There was no red carpet or little golden statues, but the inaugural New England Travel Readers' Choice Awards announced on March 30 recognize the region's best and most memorable places and experiences and give the hard-working innkeepers, snow groomers, chefs, brew masters, event planners and other hospitality and tourism industry professionals behind them the right to swagger throughout 2012. Like all of About.com's Readers' Choice Awards, these honors provided travelers with an opportunity to determine the ultimate winners by nominating and voting for their favorites in a variety of categories. Whether you live in New England or are planning to visit this six-state region, here's your guide to some of the best New England has to offer.
And the Winners Are...
Thousands of votes were cast for the 2013 New England Travel Readers' Choice Awards, and now it's time to reveal the winner in each of the eight award categories below.
And the winners are...
And the winners are...
Just like snowflakes, no two New England B&Bs are alike. And therein lies their charm and allure for many travelers. Discover the distinctive qualities that helped one New England inn emerge as the winner in this hotly contested category.
Family-friendly resorts and hotels beckon to New England travelers with their array of recreational amenities, accommodations options and scenic locales. There were family resorts by the sea, in the mountains and lakeside among the finalists, but the winner of Readers' Choice honors is a working farm.
winner and runners-up in this category have unparalleled autumn appeal.
What makes a ski resort the best? Great snow conditions and exhilarating trails for all abilities--sure! But mountainside amenities, atmosphere, instructional offerings and the après-ski scene count, too, and one clear winner took the Readers' Choice Award for Best New England Ski Resort.
It is completely possible to eat lobster for breakfast, lunch and dinner when you're traveling in New England... or even to belly up to an all-you-can-eat lobster buffet. Some prefer their lobster all piled up on a bun or beautifully plated in an elegant restaurant. Others say you haven't tasted lobster until you've eaten it "in the rough" at a lobster pound on the Maine coast, but surprisingly, the top lobster spot in New England winner is actually in one of the region's southern states.
The Pilgrims didn't spend all of their time planting corn and hunting turkeys. They also labored to make beer. And New England breweries large and small still make distinctive brews that you'll find on tap during your travels. Which brewery rated top honors? A household name was the winner, but you'll find craft breweries that also deserve accolades among the runners-up.
When you live in New England, it's impossible to be bored. There are simply too many excellent events happening in the region, season after season. The winner in this category is a cherished Rhode Island tradition, and I love that the event is both a work of art and absolutely free.
As anticipated, this Readers' Choice Award category produced an eclectic line-up of contenders, all worthy of increased visibility. Readers have weighed in on what's fun to do in the region, and now, it's time to reveal the winner and runners-up.