Pull up to the pristine white colonial-style buildings of the Inn at Perry Cabin for friendly valet service and a welcome glass of cava (complete with a ceremonious sabering) before settling into your luxe river-front suite. If the hotel looks familiar, that’s because it is—the idyllic property was featured as the reception site in the hit film Wedding Crashers. Indeed the Chesapeake Bay resort, just a 90-minute drive from Washington or Baltimore in the quaint town of St. Michaels, Maryland (population 1,028), is an ideal setting for an elegant yet relaxed society soiree. And while we’d love to attend a wedding there, a weekend getaway may be the next best thing.
Open year-round, the hotel is a draw in any season. Visit in the winter and you’ll beat the crowds and enjoy romantic activities like s’mores around the fire pits, rum winter coffees at Purser’s Pub and rejuvenating couples spa treatments. In the warmer months, take a dip in the pool, play croquet on the lawn, or indulge in some tennis or a round of golf at the brand new, 18-hole Pete Dye-designed Links at Perry Cabin. Befitting the nautical theme, the Inn has a lot to offer when it comes to boating. Group sails are available throughout the day and private tours can be arranged complete with lunch, dinner, sunset cocktails and a full bar on your choice of sailboat or motor yacht. And if you’re a novice, certified sailing instructors are on hand to share their knowledge.
Though 200 years old, this 78-room hotel feels anything but dated, thanks in part to a 2017 renovation by Alexandra Champalimaud. Bright, airy and liveable rooms have a clean, monochromatic color scheme with no luxury spared—think marble bathrooms, soaking tubs, fine linens and cozy indulgences like plush robes and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies at your bedside nightly. With water view suites starting at 850 square feet, this spacious escape is a welcome respite from city living.
Local ingredients and themes in spa and restaurant menus add to the unique flavor of the resort. Indulge in a Tides of the Chesapeake Body Polish and Massage (an “exfoliating scrub and full body massage inspired by the tide”) or a Seasonal Botanical Ritual inspired by lush gardens of the inn. Plant-based treatments made from herbs and aromatics are grown in the inn’s on-site garden and harvested from farms across the Eastern Shore. Add a CBD enhancement for ultimate relaxation.
On the dining menus, fresh Chesapeake Bay cuisine is at the forefront. At the main restaurant Stars, request a seat at the window overlooking the river and begin with the award-winning oyster stew featuring lemongrass, celery root, and Harris Creek oysters. For your main, savor a generous portion of jumbo lump crab cakes or choose the daily “Commodore Special” — on a Thursday in March, this was a whole lobster, served with Hasselback potatoes. Before or after dinner, grab a house specialty cocktail at Purser’s Pub. The “Figtini” with Stoli Vanilla, fig puree, and pomegranate and lemon juice is dangerously delicious; you’ll struggle to stop at one. For breakfast, dine at Stars or have sweet-and-savory zucchini pancakes (with almond crumble, lemon curd, whipped ricotta, and blueberry syrup), Maryland crab cake benedict and/or Carolina shrimp and grits delivered to your room.
Although there’s more than enough to entertain you onsite, you’ll want to take advantage of the charming small town just a half-mile away. The inn has bicycles just for that purpose. Spend a day or an afternoon exploring St. Michaels; pick up nautical-inspired furnishings and clothing from one of the many independent shops that line main street, grab a famous shake from Justine’s Ice Cream Parlour, immerse yourself in local history at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum and sip wine while people-watching at St. Michaels Winery. You’ll return to the city well-fed, relaxed and dreaming of a return to this luxurious hidden gem.