Martin Hill Inn

404 Islington Street, Portsmouth, New Hampshire 03801
Innkeeper(s): Meg Hunter & Russ Levreault
  • Introduction

    Martin Hill Inn front of inn

    Opened in 1978, the Martin Hill Inn was Portsmouth's first B&B in New Hampshire. Tucked in among residential houses lining the street that leads directly into Market Square, the Inn is a 10 minute walk from the center of town.

    The Martin Hill Inn is located on land which was sold by New Hampshire Lt. Gov. George Vaughn to the Martin family in 1710 for 50 British pounds. Over the years, this area of Portsmouth became known as Martin Hill.

    The Inn's guest rooms are in two buildings, the first built in 1820 and the second in about 1860. Each of the guests rooms is individually furnished with either queen or king sized beds and each room has a private en-suite bathroom. The Main and Guest Houses are connected to each other by a short, flower-lined, brick path and patio with a lush water garden.

    Our hot breakfast is just what you would expect if you went to a friend's house on a weekend. Gather in the dining room to meet fellow travelers and enjoy seasonal fruit dishes accompanied by traditional New England fare. Our wild Maine Blueberry Pancakes come with a side of sausage and a warm pitcher of pure maple syrup. Another favorite is our Artichoke and Spinach Quiche garnished with herbs from our garden and served with fresh baked muffins or scones. Home made cookies and refreshments are served in the dining room each afternoon.

  • Insider's Info

    Travelers are always looking for memorable and relaxing experiences. Let’s discover more through the words of our innkeepers. Many thanks to Meg Hunter & Russ Levreault for sharing their own secrets with!
    Why do most travelers stay at your inn?

    We are located very near downtown, but are in a residential area providing plenty of parking while being able to walk into town in under 15 minutes.

    What are you best known for? What makes your inn unique? What do you love most about your inn?

    We still maintain two common tables in our dining room (versus individual hotel style seating) so our guests really enjoy talking with each other, sharing sightseeing tips for Portsmouth and New England. We still serve a full, hot breakfast.

    If someone has never been to your city, what is the #1 reason to come visit?

    In addition to everything Portsmouth has to offer (history, food, entertainment), making Portsmouth your home base puts you within day trip distance of Boston, Cape Ann, Lake Winnipesaukee, southern Maine coast and the White Mountains.

    What’s the best compliment you have ever received about the inn?

    "It's just like it appears on the website. We loved meeting everyone at breakfast."

    What’s the best kept secret about the area?

    The nature walks.

    If a traveler is staying at your inn for 4 nights, what should he/she do in the area?

    Visit the historic homes, take a harbor cruise, book a special dinner (or three), visit the light houses, sit in our gardens and relax, shop the independent stores, take in a performance at one of three theaters, take the bus to Boston for a day, drive to the lake region or southern Maine beaches for the day.

    Is there anything within walking distance of your inn?

    Almost everything is within walking distance.

    What is your favorite restaurant/food in the area?

    Black Trumpet Bistro or Jumpin' Jays Fish Cafe

    Any good area guides/websites that travelers could reference?

    The activities page on our website or

    How many rooms does your inn have?

    We have 7 rooms.

    Do you accept pets?

    We don't accept pets. There are a few kennels in our area, several motels and one B&B that accept pets.

  • Our Gardens

    Martin Hill Inn gardens

    In the early spring, our perennial gardens come to life with spring bulbs and primroses. The stone path leads from the parking lot to the back of the Inn. In the summer, take a glass of wine and a book outside to sit in the shade and cool breezes created by the large leafy canopy of tall New England trees.

    In June 2007, the Garden was one of the local gardens featured on the annual Portsmouth Pocket Garden tour.

  • Area Attractions

    Martin Hill Inn building

    Not many small cities have as much to see and do in such a small area that you can walk from side to side in less than 20 minutes. There are 380 years of American history to experience, from historic homes to Revolutionary War forts to early modern submarines. All along the brick sidewalks of downtown there are restaurants and small boutiques visited by locals and tourists alike. All of downtown Portsmouth is a 10-15 minute walk from Martin Hill Inn.

    Visitors in the spring months will get a glimpse into the city's beautiful parks and gardens just as the first buds and blossoms appear. Restaurants and shops are the primary draw, but on a sunny day people flock to the nearby beaches or nature preserves. The Music Hall and local theaters provide regular shows and films for evening entertainment.

    During the height of the tourist season from summer to fall, all of Portsmouth's doors are wide open with museums, historic homes, outdoor attractions, festivals, and beaches to visit and explore. Shops and restaurants are open later with happy groups of people meandering Market Square all day and into the evening. Don't forget the home made ice cream at Annabelle's.

    Winter in Portsmouth is time to slow down, enjoy the local shops and restaurants. Maybe take a trip to Kittery Outlets for some holiday shopping. If the snow is deep, take a snowshoe trip through one of the nature preserves or a winter stroll on the beach. Local theaters, live music venues, and special events (such as cooking classes at Stonewall Kitchen) draw people from nearby cities throughout the winter months.