As the site of America’s oldest inn, Canoe Place Inn & Cottages has had many lives and witnessed countless legends as a gathering place for creatives, intellectuals, artists and politicians through the ages. The ‘first stop out East’ was a haunt for British soldiers during the Revolutionary War, a counterculture speakeasy during the Prohibition era, an inn and dance hall in the early 20th century playing host to Cary Grant, Lucille Ball, Babe Ruth, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Albert Einstein and a performance venue with acts spanning Duke Ellington, Led Zeppelin, The Ramones and Billy Joel.
After a major renovation by Rechler Equity Partners, the storied property reopened in August 2022 as a boutique inn, restaurant and event venue inspired by a century’s old history and the timeless luxury out East. Now in partnership with independent hospitality management firm, Main Street Hospitality, the team is reviving its roots with Front Row at Canoe Place, a thought-provoking speaker and music series which offers exclusive access to the gatekeepers of today’s arts, culture, music and entertainment dialogues, bound to challenge perspectives and inspire conversation. The year-round programming combines intimate live talks, musical performances, and film screenings to encourage all walks to come together to listen, share, and discover.
“Every aspect of the Front Row is curated to surprise, excite, and inform audiences,” said Mario Arakelian, General Manager of Canoe Place. “The aim is that these dialogues and experiences will inspire and connect both our guests and local community.”
Open to Canoe Place guests and the greater community, the 2023 Front Row series lineup includes the below line up, with more to come:
♦ April 6: Leonardo Da Vinci, the Last Supper and the Art of Throwing a Great Dinner Party with Art Historian Rocky Ruggiero Ph.D. – Ruggiero brings to life “the first work of the High Renaissance” and reveals little-known facts about the famous painter and painting.
♦ April 23: Art Talk with Yenna Hill and Lucy de Kooning Villeneuve – Join the two artists as they have a candid conversation on the world of art, moderated by Rachel Wilkins.
♦ May 11: Campus Culture with Michael Roth, President of Wesleyan University – The well-known historian, author and curator talks about current culture on campus and what it means for the future.
♦ May 18: Art Today, a Conversation with Kristy Edmunds – The director of the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Arts (MASS MoCA) discusses her career and the world of art today.
♦ June 1: The U.S. Political Landscape with Deval Patrick – Former two-term Governor of Massachusetts and presidential candidate has an open discussion on U.S. politics.
♦ June 14: Community, Race, and the Arc of Policing in America with Former Police Commissioner, Bill Bratton – The former Boston, Los Angeles, and New York City police commissioner candidly opens up about his career and discusses his book “The Profession.”
♦ June 23: Candlelight Concert Series: Queen – A wildly popular, one-of-a-kind multi-sensory tribute series with musicians from all over the world makes its way to Canoe Place. Experience music in a whole new light with an homage to one of the greatest rock bands of all ages.
♦ July 13: A Wellness Talk with Susan Bauer Wu – The president of the Mind & Life Institute shares insight on how to improve your mind, body and spirit.
♦ July 14: Candlelight Concert Series: Vivaldi – A multi-sensory experience illuminated by thousands of candles creates a magical night honoring the Italian composer and violinist’s masterpieces.
♦ August 4: Candlelight Concert Series: Fleetwood Mac – Experience the legendary British-American rock band’s greatest hits under the gentle glow of candlelight.
Each event will include a presentation followed by a Q&A session with the audience. Guests will then be invited to mix and mingle as they network over cocktails and music. Additional voices and programming will continue to be added throughout the year, including a curated list of musical artists led by Brian Kelly of MURMRR and a jazz series with renowned saxophonist Ken Fowser.
“Our mission is to create spaces that will enable people to connect in meaningful ways — a step beyond the typical hospitality experience,” said Sarah Eustis, CEO of Main Street Hospitality. “Canoe Place has been historically frequented by starlets, socialites, politicians and presidents alike. We thrive on bringing together bold, dynamic personalities with different points of view, and we are honored to leverage our relationships and be stewards of shared experiences and interests.”
To view upcoming events or to register, visit canoeplace.com/experiences/.