When you meet innkeeper Ken Withrow at his highly regarded bed and breakfast, Nantucket’s Union Street Inn, it is obvious that this is a guy who loves his job—which is probably the reason why Union Street is a perennial award-winner in travel and lifestyle magazines from coast to coast.
On a warm June morning, Ken welcomes guests to Union Street’s outdoor dining patio nestled beneath a green hillside of ivy and sheltering trees in one of the island’s elegant neighborhoods right off Main Street. While guests start off their day with heaping plates of pancakes bursting with blueberries or fresh salmon cool with cucumbers on fresh bagels (Union Street is the only B&B to offer complete gourmet breakfasts on Nantucket) Ken walks from table to table.
“What would you like to do today,” this urbane, former Manhattanite says to guests who look rested and happy having slept in one of Union Street’s 12 rooms in this painstakingly restored 1770s antique residence. Each room here is a masterpiece of carefully selected furnishings and amenities, ultra-comfortable beds beside fireplaces piled high with Frette linens, baths gleaming with imported Italian marble.
Union Street’s sophisticated décor with refined antique details is a reflection of the successful collaboration between Ken, who has decades of hotel management experience in some top quality places, and his wife, Deb, whose background in retail management includes such names as Fiorucci and Henri Bendel. Combined with the couple’s famed attention to detail and Ken’s relaxed charm, it’s easy to see why Union Street is a Fodor Gold Choice Award winner described as “One of the most romantic inns in the U.S.”