Friday, September 30, 2005

Hawthorne Hotel has fun with our special guest

Steve Nelson, Jennifer Normant, Ken O'Keefe and John Pellecchia have fun with the kitchen specials board, including the Standard of the Day Posted by Picasa

Now that he's gone we can talk about it. Our special guest this week was Robert Redford. Yes, THE Robert Redford.

Yes, he is as charming and handsome as he appears on screen. He is also casual, and comfortable inside his own skin. He seems genuinely nice.

To avoid the crush of the crowd here to see him yesterday, we set it up for him to go from the private reception area, to the private banquet area by walking through the kitchen. Knowing this in advance, the chef and his sous chefs decided to 'cook up' some imaginary specials to put on the specials board, all featuring Mr. Redford's work.

In case you have a hard time seeing them in the photo below, here are the "Redford" specials of the day:

Soup -- The Great Waldo Roasted Pepper

Appetizer -- Golden Globe Artichokes, Lemon-Thyme Vinaigrette

Tavern Special -- Bison Tenderloin Out of Africa, Slow-cooked on The Hot Rock

Nathaniel's Special -- Braised Lamb Shank with The Natural juices, Milagro Beanfield Beans and King of the Hill Mushrooms

Dessert -- strawberry and Chocolate Cake Laced Inside with Daisy Clover Honey, created by Bru, our Baker

The Safety Standard for the Day -- No Sneakers on the Floor

Mr. Redford enjoyed seeing this bit of kitchen creativity and got a good laugh from it, and he genuinely seemed to enjoy his dinner at the special banquet held in his honor here at the Hawthorne Hotel. We are happy to report he ate all three courses, in spite of a tight time schedule, and having to give a speech to 1,800 people immediately afterward.

I hope you enjoy hearing about some of the good-spirited fun that our staff has in the execution of their duties. We are a very cohesive team at the Hawthorne Hotel, and part of the reason is we are able to laugh together while we work together.


Specials created by Chef Steve Nelson and Sous Chefs of the Hawthorne Hotel in honor of Robert Redford's visit to the hotel  Posted by Picasa

Robert Redford at Salem State College Series event last night Posted by Picasa

Thursday, September 29, 2005

A letter that made my day. . .

With the permission of the author, here is a letter I received from Pamela Kleinman of MEBN, regarding a conference that they held at the Hawthorne Hotel this month:

Dear Ms. Lederhaus

On behalf of MEBN and our partnering organizations, I would like to thank your staff for their outstanding service and hospitality. This is truly an outstanding group of people and I would like to recognize each and every one of them for going out of their way to make our stay at your hotel a most enjoyable experience.

I have been in the event/meeting planning field for over 10 years and I don't believe I have ever encountered such a dedicated and friendly staff. No matter whom I turned to for help or to ask a question, everyone was more than willing to go above and beyond.

It was such a pleasure working with Susan Babine and Karen Cotton on all of the pre-meeting arrangements. Having never been to Salem, I was struggling to create a scavenger hunt as a teambuilding exercise for our employees. Susan came to the rescue and helped me put together my list. It was a smashing success!

I would also like to compliment your chef for the outstanding quality of the food, as well as all the catering managers and banquet staff that assisted us. Claire Marie and Lindsay were both very attentive to our functions as were our servers Mark Goya and Danny Mattais. James Kluge even jumped in to help out when I had a quick question or needed to find my banquet captain. It is teamwork and dedication like this that really sets your hotel apart from others. It is a rare pleasure to find every employee in the hotel so willing to do anything they can to make our experience enjoyable.

I would also like to recognize and thank Melissa Allin and the rest of the front desk staff for being so pleasant and helpful to all of our attendees.

The Hawthorne Hotel is truly lucky to have such an outstanding staff! I will definitely recommend this property to my network of meeting planners and hope to be able to bring our group back to Salem in the near future.


Pamela Kleinman

To paraphrase a famous golfer who said "the more I practice, the luckier I get", I will say that the more we train our staff, the luckier we get as a hotel!


Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Is there a Hawthorne Hotel bookclub waiting to happen?

Author Walter Ford Carter speaks at Salem Rotary Club meeting at Hawthorne Hotel Posted by Picasa

Yesterday the speaker at our Salem Rotary Club was Walter Ford Carter, who wrote the book "No Greater Sacrifice, No Greater Love" pictured above. Walter Ford's story was so touching, I had tears in my eyes several times in his 30-minute speech which gave a synopsis of his story written about in this wonderful book.

The personal stories of the heroes of World War II are quickly disappearing from us, as time goes by. Hearing the first-person story of Walter Ford's relationship to his father brought all of it back into focus. I am enjoying reading 'the rest of the story' in his book, and thought you might be interested in knowing about this touching read as well.

For more information you can go to the following website:

You may order the book there, or from

If you are interested in know more about the Salem Rotary Club, you may visit that website at


Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Halloween as part of one's job description

There are probably very few places in the world where the work one must do includes a commitment to work on Halloween as part of the job description. However, that is indeed the case at the Hawthorne Hotel.

Following this post are a number of photos of last year's costume contest finalists. If you want to see lots more, simply click on this link to our website: and click on the link to Halloween. A word of warning: when you open a photo, to get back to the site, use the back button on your browser. If you click the X to close the photo, it will take you back off of our website. So just use the back button instead.

While virtually everyone comes to the costume ball in costume, it seems that the people are fairly evenly split between the groups that come to watch, and those who come to preen and be watched. It is an amazing evening, not duplicated by any experience I have had in decades of hotel-keeping anywhere else.

I hope to see you there,

P.S. For tickets click on

Vampires in Bondage Posted by Picasa

The Snow Queen Posted by Picasa

Moths to a Flame Posted by Picasa

PacMan revisted Posted by Picasa

Puppeteer and Master win the group contest in the Hawthorne Hotel Halloween Ball costume contest for 2004 Posted by Picasa

Egyptians invade the Hawthorne Hotel Ballroom Posted by Picasa

The Adams Family at the Hawthorne Hotel Posted by Picasa

Staff of the Hawthorne Hotel is ready to welcome the Halloween Ball guests, October 2004 Posted by Picasa

Monday, September 26, 2005

Flags of the Week September 26 through October 2, 2005

Monday September 26
Neatherlands and Utah

Tuesday September 27
New Zealand and Vermont

Wednesday September 28
Nicaragua and the Virgin Islands

Thursday September 29
New Zealand and Virginia (revised due to a special request)

Friday September 30
Niger and Washington

Saturday October 1
Nigeria and West Virginia

Sunday October 2
Norway and Wisconsin

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Tickets for the Hawthorne Hotel Halloween Ball

Every year on the Saturday before Halloween the Hawthorne Hotel hosts the biggest and best Halloween Ball in the Halloween capital of the United States - Salem, Massachusetts.

This year the ball will be held on Saturday October 29, from 8 pm to midnight. The theme for this year's ball is Medieval Madness. Tickets are $85 each and are available on line from Ticketweb,
or by calling the Hawthorne Hotel at 978-744-4080, or by stopping by the Hawthorne.

We sell every ticket available for the ball each year, and this year promises to be no exception -- in fact, the tickets are selling even more quickly this year than they ever have before.

Please note that hotel rooms in Salem have been sold out for about 11 months for this weekend. We would suggest staying in Boston, and taking the commuter rail to Salem for the ball, as the traffic jams and parking tend to be quite daunting the weekends in October, especially the weekend of the ball.

If you would like to see photos of prior years' events, you can do so by visiting our Hawthorne Hotel website at .

I look forward to seeing you at the Medieval Madness Halloween Ball,


Saturday, September 24, 2005

Hawthorne Hotel Managers Name Balerio Cuervas Full-time Employee of the Month

Each month the management staff of the Hawthorne Hotel gathers together for a full staff meeting. Part of the reason for meeting is to discuss the nominations for our full-time and part-time employee of the month awards for the prior month.

This week we presented the Full-time Award to Balerio Cuervas, who works in our kitchen as an assistant to the cooks and as a member of our service team there. Balerio has been with us for several years, and has proved to be a loyal, hard-working, and strong member of this outstanding team.

The kind of position that Balerio holds at the Hawthorne Hotel is a very important, and key position, but unfortunately one that gets little recognition from our guests. Because they do not see the people who work in the kitchen, it is hard for them to think to recognize them. It is especially for this reason that we, the management team, feel it is important to offer our recognition.

Congratulations, Balerio!

Thank you for all you do,


John Pellecchia, Steve Nelson, Balerio Cuervas, Ken O'Keefe and Jennifer Normant of the Hawthorne Hotel culinary team celebrate Balerio's selection as Employee of the Month Posted by Picasa

Steve Nelson and Juli Lederhaus congratulate Balerio Cuervas as August 2005 Employee of the Month for the Hawthorne Hotel Posted by Picasa

Balerio Cuervas, Hawthorne Hotel Employee of the Month for August 2005 Posted by Picasa

Friday, September 23, 2005

Entertainers for this Week at the Hawthorne Hotel

This week we offer, for your listening pleasure, the following live entertainment in Nathaniel's Restaurant at the Hawthorne Hotel:

Friday September 23, Steve Belgiorno
Saturday September 24, Steve Belgiorno
Sunday September 25, Jazz Brunch, Julie Doherty
Sunday September 25, Judy Ryer

Reservations are not required, but are always welcomed and usually a very good idea. To call the restaurant directly, you may do so at 978-825-4311.

We look forward to welcoming you to the Hawthorne Hotel and Nathaniel's.


Thursday, September 22, 2005

We like it when folks pay attention, even when those folks aren't even in school yet!

Our tiny flag inspector never misses a day! Posted by Picasa Every day Alfred and his grandmother pay a visit to the Hawthorne Hotel so that Alfred can inspect the flags we have flying. He has loved flags since he was a baby, and since I've watched him grow up in our church, it has been his passion. We are happy to have his daily visits to the Hawthorne.


Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Kensington-Stobart Gallery at the Hawthorne Hotel holds an Estate Art Sale

Sandy Heaphy speaks with a local art collector about the wide variety of Estate Art being put on sale at the Kensington-Stobart Gallery at the Hawthorne Hotel. Posted by Picasa

The sale starts today, and runs through October 5th. Prices are 10 to 20% off of the posted prices.

I hope to see you there.


An unusual piece, perfect for someone who has an interest in noses and ears and mouths. . . perhaps your son, the ear and nose doctor? Posted by Picasa

Many local artists of interest represented in Estate Art Sale at the Kensington-Stobart Gallery in the Hawthorne Hotel Posted by Picasa

Are you a collector of beautiful art?  Posted by Picasa

Kensington-Stobart offers original paintings at wonderful prices during a limited Estate Art Sale Posted by Picasa

Estate Art at the Kensington-Stobart Gallery Posted by Picasa

Susan Fader previews the art being hung for the Kensington-Stobart Gallery's Estate Sale Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Hawthorne Hotel has another lovely venue for a wedding

Sophia's and Nathaniel's used in conjunction for an intimate wedding reception Posted by Picasa

Due to numerous requests, we have decided to make another part of the Hawthorne Hotel available for wedding receptions. This is the combination of Nathaniel's and Sophia's rooms. The two spaces together can accommodate approximately 110 guests with a dance floor, and cake table.

The built-in bar in Nathaniel's is very convenient to our guests, and the lovely windows in this space add a view of the surrounding area, including a look down Hawthorne Boulevard toward the statue of Nathaniel Hawthorne.

Should you have an interest in booking this space, please contact our catering office at 978-825-4358.

We look forward to seeing you,


Hawthorne Hotel Staff redies Sophia's and Nathaniel's for a wedding reception Posted by Picasa