Maine is the type of place that you want to tell people about, but at the same time it is a place that you don’t want everyone to know about for purely selfish reasons. A sleepy town with a thriving creative scene, a visit to Portland strikes a delicate balance between a desire for you to hit the twitters with “Portland is amazing” in the same way visitors to places like Austin and Nashville do, with a selfish inclination towards covertness. Even as the Pine Tree state’s biggest city, Portland is a Relatively small place that is easy to get to know. A quaint respite from the frenetic pace of the rest of the East Coast, it’s a town where hardworking blue collar folks embrace good food and a laid back way of life. Only just a small city, from dining to shopping, Portland is an aesthete’s dream.

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Shops Part art gallery, part clothing label and part pop-up specialty shop, Seawall puts a new and creative spin on your typical retail space. The hybrid shop was founded by Daniel Pepice, Sara Lemieux, Thom Rhoads and Brook Delorme in the spring of 2012 with the idea of showcasing the best Maine had to offer from the worlds of clothing, art and accessories. Seawall also stocks great product from other designers that serves to compliment the in-house label and local goods. It’s a worthy destination for those with an interest in creative things made with care.
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Restaurants Friendly French food, Petite Jacqueline is a playful spot that is equal parts neighborhood eatery and culinary destination. It’s casual and precious in a way that keeps you in a state of engaged relaxation. The menu is well structured from both land and sea. The wine list is diverse, but also manageable and well thought out with a strong offering of wine from some of France’s lesser known appellations. It’s Maine meets France in the best way possible.
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Design Not one to enjoy the company of others, Winslow Homer famously built his Prouts Neck studio with no windows facing the street, so that way he could paint in peace and wouldn’t have to actually come into contact with anyone. The most striking quality of the wood shingled studio —which has recently been beautifully restored by the Portland Museum of Art— is its wonderful ability to frame Maine’s natural beauty, surroundings that helped make Homer and his landscapes famous.