About an hour north of Boston on the southern coast of Maine rests Ogunquit, a resort town of about 1,200 year-round residents that swells to more than 35,000 in the summer. The four-square-mile community abides along three miles of white sandy beaches, a mile-long path that hugs the scenic rocky coastline, and a working harbor complete with pedestrian-operated drawbridge. Abundant vessels for everything from deep-sea fishing to whale watching make intriguing Ogunquit event venues; and the quaint downtown has a variety of shops and restaurants, along with galleries featuring the works of the resident art colony.
Ogunquit is within an hour's drive of three airports: Portland Jetport, Boston's Logan International, and Manchester, New Hampshire's Jetport. The closest, Portland Jetport, is 35 miles away. Sedan, SUV, and van service is available to/from all three airports. The resort community is also about 10 miles from the Amtrak train station in Wells.
There are no large convention venues in Ogunquit; the largest capacity is found at the 166-room Cliff House Resort & Spa, which has 13,700 square feet of meeting space that includes a 150-seat amphitheater; and the 144-room Meadowmere Resort, which offers about 6,000 square feet of function space that can handle a group of up to 160 people for a meeting. Other hotel venues in Ogunquit that can host a meeting of 80 to 100 people include the 82-room Beachmere Inn, the 87-room Hampton Inn & Suites, the 64-room Admiral's Inn, and the 58-room Stage Neck Inn. One of the oldest inns in town, the circa 1897 62-room Colonial Inn, completed a $4-million renovation that maintained the hotel's Victorian charm in 2013.
Along with an extensive list of restaurants happy to host special events, Ogunquit has several unique venues that show off the area's history and scenery. Tents for various-sized groups can be set up at locations such as the Ogunquit Playhouse (in its 80th decade, with alumni that include legends like Bette Davis) and in the Dorothea Jacobs Grant Common, a park with wildflower gardens at Ogunquit Heritage Museum. Two settings that offer a view of the sea are the Ogunquit Museum of American Art, which has a sculpture court overlooking the ocean and the ability to host up to 120 people, and the Terrace By The Sea, an oceanfront inn with a lawn overlooking the water that can accommodate a special event for up to 80 people.
Ogunquit's abundant dining scene boasts nearly 60 eateries, many of which are chef-run restaurants. Two of the most popular eateries for their entertainment element are The Front Porch and Piano Bar and Jonathan's Restaurant, which brings in quality well-known entertainers like Leon Russell, John Sebastian, or Aztec Two-Step. Another festive spot is Post Road Tavern Restaurant & Rocky Coast Brewing, which has an on-site brewery. Those looking for good eats with a view have plenty of options: On the Beach and Splash are located on the beach; Foot Bridge Lobster is a tiny waterside lobster stand; and Jackie's Too, Oarweed, and Barnacle Billy's all overlook the water in Perkins Cove, the town harbor. Finally, That Place offers steak and seafood, and the pleasure of outdoor eating in season.