Last week Emma and I had the incredible opportunity to stay at the beautiful Four Chimneys Inn while visiting Vermont. It was the perfect place to act as a home base for all the leaf-peeping and driving around that we had planned and we were so excited. We couldn’t wait to finally visit the popular New England towns in person and see fall in Full colorful grandeur! This has been a trip that we’ve looked forward to for as long as we can remember and we were thrilled. (The Four Chimneys Inn was recently named Vermont’s best Bed & Breakfast in 2019 by Yankee Magazine. Not surprised after staying there!)
History of Bennington
Four Chimneys Inn is located in Old Bennington, an adorable spot with tons of history. The town sits near the state lines of New York and Massachusetts and it was the first town chartered in the state of Vermont – way back in 1749 by the New Hampshire Governor. The town’s original settlement was formed in Old Bennington, in 1761. These early settlers were resistant to land claims from the New York colony… As a matter of fact, there was an organized citizen militia headed by no other than Ethan Allen himself known as the Green Mountain Boys. This militia later played a crucial role at the Battle of Bennington on August 16, 1777. That battle was a prelude to the surrender of British General John Burgoyne at Saratoga, which led directly to the success of the Revolution. So interesting! This is a place Jeff needs to visit. He loves history..
(Thanks to the Bennington website & Museum for the history lesson)
History of the Four Chimneys Inn
Dating back to the late-1700s:
In 1783, the original building of the Four Chimneys Inn was the home of the town’s pastor, Reverend David Avery. Unable to afford the upkeep he sold it to Nathanial Brush, a notable participant in the battle of Bennington. Brush turned the mansion into a boarding house & general store but in 1910 the mansion burnt to the ground, leaving only the foundation. Philip B. Jennings, a prominent local businessman, saw promise and rebuilt the estate in 1913 and kept it as a summer home for he, his wife and daughter. They lived there on and off until his death in 1949. With over 12,000 square feet the Inn is huge! I can’t imagine it acting as a home for just 3 people. In the 1950’s the mansion was sold and turned into a fine dining establishment. Famous clientele included Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, and Walt Disney! The mansion was also used as a backdrop for many weddings because of the beautiful expansive grounds. In 2005 innkeepers Lynn and Pete purchased the Four Chimneys Inn and turned the mansion into a beautiful bed & breakfast.. They pride themselves on keeping the historic elements of the mansion intact.
The Inn Itself
From the minute we arrived at the Inn we fell in love with it’s cozy and intimate vibe. The living room had a fire lit and there were guests enjoying their nightly cocktails.. The staff is warm & welcoming as is the Inn itself and we were made to feel right at home.
Our room was located on the 2nd floor and it was gorgeous. It’s painted a soft light blue color and filled with mahogany furniture. With hardwood floors and a fireplace our room felt so luxurious. An added bonus – all rooms have super comfy memory foam mattresses. So spoiling when traveling away from home. The bathroom was large with a huge jet tub, shower and all the amenities that one can think of. The innkeeper, Lynn designed each room herself using a mix of colors and styles. Love that! Luckily for us, we were able to take a sneak peek into a couple of the other rooms and take a few pics to share with you. I love how different each of the spaces look & feel!
One of our favorite parts of the Inn is the gorgeous breakfast served each morning. Every night before heading to bed you are given a menu for the next day’s breakfast selections and a choice on times to eat.. This prep works cuts the waiting time for breakfast in half in the morning.. perfect for someone like me who isn’t a morning person. ;)
The dining room has a fine-dining look & feel and everything is thought of. There is a coffee/juice bar for self service and breakfast is served immediately. Lynn arrives early every morning to whip up the breakfasts herself and I can’t emphasize enough what an amazing cook she is. Everything was so yummy! I can’t wait to share the orange-infused blueberry cream cheese french toast recipe with Jeff. My favorite!
The only issue I had about our visit is that I wasn’t able to sample every breakfast. We’ll have to stay longer next time. ;)
The grounds and gardens surrounding the Inn are just as gorgeous as the Inn itself. Beautifully maintained, they’re made for a wedding or party on the lawn. Four Chimneys has the cutest porch overlooking the grounds as well.. it’s the perfect spot to sit in, relax and enjoy an afternoon tea or cocktail.
If you’re thinking of visiting the Four Chimneys Inn, especially for Fall Foliage, make sure to book out a few months in advance. There are only 11 rooms (+ the cottages) so the B&B fills up quickly. Click here to see the different room comparisons/booking availability.
There are so many fun things to do near the town of Bennington. Famous towns such as Woodstock and Manchester are also a close drive away.
A few local favorite activities:
- Old First Church – Make sure to visit Old First Church. This church is a short 5 minutes walking distance from the Four Chimneys Inn. It’s both beautiful and historic.. the first church built in Vermont in the early 1800’s. If you’re a fan of poets, the cemetery is also historic. Robert Frosts’ gravesite is located here.
- Bennington Potters – 1 mile away from the Inn. Visit the largest working craft pottery in the U.S.
- Bennington Museum – Walking distance from the Inn. Bennington is rich in history and there is so much to learn about the area here.
- Hildene, the Lincoln Family Home – Lynn recommended that we visit Hildene and we’re so happy that she did! Abraham Lincoln’s oldest son, Robert Todd Lincoln built the estate as his summer home in 1905. It’s stunning and full of history with many famous people visiting over the years. Today you can see the estate with over 90% of the original furnishings and they’ve made sure to keep the interiors designed the way the family had them. The gardens are formal and the surrounding mountains are the perfect backdrop for photos.
- Robert Frost Stone House Museum – around 7 miles from the Inn. Literary landmark, Frost resided in the home from 1920-1929 during which he composed the extremely famous poem, “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening.”
We had such an amazing time in Vermont with our stay at the Four Chimneys Inn a definite highlight! Next year we’ll have to bring Jeff and Emma’s boyfriend with us.. Jeff lives for historic sites and I just know he would love to see the Inn in person. If you’re traveling through Vermont I suggest staying at least one night at Four Chimneys Inn if possible… you won’t regret it! From the thoughtfulness of the Innkeepers to the beautiful home and grounds themselves it’s become one of our new favorite places to visit.
Click here to book a stay & to learn more.
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