Awards & Recognition
Voted the "2001 Inn of the Year" by the readers of Pamela Lanier's guide, The Complete Guide to Bed & Breakfasts, Inns & Guesthouses.
June 2001, Placed in the Congressional Record by Senator Bob Smith for our economic contributions to the hospitality and tourism industry.
Voted by inngoers as the "2002 Inn with the Friendliest Innkeepers" in the Arrington's Bed and Breakfast Journal Book of Lists.
Featured in Country Extra magazine (Nov 2001) as a great place to stay.
February 2003 Featured in Tastes of New England Newspaper
Voted by Inngoers as the 2003 Best for Viewing Fall Foliage in Arrington's Bed & Breakfast Journal Book of Lists.
Selected for inclusion in Accords Publishing "day by day" Bed & Breakfast Calendar for 2003.
Featured in the March, 2004 issue of NH Magazine
Voted by inngoers as the 2004 Inn with the most Privacy in Arrington's Bed & Breakfast Book of Lists.
Featured in the March 2005 Issue of NHToDo Magazine
Voted by inngoers as the 2005 Best in Room Amenities in Arrington's Bed & Breakfast Book of Lists.
2006 Best Breakfast in New England by Inn Traveler Magazine.
2006 Editor's Choice Yankee Travel Guide
Featured in Accent Lifestyle April/May 2006
New London Chocolate Fest 2007
Judge's Choice Best Chocolate 2nd place.
Judge's Choice Display 3rd place.
Featured in NHToDo magazine on our Winter's End Tea Party and Tasting 2007
Candlelite Inn B&B Wins Top Honors for Business Competition under Boomers Back in Business
Kearsarge Magazine Summer 2009: The Oldest Business in Town: The Candlelite Inn
Lake Sunapee Snowmobile Association
New Hampshire Sustainable Lodging & Restaurant Program
A Brief History of the Candlelite Inn
The history of the Candlelite Inn begins with the Raymond House & Tavern at the corner of Main Street and Rte 114. The Raymond House was built by John Raymond and was one of the oldest and most famous hotels at its time. The house became specially noted from the fact that General Lafayette was entertained there, during his visit to America and tour of the country on June 27, 1825. Later the house was passed into the hands of Charles Gillis, who conducted it, until it burned, as a temperance hotel strictly, never having sold a glass of liquor. The bottom step of the Raymond House still remains, on which a memorial plaque honoring Marquis de Lafayette's visit.
Charles Gillis was a man of marked characteristics and unique personality. He was born in Francestown, NH, October 5, 1838 and was educated at David Crosby's famous school in Nashua. He served in the Eighth New Hampshire Regiment in the Civil War; was with Butler at New Orleans where he witnessed the hanging of Mumford; and with Sheridan during the celebrated Wilson Raid in Virginia, participating in the fiery devastation of Luray Valley. Among his many exciting experiences was that of witnessing the execution of the conspirators connected with the assassination of President Lincoln at the close of the war. He had been in the hotel business for fifty years, having established the St. Charles Hotel, at Hillsborough Lower Village after the war, and conducted it for ten years.
After the burning of the Raymond House, he built this fine Victorian structure just south of the old site. The Gillis House has always been a host for entertaining summer boarders. The Inn was the halfway point from Boston to Montpelier, Vermont, for those residents of Boston who summered on Lake Champlain. In 1907, the Gillis House had opened year round. Nine years later, all furnishings were sold at auction for the Anna Gillis estate.
In 1918, Suzanne Robbins opened her place "Acokaka" an Indian word meaning "there is room". In October 1928, it was sold to Frank Rowe and Mr. Cody of Henniker, NH. In November, 1931, Rowe sold the property to A.O. Wolf of New York City. By 1933, the Inn was known as the "Green Shutters" and received recognition for the best advertising of the week by "Hotel World Review", a New York publication. In March of 1946, the Inn was sold to Butler Perry and his wife, who in turn sold it to Hans & Anna Thiemann in February of 1954. The Thiemann's renamed the property the Candlelite Inn. Not only did they have overnight guests, the Inn housed a restaurant where the Thiemann's served dinner to the public. Mr. Thiemann has since passed away, however, Mrs. Thiemann still visits the Inn. Between 1958-1961, the Inn was leased to Frank and Signe Hallin and they renamed the Inn to "Hitching Post Inn". When Hans and Anna Thiemann took possession back, they returned the name to the Candlelite Inn. The Thiemann's sold the property to the Carlton's in the 1970s and they also had a restaurant. It was then sold to Sarah Coffin in 1980 who ran the Inn for a short time as a Bed & Breakfast and then several years later turned the Inn into apartments. She also had an antique shop in the barn. In 1982, Bill and Barbara Cotter became the innkeepers and they also served evening meals. Les and Marilyn Gordon bought the Candlelite Inn in January of 1993 and have done extensive remodeling to bring the Inn to its present state.
*Note: Most of the information came from "Two Hundred Plus" and also from the Bradford Historical Society, for which I would like to thank Millie Kittridge for all her help. Hopefully one day, I will be able to sit down and do a more thorough search of the Candlelite Inn. In the past few years, some of the children of former innkeepers stopped by and after a tour of the Inn, reminisced of their days here at the Candlelite Inn.