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Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927
Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927


Bedrooms 4
Space 2,000 sq. ft.
Property type house
Minimum Stay 7 nights


About the property

Sleeps 6 in 4 Bedroom, 3 Bathroom house

Three prime weeks still open. In September this house will be going on the market, making this possibly the last opportunity to rent.

Located in the enchanted hamlet of Sconset, this house has documented evidence to support its claim as the island's oldest house. In it's remarkable history, it has been a boarding house, a tavern, a general store, an official US Post Office, a brothel, a fishing shanty and of course a private home.

Located on the eastern-most part of the island, the town of Sconset is a spellbinding collection of unique and historically significant houses, originally built as a fishing outpost in the summer. It became celebrated during 1920s when the nation's most famous actors flocked to the Sconset Casino to apply their skills when the theaters in New York City started to struggle. Some even suggest it was the country's first "summer resort". Today, it is a dreamlike hamlet of serenely beautiful rose-covered cottages and narrow roads. To stay in Sconset is to experience the real Nantucket of old, in all it's glory.

My family purchased the property in 1964, but have only been renting it for a few seasons, and are probably not going to again after this one.

There are two structures, a Main House with a Master Bedroom, and 4 single beds upstairs in a two bedroom a-frame configuration. A detached Guest Cottage built for two with a Queen Bed and private bath with shower completes the property. Shanunga boasts a unusually large yard for Sconset, with a hedge around the entire property that gives it a high degree of privacy that is rare in Sconset proper. We have all the modern conveniences with the exception of A/C (which most cottages don't have because the cool ocean breeze does the trick), and if there is anything you need to make your stay even more comfortable, or your experience even more memorable, we'll accommodated it if we can. Our Caretaker is on island and will deal with anything from a leaky faucet to a restaurant suggestion.

Conveniently located a mere block away from the small town of S'conset, Shanunga is only a two minute walk to either the beach or the shuttle service that runs virtually everywhere on the island. Golf, tennis, and a great restaurant are all less than a quarter mile from the house. Bike paths abound. Plus all the necessary amenities to make your stay comfortable and memorable as we can.

More Details

Michael Darling
Member since: 2015
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within a few days
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
June 23, 2017

About Michael Darling

I live with family in CT. Most of my career was in Marketing and Advertising, mostly at the big New York City agencies. I received a BA in Political Science from Lake Forest College in 1975, and an MBA from the University of Miami in 1979. Between golf, reading, and my fabulous boys, I have all I need to keep myself busy and amused.

Michael Darling purchased this house in 1964

Why Michael Darling chose Siasconset

A unique opportunity to stay in a house that was built 94 years before the US was formed. If you had the money and the right connections, you could build the biggest house on Nantucket, but unless you've mastered time travel, you can never build the oldest house. And this is an island that values history above all else. Regardless of its age, it is above all else a private home, and has every convenience one could possibly need. Linens, beach towels, coffee makers, dishwasher, microwave, washer/dryer, bikes, fishing poles, DVDs, internet, etc. The only thing missing is you.

The town of Sconset is also unique. There isn't another collection of houses so historically significant in such close proximity anywhere else in the country. Despite this proximity, Shanunga has an unusual amount of privacy, a most desirable asset.

Sconset is arguably the most beautiful location on an island with many. Coupled with its proximity to the water, some of the best restaurants on the island, as well as the comforting sundries of everyday life (a few locales to purchase sandwiches, newspapers, breakfast pastries, ice cream cones and the like), a magical experience awaits.

What makes this house unique

Many have just been mentioned, but PLEASE READ THIS! Do NOT let problems getting the perfect reservations on the car ferry stop you. I use a little-known work-around that virtually guarantees your car will be there the same day you are. It's not guaranteed, but it's never failed me, not once, and we've used it probably ten times ourselves, and passed it along to numerous family and friends, all of whom have used it without so much as a wrinkle.


Siasconset House Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • house
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 2000 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Check-in: 2:00 PM / Check-out: 9:00 AM
  • Max. occupancy: 6
  • children welcome
  • pets not allowed ...
  • non smoking only
Location Type:
  • Beach View ...
  • Beachfront ...
  • Golf Course Front ...
  • Near The Ocean ...
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Fireplace
  • Hair Dryer
  • Internet
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Parking
  • Telephone
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Wood Stove
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 6 people
  • 3 Bathrooms
  • Master Bedroom Private Bathroom - toilet , shower
    Off Living Room - toilet , combination tub/shower , Used by loft residents
    Guest Cottage Private - toilet , shower
  • There are a washer and dryer contained in a nook area of the Master Bath.
  • 4 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6
  • Master Bedroom - 1 king
    Guest Cottage - 1 queen
    Bedroom - 2 twin/ single , Upstairs-Best for kids or young adults
    Bedroom 4 - 2 twin/ single , Upstairs-Best for kids or Young Adults
  • The Loft is up a set of sailor stairs, steep with a rope bannister. It has been used for decades for either two adults or 4 small children. It can, but is not really comfortable for four full adults. Please do not inquire if other than these parameters are your preference. thank you.
  • Books
  • DVD Player
  • Games
  • Satellite / Cable
  • Television
  • Toys
  • Video Games
  • Video Library
  • Bicycles
  • Deck / Patio
  • Golf ...
  • Lawn / Garden
  • Outdoor Grill
  • Tennis ...
  • 1 bicycles
  • wheelchair inaccessible
  • autumn foliage
  • bay/sound
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • festivals
  • library
  • live theater
  • marina
  • museums
  • playground
  • restaurants
  • winery tours
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • horseback riding
  • outlet shopping
  • photography
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • whale watching
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • Babysitter
  • fitness center
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • laundromat
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • deepsea fishing
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • ice skating
  • roller blading
  • sailing
  • sound/bay fishing
  • surf fishing
  • surfing
  • swimming
  • tennis
  • water skiing
  • wind-surfing


5/5 -
(5 traveler reviews)

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average rating of 5.0 based on 5 reviews

'Sconset: a heavenly escape

  • 5 of 5

Our family adores Siasconset. It's quiet and removed from the bustle in town, around the ferries. It's cozy and perfect for real family time. The bike rides can't be beat, especially to Sankaty Lighthouse. The beach isn't packed and there is a steady stream of curious seals swimming by. There's a nice new playground. To stay in a home decades older than our country was a real treat. And the location can't be beat, as far as we're concerned. It was a short stroll to the general store for ice cream; the bus to town; and the beach. We saw a movie at the Casino and enjoyed the famous bluff walk, also steps away. It was so nice to have a little yard in which to sit and relax. It was virtually fenced in by the hedges. The separate cottage worked out great for us. It was great to have a dishwasher and washer/dryer. The owner and caretaker do their best to make sure you have a wonderful stay. And we did.

  • Submitted: Jul 18, 2016
  • Stayed: July 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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  • 5 of 5

What a lovely little cottage! As old house buffs, we so enjoyed our September stay at Shanunga. Like being able to step back into time, with all the comforts of the modern world. We loved the samplers on the walls and beautiful hand-worked boards. Our walk to and on the beach in the moonlight was a real treat, and gave us a sense of place and beauty that previous generations must have enjoyed. We left our car on the mainland, bike rentals and the shuttle made it easy to explore the rest of the island and to enjoy some very fine dining, too. Thanks for sharing your home with us!

  • Submitted: Feb 5, 2016
  • Stayed: September 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
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Want the REAL Nantucket experience? Stay here!

  • 5 of 5

My family and I went up on short notice, so we weren’t sure exactly what to expect. We could not have been more surprised with this amazing property that met and exceeded every expectation. 'Sconset is a summer resort like no other I have ever been to. It transports you back to a time when the United States was still just a concept. Much of the house still retains its original building materials, is essence, this is a house that has been preserved, not restored. Despite it’s remarkable age, it has all the modern conveniences and is well stocked with everything from extra beach towels to fishing poles, all of which we took advantage of. I can wholeheartedly endorse this property, and it’s owner, as five star all the way. We felt fortunate to have been lucky enough to stay at this historically significant house. If you get the chance, don’t pass it up.

  • Submitted: Feb 4, 2016
  • Stayed: August 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
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Magical Cottage on Magical Island

  • 5 of 5

Nantucket is unlike any other place we've ever been; as is the historic and magical Shanunga. We were first attracted to the listing by the pictures that display a quintessential and beautifully maintained cottage; that it had a separate guest house was a significant plus for our group. One note: The upstairs of the main house is one large room divided by a wall with a doorway into two rooms each sleeping 2 - it is most comfortable for children & teens but not uncomfortable for adults though you may have to 'duck' a bit going up & down the steep set of traditional stairs.

The property is completely enclosed by high hedges with a lovely yard perfect for a late day refreshment, or coffee in the morning. A full-time caretaker is available for anything you need, whether for information or assistance. Across the street and down the hill the beach beckons - a 2 minute walk away. Children and adults alike can bike along the many paths and small roads that surround the home, or use several bike paths including one that goes almost directly into the Town of Nantucket proper.

The property is at a place called 'Pump Square', where the settlers used to pump their water and now serves as a place to sit and rest with an ice cream from the Market or a Sandwich from the shop in the center of S'conset (a 2 minute walk from the house).

Other proprietors are a post office, real estate office, a fabulous restaurant called Sconset Cafe that seats all of 30 people tops with a changing menu & BYOB either from home or bought around the corner at the Liquor Store. Two seatings have people lining up at 5:30-ish and again at 8:00 or so...don't miss it for Dinner if you can! There are small buses back & forth to town day and night.

The Market is ground zero for everyone, sundries, essentials, the best crumb cake in the world that is gone by 8 a.m., newspapers, gourmet and specialty foods, and a bevy of college kids working and playing their ways to some of the best memories of their lives.

We certainly have those and some to spare from our visit. We would rent Shanunga exclusively if we could for the loveliness of the dwelling, the history behind its walls (as a post office, restaurant, brothel and other incarnations along the way since 1682), and the genuineness and warmth of the owner who could not have been more accommodating or helpful in making our trip so special.

Cannot recommend more highly - you won't find an experience like this often enough. Enjoy!

  • Submitted: Feb 3, 2016
  • Stayed: May 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
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Cape Cod

Perfect cottage for a summer vacation in 'Sconset!

  • 5 of 5

We love staying in Shanunga and recommend it highly. We’ve stayed here a few times and each time we feel very fortunate for the opportunity. It truly is a unique treasure even among all the charming historic houses in ’Sconset.

It’s easy to feel that you are staying in a museum of early Nantucket life rather than just a house. At the same time it’s spacious and comfortable, with a nice living room and master bedroom, a cozy four-bed loft upstairs, separate studio cottage, two bathrooms in the main house and one in the cottage, a modern kitchen (there is not a kitchen in the separate cottage), a washer and dryer and a very nice private wrap-around hedged yard. The loft upstairs is best for children since the beds are small and the stairs, typical of very old houses, are very steep and narrow and there’s a rope to hang onto as you go up. There are a lot of doors and windows to let the outside in, which I love. You can leave them open for a fresh breeze and to hear the sounds of ‘Sconset.

Shanunga is in the heart of ‘Sconset on a very desirable street, Broadway. The location is perfect. It’s steps from the beach, from the little market where you can get groceries and coffee and muffins and ice cream cones, from the post office, a small church, the bus stop and a couple of (expensive) restaurants. It’s surrounded by beautiful old cottages and quiet streets. If you are looking for a real ‘Sconset experience, Shanunga is the perfect choice.

  • Submitted: Jan 5, 2016
  • Stayed: September 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
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Nearest Airport
3 Miles
Nantucket Airport
Nearest Ferry
8 Miles
Nearest Golf
0.5 Miles
# course w/in a mile. 1 private, 1 semi, 1 public
Nearest Restaurant
0.1 Miles
Less than a city block. Excellent restaurant.
Nearest Beach
0.1 Miles
Sconset Beach a walk away
Car: recommended


Rates & Availability

Taxes and fees are additional

Additional information about rental rates

Cleaning $175

Owner's Cancellation Policy

  • 50% refund if canceled at least 14 days before arrival date.
  • 100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
  • Service Fee fully refunded on cancellations that qualify for 100% refund.

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