Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Doggie Wedding Honeymoon at the Hawthorne Hotel

Okay, I know what you are thinking! Some people have too much time and money on their hands. Well, you need to know the "rest of the story" as Paul Harvey used to say.

These dogs are special (I know, all of us dog owners think our dogs are special, and they are!) -- but these dogs are particularly special.

Cricket is a therapy dog. She works with seniors at a local residence for women located near the Hawthorne Hotel.

Black Magic is a rescue dog. He spent the first 8 months of his life in deplorable conditions in another state, until Sharon Shea rescued him. He was so poorly treated, living in a hole in the dirt, cowering from everything and everyone, you would not be able to recognize him as the same dog today. He is even partially blind from all the dirt that was lodged in his eye. But thanks to Sharon, he is well, and on his way to being a happy dog.

As Sharon was walking these two special dogs around downtown Salem, she began to get asked "so when are they getting married?" This innocent question sparked an idea, and the idea was bantered around the places Sharon went, including "Living with Pets" owned by Nancy Ripa, on Pickering Wharf.

One thing led to another, and plans were actually hatched for this bit of fluff. Nancy volunteered to outfit Cricket and Black Magic, the wedding was planned, a date chosen, invitations sent (especially to the women that Cricket visits as part of the therapy work she does), and then I found out about it.

Well, no wedding is complete without a honeymoon, so I volunteered to host the happy couple in our pet-friendly suite here a the Hawthorne Hotel. And of course, the arrival had to be done in style, so we pressed upon the limousine service that handles our wedding packages for us, and Ludwig's Limousines graciously agreed to provide the limousine for their ride from their home on the other side of the Common to the Hotel.

When Steve arrived with the lucky "couple" he even got out the "red carpet" so their arrival would be complete. (He confessed to me later that he had never seen anything like it, but he was smiling broadly and enjoying every minute, from what I could see! He even had his own camera out for some photos.

The happy couple enjoyed their meal from our "Doggie Room Service Menu", and they especially enjoyed their welcome gifts of "Hawthorne Hotel" squeaky bones, as you will see in the video that I am including with this blog post -- it is on YouTube, to make it easy for anyone to see:

Arrival at the Hawthorne Hotel for the Honeymoon.

Steve from Ludwig Limousines was professional to the max. Limo was provided courtesy of Ludwig's.

Cricket's train was three feet long, and she was such a good sport about it all. I know my dogs would have been busy ripping it to shreds if their places were reversed.

The doggie wedding cake was provided by Nancy Ripa of Living with Pets, who also made the wedding dress, and provided favors for the canine guests.

Cricket (the bride) and Black Magic (the groom) were intrigued by the balloon arch, also provided by Nancy at Living with Pets.

Steve, the chauffeur, even brought in the dog's luggage.

One of the doggie guests came in his own "tuxedo"!

Cricket pronounced the cake Excellent! She especially enjoyed the pink and blue dog biscuits that were the decorations on the cake.

She wasn't too sure about sharing the cake with her groom, but handler/owner Sharon Shea had a way of convincing them to share.

Our own Nathaniel's server, Judy, went to the wedding on the beach with her granddaughter, and was really happy to be able to have her photo taken with Cricket when she arrived for her shift on this afternoon.

While we often hear from brides that they want to be the ONLY bride in the hotel at any one time, this bride seemed to enjoy the fun of the doggie wedding couple's arrival in the hotel at the same time she was leaving to get married. No ego there! She even directed her photographers to take some shots of the dogs for her album. And you can see her attendants were getting in on the action as well.

The couple's trousseau including their matching pajamas were of interest to Cricket. Or was it the squeaky toys they packed to make their honeymoon night especially fun?

They even brought a book about their breed, Schipperkes. Maybe they are studying up for a family to come?

Ascending the staircase to their suite on the second floor.
Hmmm. . . will he carry her over the threshold?
In their suite. . .

That's all, folks!
I hope you enjoy this very special look at a very unusual happening in the life of the Hawthorne Hotel, the most pet-friendly hotel in Massachusetts!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Rearranging the Furniture

Last week I decided to rearrange the furniture in the area on the second floor that we jokingly call the Mezzanine. It is the area where the "grandmother windows" are located, overlooking the Grand Ballroom. That little project inspired me to try rearranging the lobby.

So today I was still in the mood, and I happened upon a staff member who is extraordinarily helpful, strong, and willing to do whatever -- Jonah Pringle -- and I asked him for his help. Between the two of us we repositioned most of the furniture in the lobby.

I quickly snapped these photos with my iPhone, because someone had borrowed my camera and had not returned it, and I didn't have time to wait. I promise I will shoot some better quality photos with my "big rig" soon, but wanted you to see this "day in the life of the Hawthorne Hotel" before it became old news.

We think it allows for better conviviality and conversation arranged this way. I hope you enjoy it too.


P.S. My husband has never been crazy about my penchant for rearranging furniture, so he was especially happy to learn I had substituted the hotel for our house, in terms of rearranging the furniture.

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Monday, June 28, 2010

Beer + Chocolate ? You Bet!

The Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) announces new pricing for the upcoming tasting event. BEER + CHOCOLATE = FOOD OF THE GODS taking place Thursday, July 8th at 6:30 P.M. Tickets are now $55 for members and $65 for nonmembers. The event complements Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea, on view at PEM through July 18, 2010. Further details are listed below...

Thursday, July 8th at 6:30 P.M.
Event Complements Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea
On view through July 18, 2010

SALEM, MA—Take a delicious journey into the art, culture, and history of Maya chocolate beverages with Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) curator George Schwartz and locally-based Taza Chocolate co-founder Alex Whitmore at Beer + Chocolate = Food of the Gods on Thursday, July 8 at 6:30 p.m.

Known to the Maya as kakaw (cacao), the chocolate beverage was a cherished luxury good considered fit for the gods. Recent archaeological research has confirmed that a fermented chocolate "beer" preceded the non-alcoholic chocolate drinks of the New World. Chocolate continues to inspire brewers today.

Beer + Chocolate begins with a tour of Fiery Pool: The Maya and the Mythic Sea led by Schwartz. Following the tour is a presentation and tasting featuring beers such as Dogfish Head’s Theobroma and Southern Tier’s Choklat, along with Taza’s renowned stone-ground organic chocolate. Guests will also try their hand at creating a chocolate beverage in the style of the Maya, and enjoy Maya-inspired cuisine.

Schwartz and Whitmore will discuss the importance of cacao and chocolate beverages in the Maya world, linking the discussion to the watery themes of Fiery Pool, and revealing through imagery and demonstration how Maya beverages were made and continue to be made today. The event closes with a tasting of modern Taza chocolate and discussion of how it is inspired by ancient Maya and Mesoamerican cacao beverages.

THURSDAY │ JULY 8 │ 6:30PM │ Members $55; Nonmembers $65
Call 978-745-9500 to reserve your seat(s) before they are all filled up!

I hope to see you here or THERE!


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week ~~ June 28 through July 4, 2010

July 4th ~~ Salem, MA In honor of Independence Day this coming Sunday, we will be flying the flag of the United States of America on the front of the hotel in the place of our rotating country flags (in addition to the giant version that is always flying on the roof of the Hawthorne Hotel.)

Monday , June 28 ~~ Honduras and Micronesia
Tuesday , June 29 ~~ Hungary and Minnesota
Wednesday , June 30 ~~ Iceland and Mississippi
Thursday , July 1 ~~ India and Missouri
Friday , July 2 ~~ Indonesia and Montana
Saturday , July 3 ~~ Iran and Nebraska
Sunday , July 4 ~~ United States and Nevada

All of the other flags, countries and states, are in their usual alphabetical order. Regarding the countries, we only fly the flags of the countries who are members of the United Nations.

If you have a special request, be sure to call us at 978-825-4322 or 978-825.4444. Leave us a message and we will return your call.


Flowers with Brick ~~ Lavender

Flowers with brick is a theme I love to photograph in the historic neighborhoods of Salem, MA.

Do you have a favorite "photo theme" that you like to use, especially as it relates to historic areas? I would love to hear about your ideas.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

75th Wedding Anniversary, Leon and Jeanne Masse

Many hotels have function spaces, as do halls and restaurants. However, not very many have the kind of longevity in the business that we do here at the Hawthorne Hotel. This year is our 85th year of serving the North Shore of Boston, Massachusetts.

That kind of longevity is not only rare in the hotel and function business, but it is becoming increasingly rare in the realm of relationships and especially marriages. That is why it is especially appropriate for us to bring you this story today.

We first wrote about the Masse's, pictured above in a photo I just took today, in a blog post that I did five years ago. Here is the link to that post:

Today Leon and Jeanne Masse celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary, surrounded by friends and family, in our Essex Room at the Hawthorne Hotel. They are simply the sweetest couple, and have a truly loving and wonderful family. As a group, they epitomize the kind of customers for whom we exist -- guests who appreciate our brand of hospitality, and who show their appreciation in their genuine warmth, happiness, and kindness.

I hope you enjoy sharing this special part of our day today.

Congratulations to Jeanne and Leon Masse from the staff of the Hawthorne Hotel.

Juli, and the Team

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Friday, June 25, 2010

Beautiful Touches for Tonight's Wedding

The wedding that is taking place tonight in our Ballroom has some lovely touches, as you can see here. The flowers are everlasting arrangements that were created by the mother of the groom as a gift to the couple. It is so nice to see families unleash their creativity to make things special for couples getting married.

These special touches above were placed in each window of the Ballroom.
I hope you enjoy this little look at what is taking place here at the Hawthorne Hotel today.
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Snaphot of a Family

. . . who selected our package that includes a photo session with me, and our props, in honor of the Kennedy photo exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum.

I hope you enjoy being able to witness some of the fun we have here at the Hawthorne Hotel, where we might be historic, but we are hardly staid!

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Thursday, June 24, 2010

A Special Wedding Anniversary

This week, Mr. and Mrs. Bradford Harding, of Natick, spent a night with us in celebration of their 46th wedding anniversary. What made it extra special was the fact that they had their wedding reception here at the Hawthorne Hotel 46 years ago, and had their wedding photos taken in front of another painting here in the hotel that evening.

As you can see, part of what we do in continuing to operate an historic hotel is to maintain our place in the fabric of people's lives -- people like the Bradfords. So, remember this when you think about whether or not it is a good thing to support historic preservation, and as you make your choices for the kinds of entities that will likely be around when you celebrate your 46th anniversary.

I hope to see you here.

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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Children Welcomed

Here at the Hawthorne Hotel we really value all generations of guests, and children are especially welcomed.

In our dining rooms we offer kid-friendly menus packaged along with Wiki-Stix for the children to play with while they wait for their meals to be freshly prepared by our chefs.
As I was going table-to-table this afternoon, I happened upon Olivia, who was here visiting for the day from Quincy, with her mother. They were having lunch in our Tavern, and Olivia, who is in the fourth grade, showed me the "pizza with pepperoni slice" that she had fashioned, along with a peace symbol.
I thought her creative use of Wiki-Stix was worth immortalizing in our Hawthorne Hotel blog, and asked permission to take her photo with them. "Mom" said it was okay, so here she is, smiling a great smile, with her creations.
Thanks so much for sharing your artistic talents with us, and our blog readers, Olivia!
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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A Lovely Thank You Note for a Rehearsal Dinner at the Hawthorne Hotel

Our guests clearly say it best when it comes to letting everyone know how well we do in fulfilling our mission as a premier hospitality company for the North Shore of Boston, Massachusetts.

This thank you note, sent to Karen Cotton, our Director of Catering here at the Hawthorne Hotel, certainly made our day!

I hope you enjoy seeing a little bit of the inside of our business.

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Monday, June 21, 2010

Flowers with Brick -- Johnny Jump-Ups

I love the contrast of beautiful flowers with the old brick. These photos also show some granite that edges the brick, adding yet another lovely contrast.

Last spring (2009) I planted Johnny Jump-Ups in my garden. They went to seed, and created these volunteers that sprouted up in my brick driveway at home.

I hope you enjoy my returning briefly to "flowers with brick" right now, and I also hope you will take the time to look around wherever you are to find a little bit of beauty in an unusual place.


Sunday, June 20, 2010

Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week ~~ June 21 through 27, 2010

We moved Germany to Monday because we flew the French flag this past weekend in honor of a large group of French people who were staying with us in the Hotel for a wedding.

Monday , June 21 ~~ Germany and Kansas
Tuesday , June 22 ~~ Grenada and Kentucky
Wednesday , June 23 ~~ Guatemala and Louisiana
Thursday , June 24 ~~ Guinea and Maine
Friday , June 25 ~~ Guinea-Bissau and Maryland
Saturday , June 26 ~~ Guyana and Massachusetts
Sunday , June 27 ~~ Haiti and Michigan

There are no special requests for this week (at least so far!)


Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Tavern at the Hawthorne Hotel is for Sports Fans

This group of sports fans turned the Tavern at the Hawthorne Hotel into their own comfy living room Thursday night as they watched the Celtics lead through most of the final game of the NBA championship, only to go down in flames in the fourth quarter.
We have a large, flat-screen television in the cabinetry of the Tavern, and another one over the bar, so our fans can easily watch the important sporting events that occur.

I hope to see you here in the Tavern for the best burgers ever, ice-cold draft beer, and a terrific, cozy atmosphere.

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