by Amanda Geronikos
Union Bluff Hotel can best be described as “luxury at the beach.” The hotel features modern guestrooms, some of which have balconies and fireplaces. It also has two onsite restaurants, including The Union Bluff Pub & Grill, a casual spot with indoor and outdoor seating and a designated menu for kids.
The hotel’s best feature, however, is its location across the street from Short Sands Beach, named one of the 10 Best Beaches for Families in 2014.
The hotel opened in 1989 (technically 1987, but it burned down and was then rebuilt to look the same), and has since expanded twice with the addition of a guestroom building in 1998 and another eight-room building for weddings, meetings and other special events in 2007.
Our Editor Loves
- Beachfront hotel
- Onsite restaurants
- Modern guestrooms
- Connecting Rooms
- Family Room 5+
- Free Wi-Fi
- Onsite Dining
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The hotel has 70 deluxe guestrooms spread across three buildings. All of the guestrooms have mini-fridges, Keurig coffeemakers, flat-screen TVs and free Wi-Fi access. Some rooms also have microwaves, while others may have fireplaces or balconies.
Rollaway beds and cribs are available upon request for $10 per night. They are not permitted in all rooms, however, as there may not be enough space.
The Main Building houses most guests, with 42 rooms available in various configurations. Some rooms have small, private balconies, while others have large, shared balconies. Most of the smaller rooms have balconies, so finding a space for your family that includes a balcony may be a challenge.
The Annex offers rooms with one king bed, two double beds, or two double beds with a pull-out couch to sleep five or six guests. While the latter option is fantastic for families, it faces away from the ocean. From the other rooms, you can enjoy views of the ocean from a long, shared balcony that runs the length of the three-story Annex.
This building was designed for weddings and other special events, though the hotel will occasionally put guests in the Meeting House when there aren't any events on the schedule. Rooms feature one king or two double beds, with a hospitality suite available for family gatherings, as well. Note that many of the Meeting House rooms have showers only.
On a recent drive up the Maine coast we spent a night here. We were in the annex building with a nice view of the ocean and beach. It was after Labor day so much of the town shut down at 5:00 or perhaps before.
The pub was nice and the food good.]
The room was clean and parking nearby.
Staff was very pleasant.
We've been going to Union Bluff for 9 straight years. It's all about location….location …location. The view is beautiful, in fact, so beautiful that we kept overlooking the routine rudeness of the front desk staff during basic functions like checking in and checking out. However now the quality of the food in the hotel Pub is also a problem, and when traveling with children having a restaurant in the hotel is key. There is no room service but at least it was convenient, to not have to leave the building to get food.
We might have seen our last year there. The last straw was, after sending pictures with my complaint about the burnt breakfast and getting no response, and filling out their customer survey and again getting no response, we really got the impression that they couldn't care less about their customers.
Yes, the views are breathtaking, you are literally on the beach, just weigh that against EVERYTHING else.
Short Sands Beach is so close, you can practically reach out and touch it!
Stake your spot early in the day, as it can get crowded. Close to the beach, you'll also find a playground, basketball court and public restrooms.
The hotel is located in York Village, close to a bowling alley and arcade (especially perfect when it's time for a break from the sun) and York's Wild Kingdom Zoo and Fun Park.
Of the hotel's two onsite dining options, Union Pub is best for families, serving lunch and dinner in a casual atmosphere. While children's options are available, you'll find most of the menu to be kid-friendly, with burgers, flatbreads, fish sandwiches, and more available. Union Pub, which offers both indoor and outdoor dining (seasonal), is open 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday to Thursday, staying open until 10 on Fridays and Saturdays.
Union Grill is where you can have breakfast, served 7 to 11 a.m. daily. It includes the usual mix of favorites, from fluffy omelettes to French toast.
The restaurant then closes for lunch and reopens for dinner at 5 p.m. Kids are still welcome here, but expect a slightly fancier setting and enhanced menu, with filet migon, duck breast, salmon, and of course, boiled lobster, on the extensive menu.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
Free Wi-Fi is provided and works well.
Pets are not permitted at the Union Bluff Hotel.
Check-in is at 3 p.m., with check-out at 11 a.m.
The Art of Smart Timing
The hotel is busiest in the summer, though it doesn't start to truly calm down until York HarvestFest, which takes place the weekend after Columbus Day.
The closest major airport is Portland International Jetport, approximately 45 minutes away. You can also fly into Boston Logan International Airport, which is a little over an hour away. Expect a few tolls (and some traffic near Boston) en route to the hotel.
There's no need to drive anywhere with the hotel's location in town. You can easily walk to everything, including Short Sands Beach and restaurants. You'll need a vehicle to explore other areas, though.
Complimentary self and/or valet parking is available.
For Mom and Dad
Enjoy a drink on the outdoor patio at Union Pub, or go for a stroll on Short Sands Beach at sunset.