Mercury Inn: a hotel in Portland, Maine

Earlier this week, I wrote about my quest to bring less stuff into my life and invest more in worthwhile experiences. One of the ways I’ve been motivating myself is by deciding exactly what experiences I’d like to invest in. Travel is at the top of my list, and when August rolls around, I know I’ll be looking for an northern escape from the NYC heat. The Mercury Inn in Portland, Maine looks like a pretty awesome experience. Hotel owners, Tim Karu and Jacob Krueger, purchased an aging Victorian inn in the historic Parkside neighborhood of Portland, Maine and set about making it a more modern and sustainable place to stay. The duo called upon Tyler Karu (Tim’s sister and whose home we featured here) to blend the original Victorian details of the property with the pair’s modern, sustainable sensibility. Tyler, along with Godsoe Builders – who did the heavy lifting on the renovation – managed to seamlessly fuse the modern and Victorian – pairing the home’s turn-of-the-century millwork, for example, with an Eames lounger and Kartell tables. This smart union of elements – combined with the cooler temperatures up north – moves a trip to Maine to the top of my experience list.  –Amy

Photographer- Justin Levesque

Image above: I was lucky to be able to work with the wide-plank pine floors in the dining room. They dictated the direction of the room. The farmhouse swing stool table is from Portland Architectural Salvage, as is the Jason Wein steel serving cart. The light fixture was made by Decorum in Falmouth, ME., as were all the custom lights in the inn. We sourced the majority of the finishes and fixtures in Maine and worked with local vendors and craftsmen on all of the custom pieces. Local sourcing kept the carbon footprint low, as did the Mythic Paint used throughout the interior. This non-toxic, zero-V.O.C. paint was imperative to the environmentally conscious renovation.

Image above: The floral designs were done by Stephanie Pilk.

See more of this Portland hotel after the jump!

Image above: The Mid Century sofa was purchased at Just L in Littleton, NH. It was important to tie the name “Mercury” into the design scheme. By using greys and mixing metals, we aimed to reference the inn’s namesake. I used bold accents, specifically yellow and chartreuse, to connect with the inn’s brand and identity.

Image above: The real-deal Eames lounger on the left hangs out with its knockoff counterpart sourced at Brimfield. Jason Wein lamps provide reading light in one of the common rooms.

Image above: The MERCURY letters were found at Brimfield and the metal folding chairs are from Pillars in Freeport, ME. The rug and floating metal cabinets are IKEA.

Image above: Custom light made by Decorum.

Image above: The beds were custom-made for the inn by the Portland, ME-based furniture company, Furniturea. The rolling rack and shelf were crafted by Ashley Kent.

Image above: Sea Bags custom-made pillows for each guest room.

Image above: I designed the gooseneck lamps to thread though the mounted shelf, providing optimal reading light for guests.

Image above: The whale shower curtain by Thomas Paul is a nautical nod to Maine.

Image above: The photos above the bed are turn-of-the-century photos of Portland and have been colorized by Patty Allison of Imbued With Hues.

Image above: An IKEA cart sits below an antique map of the Maine coast.

Image above: Two Jason Wein carts serve as nightstands next to the grey Furniturea bed. The yellow arm chair is from Pillars, as is the oversized chrome lamp on the corner stand.

Image above: Black canvas blinds from The Shade Store are used throughout the inn.

Image above: Along with the beds, Furniturea created bedside tables for the inn. The vintage lamps are from Brimfield.

  1. silentmeow says:

    Beautiful! What brand of ceiling fans did you use? I’ve been looking for minimal-looking ceiling fans. Those fit the bill.

  2. Jackie says:

    Loving the bright yellow and blue blankets! Is there a source for those? I’m moving into a new place and I’m struggling in my search for blankets.

  3. Rebecca M says:

    Beautiful place, and I love the light fixture in the foyer!

  4. JK says:

    So lovely. May I ask where you found the mirror over the bed in the last picture? Thank you!

  5. Tyler Karu says:

    Thanks for the kind words! The ceiling fans are a very affordable model from We had the electricians adjust the height for the rooms. The blue quilts are from cb2 and the yellow quilts are Trina Turk. The mirror above the bed is from Ballard Designs

  6. Taylor says:

    Wow! Gorgeous place to stay! I may need to book a trip to Portland ASAP!


  7. Anna says:

    Could not be more inviting. May I also impose on you for the source of the little yellow bedside lamps in two of the rooms? Many thanks!

  8. Betsy Stires says:

    Spectacular all around Tyler. Inventive, striking and comfortable ! It will be an adventure for all the guests.

  9. Jody says:

    Gorgeous space! And in my hometown :)

  10. Amanda says:

    My husband and I were just there in early April. It was refreshing to visit a bed and breakfast with a modern spin and it was so reasonably priced. The breakfast was really yummy.

  11. Meinhilde says:

    I’ve never seen a hotel so lovely! I love all the colours and the light.

  12. Christina says:

    Such a beautiful, inviting space. Love how casual and bright it is. Where can I find the gooseneck lamps used above the bed? They’re perfect!


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