65 miles from Philadelphia (1 hour and 30 minutes by car)
The writers of the tourist tome 1,000 Places to See in the USA and Canada Before You Die have deemed King’s Cottage one of the thousand, and as you take in the Spanish-style mansion, with its claw-foot bathtubs and pedestal sinks, the en-suite stained-glass windows, the lustrous hardwood floors and soaring — even, yes, regal — four-poster beds, it is hard not to think just how sweet life can be. A strict no-children policy helps guarantee peace here; gas fireplaces boost the cozy factor; whirlpool tubs, flat-screens, fluffy robes and pillows like clouds make it easy to sink in and be happy. Downstairs, Samson, a hefty 15-pound bichon, breezes in and out of three common rooms decorated with charming Amish artwork. But that Pennsylvania Dutch Country simplicity ends at breakfast: We devoured an exotic fruit salad, warm cranberry-and-orange nut muffins, and ham and cheese crepes with a sweet mango spread, all of which was, in a word, heavenly.
Book it: 1049 East King Street, 717-397-1017, kingscottagebb.com.
Rooms: 8; 1 private cottage.
Rate per night: $150 to $300 for rooms; $300 to $325 for the cottage; weekend rates about $20 higher; 2-night weekend minimum.
Snacks: Afternoon coffee and tea, plus fruit, scones and cookies.
Meals on-site: Breakfast.
Insider tip: Splurge on upgrades like gourmet gift baskets ($60 to $75), cheese-and-cracker trays ($15), and hot stone or Swedish soft-tissue massages ($70 to $100).
Don’t forget: Your bathing suit — a 47-jet hot tub adjoins the sunroom.
While away the hours: With the mile-and-a-half walk to Central Market, the country’s oldest farmers’ market (founded in the 1730s), for fresh bread, local cheese, and other take-home treasures (whoopie pies!) from 70-plus vendors. The innkeepers will direct you to any number of local restaurants, too.