York Harbor Inn York Harbor Inn

Inn History

Inn's roots date back to 1637!


York Harbor Inn - York Harbor Maine HistoryYork Harbor Maine. In the early 1800’s, a fishing community on the Isles of Shoals, ten miles off the coast, dismantled their homes and brought them to York. It was at this time that the York Harbor Inn’s post and beam fireplaced "Cabin Room" (Circa 1637) was carefully dismantled by its owners and transported by barge to York Harbor from the Isles of Shoals where it had been used as a sail loft for the refitting of ships sails. Today the cozy Cabin Room is the centerpiece of the York Harbor Inn.

The town of York has its own rich past. The first settlers came to York in 1623. Primarily English and Scottish, they were farmers and fisherman. They were a growing community when in 1692, an Indian massacre occurred, destroying all but a handful of these pre-colonial buildings. Through strength and determination, the town was rebuilt and prospered.

The picturesque York River was a fluid expressway for merchant ships during the 1700's. Warehouses lined the riverbanks and as many as fifty multi-masted ships were anchored in the York River at one time. During this period, John Hancock owned and operated a wharf and business on the York River. The Hancock Wharf is still accessible today, operated as a museum by the Old York Historical Society.

The York’s second economic boom began in 1871 with the building of the Marshall House in York Harbor. This was the beginning of a new era. Over a hundred guesthouses and hotels were erected throughout the years that followed, and the harbor area became a summer haven for literary and cultural notables and the affluent. 

The York Harbor Inn, then the Hillcroft Inn, was operated by the Smith family with a handful of guestrooms, a dining room and a tavern. The popular tavern was known as "The Cellar", complete with horse stables converted into cocktail sitting areas and a functional hitching post, which to this day stands outside the “Cellar” door. 

At the turn of the century, trolley and train tracks led vacationers from the four corners of New England to the southern coast of Maine. The trolley ran right in front of the Inn and original trolley lamps still hang from the beams in the Cabin Room, recalling that grandiose era of sunny, seaside resorts.

During the 1940’s, the Colligan family purchased the Inn, which they operated until 1978 - when it was purchased by the current owner/operators - the Dominguez family. The Dominguez' have continued to build the business, creating a major addition in 1988 and upgrading all of the Inn's major mechanical and electrical systems, as well as adding a professional kitchen and redecorating and refurbishing each of the Inn's guestrooms. 

The historic building adjacent to the Inn on the west side (circa 1783) is the Yorkshire House, which was purchased in 1983 and became part of the Inn, offering eleven additional guestrooms. In 1997 the Harbor Cliffs, on the east side of the Inn, was purchased and seven new private rooms were added. Each of these exquisitely decorated rooms offers a private bath and most rooms feature stunning ocean vistas. Additionally, several of the guestrooms offer working fireplaces and some rooms even feature spa tubs.

Next to the Yorkshire House is the Harbor Hill Inn building with seven oversized rooms exemplifying a Grand New England Cottage architectural style. Each room in this new Inn features ocean views, gas fireplaces, Jacuzzi spa tubs, king beds and many more luxuries. The Harbor Hill building opened during the summer of 2001.

2005 brought the debut of the newest luxury Inn, the 1730 Harbor Crest Inn with seven additional oversized rooms. Located on scenic Coastal Rte 1A approximately one half-mile prior the York Harbor Inn. It is also only about .5 mile from the shops and restaurants of York Village, legendary Wiggly Bridge, Fisherman’s Walk and the Harbor Beach. Built in 1730, this historic upscale inn is surrounded by a wrought iron fence outlining the original grand circular driveway and gardens. 

The Inn has seven beautifully appointed luxury guest rooms, including one two-room suite with a second floor deck. All seven guest rooms have been revitalized with four-poster king size beds, gas or wood (wax log) fireplaces, wireless and direct internet connections and spacious bathrooms. Six of the seven rooms have two person Jacuzzi spa tubs. There are two premier rooms on third floor with gracious cathedral ceilings.

The York Harbor Inn continues to embrace the tradition of welcoming visitors and providing fine dining and gracious lodging, excellent banquet and meeting space. The classic Cabin Room and Ship’s Cellar Pub provide warmth and cheer to visitors and guests.
For additional information on the York Harbor Inn call 1-800-343-3869 or visit www.yorkharborinn.com.