Over the next three weeks, peak fall foliage will strike across lower New England. For most outside of the region, the state of Connecticut marks the easiest entry point. Sat in the rolling hills of Litchfield County, the Grace Mayflower Inn and Spa epitomizes an autumn leaf peeper’s dreamscape. The 58-acre compound is set among rolling woodlands, well-balanced with evergreens and the seasonally-shifting deciduous trees. At its center lies a 30-room inn which can trace its origins back to the 1800s—though it received substantial renovations in the ’90s. There’s a reason the Grace Mayflower has maintained its reputation over the years: it’s an inspirational place built to incorporate the surrounding nature.
Windows to the outside world define the luxurious hotel. This same feature, as well as an outside dining patio, makes their restaurant The Mayflower Grille a valuable asset for breakfast, lunch and dinner—for non-guests, as well. The restaurant’s menu has just undergone a seasonal shift and the classic fare features regionally-sourced ingredients. The dining room itself underwent a recent renovation, which lends the space an air of peace. For those looking for a quiet view to dine beside, the landscapes here are slowly escalating toward extraordinary.
And of course, one of the Grace Mayflower’s most-acclaimed features happens to be their 20,000 square foot spa. At present, this is of interest for two reasons. Not only is the pool room surrounded by glass—it abuts the transforming woodlands allowing unencumbered views during all seasons. Second, their meditation room sports floor to ceiling windows oriented toward a forest vista. A handful of reclining chairs are placed directly in front, encouraging guests to get lost in their gazing. The spa, much like the hotel, is an aspirational place that embraces its surroundings.
All of this is accessible in roughly two hours from New York City by car. Other amenities abound on the premises, but the staff is also quick to offer guests guidance on local antiques and activities. They’re also knowledgable on the surrounding towns worth visiting and all manner of outdoor adventures (from kayaking to hiking and more). Each year, the allure of autumn strikes and, consistently, the Grace Mayflower can match the inspiration outside with something special inside.
You can book a room at the Grace Mayflower online, with prices starting at $510 a night.
Images by David Graver