Archive for the ‘Bed and Breakfast’ Category

New York Times Article Featuring Willows Inn

June 17th, 2011 by Mariah

A special congrats to the Innkeepers and Staff at Willows Inn for being featured in the New York Times!!!

Here is an excerpt from the article, “Seattle, a Tasting Menu”:

“I know that from previous visits to the region, and on the basis of those trips I can also say that its culinary strides of late seem especially long and fleet. One measure of these advances is the transformation of the Willows Inn, a longstanding lodge on Lummi Island that has recently become the focus of considerable chatter among (and pilgrimages by) restaurant lovers.

Lummi Island, a hilly, verdant, narrow finger of land that’s only about 10 miles long, is another of the San Juans, and isn’t especially trammeled or set up for significant tourism — at least not yet. After a roughly two-hour roadtrip from Seattle, a sign I confronted as soon as a ferry deposited me and my car there made that clear. It pegged the population at 816.

Lummi, which rhymes with chummy, has such a closed, cozy feeling that if you drive down streets away from the main part of town, people tilling their gardens or mowing their lawns look up expectantly, seemingly poised to wave hello to someone almost certain to be familiar to them. When they realize they don’t know you, there’s a moment’s pause. Then they wave anyway.
Willows Inn goes back to 1910, but in 2001 its current owner, a commercial fisherman named Riley Starks, bought and began to refurbish it, turning each of its 15 rooms, including two cottages, a yurt and several suites, into rustic delights. He wanted to upgrade its restaurant, too, and make it a showcase for the island’s small farms, one of which belongs to the inn, and for fresh catch from the surrounding waters. But his vision didn’t fully come together until late last year, when a young chef who had spent several years at Noma, a Copenhagen restaurant internationally renowned for its dedication to local products and traditions, agreed to take over the kitchen.

The chef, Blaine Wetzel, 25, has tried to create a North American Noma by faithfully — even slavishly — reproducing the original’s theatrics and grace notes. As at Noma, dishes come to the table in unconventional vessels: cedar boxes, clay flower pots, wicker baskets. As at Noma, there’s a profuse deployment of arcane greens (beach mustard, sheep sorrel, pine shoots) and vivid flowers (salmonberry, arugula blossoms, wild roses), some of them pickled and many of them foraged — as at Noma — that very day. And in yet another crib from Noma, Mr. Wetzel and his assistant chefs deliver these dishes themselves, so they can brief you on the backstory of each ingredient and how very nearby it sprouted, bloomed, grazed or swam.

What they don’t tell you, the printed menu does, providing assurances, for example, that reef netting, “considered one of the most sustainable fishing methods in the world,” and the labors of “Lummi tribal members” were responsible for much of your seafood.

A bit much? Perhaps. But the atmospheric and gustatory joys of dinner, which is a pre-selected tasting menu of five courses for $85 (not including drinks, tax and tip) redeem the preciousness. The inn’s hillside perch affords an expansive view from the dining room of the sea and the sky, streaked with orange and pink as the sun sets.

And Mr. Wetzel and his team for the most part do justice to incomparably fresh food. Seared spot prawns, floating in a cloud of mussel-broth foam, put me in mind of Lilliputian lobster tails. Their flavor was that rich, their texture that buttery. Equally tender fingerling potatoes, dressed with melted havarti and buttermilk whey, had such a true, clear taste it was as if someone had infused them with, or marinated them in, some magical potato extract.

They had been harvested from the inn’s farm, just a mile up the hillside. That’s where I stayed, in a satellite suite the inn has there. Rosemary, rhubarb and lovage skirted its stoop. Through the front windows I could see and hear the strutting and clucking of free-range chickens. You want a closer relationship with what you eat? At the Willows Inn you can practically bed down with it.

By taking culinary trends further than other places manage or care to, Seattle and its environs put a pleasantly kooky spin on things — which brings me to Woodinville, an audacious exurb of Seattle that indulges Americans’ deepened romance with regional winemaking through the illusion of vineyards where they don’t really exist. There’s no significant grape cultivation in Woodinville. That happens in areas of Washington far away. But to allow Seattle residents to sample the fruits of their state’s considerable — and noteworthy — viticulture without a long drive, more than 90 winemakers have set up tasting rooms here, many within the last two years. And they’ve been joined recently by artisanal producers of vodka and whiskey who actually distill their grains in Woodinville office parks and warehouses, then sell them from adjacent tasting rooms, taking advantage of a captive audience of tipplers. ”

To read the entire article click here:

Quick Tips for the Holidays

October 21st, 2010 by Mariah

Quick Tips for the Holidays


The extra commitments and responsibilities brought on by the winter holidays can make the most organized innkeeper frantic. With a bit of preplanning and a pinch of preparation you can create a gathering you can easily host and enjoy, too.






To start, plan your menu by making as much of it self-serve as possible. Set up a drink station so guests can help themselves. Mix up trendy dishes with traditional ones for your menu. And be sure to watch the advertisements for loss leaders that are plentiful this time of year. Include one or two hot dishes and fill in the rest with raw veggies, seasonal fresh fruit and make-ahead cold side dishes. Be sure to offer a low-cal choice and vegetarian dishes, too. For hot dishes, use the slow cooker or a roaster to keep food warm.



Consider a cheese arrangement. Chunks of cheese with spiced nuts, fresh or dried fruits and a variety of breads can make a great munchies table. Be sure to include three different types of cheese for a smaller group and five or six varieties for a larger group. Serve each cheese on a separate plate with its own knife.



Try hors d’oeuvre party for simplicity. For appetizers, make bite-size nibbles in a variety of colors, textures or flavors. Serve small bite-size hors d’oeuvre so you can eliminate the need for utensils and spills on your carpeting when guests are trying to cut something in half and the piece of kielbasa lands on your carpeting. A favorite club sandwich cut into quarters makes an easy appetizer. Add a garnish on top with a toothpick.



A dessert theme works for an afternoon or after-dinner hour get-together. Serve three or four desserts, such as seasonal fresh fruit, holiday cookies, and miniature cupcakes for smaller crowd and five to six items for a larger group. Offer coffee and tea; however, make it self serve.



Using foam and paper plates will cut down on after-party clean-up; however, use holiday-themed colors in the paper products to add pizzazz to the table. You can find these at dollar or discount stores. Don’t forget music and match it to the gathering and the crowd.





Now you’re ready to write a shopping list using your preplanned menu. Post the menu on refrigerator so you don’t forget anything in the frenetic pace to get everything on the table.



Create a preparation and cooking schedule. Note the designated times that particular dishes must go into the oven or slow cooker so they’re ready in time for the bash. Make as many dishes a day ahead as possible. Or mix dry ingredients together, adding wet ingredients on cooking day.



Pull out your serving trays and dishes several days beforehand. Use grandma’s bowls and heirloom pieces to hold paper products, cookies, breads and more. Don’t keep them hidden. Decide if you need to buy or borrow additional pieces. Again, look to dollar & discount stores for possibilities.



Set your dining table or buffet table a day or two prior to the party. Include everything from dishes to utensils to serving pieces. Cover the “set table” with a sheet to avoid dust collecting and uncover prior to guests’ arrival.



Keep garbage cans throughout the party area so guests can dump their own plates and not leave them on your coffee tables or another other flat surface they find. Assign tasks to family members or early bird guests. Include everything from lighting candles to hanging coats to refilling the relish tray.



Now, take a deep breath and enjoy mingling with your guests.

Honeysuckle Acres Bed & Breakfast

October 18th, 2010 by Mariah

Honeysuckle Acres in Winnsboro, SC
Shaggin’! Shag is the official state dance of South Carolina. Learn from Lynn and Jimmy Douglas, professional dance instructors. Basic Shag with a flair. Whether you’re a first timer or an experienced Shagger with beach music in your heart come have fun with us. We will literally roll up the rug in our forty-foot ballroom for a two hour lesson. Price includes a two-hour lesson, dessert or hors d’oeuvres, complimentary glass of wine or beer, beautiful room and a gourmet breakfast in the morning.

Honeysuckle Acres Bed & Breakfast
“A Bed & Breakfast”
70 Honeysuckle Lane
Winnsboro, SC. 29180
Harold & Patricia Frish

Rates: $100-$115 USD
Rooms: 3

Phone: 1-803-635-7583
Toll Free: 1-800-387-1112

Welcome to our newest member!

September 29th, 2010 by Mariah

With its 300+ acres of pristine wilderness and untamed beauty, River Ranch Bed and Breakfast is one of the most beautiful natural retreats in North America. Located in the picturesque historic town of Hattiesburg, Mississippi, River Ranch has been known to only a privileged few, who for many years have come to unwind, reconnect and rejuvenate.Discover a land where life moves at a more leisurely pace, following the rhythmic ebb and flow of the Bouie River. Nestled on a private wildlife preserve, River Ranch is a tranquil 5-room, authentic, hand hewn log cabin Bed & Breakfast that seamlessly blends the elegance of a bygone era with the modern amenities and conveniences the discriminating traveler expects.Thoughtfully perched on the banks of the Bouie, River Ranch is the perfect escape for a romantic weekend getaway, weddings, family gatherings, corporate events or an extended vacation. The Suites are designed in classic style, reflecting a timeless Southern architectural heritage. Pine floors, vaulted ceilings and spectacular views welcome you into your very own private hideaway.For the ultimate in style and comfort we offer one and two-bedroom suites, as well as as “The Penthouse Suite” that encompasses the entire top floor of the Lodge. Each suite is luxuriously appointed, creating a warm atmosphere to relax and enjoy friends and family. If complete privacy, luxury and convenience are what you are looking for, consider reserving the entire Lodge for your Wedding, Church Retreat, Corporate Event or Family Gathering. We offer a 20% discount when reserving the entire Lodge. A minimum two night stay is required and additional restrictions may apply.Our peaceful and secluded Bed and Breakfast, is conveniently located just 2 miles from Interstate 59 and the newly completed Evelyn Gandy Parkway; and just 3 miles from US Highway 49 and Peps Point Road. A great location if you are visiting the University of Southern Mississippi, The Long Leaf Trace or Camp Shelby.With 300 nature-packed acres to discover, you will enjoy the 10+ miles of groomed trails perfect for hiking or biking. Take a stroll past the 4-acre stocked fishing pond on your way to Deep Woods Trail or Rankin Run and be sure to stop by The Artisan Well for a drink of the coldest, purest water you have ever tasted. Bring your camera along because you are sure to spot plenty of wildlife on your journey.River Ranch’s Concierge Service allows you to make your getaway experience exactly what you want it to be. Your innkeepers are happy to make reservations for any of the restaurants or activities on your behalf allowing you to fully enjoy your vacation. The innkeeper’s relationship with local providers means that many of the activities such as concert and theater tickets, canoeing, kayaking, tubing, fishing, camping, picnicking, horseback riding and in-room spa treatments can be arranged in advance.River Ranch is a member of The Professional Association of Innkeepers International and is considered one of the most unique lodging facilities in the Southeast. River Ranch is highly ranked on Ranch Bed and Breakfast. A 300-acre paradise just waiting to enrich your soul and energize your spirit.River Ranch Bed & Breakfast “A Bed & Breakfast”655 River RoadHattiesburg, MS. 39401USA Innkeepers:Tiffany & Steve ParrishRates: $99.00-$125.00 USD Rooms: 5Phone: 601-422-7575 Toll Free: 800-500-4050 Fax: 601-450-7111

Never Stayed In a Bed and Breakfast? Click Here.

September 20th, 2010 by Mariah



The bed and breakfast industry began to blossom in the U.S. during the 1980s, and B&Bs thrive today in large part because they provide an atmosphere of warmth and coziness that traditional hotels simply can’t match — although many are now trying.




Most bed and breakfasts are owned by the innkeepers, who usually live on the premises. It’s natural to expect that innkeepers who live in their own inns will bring a different perspective to the job than someone who works a shift behind a hotel reception desk and then goes home and forgets about the customers left behind.




At good B&Bs, “customers” are truly guests, and it shows. Innkeepers will gladly help you find the best restaurant in town, point you to the most romantic spot in the nearby park, and much more.




Most bed and breakfasts generate a substantial portion of their income from repeat business. Many also depend on word-of-mouth recommendations. Combine those two factors and it’s easy to see why most innkeepers go out of their way to make sure your stay provides some great memories.




To get started on planning your first (of many) Bed and Breakfast vacations click here!


September 10th, 2010 by Mariah


Darby, Montana – August 2010 – A favorite destination of artists and photographers, Triple Creek Ranch has a long history of nurturing the creative arts. Its setting in Montana’s Rocky Mountains, as well as its art-filled Lodge and private log cabins and immersive guest programs, create an environment that inspires and encourages both the aspiring and accomplished artist. This fall, arts-loving guests will have an opportunity to fine-tune their skills alongside some of the West’s most accomplished professionals when the ranch once again hosts its highly regarded Artists’ Workshop Weekends (Oct. 7-10, Oct. 14-17, Oct. 21-24) and David Stoecklein Photography Weekend¸ (Oct. 28-31).


The participatory weekends further demonstrate the Relais & Châteaux property’s appreciation for art, as captured in its extensive private collection of original Western art found both in the Lodge and throughout the recently refreshed private log cabins, which now also feature new fireplaces, fabrics and furnishings. Original works by grand masters such as Charles Russell, Frederick Remington, Joseph Henry Sharp and Eanger Irving Couse and contemporary artists such as Carol Hagan, Brent Cotton and Nancy Dunlop Cawdrey and photographer David Stoecklein create an atmosphere infused with the spirit of the West. Many of the works are from the private collection of the ranch’s owners, devoted collectors Barbara and Craig Barrett.


Scheduled October 7 – 10, October 14 – 17 and October 21 – 24, 2010, the series of four day/three-night Artists’ Workshop Weekends each feature three celebrated artists leading a full program of morning and afternoon hands-on workshops. Additional sessions include Painting; Artists at Work, featuring artists demonstrating and displaying their work; and the World of Art, an introduction to how, when and where to buy art. In addition to the workshops, the all-inclusive weekends include luxurious accommodations in a mountain cabin with wood-burning fireplace and hot tub (in cabin or nearby), gourmet meals and complimentary house wine and spirits, ranch activities, artists’ welcome reception, a guided tour of the Ranch’s art collection and farewell art exhibit. The three-night/four-day weekends are priced from $2,100 to $3,435 per couple, inclusive of all meals, beverages and on-ranch activities.


The nine artists include the aforementioned Hagan and Cotton, as well as Nancy Dunlop Cawdrey (October 7 – 10), Julie Jeppsen, Joe Kronenberg and Graham Flatt (October 14 – 17) and Greg Kelsey, H. Steve Oiestad and Jean Richardson (October 21 – 24). Award-winning photographer Stoecklein, whose work is hailed for its authenticity in capturing the spirit of the American West, will lead the David Stoecklein Photography Weekend scheduled October 28 – 31, 2010. Alongside the world-famous photographer, guests will refine their technique, trade ideas and opinions and gain inspiration from new subject matter and the scenic surroundings of the Bitterroot Valley. Stoecklein has authored or co-authored numerous books, including Cowboy Gear, The Montana Cowboy and Cowgirls in Heaven. An engaging and educational program, the two-day workshop is priced $1,500 per person. Luxurious mountain cabin accommodations start at $650 per couple, per night, and include all meals, beverages and ranch activities.


It’s hard to imagine a more inspiring setting for focusing on and fine-tuning one’s craft. Nestled in the Bitterroot Mountain Range of the Montana Rockies, Triple Creek Ranch is situated on the wooded slopes of Trapper Peak amidst the expansive Bitterroot National Forest. This spring, a resort-wide renovation added new fabrics, appointments and original Western art to all cabins, including works from the owners’ personal collection. Cabins feature wood-burning fireplaces and a private or nearby hot tub, and come with a fully stocked and complimentary wet bar, freshly baked cookies and trail mix. All cabins are equipped with direct-dial phones, satellite television, WiFi, and CD and DVD players.


Whether guests are exploring the ranch on horseback, hiking, birding or fly-fishing, they will enjoy the natural beauty of the setting and abundant wildlife. For relaxation, a massage in the privacy of the guest cabin and a hot tub soak among the Ponderosa pines make inviting options. When curling up with a good book is the preference, a crackling log fire in the cabin is especially cozy.


Well-known for its culinary superiority, the ranch features an expansive dining room and bar, a chef’s table with views of the Bitterroot Mountains, and a climate-controlled wine cellar with an extensive collection of more than 500 wines from the world’s premier winemaking regions. A series of vintner weekends is held each spring, featuring wine dinners and seminars with premier West Coast vintners.


Triple Creek Ranch is a repeat recipient of the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence and the Wine Enthusiast Award of Distinction.

Triple Creek Ranch
“A Luxury Resort”
5551 West Fork Road
Darby, MT. 59829

Sept Newsletter From Sherwood Forest

September 7th, 2010 by Mariah

News from The Forest


The summer is coming to an end, and although the autumnal equinox is still a few weeks away, things have quieted down here on the lakeshore. The squirrels have started gathering their food supply for the fall, the young turkeys are wandering through the woods, and soon the hummingbirds will start their long trek south. The nights are cool; the days are peaceful; the early apples and pears are ready for picking. It’s a great time of year to join us for some relaxation and beautiful fall colors.



Sherwood Forest Picnic Baskets



Venture forth from Sherwood Forest with your own basket of goodies. The picnic includes a fine selection of Italian meats, cheeses, and baguettes, along with fresh fruit and sweets to make your afternoon rendezvous complete. To wet your whistle, choose from spritzers or bottled water (vegetarian selection also available). Price: $55 for two.



Melt your Stress Away Package



Upon your arrival, you’ll find a beautiful wine and cheese basket with a bouquet of fresh flowers. During your visit you’ll each experience a soothing massage in a style suited just for you and a $30 voucher good toward a romantic dinner at a fine restaurant. Upon your departure (which we’re sure you’ll want to delay as long as possible before returning to the “real world”) a gift from us: a compact disc of relaxing music and an illustrated guide to massage. Price: $235 (does not include room rate). If you wish to have this awaiting your arrival, give us a call at 800-838-1246.



Sherwood Forest Gourmet Dinners



Now’s the time to gather up that group of friends or family and plan a visit to Sherwood Forest B&B for one of our awesome Gourmet Dinners. From November through April, let us wine and dine you. Book the entire B&B for 2 nights or more and we’ll have such a feast catered, your taste palates won’t allow any leftovers. We’ve cornered the market on the best chefs Saugatuck and Douglas have to offer. These epicurean wizards of gastronomic delights will amaze you in what will be your own private dining room, and you’ll have the time of your life. Here are the details: dinner is $50 per person, you provide your own alcohol, and a 2-night minimum stay is required. You pick the date November through April and we’ll pick the chef. Bring your appetite and whatever you need to wet your whistle, sit down, and dinner is served. Black out dates are New Year’s Eve and Valentine’s Day weekends. To book a gourmet dinner, call Keith or Sue at 800-838-1246. You can see some of our past dinner menus at



Bed, Breakfast, and Arnold Palmer Golf



Now that the golf courses are a wee bit less crowded, it’s a great time to enjoy some golf. We’ve come up with some incredible stay-and-play golf packages for you to choose from. Spend a night or two at Sherwood Forest B&B and we’ll arrange for you to play at The Ravines, an Arnold Palmer Signature Championship Golf Course, a sweeping, 18-stanza epic, where nature meets sport in ways you simply must witness to believe. Cost ranges from $251 to $625. For more info, visit





Bed, Breakfast, and Brewery



Looking for a weekend getaway involving brewing your own batch of beer? Sherwood Forest is offering a unique package that includes a 2-night stay plus access to Saugatuck Brewing Company’s brew-on-site facilities. SBC will provide the recipes, from light to dark; over 70 different recipes are available. They’ll also provide the ingredients and professional brewing equipment, as well as the expertise to take you through the brewing process. You’ll brew at least 11 gallons of beer (sixty 22oz. bottles). If 11 gallons of beer is more than you need, bring a friend or two and split the batch. It takes 3-4 hours to brew your batch and you return in 2 weeks to bottle and sample your beer, which takes about 2 hours, or you can have them bottle it and pick it up (an extra $20). Cost runs from $512 to $695. For more info, call Keith or Sue at 800-838-1246.



To read more of our newsletter click here!

Hope to see you soon! Keith & Sue Sherwood Forest Bed & Breakfast

938 Center St.

Douglas, Michigan 49406


P.S. Peace on Earth

Triple Creek Ranch Featuring Klicks For Chicks

September 4th, 2010 by Mariah

DARBY, MONTANA (August, 2010) – Cowgirls are invited to participate in a one-of-a-kind horseback riding adventure, created and led by Triple Creek Ranch owner Barbara Barrett. The first annual Klicks for Chicks 100-kilometer ride is an all-female upgrade of the all-male 100-mile Los Caballeros and Bohemian Grove endurance horse rides. With a decidedly Triple Creek Ranch twist, the ride is for women only, and cowgirls will ride rugged all day but return to the luxury of the Rocky Mountain resort at night. Riders will venture into deep canyons, over mountain passes, past crystal-clear lakes and through open meadows to discover the ‘last frontier’ and wilds of the Rocky Mountain West. Gourmet evening meals followed by crackling fires in Triple Creek’s luxurious cabins and a relaxing outdoor hot tub will be the reward for a long day in the saddle.

The “100 Klicks for Chicks” program is priced starting at $650 per night, per couple and features three-and-a-half days of riding, concluding with a fireside roast and awards presentation. All meals, beverages, and activities are included. Participants will also receive a personalized fleece vest. Traveling companions not participating in the ride are welcome to enjoy the luxurious accommodations and varied activities that Triple Creek Ranch has to offer while the cowgirls ride off into the sunrise. Husbands and compadres are invited to join the cowgirls for dinner each evening during the program.

Known for its spectacular setting in the Montana Rockies, its luxurious accommodations and superb, personalized service, Triple Creek Ranch, an award-winning member of Relais & Châteaux, offers outdoor adventures and luxury under the Montana Big Sky.

“Klicks for Chicks” October 28-November 1 Event Schedule

Thursday, October 28th

  • Cowgirl-up, at the Riders’ Roost, 1pm

  • Meet and greet horses and fellow cowgirls

  • Warm-up ride, 10 klicks (6 miles) among the Bitterroot Mountains

  • Cocktails at the Rooftop Lounge featuring local hat maker, Jimmy Harrison, from Double H Hats

  • Dinner with fellow riders and spouses

Friday, October 29

  • Breakfast in the dining room

  • Cowgirl-up, at the Riders’ Roost

  • Trailer horses to the trailhead

  • Ride 34 klicks, (21 miles), lunch provided

  • Trailer home to Triple Creek Ranch for cocktails in the Rooftop Lounge

  • Dinner with fellow riders and spouses

Saturday, October 30

  • Breakfast in the dining room

  • Cowgirl-up, at the Riders’ Roost

  • Trailer mounts to new trail

  • Ride 33 klicks, (20 miles), lunch provided

  • Trailer home to Triple Creek Ranch for cocktails in the Rooftop Lounge

  • Dinner with fellow riders and spouses

Sunday, October 31

  • Breakfast in the dining room

  • Cowgirl-up, at the Riders’ Roost

  • Haul horses to ride starting point.

  • Ride 23 klicks, (15 miles), lunch provided

  • Fireside roast and awards ceremony at Elk Meadow

  • Partner-up with spouses and friends for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres

· Adios dinner for all

Monday, November 1

  • ‘Happy trails’ to friends and trusted steeds

  • Breakfast

  • Lunch

About Triple Creek Ranch Rated the #1 US inn and #2 worldwide hotel in Travel + Leisure’s 2010 World’s Best Awards and the #1 US hotel and #5 hotel worldwide in Travel + Leisure’s 2009 “T+L 500,” Triple Creek Ranch is a Relais & Châteaux member property and an Orvis-endorsed fly-fishing lodge and resort. Set against a backdrop of the Montana Rockies, Triple Creek Ranch is a favored all-inclusive luxury getaway for couples who appreciate a balance of rest, romance and outdoor recreation with exquisite service, an extensive wine cellar and innovative cuisine. Accommodations are in 23 Western-style luxury log cabins with fireplace (most with private hot tub), all newly renovated. All-inclusive rates include trail rides, hikes, tennis, fly-casting lessons, snowshoeing, 3 meals daily, snacks, house wines and house cocktails, and in-room bar set-ups. Children 16 and over are welcome. Activities include fly fishing, helicopter tours, cattle drives, guided nature tours, snowmobiling, ATV tours, and downhill and cross-country skiing. Exceptional Western art is found throughout the property. The resort offers artists’ and photography workshop weekends; cowboy roundups; horseback riding, back-country fly-fishing and vintners’ programs. Triple Creek Ranch is a repeat winner of the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence and the Wine Enthusiast Award of Distinction., 406-821-4600, 800-654-2943. Twitter: @TripleCreekRanc Facebook: .

Labor Day Travel Expected To Increase

August 27th, 2010 by Mariah

NBC — In the air and on the highways, more Americans are expected to head out for holiday travel over Labor Day weekend with increases in all modes of transportation.

Projections are that 35 million travelers will take a trip at least 50 miles from home.

It’s about four million more travelers than last Labor Day.

Despite mixed economic news, the U.S. travel industry began to gain strength the end of last year and the momentum has continued.

AAA says more than 90% will travel in cars.

Only five percent will travel by plane, but it’s still an increase over last year despite fare increases.

“While there are higher airfares this summer and as we go into Labor Day weekend, travelers are able to offset those higher airfare costs with the tremendous savings they are going to find on hotels,” said Jeannene Tornatore, Orbitz senior editor.

Some of the best deals are in big cities and top destination sites.

Orbitz says its most popular destination for Labor Day this year is Las Vegas, followed by New York, Chicago, Denver, and Seattle.

It’s a chance for one last blast of summer, before the new season.

The Labor Day holiday travel period begins Thursday, September 2nd to Monday September 6th.

Email Us With Your Fall Specials and Events!

August 19th, 2010 by Mariah

Wednesday, September 22 marks the first day of fall. Now is the time to start making potential guests aware of any specials or events you will be running, such as annual fall festivals. Many travelers are just now starting to look at their fall travel options, and may be influenced to visit your area if the price is right.

Email Denee at with your Fall Spotlight Events and Specials, and we will post them in our “Fall into Autumn” Blog, that will be featured in the month of September. Spotlight: The Willows Inn

August 17th, 2010 by Mariah

The Willows Inn.

Located near Bellingham, WA, nestled in the northwest corner of Whatcom County, sits Lummi Island, home of The Willows Inn, an historic Bed and Breakfast retreat. Its organic, authentic farm-to-table fine dining is consistent with Slow Food, making The Willows Inn one of the most sought after B&Bs and agritourism destinations in the San Juan islands. Imagine a European auberge planted amid the stunning marine views of the San Juan Islands, and you begin to experience the peace, tranquility and sustainability the Willows Inn offers. Here is the affordable San Juan Islands experience.

The most northeastern island in the famous San Juan Island chain, Lummi is easily reached by a 6-minute ferry ride. The journey is beautiful with silhouettes of Lummi’s sister isles jutting from the sea. Once at the Willows you will find yourself in a unique hide-away, rich with natural beauty, local charm and an individual flavor all its own. Spend your get-way time relaxing instead of traveling… a 6 minute ferry ride will deliver you to a totally different world… an authentic Island experience without the long ferry lines and high cost of other San Juan islands.

In fair weather , enjoy spending time on the deck, and around our Nettles Farm and gardens. Nettles Farm features a program for Agritourism each year, with workshops for poultry and salmon processing. Stay in one of our two suites at the farm, for a true agritourism experience. In winter, enjoy the winter storms from the safety of the Great Room and its roaring wood fire.



The Willows Inn“A Bed & Breakfast”2579 West Shore DrLummi Island, WA. 98262USA

Rates: $165-$350 USDRooms: 8

Phone: 360-758-2620Toll Free: 888-294-2620Fax: 360-758-7399

PBS chooses Bellingham to show sustainable economy

August 17th, 2010 by Mariah

PBS chooses Bellingham to show sustainable economy


BELLINGHAM, Wash. — Bellingham will be one of many cities nationwide featured in a PBS “Now” special called “Fixing the Future.”

TV crews were in the city Aug. 8-11, filming at sustainable businesses for the one-hour special scheduled to air Nov. 18.

David Brancaccio, host of “Now,” said the special’s focus will be on finding new ways to think about and structure the economy after the financial meltdown and recession.

“We’re asking the question: Is there a way to make an economy serve more people?” Brancaccio said. “Because the old economy wasn’t good enough.”

Brancaccio said Bellingham was an ideal city to film because of the number of local and sustainable businesses working together to support a healthy economy that keeps money and jobs within the community.

Other cities to be filmed to be in the special include Austin, Texas; Portland, Maine; St. Paul, Minn.; and Berkeley, Calif.

“Bellingham is kind of the gold standard for sustainable, local businesses. It seems like people here get what it’s about,” Brancaccio said. “And it’s not just price, it’s something else. (In Bellingham) you know where your food is coming from, rather than it being a mystery. (Food) doesn’t come from across the world, emitting carbon (in travel).”

The crew filmed in a variety of locations: Lummi Island Wild, which practices sustainable reefnet fishing; the Willows Inn, a bed and breakfast that serves local fish and produce; a treetop office with a green roof that hangs over Chuckanut Bay; the Vehicle Research Institute at Western Washington University; Whatcom Educational Credit Union, which has built three LEED-certified buildings; Wood Stone Corp., which manufactures ovens; Mallard Ice Cream, which uses local ingredients; and the Community Food Co-op.

“There are so many good stories in Bellingham and Whatcom County about local businesses reducing their environmental footprint and … supporting one another,” said Derek Long, executive director of the nonprofit business group Sustainable Connections. “(Bellingham) is faring better in this slow economy than other communities are, and I think all our investments over the years in supporting each other and local businesses is why.”

One of the TV special’s goals was to find a manufacturer that doesn’t outsource – Wood Stone fit the bill.

The oven manufacturer provided 45 new jobs in Bellingham when it upgraded its factory near Bellingham International Airport with a robotics system in December 2008. Wood Stone does 95 percent of the manufacturing in the Bellingham factory, leaving only 5 percent of its parts coming from other countries.

Keith Carpenter, one of the founders and presidents, said sustainability is a large part of the Wood Stone culture, even though it can be a challenge in a tough economy.

“Sustainability isn’t something you do, it’s something you live,” Carpenter said. “Our employees learn to be a participant in sustainability.”

Brancaccio said it would be up for the TV audience to decide whether structural change and sustainable businesses are the solution to fixing our economy.

“We’re hoping that if we say ‘fixing the future’ and we talk about ways to ensure our economic survival, I think everyone will be interested in that,” Brancaccio said.

Fake B&B Gets Over 600 TripAdvisor Reviews

August 12th, 2010 by Mariah

One recent TripAdvisor review of the agrotourism destination Schrute Farms awarded four stars, lavishly praising the food, while another yielded just one star, casting aspersions on the owners’ sanity. This wild disparity is especially odd because Schrute Farms doesn’t even exist.


The farm “belongs” to Dwight Schrute of the NBC series “The Office” (and his eccentric cousin Mose). In September 2007, the show asked to use TripAdvisor, a travel Web site, in an episode in which Dwight turns his beet farm into a bed and breakfast. Christine Petersen, the chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor, was thrilled. “We don’t have a big marketing budget and don’t do TV ads,” she said. “This was the big time.”




TripAdvisor set up a review page, thinking it would be good for a quick laugh or two. Paul Lieberstein, who wrote the episode, called “Money,” never even went back to the site afterward. “We thought it would be fun, but then we didn’t think about it anymore,” he said in an interview. But Schrute Farms is still doing big business — for TripAdvisor. Reruns and DVDs keep inspiring new visits to the site and there are now over 600 reviews (more than for many major Manhattan hotels, Ms. Petersen said).


Many reviewers add their own funny flourishes, enhancing the show’s mythology: Mandy Pyszka from Milwaukee, who stumbled upon the TripAdvisor site while searching Googlefor Dwight Schrute quotes, raved about the beet pudding.



Carla Harrington of Fredricksburg, Va., was surprised to find 82 percent of reviews recommended Schrute Farms. “I thought about what it would feel like not to know them as TV characters but to really go to this B & B,” she said in an interview. Her one-star slam called Dwight “an overbearing survivalist who appears to have escaped from the local mental asylum.” Mr. Lieberstein, who also plays Toby Flenderson, a human resources staff member, on the show, said that “The Office” might someday revisit the farm. TripAdvisor executives said they would love that. “We’ve started many a meeting with Dwight’s quote that TripAdvisor is ‘the lifeblood of agrotourism,’ ” Ms. Petersen said. She has contemplated adding the Bates Motel and “The Shining’s” Overlook Hotel.



But not everyone gets the joke. Recently, TripAdvisor added a caveat explaining that Schrute Farms was fictional, Ms. Petersen said. “We had a complaint from someone who had wanted to go there.”





Article Taken From:

New York Times

March 28, 2010 Spotlight: Napa Valley

August 3rd, 2010 by Mariah

Napa Valley is one of the premier travel destinations in the world. Breathtaking views abound at every turn – mustard in the late winter, picturesque rolling hills planted with vineyards year-round and wineries of every stature dot the landscape. Whether you are wine tasting, dining at renowned restaurants like the French Laundry, pampering yourself with a mud bath in Calistoga, or just enjoying your stay at quaint bed & breakfasts, hotels or resorts … Napa Valley is your spot of heaven on earth. Here are a few of our favorite places to stay while in Wine Country!

Milliken Creek Inn
“A Bed & Breakfast”
1815 Silverado Trail
Napa, CA. 94558


Situated at the foot of the world-famous, winery-lined silverado trail, along the banks of the Napa River, this luxury inn and spa-retreat is just minutes from the Robert Mondavi sponsored Copia, The American Center for Wine, Food, and The Arts, renowned restaurants, shopping, cycling, ballooning and places of historc interest. The 3-acre property is laced with gardens, oaks, and redwoods. Care has been taken to develop restful spots for outdoor reflection and enjoyment with benches, outdoor seating, decks, yoga gazebo, pool, fountains and other water features nestled amongst live oaks. Milliken Creek…A Stylish new Face in the Napa Valley.





Bel Abri
“A Bed & Breakfast”
837 California Blvd.
Napa, CA. 94559


Bel Abri is a French Country Inn style bed and breakfast located just off I-29 and First St. in Napa. Our old world charm and ambiance featuring luxurious French tapestries and hand crafted furniture makes you feel as if you were whisked off to a French Chateau. Awake in the morning to a country style breakfast served in your room. After a busy day join us for a complimentary tasting of local wine and cheese.






Inn On Randolph
“A Bed & Breakfast”
411 Randolph Street
Napa, CA. 94559



Inn on Randolph uniquely blends classic bed and breakfast hospitality with a choice of distinctive accommodations. For the more traditional inn experience, choose a “Four Seasons” room in the restored 1860 Gothic Revival Victorian. If you prefer the intimacy of a private cottage, stylishly furnished and brimming with luxuries such as fireplaces, whirlpools and private entrances, there are three bungalows dating to the l930’s. Situated on a generous half-acre, the inn is surrounded by lawn, gardens, meandering stone pathways, and is only a short stroll or trolley ride from Napa’s rejuvenated downtown district. While at the inn, guests are treated to personalized service that is boundless, yet discreet. And when you’re ready to venture out,we’ll happily share the insider knowledge and special offerings cultivated with 10 years of hospitality experience in the Napa Valley.










Oakville Vineyard Bed & Breakfast
“A Bed & Breakfast”
7960 Money Road
Oakville, CA. 94562


Oakville Vineyard Bed & Breakfast is located in Oakville in the heart of the Napa Valley. The Bed & Breakfast sits next to the Napa River amid trees and gardens in a beautiful compound with a 100 year old barn and vineyard views.

After a wonderful night’s sleep in one of our tastefully appointed rooms with private baths, enjoy a generous Continental breakfast of fresh fruit, cereal, and homemade scones or frittata. Feel stress “melt away,” in the words of many guests, while you enjoy sitting by the pool or walking, jogging or biking through adjacent vineyards and along the Napa River.

Oakville Vineyard Bed & Breakfast is located within two miles of Silver Oak winery for tastings and special events and Robert Mondavi for tastings and summer concerts. Other wineries within a two to four mile radius include Beaulieu Vineyards, Cakebread, Caymus Cellars, Far Niente, Groth, Mumm, the Napa Wine Co., Miner Family, Nickle & Nickle, Opus I, PlumpJack, Round Pond, Rubicon, Rudd and Saddleback.

Fewer Lodging Options in New York City

August 2nd, 2010 by Mariah

Fewer Lodging Options in New York City
Wednesday July 28, 2010

A new state law means there will be fewer lodging options for travelers in New York City. Effective May 1, 2011, it will be illegal to rent an apartment in the city for any period under 30 days, according to an article in The Guardian. Gov. David Paterson said in a statement that the law “fixes problems caused by illegal hotels and improves quality of life in traditional residential apartment buildings.”

The Professional Association of Innkeepers International is among the organizations which called on Gov. Paterson to veto the legislation. In a letter to the governor, PAII said “the consequences of this bill will dramatically hurt tourism for the short and long term.”

Click here to read PAII’s letter to Gov. Paterson.