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July 28, 2014
Travel / Shoreline / Chatfield Hollow Farm B & B

Chatfield Hollow Farm Bed & Breakfast

I adore summer on the Shoreline: lazy dinners on the terrace, farmers markets, jaunts to the beach. It’s practically a vacation every day. And for far-flung family and friends, it is, too. Which translates to grocery shopping, cleaning and cooking on Friday and mountains of sheets and towels to launder, come Sunday night. Don’t get me wrong. I love a full house, but by midsummer, it gets a bit old. Happily, I’ve just discovered the perfect Bed & Breakfast to stash overflow weekenders, and believe me, it’s a whole lot better than my guest room.

Down Firetower Road in Killingworth, you’ll come upon a sign for Chatfield Hollow Farm. Turn in, heading past a sculptural orchard of fruit trees. Beyond the aviaries housing rare peacocks and exotic vulturine guinea fowl, you’ll pass a sleek, modern home with a precise lawn and thoughtful plantings. Further on, you’ll spy two black swans paddling lazily around a pond. Tema, the delightful innkeeper, will greet you as you pull up to the secluded log cabin that is Chatfield Hollow B&B. I can’t improve upon their own description of “mid-century modern meets Daniel Boone decor”,  so I won’t try.

The cozy fireplaced living room leads to a streamlined kitchen where a breakfast of fresh eggs from the farm, organic juices blended from just-picked berries and greens, croissants and pastry awaits. Take your breakfast (or a meeting) in the tranquil glass-walled dining room overlooking the pond. The five rooms and bathrooms are decorated in elevated log cabin, complete with a careful mix of Danish modern and reclaimed furniture, antler lighting, and pristine baths with either a deep soaking tub or oversized walk in rain shower. Guests have the run of the property, which includes a 24/7 gym, meditation/yoga deck, a sugar house (come winter you can try your hand at making maple syrup), and acres and acres of walking, hiking, mountain biking or cross-country skiing trails (the farm’s 23 acres back up on the 356-acre Chatfield Hollow State Park). Wander the abundant vegetable gardens or gaze at koi in the spring-fed pond. It’s hard to get your mind around this fantasyland in the backwoods of Killingworth, but there are a couple of visionaries behind the scenes. Those carefully cross-hatched logs in the field are home to vast quantities of shitake, maitake and oyster mushrooms and the undergrowth in the forest is planted with acres of ginseng. Fig trees dot the landscape. This is a productive, organic forest farm, currently yielding pounds of mushrooms (available at Chester Sunday Market) and with the future goal of opening the property to schools and groups for eco-touring and classes on sustainable farming methods. Oh, and it’s a gorgeous getaway. Me, I’m thinking, after the summer guests pack up,  I’ll reserve a midwinter weekend for Scrabble around the fire, maple candy, and an afternoon twirl on the skating pond.

Good To Know: Chatfield Hollow Farm is happy to host intimate weddings, meetings and yoga retreats. It’s super kid friendly: queen rooms can be connected to singles for families. The cabin sleeps 8 and is available for group rentals. Breakfast is included, a wine list is available and all other meals can be arranged. Classes and massage available. It’s close to the Clinton Outlets, the Bistro at Chamard Vineyards and all the fantastic restaurants of Chester. Rates $99 – $189.

Visit Chatfield Hollow Farm website here: www.chfbandb.com

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All photos above by Amy Etra Photography

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Above: mushroom cultivation

Some other interesting places to stay on the Shoreline that I’ve written about:

The Lighthouse Suite at Saybrook Point Inn, The Inn at Stonington, The Villas at Water’s Edge, A Cabin on a Lake, and Beech Tree Cottages.

Tags: bed and breakfast, hotels, yoga retreat, eco-tourism, farm, weddings

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