Monday, July 31, 2006

Flags of the Week -- Hawthorne Hotel, July 31 through August 6, 2006

If you are new to our Blog, you might wonder about the flags. Every Monday we post the flags that we will be flying on the front of the Hawthorne Hotel each day. We fly all of the flags of the members of the United Nations, as a reminder to all that we are part of the greater place called the World, and to help all of us think about others in the World as neighbors. We usually keep to alphabetical order, with the exception of special requests.

We also fly the flag of each state in the United States, again as a reminder to all of us in Salem to think beyond our borders, and to be kind to people from every state and every country. It is part hospitality, and part World Peace initiative.

Of course, we do fly the flag of the United States on the roof of the hotel. It is actually part of a cell antenna that was placed there a number of years ago. Here is a photo showing the flag on our roof.

Monday , July 31 ~~ Costa Rica and District of Colombia
Tuesday , August 1 ~~ Côte d'Ivoire and Florida
Wednesday , August 2 ~~ Croatia and Georgia
Thursday , August 3 ~~ Cuba and Guam
Friday , August 4 ~~ Cyprus and Hawaii
Saturday , August 5 ~~ Czech Republic and Idaho
Sunday , August 6 ~~ Democratic People's Republic of Korea and Illinois

When we receive special requests from our guests staying here, we will usually change the rotation to include those special requests. If you have a special request, be sure to let us know in advance.

I hope you enjoy learning more about the world, and the flags of the Hawthorne Hotel.


Sunday, July 30, 2006

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A very special family reunion

Today we had the pleasure of welcoming members of the Labrie, Clark, and Queenan families, and friends, back to the Hawthorne Hotel for the L,C,Q 2006 Reunion. As you can see by this photo, they are a fun-loving group, and they seemed to have a really good time celebrating here with us.

They are, from the top row, from left to right:

Maureen, Deborah and Bill

Rod, Jean and Tinsy

Nathaniel and Laura

Norma, Marion and Mark

As a long-standing institution in the community, we take great pride in being here to welcome generation after generation of customers from one family. It is such a joy to be part of the fabric of life, here in Salem.

I hope to welcome you to the Hawthorne, whether you come for a quick visit, or you become part of 'our' extended family.


Saturday, July 29, 2006

Our guests say the nicest things. . .

Here are some more exerpts from our guest comment cards and event evaluations that I thought you might enjoy reading:

Event Evaluation from a Wedding
"From April 2005 to July 16, 2006, we could not have been more pleased. The planning, the availability of rooms, the final arrangements on Thursday, the cocktail hour, the reception and the breakfast in the Library were all beyond expectations (and we had high expectations!)

"Christine Turner -- always available, helpful and friendly whenever Dawn needed her. Liz Dube -- the perfect hostess who thought of everything so I didn't have to. The waitstaff -- our waiter at table #8 was most professional yet friendly and humorous, even with my annoying brother-in-law who claimed he was allergic to bliss potatoes! All the guests commented on the exceptional demeanor of the staff.

"I have had nothing but glowing feedback from our guests. Thank you for making us geel like royalty for one glorious evening!"

-- Jane, Mother of the Bride

Thank you Note for a Birthday Brunch

"Dear Suzanne, Donna and Catering Staff,
"My husband and I want to extend our sincere thanks for a lovely birthday brunch for his father. It was a wonderful event celebrating his 90th birthday.

"The food was delicious and the service outstanding. I know we challenged the service staff by people moving around to visit the guest of honor, but your staff responded beautifully.

"The guests came from as far away as California, Virginia, Ohio, and Pennsylvania as well as locally. I'm sure everyone is at home spreading the news of a lovely event at the Hawthorne Hotel in Salem!"

"Gratefully yours, Lesley"

I hope you enjoy our sharing these comments with you, as much as we enjoy being of service to all of these terrific guests. We look forward to serving you.


Friday, July 28, 2006

Endless Summer Package

Enjoy Two Great Cities -- One Great Location

Our Two-Night Salem-Boston Package Includes:
Overnight Accommodations for Two
Full American Breakfast
Salem Trolley Passes
Two Round-Trip Passes on the New Salem Ferry to Boston
Complimentary Maps and Walking Guides
Available Sunday-Thursday
$410 based on double occupancy
Family rates available for up to four people
(Does not include tax and gratuity)

Sample Itinerary

Day One
Arrive mid-afternoon to the Hawthorne Hotel. Relax in our Tavern with a refreshing libation or take our leisurely stroll; view our beautiful architecture, enjoy a revitalized waterfront or visit our many fine shops.
May we suggest an intimate dinner in Nathaniel's or if you prefer more casual dining, our Tavern offers a selection of lighter fare

Day Two
Enjoy a hearty breakfast in Nathaniel’s.
Board the Salem Trolley for a one-hour narrated tour of Salem. This is both informative, as well as a great way to help you plan your visit. Your trolley passes may be used throughout the day so you can disembark and board at anytime. The tour travels past many of the sites that reflect the history, art, culture and architecture that make Salem such a unique city.
Enjoy lunch at any number of outstanding eateries.
Return to the hotel and refresh and relax.

Use your trolley passes to transfer to the Blaney Street pier and board the Salem Ferry for a 50-minute boat trip along the North of Boston’s picturesque coastline. Please visit for detailed information. The ferry docks within walking distance of Faneuil Hall and the historic North End. Your package includes a walking map of Boston.

Return by ferry to Salem and the Hawthorne Hotel. You may use your trolley pass to transfer back to the Hawthorne Hotel or it is just a 20-minute walk to the hotel.

Day three
Enjoy a leisurely breakfast in Nathaniel’s Restaurant. There is plenty of time to continue to explore Salem and everything is within walking distance. If you expect that you will be staying for the entire day, our front desk staff will be more than happy to store your luggage.

Reservations can be made by calling 978-744-4080 or 800-729-7829, or by going online to our website, where you can book the package directly.

Please mention that you saw this package on our blog! There is a section in the on-line booking engine to allow this. The first ten guests who book this package on-line and mention our blog will receive complimentary chocolate-dipped strawberries on arrival.


Thursday, July 27, 2006

The Gardner-Pingree House, a neighbor at the PEM

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The Gardner-Pingree House was built in 1805. It is located at 128 Essex Street in Salem, which is just across the street from the Hawthorne Hotel.

It is owned and operated by the Peabody Essex Museum, and it is open for tours. If you want to tour it, and their other historic houses, just ask for that when you buy your tickets to the PEM.

The house was built by John Gardner during Salem's most prosperous era, and this elegant Federal town house is widely admired in the published history of American architecture for its imposing but balanced and restrained facade. The lavish interior and exterior wood ornamentation were designed by Salem's master builder and carver, Samuel McIntire, at the height of his powers.

Sometimes when you walk by a place as often as I walk by this lovely house, one may tend to simply see it as part of the sidewalk. It is far more than that, and a lovely house to visit, and a way to learn more about Salem's varied and interesting history.

I hope you will plan to visit both the Gardner-Pingree House, and the Hawthorne Hotel on your next trip to Salem.


Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Saving an Architectural Treasure

In the mid-1950's, in response to the growing role of the automobile in American life, the Hawthorne Hotel changed its name to the Hawthorne Motor Hotel and substantially enlarged its rear parking lot.

This project necessitated the aquisition and demolition of a number of nearby structures. One building, however, was spared the wrecking ball. The Crowninshield-Bentley House, (built in 1727 with later additions) the long-time home of Salem's famed diarist, William Bentley, was donated by the hotel to the Essex Institute. The wooden Georgian structure was moved to a site opposite the hotel's main entrance and was later restored in honor of local preservationist Louise du Pont Crowninshield.

Today the Crowninshield Bentley House is owned by the Peabody Essex Museum ( and is open for tours to museum visitors. The site where the house originally stood is now occupied by a hotel function room named for Nathaniel Hawthorne's wife, Sophia Peabody.

We hope to see you when you come to visit the Crowninshield-Bentley House.

Juli Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Bewitched Statue


I had this in my photo archives for last year, and since the subject of the blog is the Bewitched Convention, I thought I'd add this to today's post.

Juli Posted by Picasa

The Bewitched Convention Comes to Salem


From left to right, starting at the top are:
David Pierece, Edwina Haselberger, Kevin Brophy
Judy McClelland, Jean Yannes, Melanie McDonald
Jone Devlin, Tom Stevenson, Ross Allison
Mark Simpson, Sharon Orazi, and Debra Elszewski

Here are a number of the participants of this year's convention. The attendees came from all over the world, and from as far away as Australia. The convention was organized by Mark Simpson, who lives in Tacoma, Washington surrounded by his Bewitched memborabilia.

As I spoke to them, and took their photo, they were being followed around by a Canadian television reality show camera crew.

Managing the Hawthorne Hotel is never boring -- there is always something new happening here!

I hope to see you here soon.

Juli Posted by Picasa

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Gretchen Kehn, and her son Michael with wife Kate

Today we had a visit from two members of the Kehn family, Gretchen, seated on the left, and her son Michael, on the right. They stopped by to have breakfast with us.
Gretchen is a regular customer, and we love having her visit us, because of her strong attachment to the 'middle past' of the Hawthorne Hotel.

From 1953 to 1964, Gretchen lived in the Hawthorne Hotel with her husband, Robert Kehn, who was the General Manager. Several of her children were born while they were living here, and a brief description of their life as the live-in management family of the Hawthorne Hotel is hanging in Nathaniel's Restaurant here in the Hawthorne.

A few of the interesting items from that history are that the children, Robert, Mitzi, and Michael, had their own wading pool on the roof of the Hawthorne. They could access that, and their log cabin playhouse, from the third floor. Also, the way guests knew that they were in the vacinity of the manager's apartment was the lineup of tricyles in the hallway outside their door.

Since I too, grew up in a hotel family, I know a little bit of what their life might have been like. Sometimes guests ask me if I live at the Hawthorne like the Kehn's did, but that is simply not the normal life of a hotel manager any longer. Most hotel managers in this time live off-premises. I do live close to the hotel, so that I do not have to spend a lot of my time commuting, and so I can be there in the 90 seconds to two minutes it takes me to get here if there is an emergency.


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Saturday, July 22, 2006

Today's Ballroom Wedding

I thought you might like to see a view of this evening's wedding set-up in the Ballroom. This couple chose to have a headtable, so in this view you can see how that looks in our room.

We usually always set-up the wedding cake on the dancefloor so that everyone can get a great view of it when they arrive. Of course, it is removed in time for the dancing.

I hope you enjoy this other view.

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Friday, July 21, 2006

Singin' in the Rain at the North Shore Music Theater

Photos by Paul Lyden, courtesy of NSMT Posted by Picasa

So many wonderful things to do. . .

One of the reasons I love living in Salem is that there are so many terrific things to do here. Salem is this great little city, with a huge history of its own. It is walkable, has great public transportation to Boston, just 29 minutes away by commuter rail, and chock-a-block with great things to do right here on the North Shore.

One of those 'so many things to do' is to go to the theater. What kind of theater, do you ask? Imagine it, and it is here, from the tiny Griffen Theater, to the theater at Salem State, community theater in Marblehead and other local communities, to the grand-daddy of the area, the North Shore Music Theater at Dunham Woods.

The NSMT as we know it, currently has a production of Singin' in the Rain that is simply terrific. The photos above can give you an idea. Theater in the round is certainly a challenge, and you can imagine what a challenge it is with a production involving rain, but they carry it off very nicely.

I went to a meeting this morning where I learned a little more about NSMT. Here are some interesting statistics:

- It is one of the most-attended theaters in the U.S. with a total of 355,400 patrons.

- The Boston Business Journal says is the second largest performing arts organization in the state, second only to the combined Boston Symphony Orchestra/Boston Pops.

- The subscription audience of NSMT -- 20,000 -- is one of the largest in New England, and among the top ten in the country.

Having been to the theater in Boston, squeezed into tiny seats and feeling like I was eating my knees, I was very pleased and appreciative of the size of the seats, and the ease with which one can see the production at the NSMT. I have always felt so close to the stage there, no matter where I was sitting.

For more information, you can go to their website, -- you can even purchase your tickets right there.

I hope you will plan a trip to Salem soon, and most certainly plan a visit to the North Shore Music Theater. You will most certainly feel like "Singin in the Rain!"


Thursday, July 20, 2006

We get notes from our guests. . .

Here is one from July 6, addressed to Amy Jacobson, our off-site catering manager.

"Dear Amy,

I wanted to tell you how much we all enjoyed our evening under the tent and your excellent catering company's food and service that made our evening so special.

The wraps were perfect, the pastries were delicious, and everyone loved the Cape Cod potato chips.

Most of all, I want to thank you and Liz and all the hard-working service crew that handled the bad weather so cheerfully. That really set the tone for all the guests and we truly weren't hampered by the rain once the party got underway.

Thank you, especially, for making it all work so smoothly and helping me get through my last-minute "weather-jitters". We loved the 7 Gables venue, and I'm so grateful it worked out.

Best wishes for sunny skies the rest of the summer."

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Red Cross to hold Blood Drive at the Hawthorne Hotel

On July 28 (next Friday) the Red Cross will be doing a blood drive right here at the Hawthorne Hotel. There is a severe need for blood this time of the year, as people busy with their summer plans don't make the time to give blood. The need for platelets is especially strong, since the shelf life for platelets is only about five days. If you know anyone who is going through chemotherapy, you probably know someone who needs platelets.

If you are able to stop by the Hawthorne on July 28 to give blood, I know many people will be thrilled that you did.

Giving blood is one thing that humans must do for each other. Please consider yourself asked, and if you have never done this before, you should know that it is not difficult or painful at all. And you get cookies! And juice! or for more information, call 978-646-9434.

I hope to see you here on Friday, July 28.


The Petunias are looking fine. . .at the Hawthorne Hotel

Each season brings a different kind of flower to our Hawthorne Hotel window boxes. This time of the year is set aside for the petunias, and this particular color is grown just for the Hawthorne Hotel by Nunan's Greenhouses in Georgetown.

Here is a link to their website: and if you do go there, be sure to tell Steve that we said hello!

We all love to see the boxes overflowing with blooms, and we all get in on the act from time to time, dead-heading the old spent blossoms so they keep on blooming.

I hope you enjoy seeing the boxes this week.

Juli Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Steve Nelson, John Kluge and Juli Lederhaus celebrate John's selection as Employee of the Month

Yesterday all of the managers at the Hawthorne Hotel, along with John Kluge's co-workers, applauded John on his selection as our full-time employee of the month for June.

John is one of our cooks at the Hawthorne Hotel, so if you have eaten in either of our restaurants, it is very likely that it was John who cooked your meal.

John has worked for us for almost two years, and we are very happy to have him as part of the Hawthorne Hotel team.

(And yes, he is James Kluge's brother, in case you were wondering.)

Congratulations, John, and thanks for all you do for us and for our guests!

Juli Posted by Picasa

Monday, July 17, 2006

Salem Ferry

The Salem Ferry on Independence Day Weekend
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No tunnels to Salem. . .and a great way to see Boston

No Tunnels to Salem

Are you concerned about the Big Dig issues in the tunnels in Boston? Coming to Salem from Logan Airport is a terrific thing because there are NO TUNNELS, NO BIG DIG -- just take 1A right out of the airport, and keep going. The Hawthorne Hotel is on route 1A, so it will take you right to our door.

For more detailed route information, go to our website, and click on the"About our Hotel" tab on the left side, and the link to "Directions" will be available. Our directions are turn-by-turn with landmarks all along the way.

If you are coming from the south, such as New York or Connecticut, you will likely be coming into Massachusetts either on I-84, and the Mass Pike, or simply by the Mass Pike (I-90), and thence to 95 which turns into 128. These routes totally by-pass Boston, and so none of the Big Dig tunnels are involved here either. Again, see our website directions for the detailed, turn-by-turn, landmarked directions.

A Great Way to See Boston

Boston is just a commuter train ride away - only 29 minutes from Salem station to North station, which will put you right in the historic North End of Boston, and only a few blocks from the Fanueil Hall area. In fact, virtually all of the interesting sights in Boston are within walking distance of the North station. And the train is under $4 so you can leave your car right here, and not have the hassle of traffic, or finding and paying for parking in Boston. You will be so glad you did this! The commuter rail station is Salem is only three blocks from the Hawthorne Hotel.

OR EVEN BETTER, you can take the Salem Ferry to Boston. This puts you right at the Salem Aquarium, and the waterfront area, near virtually everything in Boston that you will want to see. For more information go to Again, everything you will want to see in Boston is within walking distance, or you can take the T.

Coming from the South Shore?

Consider taking the Quincy Ferry to Boston, and then the Salem Ferry to Salem. They are even offering a special rate if you take both, and the connection is right there in one spot. Just show your ticket from the Quincy Ferry to the ticket booth attendant when you buy your ticket for the Salem Ferry, for a $2 discount on your Salem ticket.

What a great way to spend a summer holiday, by starting out on the Atlantic Ocean. The ferries are high-speed, catamaran boats, and even the non-sailor that I am had a beautiful, smooth ride, with not even a feeling of motion off the sea.

We hope to see you in Salem, at the Hawthorne Hotel.

Oh, and don't forget to save your ticket stub from the Salem Ferry, and present it for a 10% discount in either of our dining rooms for dinner.


Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week, July 17 - 23, 2006

Monday , July 17 ~~ Burkina Faso and Virgin Islands
Tuesday , July 18 ~~ Burundi and Washington
Wednesday , July 19 ~~ Cambodia and West Virginia
Thursday , July 20 ~~ Columbia and Wisconsin
Friday , July 21 ~~ Cameroon and Wyoming
Saturday , July 22 ~~ Canada and Alabama
Sunday , July 23 ~~ Cape Verde and Alaska

Sunday, July 16, 2006

A unique wedding cake

Last weekend's wedding here at the Hawthorne Hotel featured a unique wedding cake, decorated with golden calla lilies make of sugar. We thought you might enjoy seeing it.

Juli Posted by Picasa

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Barbieo celebrates her Gallery's opening


As we mentioned yesterday, Barbieo is one of the banquet servers here at the Hawthorne Hotel. We recently learned that she is an artist as well, and here are photos of the grand opening of her art gallery in Artist's Row, at the Salem Marketplace. The Salem Marketplace is located between New Derby and Front Streets, near Washington Street, in downtown Salem.

Please consider stopping by to see her and her work, and be sure to let her know you read about her on the Hawthorne Hotel Blog.


Photos courtesy of Bill Soper, also of the Hawthorne Hotel banquet staff.
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Friday, July 14, 2006

Artist's Row in Salem, and our unique connection


Last Sunday I was attending an Historic Hotels of America Board of Advisors meeting in Williamsburg, Virginia, so I could not attend the opening of Artist's Row right here in Salem. This was particularly distressing to me, since one of our own staff members, Barbieo Barros Gizzi, is one of the artists.

Stay tuned. More tomorrow.

Juli Posted by Picasa

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Our Seafood and Wine Dinner on July 12, 2006

. . . began with some outstanding local scallops, served ceviche style, in mini-scallop pastry shells. The pairing with a 2004 Kotare Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, New Zealand was just the right combination.

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Fresh Maine Peekytoe Crab Cocktail

. . . served wrapped up in English cucumbers, with avocado, capers and a citrus emulsion. This course was paired with a lovely 2004 Josephy Drouhin Domaine de Vaudon Chablis. Outstanding! Posted by Picasa

Sauteed Monkfish and Lobster Napoleon

With wild mushrooms, native peas, creme fraiche and pea shoots. This course was paired with a 2003 Murrieta's Well White Meritage from the Livermore Valley of California. Posted by Picasa