This house was originally a farmhouse that is said to have burned down. I recently found out that it was owned by John Peckett, the owner of the Peckett's Inn, prior to its major restorations. It was purchased by the actress Bette Davis as a getaway from the Hollywood scene. She made several additions and modifications to the house. The house features a hand-crafted wood kitchen counter top and cabinets, four decorative fireplaces and one working fireplace, and a wood stove. The living room features a large fireplace with working gas logs. A screened-in front porch has plenty of outdoor furniture to relax on summer days and evenings. A side stone terrace features two Adirondack chairs and Bette's garden and sundial. The wood-paneled upstairs bedrooms have built-in vanities and bookshelves rumored to have been handcrafted by the Warner Brothers studio crews. The newly remodeled downstairs bath features a slipper tub that invites you to soak sore muscles after a day of strolling around the White Mountains or skiing at Cannon Mountain. The cozy downstairs barn bedrooms have easy access to this bath and feature paneled walls and decorative fireplaces. The main attraction of the house is the barn room, where a lovely collection of photos of Bette's career and life are displayed on the wall surrounding the TV and wood stove. Bette employed a local architect to find the barn and add it to the house. Enjoy a relaxing evening watching one of many of Bette's films on DVD or VCR while feeling the toasty warmth of the wood stove!
- House3000 sq. ft.
- Half Baths0
- Min Stay2 nights
4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, sleeps 8
- english, french, spanish, portuguese
- Calendar last updated:
- Sep 25, 2018
About Marion Aldrich
I first visited the White Mountains of New Hampshire in the Summer of 1970 as a camper at the Ogontz White Mountain Camp. I fell in love with the beautiful Ogontz Lake surrounded by its idyllic hills. As a camper, I went hiking on Mount Moosilauke and climbed Mount Lafayette Mountain twice. I loved eating the freshly made pancakes topped with maple butter, syrup, and sugar.at Polly's Pancake Parlor. I loved Ogontz so much that I stayed there until 1975! Today Camp Ogontz is a privately owned camp and event center. As a homeowner in Sugar Hill, I continue to enjoy several activities of my Ogontz days such as hiking in the Flume Gorge, climbing up to Lonesome Lake, swimming and pedal boating in Echo Lake, wading in the Bridal Falls, and enjoying the cuisine at the Sugar Hill Inn and other historic Inns in the area.
Marion Aldrich purchased this House in 2009
Why Marion Aldrich chose Sugar Hill
During a summer reunion in 2008, I spoke to another former Ogontz camper who had moved back to the area. I decided to look at buying a house with a small apartment attached so I could rent the house out and stay in the apartment during the summer. In October, I traveled up to Franconia to meet with a realtor to see a few houses that fit my criteria. The realtor informed me that a house owned by the actress Bette Davis had just dropped in price (remember the housing crash?) and was within my price range. All I could remember about Ms. Davis at that moment was the scene where she uncovers a serving dish to reveal a dead rat for Joan Crawford's supper. My camp friend, the realtor and I went off to see the first house, one that fit my criteria but which I did not like. Then we headed to see the famous Bette Davis house, even though it did not have an apartment or guest house on the premises. After what seemed like a long drive on a gravel and dirt road on the side of a hill, we turned onto another gravel road and there it was! I was quite skeptical, though the porch and dormer windows piqued my interest. As soon as I entered the foyer and saw the kitchen, I felt as if the year was 1940 or thereabouts. As I strolled through this hand crafted house, I grew fascinated by the wide wood beams, built-in vanities, and cozy wood- paneled walls. I think I was admiring the photographs of Bette's career and life in the barn room when I turned to my friend and said, "I think we are done looking at houses for the day." My first stay in the house was during President Obama's inauguration, when I discovered there was little or no insulation within the walls and the weather ranged from zero to below twelve degrees outside. It took years to insulate the walls, basement, and crawl spaces and seal the house up to make it the comfortable place it is today.
What makes this House unique
The house was rebuilt and renovated by Bette Davis during her early years in Hollywood as an escape from the stress of making one movie after the next under her contract with the Warner Brothers Studio. It has been written that she employed some of the Warner carpenters to panel the interior of the upstairs bedrooms and craft the built-in vanities and mirrors. I found out she employed local architects as well to attach a barn to the house, which is the current barn room. The house changed hands a few times after Bette sold it, and the owners before me found the house abandoned with raccoons living in the attic. They collected photographs, posters, and other memorabilia of Bette's life and displayed these in the barn room. I have added a few more photographs and some of my guests have graciously added to the collection. The house is surrounded by quiet woods with a view of the original stables to the east. Occasionally, one hears the rat tat of a woodpecker and the rustling of a stream on a summer day while sitting on the porch or stone terrace. During the winter, it is fun to watch the swirls of snow build up on the back French doors of the barn room while sitting next to the wood stove after a long day of skiing, snowshoeing, or just being outdoors. The new propane stove in the living room is easy and safe to use. Snowshoes are offered to guests who dare to brave the cold and snow.
Check-in: 3:30 PM
Check-out: 11:00 AM
100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 14 days before arrival date.
Lovely and comfortable!
This is a lovely property, comfortable, spacious,with great gathering rooms. The kichen is well appointed with new appliances. The home itself is tastefully and appropriately decorated.
It is set in a forest and surrounded with a generous well kept lawns, its quietude is relaxing. It is convenient to shopping, and a lot of the activities this beautiful area offers. We enjoyed exploring Littleton and all the surrounding villages. The two week stay whizzed by! Our family highly recommends Butternut Cottage!
Comfort and Seclusion
My family stayed at Butternut Cottage for a week and loved our time there. The home is extremely well stocked with towels, sheets, blankets, and paper supplies. While the cottage is quite a ways back in the woods, it's actually a very short drive back into town and to the interstate, making it a convenient location for almost any local activity.
A lovely stay at a beautiful home.
Charming historic property, filled with amenities
My husband and I took our grown children and their partners and the dog to rejuvenate ourselves in the White Mountains. This property looked very appealing online, and it did not disappoint. Pack only your clothes and food, the house is stocked with bedding, basic toiletries, and household staples, and is very comfortable for six adults. Located well off busy roads, very quiet, yet we were close to great smaller hikes and less than an hour from the trailhead to ascend Mount Washington. We greatly enjoyed this quaint piece of history, made full use of the first-class kitchen, and look forward to coming back in other seasons.
Everything was perfect. The house is beautiful and very clean. We would love to go back!
Thank you for the kind review Janet! Marion
We all enjoyed a very quiet weekend retreat. Plenty of room for all in this very unique home. Very clean and accommodating
We really enjoyed ourselves.
Thank you very much Marion
There are lots of superb walking and hiking trails in the area. The Flume State Park, the Old Man Historical Site, and Lonesome Lake are some of these sites. The Bridle Path Falls trail is one that Bette and Arthur loved to hike. The Kancamagus Highway offers some of the best views of the Fall foliage. The nearby historical town of Littleton offers great antique and consignment shopping, a movie theatre, and dining. There is live theatre in the area during the summer months.
Additional information about rental rates
Please note that all utilities and lawn, plowing, and snow shoveling services are included in rate. A service fee for using Homeaway and VRBO is not included. An additional fee is $59 fee for the insurance policy or if you prefer, you can make a refundable $1500 deposit. Please make all payments through the VRBO or HomeAway Web sites. Please contract me if you have any questions. Thank you!