When Ontario-based John and Peggy Fisher spent the summer of 1989 at their salt box home in the peaceful fishing village of Port Rexton, eastern Newfoundland, they decided they didn’t want to leave. Over the following years they’ve created a 33-room property that has maintained the character and style of the village. Its six traditionally styled wooden buildings are scattered across a hillside overlooking the old boat-building harbour of Ship Cove and the Atlantic Ocean, backed by forest and surrounded by wildflower meadows.
Inside, the minimal decor and whitewashed walls bring the property into the 21st century, yet local artwork and furniture handmade by Newfoundland artisan Mike Paterson echo the area’s culture and heritage. Meals are prepared using fresh, locally sourced ingredients and served in the dining room, where you can enjoy sunsets over the ocean and look for whales and icebergs offshore.
The 33 rooms and suites are spread across six traditionally styled buildings, all a short walk from the main dining and living rooms. White walls, cathedral ceilings, wooden floors and sash windows allow plenty of natural light, while locally crafted furniture and original artwork add bright tones. Amenities include cable TV and free Wi-Fi. There are four categories to choose from: Garden rooms have a queen bed and views over the cove; Hilltop rooms have a mixture of twin, queen and king beds and have expansive views over the ocean; Treetop rooms have queen beds and views of either the forest or the ocean; and Suites have separate living rooms with sofa beds.
Dotted across a hillside overlooking Ship Cove’s harbour, the inn is set in the quiet village of Port Rexton on Newfoundland’s east coast. Its position allows guests to enjoy wide, far-reaching views over the ocean. The town of Trinity is just a 15-minute drive away, while Bonavista is around 40 minutes northeast.
Food and Drink
The dining room has large windows looking out over Trinity Bay. Each morning a hearty cooked breakfast, as well as continental options, is served (additional cost) and in the evening a four-course set menu is offered during two different sittings (the earlier sitting gives you time to see a show at Trinity’s Rising Tide Theatre).
Dishes change with the season and where possible use ingredients from the inn’s vegetable and herb garden, as well as locally sourced fish, and berries and mushrooms foraged from the surrounding hills and forests. Dietary restrictions can be catered for if informed in advance.
Children under the age of eight are welcome in the dining room for the earlier 5.15pm sitting.
Facilities and Activities
The inn’s craft and bookshop features local crafts and books written by Newfoundland authors. You can also browse the local artwork on display throughout the property, which is available for purchase. During your stay you can relax in the library/sitting room, take a stroll around the vegetable and herb hardens, or venture further afield and follow the Skerwink Trail, a 5.3 km (3-mile) coastal walking trail that begins next to the property. Alternatively, sample local craft beers at the Port Rexton Brewery and Tap Room.
The property offers two disabled-access rooms: one is a ground-floor Suite, the other is a Treetop room.
Environmental and Social Responsibility
The inn has a strong focus on local community and, in particular, the arts. Every year it provides gift certificates to a range of community groups. The Fishers founded Business and Arts Newfoundland and Labrador to help build mutually beneficial relationships between the business and arts communities. They also sponsor opera and theatre events that take place in Bonavista and hold a four-part reading series at the inn’s library in partnership with The Writers Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador.
The peaceful location with views over the ocean, excellent meals, and authentic style and decor of the buildings are what make this property so special. We also find the owners to be friendly and accommodating.