This famous beach, one of the finest on the coast, has become, by the opening of the Boston and Maine extension, one of the most frequented of our watering-places. The distance by rail from the city is eleven and three-fourth miles. It is a semi-aqueous region through which the road runs, crossing marsh and river and creek. Half a mile distant from Blue Point station, which is about nine miles out, lies Pine Point, where a number of our citizens have built summer cottages, and a boarding-house accommodates summer visitors. The road skirts the seashore, and the sta- tion at Old Orchard is close upon the beach, with the surf rolling in almost at one’s feet. The beach is ten miles long from Black Point to the Saco River. It is evenly inclined, and perfectly safe, there being no de- ceptive holes or rocks. Even at high tide there is ample room for carriages abreast, and at low tide it is one of the widest and grandest driving and promenade avenues to be found anywhere. It lies in a deep indentation of the shore, forming nearly a semi-circle. On the right, Fletcher’s Neck makes one arm, extending far out into the sea, at the mouth of the Saco, dotted with the white buildings of “The Pool” at its extremity. On the left, the other arm of the semi-circle is formed by Prout’s Neck, sweeping out into the sea, with Stratton Island off against it. Between these two encircling points sweeps the grand beach, smooth as a floor, hard almost as a pavement, with the waves breaking along its whole extent in never-ceasing foam and roar.
Old Orchard is abundantly supplied with hotels. The Old Orchard House, destroyed by fire last year, has been rebuilt by its proprietor, Mr. E. C. Staples, on a finer site and a larger plan. The new house stands on a high knoll, a little south of the old site. It has a sea-frontage of three hundred feet, with an ell one hundred feet deep, and is four and five stories high, finished throughout with modern improvements. The Ocean House is also a large and well-kept hotel, capable of accommodating four or five hundred guests, and is furnished with a music-hall and other attractions for the amusement of summer boarders. On the beach, below the railroad track, is a crowd of smaller hotels and boarding-houses, from the doors of some of which one can almost step into the sea when the tide is up.