This architect-designed, cozy cottage on Mount Desert's quiet side has 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, sleeps 5 comfortably, with full kitchen and washer/dryer. Located on Mitchell Cove in Bernard, 10 minutes south of Southwest Harbor—you get the best of both worlds: the quiet and privacy to enjoy your family's time together, and immediate convenience to all the attractions of the island. Grocery, library, restaurants, water sports (canoeing, sailing, motor-boating, kayaking), swimming, and miles and miles of well-maintained hiking trails up some of the country's most beautiful and accessible mountains are within a 15-20 minute drive. And just a minute's walk down the property to Mitchell Cove brings you to half a mile of secluded and undeveloped private shingle beach. A home-base for your expeditions across the island; and a light-filled, snug residence for your family's together-time during your stay.
The master bedroom is on the ground floor; two bedrooms are upstairs, one with two twin beds, the other a single. A futon in the living room can accommodate a sixth person. Maximum number of adults is 4-5. There is a $50/night charge for each person over five. A bath with shower is on each floor.
The cottage has all modern appliances; has its own well-water and lots of hot water. Wi-Fi internet service is provided. A wide deck off the front balances the indoor and outdoor spaces and is great for sitting in the sun; a secondary deck off the kitchen has a gas-powered grill that's ready for use. In the main floor's living room, a cathedral ceiling shows off the grain of the golden pine boards. A new wood-burning stove keeps the whole house warm on cooler evenings (many summers you won't need it much), and provides a natural center to game-playing, reading, or watching TV. There's ample dry firewood in the woodshed.
The cellar has an Old Town canoe and paddles, which you're welcome to take down to the Cove.
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If you're considering coming in May or early June, or later in September or October, please see note below about the wood stove. It makes a big difference!
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The house is very much more than the sum of its parts. It's situated on the site of the old farmhouse that farmed the Mitchell Cove area in the 19th century, when the land was all open meadows. You'll notice that it's the 'right' spot for a house—up on a little rise, with a full cellar dug into the side of the hill, and a big green lawn spreading down toward the Cove. Past the lawn, and the old apple tree, there is still open meadow to the front of the house; but now pine trees hedge off the few neighboring houses, which are distant and completely hidden from view. To the south and west is Lopaus Point and thick pine forest. The house is nestled into the corner between the old meadows and the newer forest—you're very much in your own world without being in any way constricted.
Open air, wide space, freedom to move—and the elegant concentrated space of the house—that's the feel of being here.
You'll also notice lots of little architectural details that make spending time in and around the house a real pleasure. The house was designed specifically to capture and display the best virtues of Maine's coastal summer climate. It encourages you to experience the best of what it's like to be here. During the long summer days, it's light-filled and airy. You'll want to throw open the doors and let the cooling ocean breezes waft through. Take your work out on the deck; watch the kids play soccer on the grass. Or wander down to the Cove. At nights, it's a supportive, cozy enclosure that brings everyone together around the wood stove. Cook up a seafood feast. Gather round a board-game. Curl up and watch a movie on the TV.
The house works so well in part because the floorplan is both open and separated. Communal activities will center on the first floor, where the kitchen and living room flow into one another and keep everyone connected. But if you want to get some work done, or the kids need to start a summer-reading project, or someone just wants to be on their own, you can head upstairs, close the door, and concentrate.
The place is full of memories of people doing exactly this for fifty years. I'm sure you'll quickly find your own way of being right at home.
**update for 2016 forward**
We've installed a new wood-stove this year. It's a Blaze King model (you can find the features online): very efficient, low-emissions, and easy to operate. It also has a fantastic burn-time--up to 20+ hours on a single load of wood. It makes heating the cottage during cooler spring and fall days and nights very easy and reliable. Load it up before you turn in for bed; when you wake, it's still full of coals and putting out good heat.
If you're considering renting during those earlier or later periods (May, September, October), the new stove will make a big difference in your comfort.
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