Wednesday, January 31, 2007

One of my favorite newsletters is the one that arrives

from Cinema Salem each week in my e-mail box. I thought I would copy and paste it here, so you could enjoy it as well. If you want to subscribe to this funny-bone tickler yourself, I know that Paul Van Ness would be pleased. Here it is, free of charge for this week only (well, actually the subscription is free too)-- enjoy!


Subj: CinemaSalem Showtimes for Feb 2-8 + MWOW Update!
Date: 1/30/2007 9:15:28 AM Eastern Standard Time

Dear Juli,

This weekly email is arriving one day early so you can not only get the scoop on next week's films but rearrange your schedules to attend all three big events of this week's Midwinter Week o' Wonders (MWOW!): three straight nights of imagination-stoking creative stimulation to warm every filmlover's soul.

When we came up with the name "Midwinter Week o' Wonders", we liked it for its exceptional lameness, and its use of the pseudo-vernacular and commercial "o'" instead of "of", as well as the preciousness of the unnecessary "MWOW!" (or technically, MWo'W!) shorthand nickname at the end. However, no one has mentioned that they find it lame, and in fact, people (not many) are calmly approaching the box office and asking, "Is the Midwinter Week o' Wonders this week or next?"

(There are two possible reasons for this. Number 1, everyone is acutely embarrassed on our behalf, sort of like when a dinner guest has a piece of spaghetti stuck to their upper lip, and no one says anything. This is the most likely explanation. Number 2, rather than being lame, Midwinter Week o' Wonders (MWOW!) is actually one of those instant grand slam marketing inspirations which immediately becomes part of America's popular lexicon, like "Kleenex", -- which also probably seemed lame at the time. But if this is true, we should probably get it trademarked ®, right away!

(As you know, we at CinemaSalem believe in the pure, unvarnished truth. So we'll ask you to tell us what you think by leaving a small, folded piece of paper in a basket by the box office. If you think that "Midwinter Week o' Wonders" is truly lame, leave us a folded piece of paper that says, "There is a piece of spaghetti stuck to your upper lip." If you love the name, you can leave us a small, folder piece of paper that says, "®" (an R with a circle around it). Thanks for your feedback on this vital issue.) Now, here's a reminder of this week's MWOW! schedule.

Tonight, January 30, we're presenting a "Queen Double- Feature" (QDF!) feature Helen Mirren in THE QUEEN at 4:15 and again at 9 pm, and a real queen, Davida Rosenblum, in person @ 7pm. Her late husband, Ralph Rosenblum edited more than 35 feature films, including ANNIE HALL and five other Woody Allen classics.

This event is free, but you'll need to pick up your free ticket in the Café in order to gain admittance to Theater One!

Many people are loving PAN"S LABYRINTH, and some people aren't, but in either case, it's one of the most talked-about films of the year. If (like me) you haven't seen it yet , you'll want to attend on Wednesday, January 31, to view the movie and join in a post-movie discussion.

Unfortunately, our discussion leader, Gordon College Provost Mark Sargent, will not be available tomorrow night because of a family emergency in California. The head of the Communication Arts Department at Gordon, Rini Cobbey, who is also a film critic, will fill in. So stay after the 7:15 screening for a discussion, and bring your lively opinions and surgical insights, and we'll all have fun.

On Thursday, February 1, the MWOW! culminates with a NO PLACE FOR HATE Celebration with Mayor Kim Driscoll. It starts at 7:00 and is free (althought donations will be accepted), and features the movie theater premiere of a film produced by young Salem residents called WHAT'S THE POINT: THE HOPE OF A GROWING COMMUNITY, which was produced with the assistance of the Peabody Essex Museum.

Last week it was the Golden Globes. This week it's the Screen Actors Guild awards. The people who determine greatness are obsessed with our current slate of films, so we'll hold them all over for another week!

PAN'S LABYRINTH (R, 114 minutes), which has been nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Original Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Original Score, Best Foreign Language Film, Best Makeup, and Best Art Direction, will play Friday-Sunday at 11:30, 2:10, 4:50, 7:30, and 10:10, and Monday-Thursday at 4:30 and 7:15.

THE QUEEN (PG-13, 103 minutes), which was just nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress, and Best Screenplay, will screen Friday-Sunday at 12:00, 2:30, 5:00, 7:25, and 9:45, and Monday-Thursday at 4:15 and 7:10 (except for the Tuesday time noted above).

Finally, DREAMGIRLS (PG-13 - 124 minutes), which was just nominated for several Academy Awards, including Best Supporting Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Art Direction, and Best Original Song, plays Friday-Sunday at 11:00, 2:00, 4:55, 7:45, and 10:30, and Monday-Thursday at 4:00 and 7:00.

Here's a peek at some of our coming attractions. On Valentine's Day (which is a Wednesday), we're opening the great new romantic-comedy MUSIC AND LYRICS, starring Drew Barrymore and Hugh Grant. We're planning a special, welcoming event for that night, to include not only the shiny, happy people, but also those for whom Valentine's Day (from my former experience) was a unique and special agony. More later.

On Friday, February 16, BRIDGE TO TERABITHIA, based on the young adult classic novel which won the Newbury award, will open at Cinemasalem, starring AnnaSophia Robb (WINN DIXIE, SAMANTHA) and Josh Hutcherson (UNACCOMPANIED MINORS, POLAR EXPRESS).

On February 23, the filmmakers who produced RAY are releasing AMAZING GRACE, the story of a passionate, brilliant, and obsessed individual who almost singlehandedly ended slavery in the British Empire. I had the pleasure of attending a prescreening at the MFA last night and found it beautiful, humorous, and powerful.

Although the title comes from a Christian hymn, the story is a universal one of the courage required by people of any faith to speak truth to power and oppose entrenched oppression until it's overcome.

Thanks for supporting CinemaSalem! Paul Van Ness

phone: 978 744-1400
web: (this is where to go to get your very own subscription for FREE, so you don't have to depend on the Hawthorne Hotel Blog to forward this fine and funny piece of writing to you)

CinemaSalem | One East India Square | Salem | MA | 01970

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

More sweets for the chocolate lover. . . .

Shannon Civitarese, our Director of the Rooms Division, just put together this nice package for you chocoholics. It is our Salem's So Sweet package, and here are the details:

Enjoy deluxe accommodations for two, chocolate covered strawberries and sparkling wine delivered to your room, and two tickets to the "Salem's So Sweet" Chocolate and Wine Tasting. Tickets are available Friday night only.

If you are unable to join us on Friday evening, or prefer to simply enjoy a romantic stroll through Salem and enjoy the sights, breakfast for two in Nathaniel's may be obtained in place of the tickets for the Chocolate and Wine event.

$189 per couple. (Does not include taxes and gratuity) ~~ This package for Friday night may be booked on line by going to our website at .

If you want to make this a two-night package, stay on Thursday or Saturday night at a special rate of $99 rate for the second night. The $99 rate does not include breakfast. For this special set of rates, call the Hawthorne Hotel directly at 978-744-4080 or toll-free at 800-729-7829.

We look forward to seeing you here.


Monday, January 29, 2007

Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week ~~ January 29 through February 4, 2007

Monday , January 29 ~~ Brazil and North Dakota
Tuesday , January 30 ~~ Brunei Darussalam and Ohio
Wednesday , January 31 ~~ Bulgaria and Oklahoma
Thursday , February 1 ~~ Burkina Faso and Oregon
Friday , February 2 ~~ Burundi and Pennsylvania
Saturday , February 3 ~~ Cambodia and Puerto Rico
Sunday , February 4 ~~ Cameroon and Rhode Island

Some people are truly surprised to find out that we change both of the flags on the front of the Hawthorne Hotel every night. We do indeed do that, and the flags are chosen by alphabetical order, unless we have a special request.

People all over Salem tell me they drive by just to see what flags we are flying, and often there are people who simply assume that there are dignitaries staying with us from those countries or states. Occasionally someone will drop in who is from one of the countries, all in amazement that we are flying 'their' flag. We love when that happens.

The flag of the United States of America flies on the main roof of the hotel, and it is a very large version.


Sunday, January 28, 2007

Courtney's Sweet Sixteen Birthday Celebration at Sunday Brunch

While I try very hard not to spoil our daughter, Courtney, when she asked if we could come to Sunday brunch for her birthday today, it was hard to say no. So, here she is, opening a very special present -- a teddy bear that was made for her by one of our 'exchange kids' who lives in Alaska. What makes it even more special is that it was made out of a 'blankey' that Courtney didn't want to let go of, despite its well-worn condition.

This gift is so unique, not only for what it is made from, but for all of its accessories. This bear, now named Gabriella, for one of C's favorite Boston Red Sox players, Gabe Kapler, is completely decked out in full Red Sox regalia, and even came with a box to hold all her accessories, such as her own music box pillow, baby teddy, ball, bat, mitt, t-shirt, and cap, along with a bear-sized pennant.

So, here she is, opening this special gift, in Nathaniel's Restaurant just a bit ago. Happy Sweet Sixteen Birthday, C!

Mom, aka Juli Posted by Picasa

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Chocolate will flow in Salem

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Are you a Choc-o-holic?

Calling all Chocaholics: Buy your tickets now!

5th Annual Salem's So Sweet Chocolate & Ice Sculpture Festival,
February 9, 10 and 11, 2007

Each year this festival brings 2,000+ people to downtown Salem and Pickering Wharf. 11 Ice Sculptures will be on display, and over 30 downtown merchants will have special Valentine promotions! The event always begins with the famous-ly delicious Chocolate and Wine Tasting, scheduled for Old Town Hall on Friday night The event runs from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm.

Tickets are only $20, and can be obtained at the Salem Chamber Office, or right here at the Hawthorne Hotel beginning on Monday, January 29.

Saturday February 10th & 11th - All day: Salem's So Sweet Chocolate & Ice Sculptures Festival throughout downtown Salem.

For more information please visit the Salem Chamber website or call 978-744-0004

I hope to see you here.


Friday, January 26, 2007

CPR Training at the Hawthorne Hotel

Today about 40 of our staff members received CPR and First Aid training, including training in how to use a defibrillator. It was great to learn more about how to take care of our guests and our own staff members.

Our defibrillator should arrive within ten days, so we will have one right here in the Hawthorne Hotel.

While this is not what one would consider 'sexy' news, like the information about our wine dinner from the day before, it is still all part of the life of all us here at the Hawthorne Hotel, on the North Shore of Boston, Massachusetts. And, while it is news I hope we never have to actually demonstrate to you, we thought you might like to know.


Thursday, January 25, 2007

Hawthorne Hotel's First Wine Dinner of 2007

It seemed unanimous that each and every person at our first wine dinner of 2007, a fully-subscribed event once again, was certainly well pleased with the evening.

Here are the photos for you to enjoy, although I can tell you that the food and wine was much more delicious in person.

Chive Potato Pancakes
apple butter, sliced apple and sour cream

Roasted Cranberry Duck Roulade
sautéed leeks and local goat cheese

Seared Sweet Coriander Scallop, curry sauce and yogurt

Red Wine Braised Pork Ossobuco
Goat cheese-mashed potatoes, sweet-roasted garlic
natural braising juices
2003 Father-in-Law Shiraz, Charles Melton

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New England Seafood Sampler
fresh Maine shrimp and crab cake,
roasted blue point oysters, arugula and Jarlsberg,
grilled calamari, with sweet onion and lobster stuffing
2005, Mad Fish Sauvignon Blanc

Grilled Sirloin Filet
Nathaniel’s house-made steak sauce, yam-stuffed red skin potatoes,
grilled lemon broccolini and sweet baby carrots
2001 Fergus, Tim Adams

Mango Mousse layered with honey-laced langue du chat cookies, kiwi and kiwi sauce.
2004 Hammond Estate Rudesheimer Drachent ein Riesling Spätlese

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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Yes, we do have packages. . .

Our new packages are out in brochure form for 2007, and if you are interested in receiving that brochure, or you want one mailed to a certain someone (subliminal hint-hint), please feel free to call us toll-free at 1-800-729-7829 (800-SAY-STAY if you need a memory aid).

Given the season -- Valentine's Day, Week, Month, is fast approaching (guys, hint-hint), you might want to check out our Sweetheart package. This includes deluxe overnight accommodations, dinner for two in Nathaniel's Restaurant, sparkling wine and chocolate-covered strawberries delivered to your room after dinner. It doesn't get much more romantic than that!

All for only $270 per couple -- you could spend that for dinner in Boston, and still have to get there, deal with parking, and drive home.

We hope to see you here.


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Some new Oriental Carpets have arrived at the Hawthorne Hotel

If you have ever visited our hotel, you know we love Oriental carpets. We recently acquired several new ones, and we thought you might enjoy seeing photos of them, in case you can't just stop by to take a look.

Here they are:

Juli Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 22, 2007

Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week ~~ January 22 through 28, 2007

Here are this week's flags. We hope you enjoy thinking about the greater world we live in.

Monday , January 22 ~~ Belarus and Missouri
Tuesday , January 23 ~~ Belgium and Montana
Wednesday , January 24 ~~ Belize and Nebraska
Thursday , January 25 ~~ Benin and Nevada
Friday , January 26 ~~ Bhutan and New Hampshire
Saturday , January 27 ~~ Bolivia and New Jersey
Sunday , January 28 ~~ Bosnia and Herzegovina and New Mexico


Sunday, January 21, 2007

A new arrival at the Hawthorne Hotel

Last week on January 10, Kristi, who is one of our cooks, had a baby. Here is Janice May, already being introduced to the staff of the Hawthorne Hotel kitchen. Welcome to our world, Janice, and congratulations to Kristi!

Juli Posted by Picasa

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Salem Visitor's Center

Recently a number of us were in a meeting, discussing what could be done to make Salem more visitor-friendly. One participant mentioned that we should have a visitor's center. Well, that suggestion had an easy answer -- we DO have a visitor's center, and it is a terrific one.

Here is a photo, and just fyi, it is located only one block from the Hawthorne Hotel, and directly across the street from the largest parking deck in Salem, on the corner of New Liberty and Essex and St. Peter's Streets.

The center is open daily, year-round, so come on to Salem, and start a great visit by visiting our visitor's center. Nuf said!

Juli Posted by Picasa

Friday, January 19, 2007

Another Cultural Event Series in Salem

As I mentioned in a post last week, it seems that Salem, Massachusetts has more cultural events and opportunities than many cities that are hundreds of times its size. Here is another series that I thought you might find of interest.

The lecture series at Hamilton Hall began in 1946, and has continued to today. It is always completely subscribed, so if you have any interest at all, you should contact them right away.

Here is the link to their website:

This year's series begins on February 1, and continues weekly through the end of March. The prices are so reasonable, you really can't afford to miss them.

Many attendees come to the Hawthorne Hotel afterwards for lunch. If you choose to do that, I will look forward to seeing you here.


Thursday, January 18, 2007

Our Next Great Wine Dinner ~~ January 24, 2007

Every time we have a new guest attend one of our wine dinners, we get a similar comment, which amounts to "I can't believe what a nice event this is. . . "
If you have yet to attend one, be sure to make your reservations early for this upcoming dinner. It promises to be another outstanding evening of excellent food, wine and fellowship.

Chef Steve Nelson of the Hawthorne Hotel Presents an Evening of Great Food and Great Wines Featuring “Blue Water” Wines

“Uncommon Food and Wine, on the Common in Salem, MA”

Seared Sweet Coriander Scallop, curry sauce and yogurt
Pork Satay, apricot glaze and hazelnuts
Roasted Cranberry Duck Roulade
sautéed leeks and local goat cheese
Chive Potato Pancakes
apple butter, sliced apple and sour cream
2004 Pinot Noir, Fisher Estates
2004 Riesling, Fisher Estates

New England Seafood Sampler
fresh Maine shrimp and crab cake,
roasted blue point oysters, arugula and Jarlsberg,
grilled calamari, with sweet onion and lobster stuffing
2005, Mad Fish Sauvignon Blanc

Red Wine Braised Pork Ossobuco
Goat cheese mashed potatoes, sweet roasted garlic
natural braising juices
2003 Father-in-Law Shiraz, Charles Melton

Grilled Sirloin Filet
Nathaniel’s house-made steak sauce, yam stuffed red skin potatoes,
grilled lemon broccolini and sweet baby carrots
2001 Fergus, Tim Adams

Chef Steve has a special surprise in store
2004 Hammond Estate Rudesheimer Drachent ein Riesling Spätlese

Wednesday January 24, 2007 at 6:30pm
$75 Per Person including tax and gratuity
For ticket information please call (978) 825-4311
We usually sell every seat, so make your reservations early.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Tavern at the Hawthorne Hotel, Salem Massachusetts

Here are our monthly specials for January, available on Sunday through Wednesday nights in the Tavern from 5 pm to 10 pm.

Baked Macaroni and Cheese with Ham

Chicken Florentine, spinach and mushroom sauce and rice

Breaded Pork Chop, mashed potatoes and vegetable medley

These dinners are all served as part of our special menu that includes a salad, choice of one of these three entrees, and dessert, for only $13 per person.

What a deal!

We hope to see you here.

Juli Posted by Picasa

The Hawthorne Hotel has been joined in the blogging world by Bill Marriott

It is always nice to see when something we started doing here at the Hawthorne Hotel in Salem, Massachusetts, nearly two years ago, and have done every day since then, starts to pick up enough steam to be noticed by the 'big guys' such as Bill Marriott.

While we are an historic hotel, and proud member of Historic Hotels of America, we too try to keep pace with technology and how it can connect us to our guests.

Congratulations to you, Mr. Marriott, for noticing that the hospitality world is changing in some terrific ways, due to this amazing place called the 'net.


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Our Connections to Our Guests

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Here you see Sue and Bill Ellis from Gloucester. They were here celebrating Bill's 50th birthday. They've been married for 21 years. They decided to stay a night here to celebrate and eat out in Salem, and then they were going to the Pat's game on Sunday.

Sue said she wanted Bill all to herself for this special celebration, and thought that the Hawthorne Hotel would be the perfect place. It turns out she wasn't quite so set on isolation, because we got to meet them while we were hosting an open house for our guests, in the suite at the Suzannah Flint House. The SFH is the bed and breakfast lodging that we run and that is located on our property right next door to the main parking lot.

It is so nice when we really get the opportunity to know our guests. Sue and Bill, we look forward to welcoming you back to the Hawthorne!


Monday, January 15, 2007

Flags of the Week at the Hawthorne Hotel ~~ January 15 through 21, 2007

Monday , January 15 ~~ Australia and Maine
Tuesday , January 16 ~~ Austria and Maryland
Wednesday , January 17 ~~ Azerbaijan and Massachusetts
Thursday , January 18 ~~ Bahamas and Michigan
Friday , January 19 ~~ Bahrain and Micronesia
Saturday , January 20 ~~ Bangladesh and Minnesota
Sunday , January 21 ~~ Barbados and Mississippi

It is interesting to see that this blog has readers all over the world. Maybe they want to see what flags are flying here?

We hope if you are coming from another country, you will let us know in advance so we can fly 'your' flag in time for your arrival?


Sunday, January 14, 2007

The "Club" has a get-together at the Hawthorne Hotel Today


We happened upon this happy group today in the lobby. We learned that they call themselves "the club" and that they get together for the holidays, one a year, and have done this for 35 years. They met in high school and grammar school, and now, with their husbands, have this lovely annual tradition.

They live all over the area, from the South Shore, the North Shore and into New Hampshire, this group of ten 'girls' who still value friendship. This is such a nice thing to see, and we are pleased that they chose our cozy little hotel as their meeting place this year.

"Club" members, we hope to welcome you back again soon.

Juli Posted by Picasa

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Hawthorne Hotel Staff Members Celebrate at Annual Holiday Party

This week we all got together at our favorite neighborhood restaurant, Finz, to celebrate another fantastic year together here at the Hawthorne Hotel. This year, as is our tradition, we honored our employees of the month, and named our employees of the year as well.

Here are all of the photos. I hope you enjoy seeing the staff members who serve you each and every day enjoying themselves together in fun and fellowship. As I have written before, we are in many ways like a very large family here at the Hawthorne Hotel. I believe that Salem, Massachusetts is a better place because of the existence of the Hawthorne Hotel, but it is the staff members who make the heart and soul of the hotel -- it is all of our staff members who create the warmth that you experience when you stay here.

Yet another slice of Hawthorne Hotel life for you to see!


Hawthorne Hotel's Employees of the Year

Here you see Kelly Newell being hugged by her fiance, Sean Lilly, as she is named our full-time employee of the year for 2006. Kelly and Sean are planning their wedding (where else?) right here at the Hawthorne Hotel this year.

Here is Kelly, with her two very special managers, Karen Cotton and Christine Turner, congratulating her on her award.

In this photo you can see Shannon Civitarese congratulating Margarita Gonzalez, our part-time employee of the year for 2006, with Margarita's sister-in-law, Lourdes Gonzalez de Reynoso looking on in approval. Shannon is our Director of Rooms, and she is responsible for housekeeping as part of her overall responsiblities. She was formally our director of housekeeping, and has supervised Margarita for over five years. Lourdes also works for us in housekeeping, and she was also one of our part-time employees of the month for 2006. It is apparent from these photos that our choices were good ones.

I hope you enjoy this additional slice of life at the Hawthorne Hotel.

Juli Posted by Picasa