Despite its proximity to Boston, the cobblestone streets and sandy shores of Nantucket Island feel a world away from bustle of the city. But the laidback getaway is seeing action of its own — new restaurants, shopping and hotels are popping up just in time for summer. Here are our top picks of this season’s latest hotspots:
Where to Eat
Englishman and Nantucket resident Nathan Coe is bringing a taste of the U.K. to Broad Street, opening Nantucket Pasty Company on Memorial Day weekend. Describing pasties as “the British version of calzones,” Coe will sell the handmade pies for pick-up with fillings such as New England clam and chicken curry, as well as dessert pasties including rhubarb custard or Nutella and banana. Boston restaurateur Kathy Sidell — of The Metropolitan Club and Met Bar & Grill — is making the move to Nantucket as she opens a restaurant at 38 Main St. this June. Met on Main will be a European-style cafe with an island vibe, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. A 40-foot zinc bar is sure to be a top cocktail destination, while the back patio will get a tropical feel from living “green” walls. A tartare bar will offer up to ten raw beef and fish dishes. Offering even more seafood, Cru Oyster Bar opens May 18 and will serve New England coastal cuisine with French flair — think summer flounder meunière and Provencal seafood stew with Nantucket striped bass. The waterfront restaurant at 1 Straight Wharf overlooks Nantucket Harbor and will serve lunch and dinner.
Where to Stay
Nantucket’s popular White Elephant Hotel will open a new expansion on July 25. The Inn at White Elephant Village is located downtown, with suites boasting large windows, wainscoting, fireplaces and Pratesi linens. Guests can stop in to the shared lobby for coffee or port wine and cheese in the afternoons. The Nantucket Hotel and Resort in downtown’s Brant Point neighborhood is slated to re-open July 20 after finishing extensive renovations. Built in 1891, the resort’s owners preserved its historic exterior while gutting the inside, transforming most rooms into family-friendly, one- to four-bedroom suites with full kitchens (the four-bed, four-bath Daggett suite sprawls over two floors and can sleep up to 14). The hotel also added a new gym and a second pool and will open a spa in the fall.
Where to Play
Nothing says current like pop-up shops, and Nantucket is getting its own this summer. Preppy women’s lifestyle brand C. Wonder (owned by Tory Burch co-founder J. Christopher Burch) will open a temporary downtown location selling home decor, clothing and accessories — all in a Nantucket-appropriate Americana aesthetic — from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Shoppers can also browse the first Nantucket Yoga Festival running July 26 to 28, when vendors including jewelers, organic clothiers and artists will display their wares at Bartlett’s Ocean View Farm. Yoginis can purchase passes to attend classes with more than a dozen instructors. For a less active afternoon, visit the historic Dreamland Theater, re-opening this summer after a near-complete renovation. The original windows and ceiling trusses remain in the new space, which includes a theater with digital projection system for blockbusters plus a studio theater for movies and performances and an event room with a terrace and harbor views.
Photos courtesy of Kit Noble Photography and Nathan Coe