25 February 2008

Waxhaw, NC Couple Married 31 Years Win Prestigious Lovebirds Contest




"we create memories for couples just like the Hutchinsons. Nantucket offers countless ways for people to discover themselves. Century House celebrates Nantucket, and now that our history has moved into the 21st Century it continues to operate with the attentive hospitality it did in the late 1800's. Century House

Season 2008 marks the 175th years beginning of Century House and Gerry & JeanE's 25th season as innkeepers. To share these milestone anniversaries, we introduced a Valentine's Day national anniversary contest calling "old lovebirds" married 25 - 175 years, to enter to win a three night Century House stay on Nantucket Island, MA. The couple was randomly selected from 1000 entries! The contest was featured on USA Today.com . Forbes.com, Palm Beach Post, Palm Beach Daily News, Kansas City Star also picked up the story. Entries came from all over the place: from California to Michigan to Texas to Minnesota, to Vermont, to Florida. And they came in all different shapes and forms: some forgot to enter their husband's or wife's name, some forgot the anniversary date, or the phone number. Some wrote their stories, some wrote nothin (there were no requirements for an essay on submitting an entry. Some wanted to add all their marriages together to make up for the 25 years. Some submitted an email entry per day. Some sent pictures. Some wrote beautiful letters, love poems, or funny stories. All entry efforts were appreciated.

We accepted all entries of 25 years or more of blissful togetherness with all the basic information we asked for, then randomly picked one.

Gail and John Hutchinson, a delightful Waxhaw, NC couple, were the winners. Upon hearing the news John exclaimed: "Oh my, you gotta be kidding me!? My wife won't believe it." They celebrated their 2008 Valentine's Day together. Gail suprised John by having the same meal as they did on their first date. "Oh, we just need Nantucket!" Gail said. He brought home the news of a free trip to Nantucket the next day.

He reminisces: "Our first date was taking our bicycles out on the ferry to Nantucket. I had been given two free tickets on the ferry. We took with us a block of cheddar cheese, a box of triscuits and a bag of cherries. After arriving on the island we bicycled down to the south beach and sat there enjoying our crackers & cheese and cherries."

Gail & John married 2 years later. "As we were planning our wedding to take place we didn't have a lot of money. We were missionary candidates and were planning to have our honeymoon on Nantucket since it would be off-season with reduced rate. Anyone for Nantucket in the winter? Gail's family felt we needed something warmer so contributed toward our one week stay on Bermuda."

All these years they still talk about Nantucket:"This gift from Century House will be a wonderful trip down memory lane for us. It will bring us home nearly 34 years after our first date."


About the Century House, 175 Years of Nantucket Discovery---------------
The historic Century House, the Inn on the Cliff, dates back to the Cliff Road land purchase in 1833. According to research performed by Edouard A. Stackpole, renowned Nantucket historian and former director of the Peter Foulger Museum, a member of an old Nantucket family of Scottish roots, Captain Robert Calder, built the Century House. Over the years, Capt. Calder took part in several long, successful voyages to hunt whale, and eventually completed the construction of the house in the early 1840’s. It is said that Capt. Calder chose this site because of the privacy, the ocean breezes, the views, and the genuine serenity the location provided in the 1840’s and still exhibits today.
According to Mr. Stackpole, the Century House is the oldest continuously operating guesthouse on Nantucket Island to date.
Visit www.centuryhouse.com for details.

13 February 2008

Ask the Artist: Sergio Roffo


The Month of Valentines conveys a celebration of loving relationships and loving passions and most of our readership know of Innkeeper Gerry's passion for the Arts and the inn's Artist in Residence Program, initiated in the late 1980's. With this issue, we introduce the Ask the Artist Column in which guests & staff alike can send in questions of curiosity about an artist's life work. Innkeeperette, JeanE posed this issue's question to renown en plein aire artist, Sergio Roffo, whose relationship with Century House goes back years!

How does the artist "know" how to translate what his/her eye sees three dimensionally onto a a blank canvass? Is it innate, mathematically, genius or what?

"On location, starting from the background to foreground mixing the pigments or colors to create the values, (the lightness and darkness of that color) that would give you the allusion of depth, distance in between the background and the foreground. The subtleties in nature are so beautiful."

11 February 2008

25 things to love about us

Location- Best between town and the beach
Smell - Fresh Coffee, baked cookies, flowers
Rooms - Each unique with cross ventilation
Old and New - Best of both, each in moderation, internet and A/C
Continuous History - Always what it is where it is. 175 years.
Guests - Best on the island; from all over the world, each with his or her own story
Staff - Comfortable with themselves and pleasant
Colors - Sunrises and sunsets
Music - Classical music always playing in the lounge area to relax while having a cup of coffee
Neighbors - Even our neighbors and friends in the area rarely leave the island
A Summer Destination - Cliff Road was made for the summer season
The Veranda - A unique addition to the house in 1910
Water - The drinking water is the best, the Atlantic is second to none, and plenty of hotwater.
The Beds - We get continuous calls throughout the year wanting to know how we buy the mattresses and where.
The Patio - We were one of the first guest houses with both North Patio and a South Patio
24 Hour Availability - There is always someone on the property
Books - Always a book to take to the beach from your room - one you probably wouldn't buy yourself
Artwork - One of the more outstanding contemporary Nantucket collections on the Island
Wood Floors - Most rooms have 150 year old pine floors
Silence - A quiet place to sit by yourself in each room
Variety - Each day is a new adventure
Safety - Speaks for itself
Night Sky - Moon and Stars are the best
Birds and the Bees - look all around

06 February 2008

Finding Romance 20 Miles at Sea

TravelLady Magazine, Article printed on www.travellady.com
Finding Romance 20 Miles at Sea
By Brooke Cunningham

Arriving on the ferry, we looked down onto a busy dock full of people waving hello and saying goodbye surrounded by mounds of blue hydrangea, small buildings covered in weathered shingles and some of the world’s truly astonishing yachts. The welcoming of Nantucket appeared to be as beautiful as we had heard.

We were booked into the Century House Inn on Cliff Road. Having no idea where that was relative to the harbor, we grabbed a cab at the end of the dock for a quick lift with our luggage to a charming wide white porch dripping with flower baskets and covered with small tables and chairs partially hidden by thick green flowering vines. Behind the charming porch was our home for a few days, one of the oldest inns on Nantucket.

Our room was a romantic mix of old and new. Provincial wallpapers, recessed paneled ceilings, wide windows that open, large fireplace with mantel for charm, plus air conditioning, television and large bathroom because convenience is a modern thing. And then there was the bed, oh goodness what a bed it was! So delicious that naps became something that we eagerly looked forward to, and getting up in the morning was a thing for debate!

We discovered on our first venture on foot that we were actually perfectly well placed for biking into town and evening sunset strolling about. Probably 10-12 blocks from town it was an easy walk past gardens and galleries to the waterfront, restaurants and shops while far enough out that we did not hear the traffic and hubbub of people moving about. The cobble streets are a thing to be mindful of though, this is not the place for amateurs in high heels! Bicycles are perfect for getting around, and we found them just down the street at Cook’s Rentals for $18/day.

We took a tour our first afternoon, with Gail’s Tours just to get the lay of the land. We discovered that she was a wonderful guide after she picked us up at the Century House in her very comfortable van. She took us on a lap around the island which happened to include John Kerry coming out of the driveway and looking as if the bicycle he was about to mount was not his friend. We saw many features of the island in an hour and a half, and spent the next few days revisiting some of them. So here we were in a romantic, elegant hotel 20 miles at sea with a list of things that we wanted to see and do for the next few days. Really a perfect way to start our new life together!

One morning we got up very early and were greeted in the whiteout fog by our taxi for a ride to meet our fishing boat. After a slow ride across the island we met Lynne Heyer, our guide and captain of the 26’ FlyAway. Through the “pea soup” Lynne carefully got us on the shoals by South Beach and did we ever hit fish!

The sun began to burn off the fog and warmed our skin as the sparkling water began to appear. There was a light breeze, it was 75 degrees under a wide clear blue sky and we brought in 14 bluefish in the course of the morning! We could hardly bring ourselves to go back “on the hard” after such an exhilarating morning at sea!

Most afternoons we would wander by The Rope Walk, a very comfortable pub on the dock with fresh sea food and a very local atmosphere. Each evening we walked to a different restaurant for dinner. You could probably stay for a month without running out of great places to dine or visiting anything twice.

One evening we did a cocktail cruise through the harbor on the Anna W. You bring your own cocktails and hors d’oeuvres and for roughly an hour the open boat takes you visiting among the yachts in the harbor. Great fun and very romantic.

The week went very quickly and we found ourselves torn about leaving our cozy room (and remember that delicious bed?) but the consolation was that now we knew how much relaxation, charm, excitement and excellent food could be had by returning to our romantic room at the Century House and leaving the world behind by 20 miles.

How to get to Nantucket
http://www.nantucketchamber.org/visitor/gethere.html

Harbor Cruises on the Anna W II
508-228-1444
Straight Wharf Slip #11- PO Box 77 - Nantucket MA 02554-0077

The Rope Walk
http://www.theropewalk.com/

Gail’s Tours, Inc.
508-257-6557
http://www.nantucket.net/tours/gails/

CrossRip Fishing charters , Capt. Lynne Heyer
http://www.crossrip.com/fleet.asp?tripcategoryid=36

Nantucket Restaurant Guide
http://www.nantucket.net/food/

Menu from Company of the Cauldron
Appetizer of Pan-Seared Nantucket Bay Scallops over Brussels Sprout Leaves with Fresh Basil and Truffle Oil

Ingredients:

1 lb Nantucket Bay Scallops
1 pint fresh Brussels Sprouts
1 tbsp chopped shallot
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 tbsp basil oil
1 tsp white truffle oil
1 tbsp sherry vinegar
olive oil for sautéing
salt and pepper to taste

Step One: The Brussels Sprouts

Cut bottoms of sprouts off and remove individual leaves.
Add a small amount of olive oil to a sauté pan and heat until smoking hot.
Add and sauté together:

* sprout leaves
* shallot
* garlic
* salt and pepper to taste
Sauté until leaves begin to wilt, and then add the sherry vinegar. Set aside and keep warm.

Step Two: The Scallops

Remove the abductor muscle and check for sand. Do not rinse.
Add a small amount of olive oil to a non-stick sauté pan, and heat until smoking hot.
Add scallops. Do not overcrowd pan or move scallops. Season with salt and pepper and brown on each side for 40 seconds.

Step Three: Plating

Arrange sprout leaves in the center of a large plate. Place 1/4 scallops on and around the sprouts. Drizzle basil and truffle oils over entire plate. Serve immediately.

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