Dunscroft or "Dunes-Croft meaning “House on the Dunes” was named and built in 1925 by the MacLeod sisters from Boston. As continues today, they wanted a piece of Cape Cod-- "The Gem of Massachusetts", so they built this beautiful 17-room private estate summer home for their large families to vacation. First developed as Pilgrim Park by four Harwich statesmen, the parcel included the two adjoining streets of Ayer Lane and Sea Street. Augustus Snow, one of the developers, positioned his magnificent Queen Anne Victorian, the Augustus Snow House, at the Route 28 end of Pilgrim Road so he could have full view of the water. It still stands today as a lovely historic piece of Harwich Port architecture.
In the forties Dunscroft was purchased by the Vachon family, and Mr. Vachon, a Harwich Port Banker, with his wife, transformed Dunscroft into an Inn in 1947, and with extensive renovations made EACH GUEST ROOM have its OWN PRIVATE BATH. Their 3 children grew up here, and local gals still living today recall having pajama parties with the Vachon children. By the late 50’s, the property was purchased by Al and Betty Paine, and with their daughter Sandra, continued to operate the Inn until 1979 when Maureen and Bill Houle from Boulton, CT purchased it. They sold the Inn in 1987 to Alyce and Wally Cunningham, and Alyce, with her staff, operates it to this day.
Alyce grew up in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia on an 100-acre working farm where her family raised Polled Herefords, various other livestock, tended many fields of grain, fruit orchards and vegetable gardens. “I would not trade that upbringing for anything,” she states. So many skills were taught by her parents that are so useful in the Innkeeping business. Upon graduation from Bridgewater College in VA, Alyce taught High School and College Freshmen English in Connecticut. After 20 years of teaching, and desiring a change, she cashed in her teacher retirement and purchased hospitality related businesses on the Cape.
“Operating the Inn is a very rewarding life-style,” she states. “You meet so many interesting, nice people who are happy campers on vacation. The pace of life is ideal on Cape Cod where it’s primarily a three-season business--Spring, Summer and Fall, but with Boston so close by with many business conferences, people still want to see beautiful Cape Cod,. so we get a fair share of winter guests too..
We heartily welcome you to this VERY SPECIAL SPACE BY THE SEA to unwind, relax and rejuvenate...to lose yourself in the natural rhythms of ocean, wind and waves.
Alyce and Staff
24 Pilgrim Road,
Harwich Port, MA 02646