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3 Days Hartstone Inn Cooking Break in Maine, USA

Cooking Vacations in Camden

Join Chef Michael in his Camden, Maine restaurant kitchen for a private one-on-one cooking class. Get specialized training on prearranged topics. Learn useful cooking tricks and techniques. Assist and work side by side with Chef Michael on preparing for the evenings dinner. Experience firsthand the scenes and the magic where food is prepared carefully and deliciously by our Chef. Afterwards join us for dinner and enjoy the dishes we made together.

Meet the instructors

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  • Private cooking class one on one
  • Learn a specified cuisine of your choice
  • Assist in preparation for Hartstones Inn fine dining
  • Personalized signed copy of Chef Michaels cookbook
  • Menu of the day, Hartstone Inn apron, food tasting
  • Quick kitchen tour and orientation
  • 2 nights luxury accommodation


1 days with instruction in English
Spoken languages: English
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Hartstone Inn

This historic and enchanting Camden bed and breakfast inn sits in the heart of the village of Camden; Maine. Fodors considers this Maine bed and breakfast to be an elegant and sophisticated retreat and culinary destination. A Mansard-style Victorian built in 1835, the Hartstone Inn offers a unique experience in pampered luxury. This award-winning Camden inn is four-diamond rated from AAA, and is part of the Diamond Collection. From Quimper faience and luscious linens in the guestrooms to the world-class cuisine in the dining room and the collection of 400 live orchids in the common areas, Mary Jo and Michael Salmon get absolutely everything right says An Explorers Guide to Maine.


Warm brown, beige and blues beautify this lovely first floor room. The wrought iron queen bed is dressed in dreamy chocolate brown. Muted gold swirl wall coverings with original oil paintings, an inviting sitting area with cable TV and hardwood floors enhance this spacious room. Private bathroom with newly tiled Tuscan stone shower. Additional amenities: DVD, Wi-Fi, iPod/MP3 player docking station, and air-conditioning

Lemon Verbena

Tucked away on the second floor, this cozy room is decorated with a soft yellow decor. The queen-sized bed is dressed with a fluffy feather duvet and French-inspired luxury linens. The sitting area has two comfortable reading chairs and highlights the original oil paintings that adorn the walls. The private bathroom has a marble vanity and a large shower. Additional amenities: cable TV, DVD, Wi-Fi, iPod/MP3 player docking station and air-conditioning. Located in the Hideaway House.


The romance of the Italian countryside is reflected in the furnishings and wall decor of this spacious front corner room. The Toscana Room has an ornate four-poster queen bed and a fluffy feather duvet. The bay window welcomes guests with comfortable club chairs and plenty of natural light. Gaze out to the village or snuggle in with a good book. The private bathroom features a shower. Additional amenities: Cable flat screen TV/DVD, Wi-Fi, iPod/MP3 player docking station and air-conditioning. Located in the main Hartstone Inn building.


The queen bed is dressed beautifully in fine ivory linens and a feather bed duvet. An ornate high ceiling with crystal chandelier and a comfortable sitting area complete the room and create the perfect backdrop for a romantic escape.The Wedgwood room has cable flat screen TV/DVD. Plus there is a spacious private bathroom with shower. Additional amenities: WiFi, iPod/MP3 player docking station and air-conditioning. Located in the Hartstone Inn.


The chef for a day program runs from 13:00 to 17:00, and is available with advance reservation. Students will assist Michael in preparations for that evenings dinner and will also get specialized training on prearranged topics. The afternoon begins with a review of the evenings dinner menu and assignment of duties. After a quick tour of the kitchen and orientation, you will work side-by-side with Michael preparing dinner. If you have a preference to learn about one of Chef Michael's recipes or a specific type of cuisine, Michael can work with you in advance to make those arrangements. You are recommended to join the dinner that evening to enjoy the dishes you helped prepare.


Michael Salmon
Michael Salmon, chef and owner of the Hartstone Inn and its Camden, Maine restaurant, has been working in professional kitchens for over 25 years. He was named Caribbean Chef of the Year for 1996-1997, while working for the Sonesta Beach Resort Hotel and Casino on the island of Aruba. Michael also was featured in a special section of the USA Today on November 8, 1996.


The Hartstone Inn & Hideaway is perfectly situated in mid-coast Maine to get outdoors and enjoy the fun. The inn is steps from Camden's picturesque harbor with its fleet of historic Windjammers ready to take you on a scenic tour of lighthouses, marine wildlife and secluded islands.



  • Cooking classes
  • Golf course nearby
  • Kayak nearby
  • Massage
  • Mountain biking nearby
  • Spa


  • Air-conditioned public areas
  • Concierge desk
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Fireplace in lobby
  • Garden
  • Lobby
  • Luggage room
  • Multilingual staff
  • Picnic area
  • Restaurant
  • Smoke-free property


  • Bicycle rental nearby
  • Newspapers nearby
  • Room cleaning
  • Shop nearby
  • Tour assistance nearby
  • Wake-up calls

Things to do (optional)

  • Biking: Scenic bicycling routes abound in and around Camden. We have mapped out various trips ranging from a 3-mile local Camden trip to 15-, 20-, 30- and 40-mile trips and more in the region. Maps include specific directions of where to turn, mileage along the way, landmarks and areas of special interest. Maps are available at the Inn. Bicycle Rental is available from Maine Sport Outfitters.
  • Cross country skiing: There are numerous ideal areas for cross country skiing and snowshoeing in the local area. Camden Hills State Park has cross country ski trails that extend for miles, winding through forests and up mountainsides. Tanglewood Camp is a short drive from the Inn and offers numerous groomed trails.
  • Downhill skiing: Camden Snow offers 10 trails from beginner to expert. It also has the only toboggan chute in the state of Maine, which hosts the U.S. National Toboggan Championships. Night skiing, a tubing hill, group/private lessons, ski rentals, toboggan/tube rentals and snowboard rentals are also available.
  • Golf: Goose River Golf Course is located on Simonton Road on the Camden/Rockport line. Tee off for a leisurely 9-hole game and then kick back in the cozy clubhouse for a "pick-me-up" from the snack bar. Samoset Golf Course offers breathtaking ocean vistas and one of the most challenging finishing holes in New England. It continues to be ranked one of New England's premier resort golf destinations. Rockland Golf Club's rolling terrain and stunning mountain and seaside views offer a challenge to golfers at all levels, and its modest green fees make it the best bargain in midcoast Maine golf.
  • Hiking: Camden Hills State Park is less than 2 miles north of the Inn and has an extensive trail system. Hiking maps are available at the Inn with descriptions of the various trails (distances and time estimates). The Camden Hills State Park and the Georges Highland Path provide some of the most spectacular coastal mountain hiking in New England. Sweeping ocean vistas, rugged coastlines and breathtaking seascapes await and surprise the hiker at every bend. The trails are well marked and maintained, there are plenty of access points and public parking is available at the trailheads.
  • Kayaking: Kayak rentals, instruction and guided tours are all available in the Camden area. Few moments are as breathtaking as the rising sun over Camden Harbor. An early morning paddle, dodging the moored sailboats and windjammers, is the perfect way to take it all in. Whether you're looking for a sea kayak tour up Maine's scenic coast or a family tour of beautiful Lake Megunticook, the perfect tour is out there waiting for you.
  • Lighthouses: With its rocky shores and jagged coastline, its not surprising that Maine has more lighthouses and beacons than any other state its size. A scenic drive through Mid-Coast Maine from the Hartstone Inn in Camden, down the coast to Damariscotta offers spectacular views of six unique lighthouses. We will be happy to provide you with our own personalized lighthouse guide.
  • Rock climbing: Enjoy an afternoon climbing outdoors in Camden Hills State Park with Acadia Mountain Guides. Climb the famous Barret's Cove cliff across from Lake Megunticook. Gear will be supplied.
  • Sailboat Charter sailing: Interested in chartering a 1939 Classic 46-foot sailing yacht for the day? Daily and weekly sailing adventures are available aboard the s/v "Viva".
  • Schooner Sail sailing: A trip to Camden just isnt complete without a day sail on one of the many windjammers in the Camden Harbor. We highly recommend the schooner "Surprise" for a 2-hour day trip out into Penobscot Bay. Captain Jack and Barbara offer wonderful hospitality on their 57-foot schooner. With a maximum of 18 passengers (children over 12 years old only), the "Surprise" experience is very intimate allowing passengers to hoist sails and listen to some of Jack and Barbara's sailing adventures. They have some stories to tell! The "Surprise" sails from May to October and snacks are offered during the sail.

Tours / trips

  • Day trips: The innkeepers have put together numerous area driving tours and day trips to wonderful destinations like Acadia National Park. A pleasant two-hour drive north, the park contains over 120 miles of hiking trails, pristine lakes, picnic areas, campgrounds, breathtaking sea vistas, coastal shores and pebbled beaches. Other day trip attractions include Port Clyde, Blue Hill, Pemaquid Point, Damariscotta and Belfast.
  • Fall foliage tour (a seasonal day trip): We have mapped out some of our favorite driving and hiking tours that take advantage of the fall foliage. We are often asked when the peak foliage occurs and, of course, it varies from year to year.
  • Guided bicycle tours: If you are looking for a more organized bicycling tour in the area, we highly recommend Norman Patry and Summer Feet Maine Coast Cycling Adventures.

Museums to visit

  • Farnsworth Art Museum and the Wyeth Cente: This wonderful museum features works by some of the great names in 18th- and 19th-century art history like Gilbert Stuart, Thomas Sully, Thomas Eakins, Eastman Johnson and Fitz Hugh Lane. The Wyeth Center showcases three generations of this first family of American art with a comprehensive collection of Maine-related artwork by N.C. Wyeth, his son Andrew Wyeth and Andrew's son, James Wyeth. The Farnsworth is located 10 minutes from the Hartstone Inn, in downtown Rockland.
  • Merryspring Horticultural Nature Park: This 66-acre park, located 5 minutes from the Inn, features cultivated gardens and preserves of Maine's native flowers, shrubs and trees. The parks varied landscapes, fields, gardens and arboretum are all connected by a network of trails.
  • Owls Head Transportation Museum: The museum is known internationally for its collection of pioneer aircraft, historic automobiles, bicycles, motorcycles, carriages and engines. It is located 15 minutes south of Camden in Owls Head.
  • Penobscot Marine Museum: The museum complex is comprised of many buildings belonging to the original "townscape," including a former sea captains home, regional watercraft collections, art exhibits, films and much more. The museum is located in Searsport, about 40 minutes north of Camden.

Spa treatments

Lotus touch organic naturals

Many of the oils, creams and lotions we use in the spa utilize natural ingredients. Lotus Touch Organic Naturals are made from certified 100% natural botanicals, herbs and organic oils. Bon Vital Naturale products are made with 100% all-natural ingredients. We place special emphasis on offering you products that are Earth inspired and environmentally friendly.


  • Baby and me: Relaxing for mother and baby, this massage is perfect for alleviating pains associated with pregnancy. Must be through first trimester to receive this massage.
  • Hot stone therapy massage: Combines Swedish massage techniques with the warmth of hot stones placed to melt away stress and tension. We highly recommend the 90 minute treatment. It is heavenly!
  • Pumpkin spice relaxation massage: Relax, unwind and savor the aromas of autumn with our Pumpkin Spice Therapeutic Massage. This full body massage treatment includes gentle, gliding strokes with light to medium pressure, and pure essential oils for ultimate relaxation. Feel the tension melt away as you enjoy the sound of soft music and take in the wafting scent of lit pumpkin spice candles.
  • Relaxation massage: Gentle, gliding strokes with light to medium pressure, and pure essential oils for the ultimate relaxation.
  • Therapeutic massage: Concentrates on sore, tense muscles in your neck, shoulders, back, legs and feet using medium or firm pressure.

What's included

  • 2 nights accommodation
  • 4-hour one-on-one instruction
  • Hartstone Inn apron
  • Food tasting
  • Menu of the day
  • Personalized-signed copy of Chef Michaels cookbook

How to get there

Driving directions from the south

  • Follow Interstate 95 north to Exit 44, Interstate 295.
  • Follow 295 to exit 28 (Brunswick).
  • Follow Coastal Route 1 north through Waldoboro, turn left onto Route 90.
  • Follow Route 90 until it ends at the junction of US Route 1 again.
  • Turn left onto Route 1 north, down into the village of Camden till you reach the stop sign. The Hartstone Inn is the fourth building on your left past the stop sign.


  • Acadia National Park, 78 meters
  • Bangor, 55 meters
  • Boston, 190 meters
  • New York, 400 meters
  • Portland, 85 meters
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