No battle plan survives contact with the enemy

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Arks's picture
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That's a wise quote from Helmuth von Moltke the Elder.

So my long-in-development guesthouse is now open. In fact, there's a guest down there right now, no doubt putting all the freebies into his luggage and using a different glass for each sip of wine.

So my concept was that all reservations would be made online. I don't even answer the guesthouse phone. They all go to voicemail. So far 100% of my contacts with potential guests have been on the phone.

So my concept was a two night minimum. So far I've caved in on that twice. No doubt a third cave in will be before the cock crows tomorrow morning (Someone may need to explain that reference to Eric A. Blair Smiling ). Tonight's guest is a one-nighter, and so is tomorrow night's!

But the credit cards are good, and that's what counts in the end.

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Thanks! I also ordered some of their ice bucket liners.

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Arkansawyer wrote:

Thanks! I also ordered some of their ice bucket liners.

AKA shell collecting bags...(Yeah we always need them at the beach! haha)

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Joey Bloggs wrote:

AKA shell collecting bags...(Yeah we always need them at the beach! haha)

Here it's mussel shells, as we discussed a while back. We're trying to get the City to haul in some sand and make a sandbar along the river where it flows by town. Right now it's just all grass and trees along the waterfront, but we want people to be able to sunbathe and imagine they're in Florida. The City won't do it, of course, but it could be nice.

But if I know our police, they'd spend all their time down there, hoping to catch a woman with her bare back exposed or something.

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Arkansawyer wrote:

Joey Bloggs wrote:

AKA shell collecting bags...(Yeah we always need them at the beach! haha)

Here it's mussel shells, as we discussed a while back. We're trying to get the City to haul in some sand and make a sandbar along the river where it flows by town. Right now it's just all grass and trees along the waterfront, but we want people to be able to sunbathe and imagine they're in Florida. The City won't do it, of course, but it could be nice.

But if I know our police, they'd spend all their time down there, hoping to catch a woman with her bare back exposed or something.

Grass! Phewy! You should know by now that I am involved with folks who work with landowners for buffer landscaping, waterfront properties at our lake. 

Check this out I saw today, it cracked me up: 

How does the Chesapeake Bay spell relief? O-Y-S-T-E-R-S, a new study finds.

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Trash can liners: American Hotel Register - PN EC202206NAH

Desc: Coreless rolls, 6 micron, 50 bags/roll, 40 rolls/case 20x22", color natural. (Natural for plastic I guess)

If they are too wide, we pull them tight and tie a knot on the outside of the trash can.

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Try tying the knot first and then pulling the bag over the can's rim.  Makes the whole process a snap!

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Try tying the knot first and then pulling the bag over the can's rim.  Makes the whole process a snap!

It's the little labor-saving things that I love to hear

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Madeleine wrote:

Trash can liners: American Hotel Register - PN EC202206NAH

Desc: Coreless rolls, 6 micron, 50 bags/roll, 40 rolls/case 20x22", color natural. (Natural for plastic I guess)

If they are too wide, we pull them tight and tie a knot on the outside of the trash can.

Gosh I just saw them for $1 at Dollar Tree. (I had to get plastic tablecloths for a picnic)

Madeleine's picture
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We've found them locally here for $1, too, but not regularly enough. That case will last a year and it's done with.

Arks's picture
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You mean these? Yes, I've seen those at hotels. I hate them, but guess women might have some use for them.

gillumhouse's picture
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Yes. I just went up and took a photo and was about to load it here because I cannot find your e-mail address - grrrrr. Some ladies do still wear skirts. I stopped wearing dresses and skirts when I had to start wearing old lady shooes. Nothing looks worse than a nice dress or skirt with clodhoppers! (otherwise known as men's gym shoes (EE) because they are the only thing wide enough for my wonderful bunion - thank you 3 inch spike heels and pointed toes)

Madeleine's picture
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Hey, I wear skirts with wide, flat soled shoes all the time. Not gym shoes. But right now espadrilles. I own not a single pair of pointy-toed, high heeled shoes. Heaven help me if the last one gets married and I'm invited. Eye-wink

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Have not worn 3-inch heels since 1973 when the OB said to stop wearing them. Once I dropped the kid, I could not take the pain of getting used to them again. Now I cannot (and have not for years) find pretty shoes that I do not blow through in less than 6 months - no matter whether they are cheap or expensive. Right foot is 1 inch wider than the left thanks to the bunion (doesn't hurt so i am leaving it alone). The only shoes I can get that I do not split out the side of are the men's gym shoes (low-cut shoelace kind) in EEE width if I can find them. I have one white pair and 2 pairs in black that I have been wearing for a couple years now..

One Sunday after church a few of us were talking about fashion and age and i said the thing I hated was having to start wearing old lady shoes. As I walked home it hit me - You dumba**, you are wearing old lady shoes BECAUSE you ARE an old lady!!! DUH!!

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Yes, those. You (well, not you) can hang a silky top using the notches on the top and a skirt from the clips at the bottom. Ditto slacks you don't want creased. BB&B sells them in a box of 20 or 25 for a decent price. Make sure the clips have rubber tips so skirts don't get caught and pull on the metal.

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Madeleine wrote:

Make sure the clips have rubber tips so skirts don't get caught and pull on the metal.

Great point! Thanks!

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Got an e-mail this afternoon from the 2-nighters mentioned above, a mostly glowing review but with a few very valuable suggestions.

You can tell I'm a single man trying to do this! Below are her suggestions:

  • The closet has only men's hangers. There should be some women's hangers.
  • There is no free outlet in the bathroom. I had to unplug the hair dryer to use my curling iron.
  • There should be Kleenex in the bedroom.
  • Ladies need a mirror in the bedroom!

OK, that's all easy to fix, but can someone tell me what "women's hangers" are, and have you ever been to a hotel that had them?

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Skirt hangers (with clips to hold a skirt) and/or hangers with cut outs on the top to hold 'slinky' things like chemises. Do your hangers have the extra bar at the bottom to hold a pair of folded pants?

Oh, that outlet one is a good one. Curious...what is plugged into the outlet in the bathroom so there is only one free outlet? (The lighted makeup/shaving mirror?) Make sure that outlet can handle a curling iron AND a blow dryer being on at the same time the A/C is also running. (Learned this the really hard way when the breakers tripped while 4 women in separate rooms were getting ready for a wedding in July!)

Yes, tissues in bedroom and bathroom. Ditto a trash can in both places for said tissues. (Otherwise, you'll find them on the nightstand or the floor - ewww.) And, you'll get a TA review that hauls you over the coals because the guest wasn't smart enough to take the trash can out of the bathroom. (No, not here.)

Mirrors on dresser AND full length mirror in guest bedroom. And outlet near one or both for said hair dryer in case someone else is hogging the bathroom.

Not mentioned, and maybe you have these, extendable makeup/shaving mirrors over the bathroom sink. The kind that are illuminated and double-sided.

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Madeleine wrote:

Do your hangers have the extra bar at the bottom to hold a pair of folded pants?

Yes, because we men need them Smiling

Madeleine wrote:
Oh, that outlet one is a good one. Curious...what is plugged into the outlet in the bathroom so there is only one free outlet?

There is NO free outlet. Lighted extendable double-sided makeup mirror and blow dryer take both outlets, so you have to unplug one to use curling iron or shaver. I'll fix that for sure.

Madeleine wrote:
Ditto a trash can in both places for said tissues.

Have trash cans covered. EVERY room in the place has a trash can. But I'm having a horrible time finding plastic bags to fit small bathroom-sized trash cans and I REALLY don't want to use Walmart bags!!!

Madeleine's picture
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We get our small plastic trash cans liners from American Hotel Register. I will look later on to get the correct size part number for you.

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Americanhotelregister.com has the boxes of small plastic liners

Arks's picture
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Thanks! When I did a search I got: 1189 results found for "can liner"

But I'll find them there eventually. Maybe "small can liner" will help.

Amazon and the local Walmart failed miserably. The smallest bag our WM has is a "tall kitchen bag".

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Not sure if this is them or not but 24 x 24 sounds closer

http://www.americanhotel.com/Products/High-Density-Can-Liner-24x24-6-Mic...

THis one is 17 x 17

http://www.americanhotel.com/Controller/controller2.aspx?R=2465EC171806N

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Women's hangers are also called skirt hangers - pincher clips to have a shirt from - or just hangers with no movable pants bar (the only way I can think of the describe it.  At a guess, I would say she was looking for a skirt hanger. And yes, they do have them in hotels.

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Congrats!  What a great feeling!   With my little, tiny experience, I'm all for caving in (err...adapting by making wise business choices) in the first few months when in business.   You can be a hard-a** later when you are SOOO full. 

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CafeMae wrote:

Congrats!  What a great feeling!   With my little, tiny experience, I'm all for caving in (err...adapting by making wise business choices) in the first few months when in business.   You can be a hard-a** later when you are SOOO full. 

Have my first 2-nighter this weekend. They're also my first to make their reservations online so it was good to see that the online system all worked perfectly. The keypad entry system sent me a notification at 6:09 p.m. that they'd entered their code and entered the apartment. The wireless keypad system is working perfectly! So I immediately charged the balance due to their credit card, per the "balance due upon arrival" policy. Lovin' it!

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THAT sounds like a swift system!

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Arks where is that chapel in the woods, anywhere near you? I saw a photo this morning. It said Arkansas.

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Joey Bloggs wrote:

Arks where is that chapel in the woods, anywhere near you? I saw a photo this morning. It said Arkansas.

The most famous is Throncrown Chapel just outside Eureka Springs (a few hours from us). It won about every architectural award in the book when it was built about 1980.

There's a similar one, which we think of with the phrase "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery" in a botanic garden at Hot Springs, also a few hours from us. It's almost as nice, but I'm sure Thorncrown is the one you're thinking of. It's world famous.

 

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all I can say is WOW!!!

Madeleine's picture
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I loved this when I first saw it years ago.

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Wow! Amazing!

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Two of them, wow. Thanks.

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Arkansawyer wrote:

...before the cock crows tomorrow morning ....

Congrats....

You don't want to know what I'm imagining...

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Eric Arthur Blair wrote:

Arkansawyer wrote:

...before the cock crows tomorrow morning ....

Congrats....

You don't want to know what I'm imagining...

I haven't done that ROTFL laugh thing in years! Thanks! I needed a good laugh after a busy day.

Tonight I have guests from Maryland, passing through here en route to see Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art (built by the Walmart heiress). Somehow I doubt all my guests will be as nice and classy as this couple, but so far, so good!

 

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Arkansawyer wrote:

Eric Arthur Blair wrote:

Arkansawyer wrote:

...before the cock crows tomorrow morning ....

Congrats....

You don't want to know what I'm imagining...

I haven't done that ROTFL laugh thing in years! Thanks! I needed a good laugh after a busy day.

Tonight I have guests from Maryland, passing through here en route to see Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art (built by the Walmart heiress). Somehow I doubt all my guests will be as nice and classy as this couple, but so far, so good!

Want to really have a laugh? See this (but be warned it is definitely NOT safe for work.)

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=48602e7b49

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Whooo Hooo!  Good to have policies and know you can bend if you want! 

I only do 2 night minimums on occasions such as special weekends - events etc.  that seem to book up in neighboring big city and overflow here.  Or sticker shock in big city which I take advantage of!   The other is if I am doing a special, like my 15th anniversary special going on now. 

Wishing you the best Arks! 

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The best laid plans...

We have a bunch of one nighters over memorial weekend, and a few two nighters. Not a one is on Friday night. You gotta do what you gotta do, if we insisted on two nights on weekends (other than peak weekends) we would go broke.

I remember years ago before the bust where innkeepers on here would talk about never ever having less than 2 nights year round, and I would gulp and think of course "location location"...but now they are having a hard time sticking to that just on the weekends. Gotta roll with the punches!

CONGRATULATIONS!

smiley

Bathroom doors closed "Where is the bathroom?" they ask the second they get in the room. But they are traveling so I may ask that, even know I could prob figure out where it is.

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Joey Bloggs wrote:

 

Bathroom doors closed "Where is the bathroom?" they ask the second they get in the room. But they are traveling so I may ask that, even know I could prob figure out where it is.

It's the only door in the apartment and you see it immediately as you open the front door, so I think they'll find it fast, especially since they're in "hurry mode" Smiling

Guest #1 is now gone and #2 comes in this afternoon. Gotta go flip!

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Ha ha...now you know what it's really like to be an innkeeper Smiling  2 days are great, but if you need the cash flow, one is just fine.

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Arkansawyer wrote:

Joey Bloggs wrote:

 

Bathroom doors closed "Where is the bathroom?" they ask the second they get in the room. But they are traveling so I may ask that, even know I could prob figure out where it is.

It's the only door in the apartment and you see it immediately as you open the front door, so I think they'll find it fast, especially since they're in "hurry mode" Smiling

Guest #1 is now gone and #2 comes in this afternoon. Gotta go flip!

 

Have fun!

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Congratulations! At bocce tonight I got the question that has dumbfounded people for years - Do you stay busy? And i always answer yes. I told the man tonight, I do not WANT to be too busy to play bocce so I choose when I take guests. They STILL cannot believe people come here to stay.

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Thanks for all the good wishes. It will be interesting to move from building and furnishing to marketing and management. We spent 10 minutes last night deciding if the bathroom doors should be open or closed when the guests first enter. Decided on closed, so they get the fun of finding out what's behind that closed door!

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Congratulations, on the INN-coming!

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Arks's picture
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Why caving? After 3 years planning and building, I'd dying to get some guests in there and get this thing up and running. If it's one night or no nights, I'll take the one.

I'm sure once business picks up I'll stick to the 2 night minimum, but for now I just need heads in beds to get some experience in flipping the apartments.

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Smiling

Madeleine's picture
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Why caving? Curious.

Innkeep's picture
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Isn't it a great feeling, though?  Just tell yourself you are "tweaking" your requirements for the market you have.

And Congratulations!!!!

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