Former Charlestown Couple, B&B Operators, Hoping Boston Residents Will Vacation in Maine

Two former Charlestown residents that relocated to Booth Bay Harbor in Maine to operate a Bed & Breakfast are reaching back out to their old neighborhood this summer with hopes vacationers might consider coming up north after the long quarantine.

“We’d love to have more Boston people come up,” she said. “It’s much quicker to get here than to the Cape now, I believe…There are some great opportunities here to get outside and enjoy nature.”

Peter and Kathryn Sullivan have operated the Bayside Inn Bed & Breakfast in Booth Bay Harbor, Maine, since deciding in 2001 to make a lifestyle change and leave their successful careers and their Baldwin Street home in Charlestown. Kathryn’s mother had operated the B&B for years in the summer, being a teacher during the rest of the year. So, the Sullivan’s purchased the home, have painstakingly renovated it, and now operate it with great success.

However, COVID-19 restrictions have lodging down 80 percent, and they weren’t even allowed to have guests in the property due to COVID-19 restrictions until last week. Now, that they can, they are hoping those in Charlestown might take the trip north to Bayside B&B.

“We lived on Baldwin Street from 1994 to 2001,” she said. “We had our first child there, but we worked a lot. We wanted a lifestyle change. We didn’t want to work 12 hours a day and try to balance our family, which is what we would have done in the construction management industry.”

Bayside B&B has five guest rooms, all named after different bays in Maine. All have private bathrooms and, though there is no breakfast included now, there are options across the street for breakfast.

“We manage it ourselves and we do everything,” she said. “We did significant renovations to the home.”

One of the best parts is that there is ample opportunity to be outside. After being inside or confined to neighborhood parks, Sullivan said their B&B has changes to be out in the great wide open.

There are boat tours now available within a short walk from the property, and a Land Trust with tons of trails for hiking along the coast. Finally, there is the world-famous Booth Bay Botanical Gardens to explore.

Right now, in such uncertain times, they are trying to adjust to COVID-19 restrictions, new sanitary procedures and other ways of doing business. Maine issued an executive order last week allowing Massachusetts residents to come up and visit. However, they must either quarantine for 14 days at their vacation home, or they can be tested for COVID-19 within 72 hours of arriving in Maine. With proof of a negative result, visitors can move about freely without any worry – especially since the Booth Bay area only had 23 cases during the entire COVID-19 outbreak, so it’s relatively free of the virus.

“Up until last Friday, we were only allowed to have Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont residents without certification of being virus free,” she said. “As of June 26, anyone who travels here has to sign a certificate of compliance.”

That certificate says you have gotten a negative test result within the last 72 hours (with proof), that you have quarantined for 14 days before coming, or you will be quarantining for 14 days while staying in Maine.

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