July 31, 2011

And a few of our favorite things

From staff reports

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Green Elephant Vegetarian Bistro has fans among readers and our staff.

Staff file photos

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Longfellow Books in Portland s Monument Square is the staff pick for best bookstore.

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BEST DAY SPA

Akari

193 Middle St., Portland

772-9060; akaribeauty.com

A full-service spa, Akari makes you feel beautiful inside and out. Services include facials, massages, waxing, tinting, injections and naturopathic medicine, all performed in a serene and relaxing space. Make a day of it and take advantage of the light fare on the bistro menu and do some shopping in the boutique. 

BEST HAIR SALON

Head Games Salon for Hair & Body

116 Free St., Portland

773-8393

To get the latest, hippest cut or color, style mavens make an appointment at Head Games. The trendy salon is filled with chic stylists who know how to deliver a flattering cut. The salon specializes in natural hair care and makeup products. 

BEST TATTOO PARLOR

Sanctuary Tattoo & Art Gallery

31 Forest Ave., Portland

828-8866; sanctuarytattoo.com

Ready to take the ink plunge? The five artists at Sanctuary Tattoo offer a wide range of styles and artistic edge to make your vision a living work of art. From the simple and small to the multi-colored and huge, Sanctuary Tattoo has been doing justice to skin for years. 

BEST BEACH

Reid State Park

375 Seguinland Road, Georgetown

371-2303; tinyurl.com/reidstatepark

Some people like to go to the beach to relax on powder-like sand. Others like to swim or boogie-board in the ocean. And still others prefer a warm, kid-friendly lagoon where the water is actually warm. You can do all of that at Reid State Park, as well as fish, hike, bird-watch, picnic and go sight-seeing for nearby lighthouses. There's also a full bath house. 

BEST BEACH-SIDE RESTAURANT

The Brunswick Ocean Side Grill

39 West Grand Ave., Old Orchard Beach

934-4873; thebrunswickoceanbeachgrill.com

This place boasts the largest oceanside patio in Maine. The food is standard Maine fare (lots of seafood along with some steak and chicken), but you'll enjoy it so much more with a cool drink in your hand and the Atlantic lapping at your table. 

BEST HOTEL OR RESORT

Samoset Resort

220 Warrenton St., Rockport

594-2511; (800) 341-1650

The history of the recently renovated Samoset Resort goes back 100 years. It has 178 rooms on 230 acres, with excellent views of Penobscot Bay and the Camden Hills. The golf course is championship-class. Food is sumptuous at the Italian La Bella Vita Ristorante and the less formal Enoteca Lounge, Clubhouse Grille and Splash Pool Bar.

BEST GOLF COURSE

Nonesuch River Golf Club

304 Gorham Road, Scarborough

883-0007; (888) 256-2717; nonesuchgolf.com

The Nonesuch River Golf Club offers a par 70, 6,300-yard, 18-hole course twisting through woods and wetlands. The club is known for its excellent putting greens. It has a full driving range, two practice greens, a golf academy and a large, convenient clubhouse. The staff is helpful and friendly. Peak-season weekend rates top out at $40, but specials are as low as $25 for 18 holes.

BEST BED & BREAKFAST

The Danforth

163 Danforth St., Portland

879-8755; danforthmaine.com

The Danforth combines Old World charm with New World comfort and style. The decor is sophisticated; the breakfasts to die for. Be sure to check out the view from the cupola.

BEST LAND TOUR

Wicked Walking Tours

Portland

wickedwalkingtours.com

When a city dates back to the 1600s, it's bound to be chock-full of odd historical facts and ghost stories. With Wicked Walking Tours, you can learn about Portland's colorful and sometimes sordid history with trips to historic gravesites, buildings and other locales. Go during the daytime -- or, if you dare, at night. Check the website for current info on tour stops.

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The Danforth in Portland gets the staff nod for best bed and breakfast.

  


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