Mass. -- With watery roots still tied to its commercial fishing
fleet, Provincetown, on the tip of Cape Cod, has emerged over the
decades as a flamboyant summer playground for gay visitors and a
year-round haven for writers and artists.
Colorful in every
respect and welcoming to alternative lifestyles, the town each
summer draws thousands of tourists.
Commercial Street and harborfront are home to dozens of shops,
galleries, restaurants and, of course, bars, where, among
entertainment by local theater groups, drag queens stage risque
On the streets,
local musicians play for passersby, and sidewalk cafes fill to
capacity by early evening.
spectacle, quaint guesthouses, inns and small hotels welcome
visitors, the bulk of them between July 4 and Labor Day.
Some of the
properties are situated on Commercial Street, which is hectic
through the wee hours. Others are a block or two away, where
vacationers might have a better chance of getting a restful nights
One top-rated choice for the
upscale client is the Crowne Point Historic Inn and Spa, a member
of the Historic Hotels of America and in its sixth consecutive year
as a AAA Four Diamond property.
Bradford Street (about a five-minute walk from where the action is)
the inn is an oasis, a luxury compound of four buildings joined by
a common courtyard, which is park-like with its greenery, bricked
walkways, ponds and fountains.
Sanford and Thomas Walter are on-site every day, running the
40-room property with the kind of attention one would expect in a
first-class European hotel.
Our guests are as
diverse as Provincetown, said Walter. Travel agents send us clients
who are looking for a full-service property and who are
discriminating in their taste.
The inn, which is
open year-round, draws guests from throughout New England and from
New York, Chicago and California, said Walter.
All of the inns
public rooms and guest rooms feature period antiques, and some
rooms have water views. Nearly all have whirlpool tubs, fireplaces
Rates include a
hot buffet breakfast. The property provides a free beach shuttle as
well as transportation from the local airport and the ferry
cookies are served each afternoon, and every evening a
complimentary cocktail hour offers wine and cheese to guests. The
inn serves dinner nightly in its restaurant, the Bistro.
2,000-square-foot Shui Spa, designed by Charles Gruwell (who
created the Four Seasons Hotel and Spa and Mandalay Bay Spa in Las
Vegas), opened just over a year ago.
through one of the courtyard paths that crosses an Asian-inspired
bridge spanning a 4,000-gallon koi-filled pond.
treatment rooms, the spas inner sanctum features a mineral soaking
tub. The candlelight atmosphere is enhanced by the soothing sounds
of a fountain designed into the back wall of the soaking tub. A
bigger-than-life statue of Buddha is the focal point of an adjacent
outdoor patio, where guests can relax on lounge chairs.
The spa has
unisex steam and sauna rooms, and a choice of nearly two dozen
types of massage are offered along with manicures and
Two Jacuzzi tubs
and a heated pool are located in the inns central courtyard, steps
from the spa.
rates, from June 29 to Sept. 7, range from $219 to $479 per night,
depending on the room.
start at $100 per night. Deluxe rooms, executive suites and
two-level penthouse suites are available, as is an all-inclusive
option that can include dinners and spa treatments.
is 10% on the rack rate only.
The property can
be booked in the GDSs or by phone, (877) 276-9631. Its Web site is
The inn provides
free parking in a nearby municipal lot. Those who prefer to leave
their cars at home can travel to Provincetown on Cape Air (www.flycapeair.com), which offers daily service in
summer from Boston.
& Brockton bus line (www.p-b.com) offers year-round service from Boston.
Bonanza bus line (www .bonanzabus.com) offers year-round service
from New York to Hyannis (connect to Provincetown on the P&B
line from there).
Bay State Cruises
(www.baystatecruisecompany.com) and Boston Harbor
Cruises (www.bostonharborcruises.com) provide seasonal ferry
service from Boston.
reporter Donna Tunney, send e-mail to [email protected].