The Hotel Bellwether (1 Bellwether Way, 360/392-3100 or 877/411-1200, www.hotelbellwether.com, $202–264 d) offers Bellingham’s most indulgent (and expensive) lodging, with a waterfront location, spacious rooms, balconies, Italian furnishings, gas fireplaces, and marble baths with jetted tubs. There are also a few splurge-worthy suites available. Regular suites with separate living areas run for $499. And honeymooners looking for a room to remember can book a spot in the distinctive three-level lighthouse suite for $699—ask about the lighthouse package, which includes champagne and caviar, plus a three-course dinner served by your own private butler. No matter which room you choose, pampered pooches are welcome. A lavish breakfast buffet is available for an extra $11.95.
The luxurious rooms at the waterfront Chrysalis Inn and Spa at the Pier (804 10th St., 360/756-1005 or 888/808-0005, www.thechrysalisinn.com, $199–209 s or d) are beautifully appointed, with such amenities as king-size beds, down comforters, CD players, fireplaces, fridges, high-speed Internet access, plus a substantial buffet breakfast. Suites ($299 d) also include whirlpool tubs, wet bars, and bay vistas. Fino Restaurant is on the main floor.
Above Lake Whatcom and surrounded by tall evergreens is a very private cottage at Schnauzer Crossing (4421 Lakeway Dr., 360/734-2808 or 800/562-2808, www.schnauzercrossing.com, $250 d). The wraparound deck overlooks the lake and the brand new interior sports a kitchenette and wet bar, gas fireplace, king-size bed, and Jacuzzi tub.
© Ericka Chickowski from Moon Washington, 8th edition