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Oct 30, 2011 09:33 PM

Dec 24 family gathering in Portland , ME

We have about 6 hours to meet up with various family members who are flying in and our of Portland, Maine on December 24. There will be 15 of us ranging in ages from 2 to 76. Does anyone have a suggestion for where we could spend this time including sharing a lunchtime meal together in Portland?

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  1. Flatbread has a corner with a set of couches that is very cozy, and you can look out at the water and watch the boats. It's very kid-friendly, and the pizza is excellent. (Pizza and salad are all they've got, but they have a great variety.) And a nice bar.

    6 Replies
      1. re: denkendall

        Is everyone going to be there at the same time or is this going to be a revolving door type of get together with people coming and going at different times? If it's a revolving door type of gathering then I might also consider one of the many Old Port pubs as well as Flatbread. The food isn't really very chow worthy in places like Gritty's, Dewey's or Ri Ra but they can be good casual choices if people are coming and going. Good beer, pub grub, and kids are fine during the day although, if you can camp out at the spot that Sciencediet recommends at Flatbread, it really is hard to beat.

        1. re: bobbert

          We will all be there at the same time. Another issue is that many places are closed on Christmas Eve. I emailed Gilbert's and Flatbread. Waiting to hear from Flatbreads to make sure they are open, but Gilbert's said they will be open 11 to 4. How do you think that would work?
          Thanks, again.

          1. re: denkendall

            Food aside, Gilbert's is not a place you'd want to spend 6 hours. Small, uncomfy chairs, and way too much cooking grease. (I like the food there better than most people, but only eaten outdoors on a sunny day.) A better bet, if Flatbread fails you, might be RiRa, in the same building as Flatbread. They have an upstairs with a view of the water and some couches. They might even have a room you could reserve. Decent Irish food, good bar.

        2. re: denkendall

          I would think if you called Flatbread and told them you'd have a group of up to 15 people going in and out and ordering pizzas and beer and hot lemonade (with maple syrup--yum) for six hours on Christmas Eve, they'd hold the spot for you.

      2. Given the age range and the duration, you might also consider renting a hotel room downtown for the day--place for babies and youngsters (and oldsters) to nap, keep any luggage and coats, etc., plus many have airport shuttles, which would make it easier for people coming and going. Hampton Inn downtown is attached to the Shipyard Brewhaus, Portland Harbor Hotel has a nice lounge/dining area, Regency & Holiday Inn both have restaurants (and HI has an indoor pool, which might be a plus with antsy kids). There's a new Marriott Residence Inn, too, which would have suites with full kitchens--order in food and relax.

        Holiday Inn
        88 Spring St, Portland, ME 04101

        Shipyard Brewhaus
        1000 Commons Cir, Kingfield, ME 04947

        3 Replies
          1. re: bobbert

            All great ideas. Thank you so much.

          2. re: Mainegal

            Just a minor correction. I work at the new Hampton Inn, and the restaurant that shares the first floor is Sebago Brewing, not Shipyard.