel tucked away on one of Maine’s secret beaches. Breathtaking views combined with top-notch accommodations and design ensure a relaxing stay for guests. Welcome to the latest addition to Tim Harrington’s Kennebunkport portfolio: The Tides Beach Club.

    Harrington jumped at the chance to acquire the antique inn on Goose Rocks Beach. He fondly recalls playing there as a child when he visited his grandmother. “I remember the smell of the sea at low tide and during thunderstorms,” says Harrington. “I know the view, the salty smell, and the silky feel of the white sand.”

    The oceanfront property was given a fresh look and new ways to lure guests. With the help of his team of business and design associates, Harrington updated the 1899 Tides Hotel, giving it a second life that has helped transform the lodging landscape of southern Maine. The top-to-bottom renovation created 21 stylish suites, including two rooms—“Ocean” and “Sea”—that not only have breathtaking views but also feature the happy designs of Jonathan Adler.

    Photography: Trent Bell and Eric Roth
    Produced by Estelle Bond Guralnick

    Read on for more about the Tides Beach Club and Kennebunkport.

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth

    Interior designer Louise Hurlbutt, who worked with Harrington on his Cabot Cove Cottages, translated his ideas into decor true to New England. “It’s a little bit St. Barth’s meets Maine,” explains Harrington. “We envisioned a joyful place: fresh, easy, and a little bit sexy.”

    In the entry, crisp white paint coats the wainscot as well as the chest that’s tucked under the stairs.

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth

    Sitting Room

    Every room in the updated inn exudes a soothing atmosphere and contemporary coastal decor. Inspired by the ocean views, splashes of color complement the otherwise neutral tan and white walls. Guest rooms vary in size from intimate to sprawling, but all provide visitors with the luxuries (fine linens, marble sinks) required for a rejuvenation of the spirit.

    In this sitting room, comfortable seating faces a pair of gently aged ceramic garden stools. Oyster shells form the bases of a couple of table lamps.

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth


    Geometric Jonathan Adler wallpaper and white marble sinks distinguish the bathroom that’s part of the blue Jonathan Adler suite.

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth


    The bed’s headboard is drawn up against a beadboard wall painted dark blue.

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth


    Besides beach-chic lodging, The Tides boasts an elegant dining room, well-stocked library, outdoor patio, and other amenities. In the club’s lively bar, earth-toned grass cloth flatters the walls while faux bamboo Chinese Chippendale chairs and accents of blue add to the welcoming ambience. Menus feature sea-inspired dishes ranging from lobster rolls and Maine scallops to fish and chips with slaw and tartar sauce.

    The natty inn is only a half mile away from its sister resort, Hidden Pond, the enchanting Victorian village featured in our June + July 2009 issue. That venue has grown to include 20 cozy cottages, a treehouse spa, a new restaurant, and such amenities as yoga and vegetable-picking classes—also available to guests at The Tides.

    “Each project is really special,” says Hurlbutt about Harrington’s long list of properties. “But no matter the time of year, Tides is the essence of a Maine seaside summer.”

    Be sure to make your reservations for dates between mid-May, when the resort opens, and the end of October, when the season ends. Visit their website for more information.

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth

    Around Town: Kennebunkport

    Resort destination Kennebunkport has everything you would expect of a New England town located along the Atlantic Ocean and Kennebunk River. There are countless options—from sailing and fine seafood to gift shops galore.

    See the following slides for some highlights of must-see attractions.

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    All Aboard

    Set sail from Kennebunkport aboard the Eleanor—a classic Maine-built vessel—for a two-hour trip along the scenic coastline from Cape Arundel to Cape Porpoise. Sailing trips are scheduled daily, depending on the weather and tides.

    Call 207/967-8809 or check out their website for more information.

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth

    Hit the Beach

    Take in the splendid views of one of Maine’s best-kept secret beaches—Goose Rocks Beach at The Tides Beach Club, located at 254 Kings Highway.

    Call 207/967-3757 or check out their website for more information.

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    Mouthwatering Seafood

    Fresh Maine seafood be found at clam shacks scattered throughout the town. This succulent lobster roll is a dish served at Tia’s Topside, located at 12 Western Avenue.

    Call 207/967-8821 or check out their website for more information. .

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth

    Retail Therapy

    Charming retail shops line the streets of Dock Square—the area considered “the heart of Kennebunkport”—including galleries, boutiques, and coffee houses.

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    East Coast Antiques

    An assortment of beach collectibles and one-of-a-kind antiques can be found at Antiques on Nine, located at 81 Western Avenue.

    For more tips on things to do in Kennebunkport, go to

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth

    Harrington’s Getaways

    In addition to The Tides Beach Club and Hidden Pond resort, designer Tim Harrington is responsible for a cluster of other projects in the Kennebunkport area, including the Cottages at Cabot Cove, The Grand Hotel, and the Kennebunkport Inn, as well as the Old Fort Inn & Resort in nearby Cape Arundel. Each venue boasts beautiful interiors with gorgeous views—two things never compromised at Harrington’s lodging properties. “People want to stay in places that are design-conscious,” he explains. “They seek a feeling of well-being that appeals to their senses as soon as they walk in.”

  • Trent Bell and Eric Roth