|Minimum Stay||2 nights|
There are six bedrooms in this 18th century gem, and 1.5 bathrooms, and also a formal, west-facing parlor, The Red Room, that bathes in the setting sun at cocktail hour. Another room, The Lounge, is the perfect slouchy retreat on cold, rainy days. There's a comfortable dining room, a well-supplied kitchen, an antique dollhouse, and an attached, drafty barn with a high roof and plenty of room to gather with friends.
Outside, on the rolling 1.25-acre lawn, there's a picket fence, of course, and also a screened gazebo wrought of ancient maple timbers. A brook runs through the property, offering up a cool, gravel-floored pool for summer wading, and sometimes at dusk a fox visits, trotting along the rough stone wall that lines the perimeter. Just behind the brick patio, there's a section of lawn that's tabletop-flat. You'll enjoy the croquet set we stowed away for you in the barn.
There's splendid swimming nearby at Crystal Lake, and The Gilmanton Corners Library sits nearby in a one-room white clapboard building.
Outings? We can point you toward Gilmanton's best blueberry picking and toward a rambling meadow for catching fireflies. There are three networks of wooded walking trails in town, and one friend has granted our guests access to the sweetest of family hikes--15 minutes up a privately-owned hill to a granite summit cap with a view. Literary types can explore the old stomping grounds of novelist Grace Metalious, who lived in Gilmanton as she wrote her 1956 smash hit, Peyton Place, which is about, ahem, a small town in New Hampshire. If you're an historian, you'll want to wander beneath the pine trees shading Gilmanton's 37 rambling cemeteries.
There's wifi and central heating at the house, but there is no air conditioning, no dishwasher, and no washer and dryer. The floors tilt and the doors creak. If you're looking for The Ramada Inn, you should probably give us a pass. But if you want to dive deep into the delights of old-time New Hampshire, stay at this beautiful house. You will be so happy you did.
[When requesting a reservation, please let me know a little about yourself and what brings you to Gilmanton. Where are you coming from? What do you enjoy doing? What attracts you to our place? I always like to have a sense as to who will be using our beloved old house. I trust you can understand.]
Review of By-The-Way
My two sisters and I rented By-The-Way (the name of this house) for a week in conjunction with a family reunion in the area. Various children and grandchildren joined us for parts of the week. The house was a great base for getting all of us together and seeing relatives we had not seen for years. It is wonderful – large, comfortable, full of spaces for many to gather and for each to get away from the group and read, snooze, daydream, etc. It has been a family summer place for 105 years. Step in the front door, take off you shoes and walk on the painted floors that have been shaped & smoothed by so many other feet. Family photos, well thumbed books, and two books written about the history of the house make you feel like you have been here before and will return. It is old and quirky, one of those classic New Englanders that joins house to house to hall to barn. The sunlight pours in through many mullioned windows and reflects from numerous mirrors. Floors slope, but the beds are comfortable. We had a great time here – blueberry picking nearby, playing boards games, reading our way through the bookshelves, sitting in the gazebo enjoying an afternoon breeze. Dinosaurs, traveling with us, invaded the doll house and the playroom was thoroughly enjoyed.
Bill, our host, was easy to reach and answered our questions, resolving any issues we had quickly. He is open to suggestions as he is new to weekly rentals and has taken over managing the house for his family. He is truly sharing a family treasure.
My sisters and I have rented many vacation homes. This is one of two we hope to return to in the future.
* Approximate monthly price. Actual pricing will depend on the days of the month you stay.