A November 2003 trip
to Massachusetts by Mary Dickinson
Quote: When we were in Cape Ann, we enjoyed exploring the towns and the seacoast. These are some of our experiences.
Bring clothes that will be comfortable when you walk the beach or the breakwater or explore the town. There is lots of metered parking in Gloucester but if you look around you can find free parking. This is not an area suitable for using public transportation, however, we were there in November and things are likely to be different in the summer months. Fishing boats, sailboats, tour boats and even a casino boat are eagerly waiting to take you out to sea.
Hotel | "Cape Ann Marina Resort"
The Colonial triple dresser, table, chairs and king size bed, with a plain upholstered pullout couch, curtains, bed spread and wall to wall carpeting were adequate for a water front room. The bathroom had a Jacuzzi, ceramic tile on the floor, and the sink was set in a wall-to-wall vanity. There was a small refrigerator that would hold a 12-pack. No coffee pot. The room was clean and neat
My husband decided a deluxe room (the Honeymoon Suite) was what he had in mind and the off-season rate was $77 for the night. A standard room cost $57. The Penthouse costs $120. He wasn't told it was available. We found a special for the resort on the Internet, a second night for $25 more, but it wasn't in effect while we were there.
We had a great time in the exquisite indoor pool and spa. Regulars, who own a membership at the resort, are very friendly and will give a lot of information about enjoying their town.
We came to Gloucester looking for another resort where we had stayed ten years ago. As we proceeded along Rt. 133 (Essex Ave.) from Rt 128 (Exit 14) toward town I noticed the resort on the left at the end of a long driveway behind a marina. The bridge going into town was out preventing further search so we decided to try Cape Ann’s Marina and Resort.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 20, 2003
Cape Ann Marina's Resort
75 Essex Ave.
Gloucester, Massachusetts 01930
The dining room (located in back) had a fire crackling in the big stone fireplace and we were seated next to a window overlooking the fishing boats. I really appreciate fresh lobster so I inquired about the market price listed on the menu for Lazy Man’s Lobster Casserole (it’s taken out of the shell for you). $28. I decided to try it. It was perfect. Served with a butter-crumb topping it was tender and sweet. An excellent apple chutney was served with it. The waitress offered to show me the live lobster before cooking it but I declined. I decided to save my appetite for the lobster so I barely touched the delicious baked potatoes and steamed broccoli that came with it.
My husband ordered the fried seafood combo, $17.95. It included clam strips, shrimp, scallops and fish. He loved everything except the clam strips. He asked me to try one. I thought it the best I had ever tasted. I asked our waitress how it was prepared. She said the clams were dipped in milk, then flour and fried in vegetable oil.
If I can get him to go back again, I would like to try their baked seafood casserole with shrimp, scallops, scrod, and lobster, or Seafood Newburg, same as above but with mushrooms and in Newburg sauce.
For more information see Gloucester House.
Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 21, 2003
Gloucester House Restaurant
Seven Seas Wharf on Route 127
Gloucester, Massachusetts 01930
We were charged $10 apiece (including departure tax), but our tickets entitled us to $10 in free quarters to use in the slot machines (or we could keep it if we didn’t want to play at all). Casinos always offer generous incentives. The casino features 225 slot machines and table games include Blackjack, 3-card Poker, Let-It-Ride, Roulette, and Craps. We usually play poker slots. I’ve had better luck elsewhere, but once we had played $20 apiece, no one complained about us sitting in the comfortable lounge on the second deck. We ordered chili and beans with chips from the menu and listened to live music as we enjoyed the ocean three miles from shore. The ocean was fairly calm, so it was a great ride.
To our surprise, we were able to take our camera aboard. My husband got some great shots of the Ten Pound Island Light, The Breakwater Light, Eastern Point Light, and a distant shot of The Twin Lights on Thatcher’s Island.
Day cruises are available Tuesday through Sunday, 11am-4:30pm. Night cruises go out Thursday through Saturday 7-11:30pm. Boarding is 30 minutes prior to sailing time. For more information, call 1-800-LUCKY-32.
East of the Fishermen’s Wives Memorial is the Fishermen’s Memorial Monument. If you have watch the movie The Perfect Storm you will know why the monument exists. Tested beyond endurance by the lure of the sea and the needs of the fishing industry, those men gave their all and lost their lives. Over 5000 names are emblazoned on the Wall of Remembrance surrounding the monument.
The bronze fisherman, standing at the helm, carefully controlling his craft to clear some dangerous rocks, is bigger than life on a rough hewn block of sea green granite. "They that go down to the sea in ships. 1623-1923" is inscribed on a single bronze plaque on the front of the granite block.
Gloucester has been a fishing seaport for 380 years. In the early days codfish were salted and placed on flakes to dry. Preserved, it could be used as a commodity for trade. Many of the names of the men on the memorial were from Nova Scotia. Today, Gloucester is mostly a Portuguese community.
From the monument, in an easterly direction, today’s fishing fleet and Gloucester’s many warehouses crowd the wharf. Looking south, toward the harbor, fishing boats sail in with their catch. Nearby, restaurants provide delicious meals serving fresh fish from their own fleets and Gorton’s is a familiar name for frozen seafood in the supermarket. They use the top half of the helmsman in their logo.
Fishermen's Memorial Monument