The Francis

Located in the charming West End neighborhood and just steps from downtown Portland, The Francis offers 15 uniquely designed guest rooms and a small spa in a beautifully renovated historic mansion.

Tandem Coffee

Located right across the street from The Francis, known for delicious freshly roasted coffee & inventive baked goods.

Rosemont Market & Bakery

Great for morning coffee & treats like bagels, breakfast burritos & muffins.

Belleville

Recently named one of the best 100 bakeries in America by Food & Wine, at the moment they are open Friday to Sunday for online order pick-up or take-out.

Lone Pine Brewing Company

A local brewery pouring classic NEIPAs, pale ales, interesting sours and collaborations with Portland favorites like Holy Donut.

Oxbow Blending & Bottling

An American farmhouse brewery with mixed-culture and spontaneously-fermented farmhouse ales. Their outdoor tasting room in Portland is conveniently located right next door to the Duckfat Friteshack so you can grab some delicious food to snack on with your beer.

The Highroller Lobster Co.

Serving signature lobster rolls on toasted brioche buns with more inventive condiments like lime & jalapeno mayo.

Eventide Oyster Co.

Home of the Brown Butter Lobster Roll and a James Beard Award-winning take on classic New England fare.

Bite into Maine Food Truck

A great spot to grab a classic lobster roll and gaze out at the famous Portland Head Light and panoramic ocean views.

Mister Burger at Floods

Offering burgers, buffalo chicken sandwiches, french fries, Sweet Cream ice cream sandwiches & drinks with a small outdoor area in front of the hotel.

The Honey Paw

Offering Asian-inspired noodles & other bites with local craft beer. Don’t miss the lobster toast and the inventive soft serve options!

Fore Street

One of the classic fine dining establishments of Portland, serving upscale American fare cooked over a wood-fired grill.

Portland Museum of Art

The largest and oldest public art institution in the state of Maine. Recently re-opened to the public and offering advanced timed ticketing.

Gorham Bike & Ski

A local bike rental store just down the street from The Francis. Rent a bike for the day and visit a lighthouse, get a lobster roll, explore an island or bike around the Back Cove trail.

Sail Portland

Relax with friends or family aboard a traditional sailing vessel and treat yourself to the best views the city of Portland has to offer. Bring along your own beverages and snacks and enjoy the sights and sounds of Casco Bay.

Explore Portland

A curated list from locals

Now that you’ve made your first important decision – where to stay (and good choice, by the way) – there are some other very important decisions to make. Namely, where you’re going to get your first cup of coffee or a fresh & juicy NEIPA or probably top of your list – where you’re going to get your lobster fix.

There’s no doubt about it, Portland is a food city. Andrew Knowlton even called us America’s Foodiest Small Town a few years back. And the best part about a small place filled with food – you can spend your days walking, eating, drinking and exploring without running out of places to try or getting overwhelmed.

You can easily walk out the front door of The Francis without a plan and come across plenty of hidden gems. But we’ve also got a lot of food opinions to share (our owners are fourth-generation Mainers and have a thing or two to say about which places in town really can’t be missed) so here’s our shortlist to get you started:

Breakfast 

Tandem Coffee, 742 Congress Street, (located right across the street from The Francis), a quirky little place inside an old gas station serving up baked goods with a bold whimsical edge and delicious coffee roasted right here in Portland.

P.S. Want to try Tandem’s incredible baked goods without having to get up early and wait in line? Add our Tandem Breakfast in Bed Package to your reservation and we’ll hand-deliver treats, coffee & juice to your room at 9am

Rosemont Market & Bakery, 40 Pine Street, a small grocery store type shop with a great selection of locally sourced produce, baked goods, wine, beer and more. You’ll find several Rosemont Markets around the Greater Portland area – they’re also great when stocking up for a picnic.

Hot Suppa, 703 Congress Street, a New Orleans-style eatery serving up breakfast and lunch daily. A great place to go when you want a sit-down breakfast close to the hotel.

Ohno Café, 87 Brackett Street, a neighborhood café nine minutes’ walk from the hotel. Ohno Café serves up some of our favorite breakfast sandwiches in Portland.

Coffee

Burundi Star Coffee, 261 Saint John Street, a relatively new coffee shop featuring sustainably sourced beans directly from Burundian coffee farmers.

Speckled Ax, 567 Congress Street, a coffee shop doing things a little differently. The owner and roaster Matt wood-fires the beans giving the coffee a distinct wood-fired taste.

Lunch

The Cheese Shop, 107 Washington Ave #1, a super cute little store on Munjoy Hill with an excellent selection of cheese (as you’d expect), as well as a menu of prepared foods like soups, sandwiches and salads. Their ham & butter on a baguette is simple, elegant and best enjoyed while sitting out on the Eastern prom.

Quiero Café, 3 Deering Ave, right around the corner from the hotel is Quiero Café. Serving up generous portions of Latin American food like empanadas and Cubano sandwiches.

Otherside Deli, 235 Vaughan Street, a take out only spot serving sandwiches, grinders and gyros for lunch. (Also open for breakfast serving bagels and burritos).

Yardie Ting, 28 Monument Square, within the Public Market House is Yardie Ting, offering authentic Jamaican dishes with a modern twist.

Food trucks, all over the place, last we counted there were 30 food trucks roaming the streets of Portland. You’ll usually find them dotted around the Eastern prom and at most of the breweries with tasting rooms.

Lobster

Eventide Oyster Co., 86 Middle Street, home of the Brown Butter Lobster Roll and a James Beard Award-winning take on classic New England fare.

Bite into Maine Food Truck, 1000 Shore Road, Cape Elizabeth, a great spot to grab a classic lobster roll and gaze out at the famous Portland Head Light and panoramic ocean views.

The Highroller Lobster Co., 104 Exchange Street, serving lobster rolls on toasted brioche buns with more inventive condiments like lime & jalapeno mayo. If you’re after something less traditional try a lobby pop or a lobster grilled cheese.

Dinner

Chaval, 58 Pine Street, right around the corner from The Francis, Chaval serves French and Spanish influenced cuisine alongside delicious craft cocktails.

Leeward, 85 Free Street, a cute and new little place serving up pasta and good times. Leeward opened a few days before the pandemic hit and is now offering their handmade pasta and excellent wine list 5 nights a week.

Little Giant, 211 Danforth Street, a cozy neighborhood bar and restaurant with a bit of a Scandinavian vibe. It’s a comforting place for any occasion – date night, family night or just happy hour snacks.

Schulte & Herr, 349 Cumberland Ave, a warm and welcoming restaurant serving homemade German food. They are currently open for take-away only but still have most of their classics available – like their thin and crispy pork schnitzel and cheesy schwäbische spätzle.

Breweries + Cideries

Lone Pine Brewing Company, 219 Anderson Street, a craft brewery started by two high school friends well known for strong and delicious New England IPAs – as well as inventive special releases like their Blueberry Glaze Imperial Sour collab with The Holy Donut.

Oxbow, 49 Washington Avenue, a farmhouse brewery based in rural Newcastle that ages and blends their beers in a tasting room in Portland’s Munjoy Hill area. At the tasting room you’ll also find the Duckfat Friteshack serving up Belgian fries cut from Maine potatoes with dipping sauces like truffle ketchup and curry mayo.

Bissell Brothers, 4 Thompsons Point #108, fans of hoppy, hazy New England IPAs are probably familiar with Bissell already. Their Portland taproom is currently only open for drive-thru service but you can definitely grab a 4 pack to enjoy back at the hotel.

Portersfield Cider, 255 Elmwood Road, Pownal, a 25 minute drive from the hotel, Portersfield is making delicious artisan cider from American heritage apples. Their tasting room is currently closed but you can swing by and grab bottles to go.

Bars

Cocktail Mary, 229 Congress Street, a super friendly neighborhood cocktail bar serving up modern twists on traditional favorites. Their frozen hemingway daiquiris have been a big hit this summer – and don’t miss their oyster bites seasoned with dill and secrets.

Anoche, 43 Washington Ave, a Basque-inspired bar serving cider, cocktails and modern pintxos. Their gin & tonics pack a punch and they’ve recently added slushees to the menu too.

Novare Res, 4 Canal Plaza #1, one of the best beer selections in Portland. With more than 33 taps and usually over 400 bottles on their list you can sample everything from Maine classics to hard to find Belgian styles.

Bramhall Pub, 769 Congress Street, a modern speakeasy a few minutes down the street from the hotel. Previously a basement hideaway, they’re now serving up their inventive cocktails and comfort food in a cozy backyard patio.

Activities

Portland Museum of Art, 7 Congress Street, the largest and oldest public art institution in the state of Maine. Recently re-opened to the public and offering advanced timed ticketing.

Gorham Bike & Ski, 693 Congress Street, a local bike rental store just down the street from The Francis. Rent a bike for the day and visit a lighthouse, get a lobster roll, explore an island or bike around the Back Cove trail.

Sail Portland, 58 Fore Street, relax with friends or family aboard a traditional sailing vessel and treat yourself to the best views the city of Portland has to offer. Bring along your own beverages and snacks and enjoy the sights and sounds of Casco Bay.

Portland Paddle, Eastern Promenade, rent a sea kayak or stand-up paddleboard for the day or afternoon and see Casco Bay in a new way. The guided tours are great for inexperienced kayakers and they offer tandem kayaks too so you can share the work.

Peaks Island, take the ferry from Old Port over to Peaks Island for the day. The ferry ride is just 15 minutes and once on the island you can swim from the public beaches, rent a golf cart or wander around the 3.7 mile loop.

Choose one of the hiking trails in the Cape Elizabeth Land Trust. There are 9,000 acres and a range of different habitats to explore. The Cross Hill Trail, the Cross Town Trail and the Dyer-Hutchinson Trail are some of our top picks.

For more recommendations view our blog below or reach out to us – there’s lots more where this came from…

Experience portland

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