This spring, Lilly Pulitzer, the ultimate American resort wear brand, partnered with famed Nantucket hotel, White Elephant, to unveil “The Lilly Pulitzer Cottage.” It’s the perfect Pulitzer-filled paradise in the heart of this beautiful island. Imagine my surprise and delight when they extended an invitation for me experience the elegant accommodations. Spending four days on Nantucket with Lilly Pulitzer and the White Elephant? An absolute dream come true! Plus, it was a joy to explore the island with their teams and some fellow fashion bloggers, including Brittany from Loverly Grey, Jenn of Haute Off the Rack, and Krystal from A Pinch of Lovely. I wanted to take some more time to share about our experience from earlier this month.
Nantucket holds a very special place in my heart. For the past several years, Bob and I have made it a point to spend at least a week of our summer on the island. From enjoying time with friends to exploring the charming homes of Sconset, morning walks and relaxing during beachside sunsets, Nantucket never lets us down. In fact, we are heading back next week, and I couldn’t be more excited!
Where is Nantucket?
Ok, I guess I should start with a few basics. If you’re unfamiliar, Nantucket, Massachusetts is a small island (less than 50 square miles) located 30 miles south of Cape Cod (i.e. the state’s easternmost peninsula). Often referred to as the “Grey Lady,” because of it’s propensity for fog, Nantucket is one of the most idyllic destinations in the country. Technically, there is the Town of Nantucket, Nantucket County, and Nantucket Island.
Although small, the island consists of several regions. Some popular ones include Siasconset (aka Sconset) on the farthest eastern shore as well as Madaket on the westernmost shore. Also, the two small western islands of Tuckernuck and Muskeget are a part of Nantucket (only the former is inhabited). Most tourists typically stay in downtown Nantucket (i.e. “Town”), as that is where the vast majority of hotels are located and where the ferries port. For a closer look at the island, be sure to read my friend Mackenzie’s comprehensive travel guide to Nantucket!
How do I get to Nantucket?
If you’re venturing to the island from the East Coast, taking a ferry is typically the easiest option. The most popular port is Hyannis, Massachusetts, and there are high-speed ferries that can get you to the Grey Lady in an hour. New Bedford also has a (slightly longer) ferry option. There are even options that go back and forth between Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard.
Should you be traveling from further away, flying into Nantucket Memorial Airport (airport code: ACK) is the best way to go. In the past, we’ve flown to the island via United through Boston Logan, Newark, and New Bedford. Jet Blue has flights from D.C., Philadelphia, and New York (LGA & JFK), and Delta flies from NYC as well. I must say, the airport on Nantucket is my all-time favorite. It’s tiny (i.e. short lines), everyone is friendly, and there’s a casual restaurant that’s the perfect spot to relax before takeoff.
Lastly, if you decide to fly to the island, pay close attention to the connecting flight you are booking. Often times, you will be on a small regional jet, but we have previously flown on a nine passenger propeller plane via Cape Air (which I surprisingly enjoyed!).
What is the Lilly Pulitzer Cottage at White Elephant?
White Elephant, a Nantucket Island Resorts property, is one of the Nantucket’s ultimate gems. It’s been named one of top 50 hotels in the United States, and after staying with them, I can see why! The accommodations are luxurious, and the location is absolutely perfect – right on the harbor! Earlier this year, the Lilly Pulitzer Design team partnered with White Elephant to create an amazing stand-alone cottage on the main property. The interior design and decor play up the brand’s bold prints and patterns, and include soft gold accents with touches of blues, greens, and turquoises. See more of the Lilly Pulitzer Cottage at White Elephant in my previous post. Reserve your stay at The Lilly Pulitzer Cottage at White Elephant here.
Next year, Lilly Pulitzer will celebrate its 60th anniversary of filling women’s lives (and closets) with sunshine, beautiful prints, and stunning silhouettes. I can’t wait to see what they have planned to celebrate this incredible milestone!
Our White Elephant & Lilly Pulitzer Itinerary
The majority of our group landed on Nantucket on Sunday afternoon. Since each of us were arriving from different parts of the country, we all flew to the island. White Elephant took care of transportation from the airport to the hotel, which is a service they can provide to all hotel guests via their Pre-Arrival Concierge. Once we arrived on property, we had a bit of downtime to unpack and settle in. We each stayed in our own Harborview Suite, and I absolutely loved my room! It was spacious and comfortable, plus I had my own patio. I definitely took advantage of this for my early morning coffee.
On the first night, we enjoyed drinks at the Lilly Pulitzer cottage before heading to dinner at Brant Point Grill (“BPG”) which is White Elephant’s in-house restaurant. It’s easy to see why it’s an island favorite, given it’s harbor views and expansive menu. That evening ended up being a bit chilly, so I was glad to be at White Elephant, because I was able grab a light sweater from my room. Even in you are going to be on Nantucket in the middle of summer, bring some comfortable layers for the cool evening breeze.
The next day, after breakfast at BPG, we headed out on a harbor cruise on the White Elephant / Barton & Bray Hinkley yacht. Having spend much of my childhood boating and sailing, to me, there is no better way to spend a day than on the water. The vessel was decked out with Lilly Pulitzer pillows, blankets, and accessories. Last summer, Bob and I were able to take part in a Nantucket sailing excursion, but this outing with White Elephant was even longer and more comprehensive. Such a blast! Through the White Elephant’s partnership with The Barton & Gray Mariners Club, guests of all Nantucket Island Resorts’ hotels can charter an excursion on the Hinckley. Hotel guests can even arrange for a picnic from Brant Point Grill to take on the boat! Another option is a harbor cruise with Shearwater Excursions; the cost is very affordable and you can even bring your own food & beverage onboard!
After returning to the hotel, we had a quick wardrobe change, and then walked to downtown and the wharfs. If you ever meet someone who has been to Nantucket, and ask them what to do in Town, I bet you that one of their top three recommendations will be to have ice cream in a fresh waffle cone at The Juice Bar. Be sure to ask for sprinkles, too! From there, we walked two blocks to the Lilly Pulitzer Nantucket Boutique (also known as color heaven). While there, I picked up this gorgeous coral shift dress and this summery yellow eyelet dress.
That evening, Lilly Pulitzer and White Elephant hosted a dinner at Galley Beach. Best of all, Carly, Katie, and Sydney happened to be on Nantucket the same time we were, so they joined the group for dinner! It was such an amazing evening. As with any dinner at Galley Beach, the absolute highlight was enjoying the sunset. Situated on the northern shoreline, this incredible restaurant has some of the best views of the water. Moreover, it’s one of the most popular spots to dine and enjoy the setting sun on Nantucket.
Our Tuesday started off with another delicious breakfast at Brant Point Grill, and then we headed off to White Elephant Village, one of the hotel’s nearby sister properties. This location is just a stone’s throw away from the White Elephant Hotel. Also, they offer an in-ground heated pool, along with additional room types like a full three-bedroom residence. In fact, guests who book that room type can enjoy exclusive access to a BMW during their stay. Fancy!
For lunch, we took out a set of the complimentary White Elephant bicycles and made our way to Something Natural. If you are looking for a delicious spot for gourmet sandwiches, put this spot at the top of your list. It’s like being invited over to someone’s country cottage and enjoying a summer lunch on their lawn. It had been a couple summers since I had been there, and I was so thrilled to return! Something Natural is also the perfect pit stop on your way to Steps Beach (one of my favorites!).
Post bike ride, we took a drive out to Sconset. If you love a bike ride, this journey is about eight miles, with dedicated bike paths along the way. Once we arrived at in Sconet, we took in all of the quaint cottages and gorgeous homes. Plus, we ventured along the picturesque bluff walk. The perfect way to spend one of your days on Nantucket.
Tuesday night brought another incredible dinner. This one was at TOPPER’S at The Wauwinet. For our last evening on the island, we took in another gorgeous sunset. The lawn has so many chic chaise lounges, perfect for enjoying a glass of wine beneath the pink skies. The Wauwinet is a stunning and historic inn, located on the northeast corner of the island. If you’re looking for a quiet, luxury retreat, this is the way to go! Also, guests of any Nantucket hotel can take The Wauwinet Lady to The Wauwinet for lunch, dinner, or brunch. The 45-minute boat ride to the hotel is free when dining at TOPPER’S.
The last day! Most of us had a morning flight off the island, so our itinerary was pretty light. We had a leisurely breakfast at BPG, followed by more time downtown. We made stops at The Skinny Dip (so darling!), Murray’s Toggery Shop (iconic Nantucket Reds), and Southern Tide (classic, preppy essentials).
As always, I was so sad while boarding my flight home from Nantucket. Knowing that I would be returning soon. Nonetheless, the care and effort the White Elephant and Lilly Pulitzer put into the experience was incredible. Lastly, I absolutely loved spending time with Brittany, Jenn, and Krystal. If you don’t already read their blogs or follow them on social media, be sure to do so!
Shop some of my favorite Lilly Pulitzer Nantucket pieces below:
Photos by Rebecca Love Photography. If you ever need a photographer on Nantucket, I highly recommend reaching out to her – she and her husband are so wonderful!