It should come as no surprise to loyal Select Registry travelers that there are Select Registry properties in 13 of the top 20 towns selected by readers of Travel and Leisure. We suspect there are inns in the majority of the 744 towns that were nominated via social media as well.
Editors at T+L found that the majority of the top towns have a history dating back at least a century. Other aspects of the towns make them unique and attractive to guests and residents.
Which cities made the top 20 and have Select Registry inns in town or nearby? Read on to find out.
#2 Estes Park, CO
This quiet town on the edge of Rocky Mountain National Park has all of the elements of a great getaway: great lodging options, a bustling Main Street, and plenty of nature to explore.
- Romantic RiverSong Inn is just a few miles from town yet is secluded on 27 wooded acres. Choose to relax in front of the fire, wander the hiking trails on the property or explore town. You can be assured your stay at the Romantic Riversong Inn will help you enjoy all of the nature that helped get Estes Park into the number 2 spot on the list.
- The Lodge at Stanley Hotel offers a variety of experiences for its guests. The Stanley Hotel gained notoriety as the location for the filming of “The Shining.” Your stay can be as thrilling as the movie or as relaxing as you wish. Located just 6 miles from Rocky Mountain National Park, it is a great place to use as a basecamp while hiking, sightseeing, or kayaking in the park.
#3 St. Simons, GA
T+L readers ranked this Atlantic island town high for its residents. We think they must be pretty special to outshine the island’s sandy beaches, sprawling oak trees, golf courses and an impressive 1872 lighthouse.
- Lodge on Little St. Simons Island is just 30 minutes from St. Simons and offers all of the attractive qualities of the bigger island plus 10,000 acres of undeveloped wilderness and a charming lodge for no more than 32 guests. The inn is comprised of 6 cottages and guest houses each with a different setting and décor. Some of best meals on the island are prepared by the lodge’s chefs and served in the family-style dining room.
#5 Amelia Island, FL
This barrier island town offers 13 miles of Atlantic coastline and a unique blend of French, Spanish, English and Mexican influences. Horse drawn carriage rides and plenty of lodging options only add to its appeal.
- Elizabeth Pointe Lodge offers guests unmatched views of the beach and the Atlantic Ocean. Guests can choose to stay in one of the main house’s 20 guestrooms and suites or the Miller cottage’s two bedrooms and two baths for families or corporate gatherings. The inn’s 24/7 staff is available to give guests the attention they need and exceed expectations.
- Fairbanks House is a 8000-sqaure-foot Italian villa built in 1885 and located in the historic district of Fernandina Beach. The inn is furnished with a tasteful blend of today’s luxuries with yesterday’s beauty and quality. Whether you choose to eat your handmade breakfast or social hour hors d’oeuvres in one of the common rooms or piazzas by the garden, you will be treated to some of the best service on the island.
- Amelia Island Williams House, one of Amelia Island’s grandest historic homes, offers visitors spacious porches for relaxing, eleven guest rooms for privacy, and breakfast every morning in the dining room served on family heirloom China, sterling silver and crystal. The staff is also ready and more than willing to provide suggestions on how to best enjoy the area.
- Hoyt House Bed & Breakfast is a Queen Anne-style mansion built in 1905 and greets guests with a 12-foot double door to impart the quality of accommodations on all who enter. The interior of the B&B is decorated with period furnishings and English antiques. Guest rooms are complete with fresh orchids, amenities from Gilchrist & Soames, and luxury bath robes.
#8 Franklin, TN
This town was loved by T+L readers for its festivals and historic preservation. With the holidays only a month away, we can’t help but mention that they ranked No. 3 for the best Christmas light displays.
- Butterfly Meadows Inn & Farm is a beautiful and tranquil combination of new and old. From the moment guests start down the half-mile driveway, they are slowly taken to a quieter and simpler place The relatively new construction was crafted to look like a century-old farm house. Inside the inn, guests find home-cooked meals, welcoming rocking chairs and delightful guestrooms and suites.
#10 Stowe, VT
Nestled in the Green Mountains, Stowe offers visitors plenty of wilderness to explore. Add in the great skiing and snowboarding, and it is easy to see why this small town made the list.
- Stone Hill Inn was built specifically and exclusively for couples. The inn’s unique amenities include fireside Jacuzzis for two, candlelit breakfasts, and two-sided fireplaces. The inn has what could be the perfect location, just minutes from the best shops, restaurants and skiing but secluded on 9.5 acres. The inn is a perfect basecamp for couples looking to enjoy all that Stowe has to offer.
#11 Skaneateles, NY
Skaneateles Lake drew settlers in the 1800s and continues to attract visitors today. T+L readers ranked the town high for active people, summer getaways and the quaint B&Bs, specifically the Sherwood Inn.
- The Sherwood Inn was built as a stagecoach stop in 1807 and still enjoys the feeling of a bygone era. Each room has been meticulously restored to offer the beauty of yesteryear with the conveniences of today. Dining at the Sherwood Inn is just as delightful as the historic building. In fact, the fine dining has been recognized by some of the top magazines including Bon Appetit, the New York Times and New York magazine.
#12 Traverse City, MI
In the spring, blooms on the cherry trees are absolutely beautiful. In the late summer, the fruit is delicious whether eaten fresh, baked in a pie, or used in beer and wine making. The Lake Michigan beaches and a thriving downtown add to the appeal.
- Inn at Black Star Farms in Suttons Bay is located about 30 minutes from Traverse City but is well worth the drive. The property offers two winery production facilities with tasting rooms, a distillery, a full service inn, the Hearth & Vine restaurant, and an equestrian facility. A complimentary bottle of the inn’s “Red House” wine awaits guests in their rooms upon arrival.
#13 Doylestown, PA
Museums and historic sites are the primary attractions in this Bucks County town, but the seafood runs a close second. Doylestown also ranked No. 3 for seafood shacks.
- The Inn at Barley Sheaf Farm is just 10 minutes from Doylestown in Holicong. This beautiful former home of Pulitzer-prize winning playwright George S. Kaufman is now an elegant and romantic estate surrounded by 100 acres of pasture and woodlands. Inside guests can choose from one of the 16 luxurious suites, and possibly add a private in-suite spa treatment with all natural products to their stay.
#14 Charlottesville, VA
Thomas Jefferson loved this small town and T+L readers do too. Monticello, the University of Virginia, and quality vineyards helped this historic town rank in the top 20.
- Foxfield Inn offers guests warm hospitality and five guestrooms, each with unique décor and handcrafted queen-size beds built by local craftsmen. The innkeepers believe the best way to start a day in Charlottesville is with a delicious breakfast, so each morning they serve an impressive three-course breakfast in the dining room. Each dish is prepared with as many local products as possible including eggs from free range chickens farmed across the street.
- Prospect Hill Plantation Inn is alive with history. From the 1732 manor and slave quarters dating from 1699 to 1850, offers a unique opportunity to enjoy a historic plantation while enjoying all of the luxury of today. With options including breakfast in bed, working fireplaces, private balconies, and romantic candlelit dining every weekend, this inn is a true delight.
- Silver Thatch Inn is steeped with history as it began its life as a barracks for Hessian soldiers in 1780. Since then it has been reinvented several times as a boys’ school, tobacco plantation, a melon farm, a private home and now a delightful bed and breakfast inn. Before exploring all of the history or wine country that the area offers, guests are treated to a full breakfast prepared by the innkeepers each morning.
#17 Harbor Springs, MI
Just minutes from arguably the best skiing in Michigan, this charming beach resort town offers visitors old-time ice cream and candy shops, a beautiful light house and plenty of quiet nature to enjoy.
- Stafford’s Bay View Inn is a scenic and pleasant 10-minute drive from Harbor Springs in Petoskey. In the warm summer months guests enjoy relaxing on the porch in a rocking chair watching the sun set over Little Traverse Bay. In the winter months, guests can snuggle with their loved one in one of the 31 Victorian guest rooms after skiing, hiking, shopping or exploring,
#18 New Hope, PA
Readers who appreciate the finer things in life are responsible for getting this small town on the list at number 18. The town’s 19th-century storefronts full of antiques and gallery art make this town special.
- Lambertville House in Lambertville is just 10 minutes from New Hope and offers a beautifully restored hotel to use as basecamp while enjoying the New Hope area. The inn, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, has 24 European-inspired guest rooms with a sophisticated blend of reproduction and modern furnishings to provide maximum comfort for guests.
- Woolverton Inn in Stockton is also a 10 minute drive from New Hope. Woolverton offers a unique blend of seclusion and romance while also being just minutes from so many wonderful attractions. The 1792 stone mansion offers a choice of three types of overnight accommodations: cottages, guest rooms, and suites. Visitors find feeding and watching the sheep on the property to be very relaxing.
#19 Lititz, PA
This small town in Pennsylvania Dutch country was ranked high for its patriotism and town pride. We recommend visiting this holiday season to take in Christmas lights that were ranked number 9 in the country.
- Swiss Woods is proud to be located in Pennsylvania Dutch country. With Christmas a little more than a month away, now is the perfect time to visit this idyllic country inn and enjoy the Christmas lights at the inn and around town. After exploring and enjoying town, take a few minutes to warm up in front of the fireplace with tea and biscotti.
#20 Eureka Springs, AR
The natural mineral springs are undoubtedly one of the top reasons this town made the list, but art galleries, live-music bars, beautiful Victorian homes and great inns also draw visitors.
- Arsenic and Old Lace B&B, a Queen Anne Style mansion, offers the fantastic luxuries to make your stay comfortable while you enjoy the town of Eureka Springs. Each of the five guest rooms have king or queen-size beds, jetted tubs, silky sheets, luxury towels and individual heating controls. All of these things and more will make you feel right at home during the chilly months.
- Inn at Rose Hall’s guests know it’s time for breakfast when aromas of freshly baked goods and specialty house coffee drift into the five guest rooms. The smells are wonderful enough to draw the guests from the luxurious linens and pillows of the comfortable accommodations. Once guests are able to pull themselves from the comforts of their room and have breakfast, they are just a pleasant 10-minute walk from downtown Eureka Springs.
Favorite Small Towns
We obviously have a preference for towns in America with Select Registry inns. What are your favorite towns and why?