Tag Archives: wauwinet

Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Awards

four star hotels nantucket

The White Elephant, White Elephant Village, and The Wauwinet have received the highly-coveted Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star rating, which was announced on February 22, 2017. TOPPER’s has also been recognized as one of the top-rated restaurants. The two properties and restaurant, part of the Nantucket Island Resorts collection, were the only hotels on island to receive this distinction. For the full list of winners, visit http://www.forbestravelguide.com/.


Forbes Travel Guide provides the travel industry’s most comprehensive reviews of hotels and restaurants, and has defined the highest standard for excellence in hospitality for more than 50 years. Each property is anonymously tested and rated on an annual basis by Forbes Travel Guide inspectors. There are 800 rigorous standards which each hotels is tested on, ranging from distinctive and memorable dining, luxurious beds, attentive service, impeccable housekeeping, and genuine interest.

wauwinet cottage

“We are honored to have received these coveted awards,” said Khaled Hashem, Managing Director of Nantucket Island Resorts. “Our newest ratings are a continuous testament to our luxurious accommodations and dedicated staff who consistently deliver outstanding guest experiences.”

The White Elephant will re-open this spring on April 13, and the White Elephant Village and The Wauwinet will re-open on April 20.  New this season, guests who book the top accommodation at each property will receive keys to a 2017 BMW vehicle for the duration of their stay.

Most of the vehicles are electric or hybrid models and charging stations are available at the White Elephant Village and The Wauwinet.

Nantucket Island Resorts will also expand their partnership with Priority Bikes by offering complimentary bikes and maps at four of the properties.

nantucket bloody mary

New amenities will include complimentary kids cooking classes and in-room “camping” with teepees at the White Elephant Village and White Elephant. New tiny cocktail tasting menu, featuring a flight of miniature drinks, and build-your-own Retsyo Oyster Bloody Mary Bar will also be offered at TOPPER’S.

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TOPPER’S Travels…

Fruili Region Italy Wineries

One of the things that Nantucket Insiders do best in the off season is travel.
Higor Valle, one of TOPPER’S certified sommeliers, shares with us notes from the road to his latest wine visit to Cantina Jermann, located along the border of Italy and Slovenia.

Cantina Jermann

This winery is often regarded as one of the most important of it locale, largely due to the innovative and passionate approach of its proprietor, Silvio Jermann. His family has been involved in wine-making in the region since 1881, when his great grandfather came over from Slovenia. Cantina Jermann currently holds several Tre Bicchieri Awards (this award is highly coveted, as it singles out a wine as being one of Italy’s best, and a validation of the winemaker’s craftsmanship). Their latest wine to receive this honor was the 2015 Pinot Grigio.

Jermann Vineyard

Higor was hosted by the winery’s Export Manager and her assistant, and greeted with a glass of wine and some small bites of local cheese, prosciutto and polenta- which were wonderful accompaniments to the wines sampled.

Friuli local cheeses

The three top picks for Higor were Vintage Trunia 2014; dry velvety and well balanced, Capo Martino 2012; intense notes of apricot, dried flowers, and honey blossom- great acidity hold it all together in this wine. Capo Martino 2012 also holds some sentimental value to the family as it was produced from the 1991 harvest commemorating the family’s great father Anton who made the journey to the region 110 years earlier. The grapes used are of historic varieties and even the label depicts elements dear to the hearts of agriculturalists; sun, water, grapes, and fish as a symbol of religion.

Cantino Jermann 2014

Higor also enjoyed the Afix Riesling with its brilliant straw color, vibrant acidity and notes of green apple with a touch of residual sugar.

Higor Valle, Toppers Nantucket

A little bit about Higor; though he’s lived in the U.S. for the past ten years, he is orignally from Sao Paulo, Brazil and this will be his second season as a sommelier at TOPPER’S. Since his first summer on Nantucket, nearly five years ago, he’s always had an interest in working at TOPPER’S because of its vast and impressive wine program. In 2017, Higor looks forward to enjoying the beautiful island and of course, opening amazing bottles of wine for the guests!



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TOPPER’S 2016 Spooky Season Finale

Krug Nantucket

For their last dinner service of the 2016 season, TOPPER’S pops the cork on a special and spooky evening with the second annual “Trick-Or-Treat Dinner”.

toppers dining room october

The dining room at TOPPER’S was completely sold out to a combination of house guests staying at the hotel, and guests who came out for dinner only. As the hotel and the restaurant are closed as of October 30 until April 20, 2017; this was the last chance until spring to enjoy the cozy, yet elegant ambiance of TOPPER’S Dining Room and the exceptional cuisine prepared by Chef Kyle Zachary , with favorites like Lobster Pasta and Tarte Flambe on the menu.

lobster pasta

Dinner guests were treated to discounts of 30, 40, or even 50%, determined by picking a ticket from TOPPER’S Magic Cauldron. From TOPPER’S renown wine cellar, all Peter Michael wine was enjoyed at discounts of 25%.

With end of The Wauwinet’s season typically falling on or around Halloween, and the popularity of the Trick or Treat Dinner, this is a tradition that is sure to continue.

fall at wauwinet


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Test Drives for the Road and the Bikepath by BMW…


August is full of excitement on Nantucket, and Nantucket Race Week is no exception. This 9-day event encompassing, regattas, award ceremonies, and parties is for many, a highlight of the summer season.

With all of this activity on the island, Nantucket Insiders will admit; it can require some extra patience to get where you’re going! To make your driving experience so much more comfortable this week, BMW is offering test drives out of four locations as a Presenting Sponsor and the Official Vehicle of Nantucket Race Week. In addition to providing a luxurious ride through Nantucket, BMW is also sponsoring some key events of Nantucket Race Week, including a special dinner with a presentation of the America’s Cup Trophy by Tucker Thompson. 

bmw i8

White Elephant Hotel (from Wednesday- Saturday) and The Wauwinet (on Friday) are two of the home bases where you can test drive one of the vehicles- including several models of the revolutionary iSeries. 

bmw tent1

In conjunction with the vehicle test drives, BMW also has four BMW Cruise E-Bikes for guests to take for a spin. Among other appealing features (like its sporty, sleek design and comfortable seat) this bike boasts a 250 W electric motor to power pedal support up to 15.5 mph! And an on-board computer provides shift cues for maximum performance. 

bmw ebikes

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Making Tracks on ACK…

nantucket aerial viewNantucket Insider knows that some ways of getting around this bustling island are easier than others. We’re sharing with you the inside track on how we prefer to traverse the island from the home base of some of our favorite hotels during these busy summer months… 

The Wauwinet Lady
The best way to head to TOPPER’S at The Wauwinet for lunch or dinner is aboard The Wauwinet Lady. Reservations are required for this once daily lunch and once daily dinner cruise, departing from White Elephant and sailing across Nantucket Bay to TOPPER’S, for more information on The Wauwinet Lady, click here.

The Beach Bus at The Cottages at The Boat Basin
nantucket beach bus

Complimentary chauffeured service to the beach for guests at The Cottages makes beach days a breeze. The shuttle bus operates during summer months and on a first come first served basis. 

Behind the Wheel of a New BMW
BMW interior

Guests at White Elephant Village staying in a luxurious three-bedroom Residence receive the keys to a 2016 BMW to enjoy during their visit. The hotel property has offered designated guests the use of BMWs for the past several years and new this season are a fleet of BMW X5 XDrive4oe vehicles, the brand’s first plug-in hybrid, designed to save energy. 

Cruising Nantucket on a Priority Bicycle
nantucket bicycles

With over 30 miles of bike path on Nantucket, taking a spin on a bicycle, is a long-time favorite mode of transportation here! Priority Bicycles have outfitted The Cottages, The Wauwinet and White Elephant Village with their stylish, high quality, easy to ride bikes. Hotel guests have complimentary access to the bicycles during their stay. 

White Elephant BMW Courtesy Car 
nantucket courtesy car
You could hire a taxi or walk to your dinner reservation, but White Elephant and White Elephant Village offer guests the luxury of traveling to in-town destinations in one of their BMW 7 Series Courtesy Cars. Courtesy Cars are reserved on a first come first served basis through the hotels’ front desk agents. 

The Wauwinet Jitney Service
wau jitney3
With a location meant to get away from it all, The Wauwinet provides hourly shuttle service for the 10 mile drive between the hotel and Federal Street in downtown Nantucket. This way, guests can have the peace and tranquility of Wauwinet while still feeling easily connected to the lively scene Nantucket town is known for. The Wauwinet Jitney is also a great way to travel to TOPPER’S!

Ride the WAVE! 
nantucket bus service
Nantucket’s own public transit system, The WAVE, is an ever popular way to get around the island and for good reasons- the buses are clean, prompt, and offer many routes for access to Nantucket’s most beloved destinations and beaches with fares ranging from just $1 to $2. White Elephant Village and White Elephant hotel guests can request complimentary passes to ride the WAVE. 


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Summer at TOPPER’S

The Wauwinet is home to one of the nation’s most acclaimed restaurants, TOPPER’S, a favorite foodie destination set alongside the waters of Nantucket Bay. This Nantucket Insider favorite taps into the island’s rich supply of fresh regional ingredients, from land and sea. TOPPER’S dining room offers a uniquely Nantucket feeling of elegant fine dining.
TOPPER's dining room

If you seek more casual fare, you will love TOPPER’s deck, where you can dine under a heated awning with views of the bay.

Nantucket Insider has sampled the summer menu this season at TOPPER’S, and it does not disappoint! See below for a few of our favorite picks from both the dining room and the deck menus. 

Summer Harvest Salad
summer harvest salad

Various seasonal vegetables (may include and are not limited to heirloom tomatoes, squash, eggplant, beans, peppers, fennel, beets and carrots) are served raw, pickled, roasted or pureed along with seasonal berries, stone fruits, herbs and herb blossoms.  TOPPER’S adds a crispy quinoa tuile (best described as a “cracker”) for texture. The dish is rounded out with Stracciatella cheese, a fresh cow’s milk cheese, made of small shreds of curd mixed with cream.  This is the filling that you find inside of Burrata.
*Gluten Free, Nut Free, Dairy Free with modification, Vegetarian

Seaweed Butter Poached Lobster
nantucket butter poached lobster

 The 1 ¼ pound lobster is first partially poached and the meat is removed from the shell and then poached in nori flavored emulsified butter.  The lobster is served with an heirloom tomato tart (puff pastry topped with tomatoes cooked down to jam consistency and finished with sherry vinegar, topped with African blue basil, chive tips and thyme blossoms), glazed baby squash, pickled baby squash, marinated shaved baby zucchini, a fried squash blossom and a rich lobster bisque flavored with tomato and finished with Pedro Ximénez sherry. The dish is garnished with a dehydrated Kalamata olive crumble.
*Gluten Free with modification, Dairy Free with modification.

Shrimp & Grits
toppers shrimp nantucket
White gulf shrimp are sautéed and served over Anson Mills white grits flavored with cheddar cheese.  There is also a slowly poached egg, sautéed oyster mushrooms and country ham gravy (Edward’s country ham, tomatoes, green onions, coffee, cream and butter).

Roasted King Salmon
Roasted king salmon is served on English pea risotto with glazed white asparagus, marinated pea tendrils and a charred ramp butter sauce.

To reserve your table at TOPPER’S call 508-228-8768 or click here

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Do You Have “That Nantucket Feeling”?

nantucket hats

Nantucket Insiders know that once you visit this island, it stays with you, wherever you go. To us, Nantucket is so much more than a destination, it’s a state of mind. Share a photo on your Instagram or Twitter account sporting a signature hat from one of our favorite hotels (click here for the list) or the Nantucket Boat Basin, whether in your day to day routine, while here on Nantucket, or as you travel the globe! Use the hashtag #ThatNantucketFeeling and you will have a chance to win a two-night stay at White Elephant during Christmas Stroll 2016 (December 2-4, 2016).  The contest will run from June 30- September 6, 2016. Click here for more details on this fun summer contest.

AMPR in hats

If you don’t already have a hat from one of our hotels or Nantucket Boat Basin, you can purchase one at any of our hotel gift shops or The Boat Basin Authentic Shop at Straight Wharf during your next Nantucket visit. You can also visit our White Elephant online gift shop by clicking here. 

White Elephant Kids Hat

We can’t wait to see where you take #ThatNantucketFeeling with you this summer! 


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8 Outdoor Adventures That Get You Out of Town and into Wild Nantucket

This week Nantucket Insider is bringing you to the natural side of Nantucket, with this week’s guest blog post by Peter Brace, highlighting the best activities to get you out of Nantucket town and into the natural world of Nantucket. Peter is the author of “Nantucket: A Natural History” and “Walking Nantucket: A Walker’s Guide to Exploring Nantucket on Foot,” and owner of Nantucket Walkabout. 

Peter shares with us his top picks for outdoor adventures on Nantucket Island this season. 

  1. Explore Gardner Farm and Witness the Return of the Ospreys

In early March, ospreys, return to nesting poles all over the island. Also called fish hawks, ospreys mate for life and usually return to the same nesting pole year after year. Nest building begins early and is as fascinating to watch as the raising and feeding of their young. Getting close to one of their nesting sites, however, can be a challenge without local knowledge. But, not if you can join Nantucket Walkabout at 8 a.m. once a week on its Gardner Farm hike this spring and summer to see an active osprey nest on Hummock Pond.

Peter Brace Blog Osprey

  1. Attend Open Night at the Loines Observatory

If you’re lucky, you may actually see some of the stars of the silver screen during the Nantucket Film Festival, June 22-27, but glimpsing the galaxies, stars, planets, meteorites, satellites and the International Space Station above us at night is far easier at Nantucket’s Maria Mitchell Association. The MMA, which maintains the largest public telescope on the East Coast, offers open telescope nights throughout the season, free to members and $10 for non-members. Scheduled open telescope nights on May 16 and 17, 7:30-9 p.m., June 1, 3, 6, 8, 10, 13, 15, 18, 20, 22, 24, 27 and 29 and equally as many nights in July and August, are subject to cancellation depending on the weather.

Peter Brace Blog -mma

  1. Pick Wild Nantucket Blueberries in the Smooth Hummocks

Wild low bush blueberries are ripe and ready for the picking July and into early August, but you have to know where to look for them. Some people spend hours and hours searching Nantucket and yet barely find enough for one or two muffins. Let Nantucket Walkabout be your guide, $40 for adults/$20 for children, to where these delicious native berries grow.

Peter Brace Blog Blueberries

  1. Explore Great Point with a Four-Wheel Drive Tour

Until you get out there and experience its extraordinary beauty, Great Point is just another named peninsula on a myriad of Nantucket maps. Walking out there on your own or renting an oversand vehicle are reasonable options, but you’ll learn the most on your trip by taking The Trustees of Reservations’ three-hour Great Point Natural History Tour of its Coskata-Coatue Wildlife Refuge in their four-wheel-drive van. For $65, the TTR tour guide picks you up in their van at the Wauwinet Gatehouse just before the Wauwinet Inn. The tour includes a climb up into the Great Point Lighthouse for an amazing view.

Peter Brace Blog 4

  1. Participate in Citizen Science Weekend June 10-12

Explore in the boots and waders of biologists studying plants, mammals, birds, insects and marine life on Nantucket with the Nantucket Biodiversity Initiative during its Citizen Science Weekend, June 10-12. Registration is free and gets you access to field trips to far-flung Nantucket locales to learn about her natural world through the senses of those conducting biological research on the island. And, don’t miss the keynote speaker Tobias Landberg’s opening night talk on snapping turtles at the Nantucket Atheneum, June 10 at 6:30 p.m. Register at http://www.nantucketbiodiversityinitiative.org and keep checking the website for an updated events calendar.

Peter Brace Blog 5

  1. Discover Smith’s Point

It is a bit of hike out there on soft Nantucket sand with water on three sides and warm southwest winds flowing over you, but the rewards of reaching the end of Nantucket’s westernmost extremity, Smith’s Point, in time for the sun setting into the ocean are well worth the two-mile walk. Along the Nantucket Walkabout’s guided tour hear about piping plovers, least tern and American oystercatchers nesting on the beach along the way, and maybe see some gray seals. Learn more  at www.walknantucket.com.

Peter Brace Blog 6

  1. Half-Day Marine Wildlife Tour with Shearwater Excursions

Humpback, finback an Minke whales, white-sided dolphins, gray seals, basking sharks, and sea turtles along with seabirds such as storm petrels, shearwaters and jaegers are 90 minutes east of Nantucket on a half-day marine wildlife trip guided by naturalist and native Nantucketer Blair Perkins with Shearwater Excursions. Trips run June 21-Oct. 15 and $165/person.

Peter Brace Image 7

  1. Nantucket Conservation Foundation’s Race for Open Space July 9

If you don’t want your morning run routine to lapse while on vacation, consider running in the Nantucket Conservation Foundation’s Race for Open Space on July 9. It’s a 5K (3.1 miles) with proceeds supporting the NCF’s Land Fund. The race starts at 8 a.m. at the Westmoor Club. Pre-register here

Peter Brace Blog 8

Guests of The Wauwinet can enjoy a Nantucket Walkabout morning or sunset hike with Peter, one of the many spring and fall activities offered at the hotel. 

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Peter B. Brace is the author of “Nantucket: A Natural History” and “Walking Nantucket: A Walker’s Guide to Exploring Nantucket on Foot.” A Nantucketer for 23 years and counting, he is currently a freelance writer for Sound Magazine, the Nantucket Chronicle and the Nantucket Coastal Conservancy. And he is an adjunct professor for UMass Boston’s School for the Environment teaching the natural history of Nantucket during its “Nantucket Semester” through the UMass Boston Nantucket Field Station.

A seasonal kayaker and daily hiker with his dog, Kismet, Peter knows Nantucket’s natural environs from shoreline to shoreline, its multitudes of plant, mammal, bird, fish, insect and reptile/amphibian species. Peter is also certified in Wilderness First Aid by the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) Wilderness Medicine Institute.

Contact Peter at Nantucket Walkabout by email at peter@nantucketwalkabout.com. For environmental news and seasonal photos of Nantucket, follow Nantucket Walkabout on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

Peter Brace

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White Elephant/ Barton & Gray Hinckley Yacht Launches for 2016 Season

IMG_3172Nantucket Island ResortsWhite Elephant teamed up with Barton & Gray Mariners Club to launch the new White Elephant / Barton & Gray Hinckley Yacht this week.


Barton & Gray is a member-only yacht service; however, guests of Nantucket Island Resorts now have the rare opportunity to charter one of their Hinckleys for half- or full-day private cruises. Guests can:

  • Explore the blue waters of Nantucket Harbor
  • Motor to Coskata-Coatue Wildlife Refuge – a remote area on the northern point of ACK
  • Swim off Tuckernuck Island 
  • Venture to Martha’s Vineyard


The 36-foot classic yacht is clad in navy, white, and elephant-printed fabric, mirroring the interior design of the White Elephant. Features also include teak decks and mahogany trim in the interior.


The White Elephant / Barton & Gray Hinckley will be based on Nantucket from May through October 2016, with experiences beginning at $1850 for four hours for up to six guests. For more information visit here or call 1-800-ISLANDS.


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A Different Kind of Stay

The days of cots in overcrowded bedrooms or pull-out sofas are a thing of the past. Family vacations and group getaways now include all the comforts of home and then some! This week’s Nantucket Insider is sharing an inside look into four of our multi-bedroom, multi-bathroom ‘non-traditional’ accommodations.

1. The Residences at the White Elephant Village


 The Details – Spacious one, two and three-bedroom Residences located only blocks away from Nantucket town. Each residence offers a living room, pantry and dining area perfect for your group stay.

Susie Kocke

Why You’ll Love it – Order cocktails to your poolside Cabana! The kids will love the ice cream cart that visits the pool hourly. Take the complimentary bikes in town for some shopping or on the bike trails for an adventure.  Guests of our three-bedroom residences will enjoy their own personal BMW to spin around the island in during their stay. 

A complete list of amenities for guests of the White Elephant Village can be found here.

 2. Anchorage House at The Wauwinet


The Details – The Anchorage House is located on the northeast end of the island, and just steps away from two beaches. This luxurious three-bedroom, three-bathroom beach house boasts a dining room and living room perfect for entertaining.

Anchorage House Living Room - Copy

Why You’ll Love it – Enjoy views of the Nantucket Bay and the Atlantic Ocean from your bedroom. Host a TOPPER’s Clambake on one of your two private outdoor decks and or set up a game of croquet outside.

A complete list of amenities for guests of The Wauwinet can be found here.

 3. White Elephant Main Street Loft

 main street loft

The Details – The White Elephant Loft at 32 Main Street is an extension of the renowned White Elephant hotel, situated in the heart of downtown Nantucket. This contemporary loft offers three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a chef’s kitchen and sweeping views of town.

main street loft 2

Why You’ll Love It – The expansive picture windows provide an unparalleled view of cobblestoned Main Street. Location, location, location! 

Guests of the White Elephant Main Street Loft and White Elephant Easy Street Loft enjoy all of the amenities of the White Elephant Village, seen here.

4. White Elephant Easy Street Loft

Loft at Easy Street 2

The Details – The White Elephant Loft on Easy Street is an in-town loft featuring three bedrooms, three bathrooms, an open living room and dining room, a gourmet kitchen and all the amenities of the White Elephant hotel.

Loft at Easy Street

Why You’ll Love It – The loft is located right on Main Street above Best of the Beach and is a prime location for all your downtown adventures. As an added bonus, the loft comes will full access to a BMW and designated parking spot. Happy exploring!

To take a further look at all the ‘non-traditional’ and traditional accommodations we have to offer, please check here!

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