Picture Perfect Inn at St. Peters
Pretty as a Picture
The Inn at St. Peters is a picture perfect Prince Edward Island vacation oasis. Sitting pretty on 13 acres of heaven on earth, this 4 ½ star Inn & Restaurant is an ideal base for soaking up spectacular waterfront views, beautiful gardens and gourmet meals as well as exploring nearby Points East Coastal Drive Shore wonders and golfing the top three crown jewels of golf on PEI: Crowbush, Dundarave and Brudenell.
One of the Top 25 Small Hotels in Canada
Winner of a Tripadvisor Traveller's Choice Award as one of the Top 25 Small Hotels in Canada for the 5th year in a row and being the only 4 ½ star Waterfront Inn on Prince Edward Island speaks to the quality and hospitality you can expect at the Inn at St. Peters. The owner ~ Karen Milligan oversees everything and is on site every day. She stays overnight 6 out of 7 nights a week as well “just in case anyone accidentally locks him or herself out of a suite or needs anything”. Aaron the Front Desk Manager, stays over the 7th night, giving Karen one night off. And that’s how it goes from the end of May to early in October. Karen wouldn’t have it any other way and she assured me she enjoys some vacation time when the Inn is closed over the winter. However, the rest of the time, Karen is on duty ensuring she and her staff deliver quality customer service. I suspect, at this level of commitment, those awards will keep on coming too.
Can We Talk About the Food?!
Sit back and enjoy the exquisite meals that come your way at the Inn at St. Peters Restaurant. “Gourmet Magazine, Chatelaine and Enroute Magazine have all featured the Inn's dining room and put it on their must visit list.” Executive Chef Jonathan Adam (20 years experience, beginning under the tutelage of Chef Gordon Bailey) joined the Inn in 2004 and rose up through the ranks earning top spot recently and he leads an amazing team. You will be wowed by the talent that continues with Pastry Chef Isabelle Chevarie (represented Canada in the Europe Culinary Olympics), Sous Chef Sean Burton (teaches at the Culinary Institute of PEI in the off-season) & Chef Adam Nowaczynski, along with Lindsay Sanderson & Connor Minnis together creating one delectable mouth-watering meal after another.
On our first evening, my husband and I both tried the tasty scallops with celeriac puree, hazelnut aioli, bacon & shallot crumb and apple butter followed by our main of seared halibut with yogurt baked fingerling potatoes, citrus basil sauce, pineapple & mango salsa, cherry tomatoes, ricotta and cilantro oil. The two servings of honey island white bread (made by Connor) that we thoroughly enjoyed left us with no room for dessert, but we promised to save room the next evening to not miss the talents of the famous pastry chef.
Our second dinner at the Inn was just as delicious as the first. Eric chose a starter of a chowder made with mussels, haddock, salmon, celery, red pepper & corn and I enjoyed the refreshing salad with watermelon, cucumber, sweet pickled shallots, dried cranberries, feta and grapefruit vinaigrette. Eric’s main was the pork tenderloin medallions, spaetzle, parsnip, fennel & apple slaw with caper vinaigrette and maple mustard reduction. I chose the grilled beef tenderloin, gruyere & sage dauphinoise, candied carrots, cashews, brown butter shiitakes and cipollini onion in natural jus. We enjoyed one serving of Connor’s lovely honey bread so we might save room for Pastry Chef Isabelle Chevarie’s brilliant creations. I had the blueberry mousse with carbonated blueberries, spiced sponge cake, blueberry compote and honey jellies and Eric tried the ‘Just a Taste’ finisher getting a taste of each of the dessert offerings… including the blueberry mousse, a rhubarb curd tart with cream cheese, strawberry macaroon, rhubarb spheres, milk crumb & strawberry compote and the chocolate pave with banana ice cream, salted caramel, honey comb, caramelized bananas and chocolate coffee crumb (and you know I had I bite of that!). Oh my yum and to top it off someone remembered our special occasion the next day and surprised us with the ‘Happy Anniversary’ chocolate drizzled message. It was above & beyond!
Now That’s a Garden!
The Inn has two gardeners on staff to care for the over 25,000 plants & flowers, as well as the vegetable & herb garden. I met both Lynn Larkin & Garth Keeping as they worked diligently the whole time I was out taking photographs and they were lovely to chat with. The Chefs can often be spotted dipping into the veggies & herbs to gather fresh bits to add to the evening’s dinner and Mary Jane, the morning waitress, often pops out to gather fresh flowers for the dining room table centrepieces.
Love at First Sight
The proud owner, Karen Milligan, said it was ‘love at first sight’ when she first laid eyes on the property and she laughed adding it was “one glass of wine too many” when she and her first husband Michael jumped at the chance to purchase it. Construction started in October 1999 and the Inn at St. Peters opened its doors for business in May 2000. I am really glad they left the city of Toronto and made this investment. Come and see for yourself. You are greeted by name every time you enter the Inn’s door and Karen and her staff go out of their way to ensure all your needs are met, and then some. The waterfront suites are especially cozy with the charming fireplaces, and the beds extremely comfortable. You can curl up or venture out. Come for the tranquility, come for the scenery, come for the Points East Coastal Wonders, come for the incredible golf nearby, come for the food, come for the hospitality… just COME and ENJOY the Inn at St. Peters.
St. Peters is a Gem!
Scenic and tucked away from all the hullabaloo of Central Prince Edward Island, St. Peters is a hidden gem. It is pretty special here and when you venture out in any direction … be prepared for: country roads, coastal views, quaint picturesque fishing villages, biking trails, parks, pristine quiet, white-sand beaches and lighthouses - boy do they have lighthouses!!
There is plenty to see and do right in the village as well. At Freckles & Porcelain, I fell in love and now have a new favourite PEI gift shop. Inspired by a vintage bathing suit, the owner and talented artist Emily Carlaw has created a dreamscape of nostalgic art, design & a collection of pretty things in what feels like an old fashioned general store. Check out my instagram account under PEI NE Shore for video tours of her sweet shop. Architecture is lovely in the village as well with several churches worth investigating and there is a nice walking bridge and other shops to check out as well. I found a fun takeout ‘Rick's Fish 'N' Chips & Seafood House, and I met Ed, at the St. Peters Bay Confederation Trail Bike Rentals. We had a great chat and he set my husband Eric and I up with rental bikes and helmets for a great cycling adventure.
A cyclist’s dream awaited us on the Confederation Trail, on the 15 km between St. Peters to Morell. Original railway lines, now since abandoned and groomed to be a paradise of biking trails, the Confederation Trail extends across the whole island but he stretch between St. Peters to Morell is the absolute prettiest. Farmland, fields of flowers, wooden bridges, quaint wooded trails with birds and butterflies visiting you, and so many sweeping ocean views. This section of the trail has more water views than anywhere else on the island The trail is fairly flat so it is perfect for any age and ideal for families. There are many spots to stop and enjoy the view too.
The Links at Crowbush Cove
Spectacular views overlooking the north shore dunes will surely wow the most discerning of golfers at The Links at Crowbush. It just happens to be rated in the top ten golf courses by Score Magazine too. Golf Digest, also rates it 4 ½ stars for its “undulating fairways, water holes and ocean breezes providing … one of the Islands toughest challenges”.
The Links at Crowbush, Brudenell River Golf Course & Dundarave Golf Course are all within a twenty minute drive of the Inn at St. Peters, and Karen and her staff is more than happy to design a golf package that will suit you to a ‘tee’.
Greenwich National Park
Walking trails, hiking, biking and birding through wetlands & forests, and beautiful white sand beaches with parabolic sand dunes makes Greenwich National Park one of the world's top Coastal Destinations by National Geographic.
Greenwich Park Beach feels like a secret place that no one knows about yet. It goes on and on for miles and miles of majestic parabolic sand dunes and ocean views offering you solitude and peacefulness. We only saw a hand full of people and it was a glorious hot day. I guess most prefer fighting for towel space, but if you are like my hubby and I, this is our kinda place! You may come across an occasional seabird like we did, wondering how you found his beach. Shhh… it’s our little secret now.
“Hey, that looks interesting! There’s so much going on and just look at those cute fishing shanties. Let’s go check it out!” I implored my husband pointing to a fishing harbour off in the distance. Eric knew it was fruitless to argue so he turned the vehicle into North Lake and he eyed the ‘Pirates Boathouse Cafe’ (no, I’m not kidding) so he went in search of lunch and I headed for the wharf where all the excitement was. Apparently, we arrived on ‘Landing Day’ ~ the last day of the season for Lobster Fishermen, so I had a blast meeting, talking to and taking photos of the locals as they unloaded all their traps and gear for the year. While Eric was enjoying a couple pirate ‘fish tacos’ I discovered North Lake Harbour, is self-declared as the ‘Tuna Capital of the World’. It lays claim to several tuna giants brought in here and the majority of tuna licensed fishermen from PEI fish from here. It looked more like the ‘Lobster Capital of the World’ today but I was told Tuna is King here.
East Point Lighthouse
Built in 1866-1867, the East Point Lighthouse was the last lighthouse erected before the Island joined Confederation in 1873. It marks the eastern most tip of PEI and it is one of the busiest supports for navigation because of its location. Shipwrecks were plentiful here as this coast was one of the most difficult to navigate, due to the meeting of the Atlantic Ocean, Northumberland Strait, and the Gulf of St. Lawrence tides.
Basin Head Beach is widely known for its ‘singing sands’ and is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. Go ahead, try it… run through the sand on a hot day and it will ‘sing’ away. Apparently this is due to the high silica content in the sand. Basin Head is one of PEI’s provincial parks so this area has some amenities you might not see elsewhere including bathrooms, a canteen and few shops. The Basin Head Fisheries Museum is also found here.
What a cutie this friendly seaside town of Souris is. I am definitely returning here for a closer look sometime soon. We only had a short time to drive through the town and visit the lighthouse, where I met a couple of painters that shared they were participating in the Points East Plein Air Festival from Wednesday July 3 - July 7th. 2019. Each day artists are to capture & celebrate the scenery that Eastern PEI has to offer in its picturesque historic town & villages. Participants compete for cash prizes in various categories.
Two nights and three days in this beautiful part of Prince Edward Island left me wanting more. There are so many things I still want to explore on the Points East Coastal Drive. This trip just captures a wee bit of the top and north eastern corner of it but it has whet my appetite and I will be back. The Inn at St. Peters was such a welcoming place to stay - no wonder Tripadvisor lists it as one of Canada’s Top Small Hotels. We left knowing we would be back again someday soon. To book your stay or to find out more information, click on the image of the Inn at St. Peters above. Tell them the Maritimes Maven sent you!
This post was sponsored by The Inn at St. Peters; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Follow me - the Maritimes Maven on FaceBook, Instagram, Pinterest & Twitter. Also be the first to receive my latest stories by subscribing to my blog by simply clicking on the link at the top of this story.