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Mini

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I would like to know how much space in your home do you think should be used as common areas.
I was at a b & b recently which used every available space in their house as guest rooms. There was just one tiny little reception room consisting of three chairs, as you entered the house.
There was a small porch on the outside of the house but if the weather was bad I guess you would have to stay put in your room.
I guess they wanted to max out their revenue but really! Even their main floor livingrooms / parlors were made into guest rooms.
I really didn't like that as I never really got the feel of what the house looked like.
 

gillumhouse

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I basically do not have "common" area other than my dining room (and many a night the participants have sat around the table looking for toothpicks to hold eyes open because the conversation was so good - last night I had to cut it off because it was after Midnight and i was a participant with my guest! - or the big front porch which is a favorite during the Summer. The Library/Office is "supposed" to be common area if I ever succeed in decrapifying it again.
My lack of common space is because the owners insist on having a bedroom/bathroom/ living room that ended up artist's studio "bat cave" for DH. JB - I got it to the point of the wingback chairs are clear, both can accept derriers. Now for the pile in front of the fireplace! I am getting there!
 

Morticia

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I have a small living room and the dining room where guests can sit. Many like to sit in the dining room and play cards. I find it awkward when there is no place but the room to hang out. Not that I hang out in the lobby at a hotel, but I expect a B&B to have some sitting space outside the rooms as, often, the rooms are small. Plus, half the fun is feeling like you're hanging out in someone's house. And getting to talk to the other guests.
That said, I bought new furniture for my living room this year and it has hardly been used.
 

Innkeeper To Go

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Victoria, I think it really depends on the place.
It's always nice to have a great big space for a common area. And I do end up hanging out in the common area (as a guest) when it's large enough to have more than one seating area. The bigger the space, the better ability you have to create intimate spaces within that room.
I've stayed and worked in places with no common area at all. And truthfully they always seem to be missing something. To me, the common area is an important part of the experience.
I've worked in places that had no ability to really create a great indoor common area so made some intimate and inviting spaces outside. But that only works in mild climates.
 

gillumhouse

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I have a small living room and the dining room where guests can sit. Many like to sit in the dining room and play cards. I find it awkward when there is no place but the room to hang out. Not that I hang out in the lobby at a hotel, but I expect a B&B to have some sitting space outside the rooms as, often, the rooms are small. Plus, half the fun is feeling like you're hanging out in someone's house. And getting to talk to the other guests.
That said, I bought new furniture for my living room this year and it has hardly been used..
It depends on the demographics/location IMO regarding how used the common area is. My guests usually have breakfast and then are gone for the day - roaming the area if tourists or visiting until all hours if here for family/friends. I have had rare occasions where someone gets up early and comes in the Library to read before breakfast or they come in to chat. They either want to see the sights or ride the rail-trail or sit around the table with coffee talking to us.
I imagine a common area is more important when couples are traveling together or for a destination B & B. My season is porch sitting season.
 

MTLLodge

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I have the greatroom which is my kitchen (open), dining area and the living room. We are on 5 acres, there are 2 patios, 1 deck, 1 covered porch and a fire pit area.
 

Samster

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I think that you need some indoor common area other than the dining room. If you have a common TV, it's nice to have another "quiet" area in that common space or a separate room for folks who don't want to have the TV in the background. Personally, I have been disappointed in the few places where I've stayed that lacked a comfortable indoor common area.
If you have smaller sized rooms, I think common spaces are even more appreciated. Also, if you don't have desk space in the rooms and you have biz guests, it's really nice to offer a library or area where they can work on a computer or have access to a printer.
A lot does depend on the demographic of your guests and your location. Most of our folks were out and about all day long and our rooms and suites are fairly roomy, but they enjoyed the living room space and other common sitting areas. And we do not have a huge house.
We're in a mild climate and people spend a lot of time on the front porch here. Still, we had plenty of folks that loved to read in the living room and early risers could relax in the early morning in comfortable seating before breakfast if they didn't want to go outside to the porch. We have patio spaces that were rarely used except by smokers.
If you're going to host any kind of events, the need for common areas becomes critical.
I guess the specific answer of size of your common areas depends.
 

birdwatcher

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In our B&B in WV we had plenty of common areas, but the innkeeping job we are at now is a HUGE house and has two big parlors, a wrap around porch and common areas on each floor. On the other hand one B & B that was renovated took all their parlors and made them into bedrooms and in the area we are in it will not give them more revenue for their B & B.
 

Morticia

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That one B&B we stayed at in Savannah had this entire empty ballroom as guest space. A couch and desk at one end and the dining table a mile away at the other! It was so cold and unwelcoming, it was better to sit in the hallway upstairs! (Seriously, it was a mile from one end of the room to the other...perfect for a big dance with hoopskirts, but nothing else. It was not hard to picture Scarlett descending the stairs into that space! Marble floors and all.)
 

JBloggs

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A B&B should have a guest common area or it is just a room for rent, that is what makes it a B&B. I know Savannah and other high occup areas rent out every space they can, and in my book they should not be licenses as a B&B. This is what sets a B&B apart from just a room, even family homes have "common areas" right?
 

Copperhead

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That one B&B we stayed at in Savannah had this entire empty ballroom as guest space. A couch and desk at one end and the dining table a mile away at the other! It was so cold and unwelcoming, it was better to sit in the hallway upstairs! (Seriously, it was a mile from one end of the room to the other...perfect for a big dance with hoopskirts, but nothing else. It was not hard to picture Scarlett descending the stairs into that space! Marble floors and all.).
Interesting, the ball room was downstairs? One antebellem home I toured in GA had the ball room on the 3rd floor. Yes, it was huge as well. I was amazed over the very open floor space. They were unable to show it to more than 10 people at a time because there was only one staircase to the 3rd floor.
 

gillumhouse

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That one B&B we stayed at in Savannah had this entire empty ballroom as guest space. A couch and desk at one end and the dining table a mile away at the other! It was so cold and unwelcoming, it was better to sit in the hallway upstairs! (Seriously, it was a mile from one end of the room to the other...perfect for a big dance with hoopskirts, but nothing else. It was not hard to picture Scarlett descending the stairs into that space! Marble floors and all.).
Interesting, the ball room was downstairs? One antebellem home I toured in GA had the ball room on the 3rd floor. Yes, it was huge as well. I was amazed over the very open floor space. They were unable to show it to more than 10 people at a time because there was only one staircase to the 3rd floor.
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Ballrooms were traditionally on the 3rd floor. We have a mansion and a lodge hall in my city and both had a ballroom - on the 3rd floor and only one (not wide) staircase. My friend in Ohio managed a building in her city for 18 years that was apartments (storefront on first floor) with the owner's apartment and the ballroom on the top floor.
 

Morticia

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That one B&B we stayed at in Savannah had this entire empty ballroom as guest space. A couch and desk at one end and the dining table a mile away at the other! It was so cold and unwelcoming, it was better to sit in the hallway upstairs! (Seriously, it was a mile from one end of the room to the other...perfect for a big dance with hoopskirts, but nothing else. It was not hard to picture Scarlett descending the stairs into that space! Marble floors and all.).
Interesting, the ball room was downstairs? One antebellem home I toured in GA had the ball room on the 3rd floor. Yes, it was huge as well. I was amazed over the very open floor space. They were unable to show it to more than 10 people at a time because there was only one staircase to the 3rd floor.
.
Well, it was big enough to be a ballroom! It was the entire first floor and it was completely open. A couple of 'support posts' here and there.
 

gillumhouse

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That one B&B we stayed at in Savannah had this entire empty ballroom as guest space. A couch and desk at one end and the dining table a mile away at the other! It was so cold and unwelcoming, it was better to sit in the hallway upstairs! (Seriously, it was a mile from one end of the room to the other...perfect for a big dance with hoopskirts, but nothing else. It was not hard to picture Scarlett descending the stairs into that space! Marble floors and all.).
Interesting, the ball room was downstairs? One antebellem home I toured in GA had the ball room on the 3rd floor. Yes, it was huge as well. I was amazed over the very open floor space. They were unable to show it to more than 10 people at a time because there was only one staircase to the 3rd floor.
.
Well, it was big enough to be a ballroom! It was the entire first floor and it was completely open. A couple of 'support posts' here and there.
.
Perhaps it was an add-on to the first floor so functions could be held. Therefore it would now be a ballroom.
 

egoodell

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Since we built we were able to make a good amount of common space. It's harder for those with historical homes. We have a sitting room, library, half bath, octagon entry, tasting room and back deck. Some have said that we are wasting space and should make the front rooms (sitting room and library) bedrooms but I don't agree. I like to have lots of common space.
Riki
 

gillumhouse

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Since we built we were able to make a good amount of common space. It's harder for those with historical homes. We have a sitting room, library, half bath, octagon entry, tasting room and back deck. Some have said that we are wasting space and should make the front rooms (sitting room and library) bedrooms but I don't agree. I like to have lots of common space.
Riki.
I sit here saying - I wish.......... The house that seemed sooo BIG when we bought it has shrunk. No room!!!
 

JBloggs

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Since we built we were able to make a good amount of common space. It's harder for those with historical homes. We have a sitting room, library, half bath, octagon entry, tasting room and back deck. Some have said that we are wasting space and should make the front rooms (sitting room and library) bedrooms but I don't agree. I like to have lots of common space.
Riki.
I sit here saying - I wish.......... The house that seemed sooo BIG when we bought it has shrunk. No room!!!
.
gillumhouse said:
I sit here saying - I wish.......... The house that seemed sooo BIG when we bought it has shrunk. No room!!!
and then they will walk into your areas anyway! blast it!

I have had a good run, they will be okay, it is one of those things like in the Pocono NASCAR race last night. One driver had to man-up for the other driver to realize he needs to back off. I set this guy straight here and marched right into his "space" when I addressed him. I do believe...he knew he made a mistake after that.
Someone BUY ME! I AM FOR SaLE! See the fun that can be all yours!
 

gillumhouse

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Since we built we were able to make a good amount of common space. It's harder for those with historical homes. We have a sitting room, library, half bath, octagon entry, tasting room and back deck. Some have said that we are wasting space and should make the front rooms (sitting room and library) bedrooms but I don't agree. I like to have lots of common space.
Riki.
I sit here saying - I wish.......... The house that seemed sooo BIG when we bought it has shrunk. No room!!!
.
gillumhouse said:
I sit here saying - I wish.......... The house that seemed sooo BIG when we bought it has shrunk. No room!!!
and then they will walk into your areas anyway! blast it!

I have had a good run, they will be okay, it is one of those things like in the Pocono NASCAR race last night. One driver had to man-up for the other driver to realize he needs to back off. I set this guy straight here and marched right into his "space" when I addressed him. I do believe...he knew he made a mistake after that.
Someone BUY ME! I AM FOR SaLE! See the fun that can be all yours!
.
Years ago now, DH was talking to a guest and went into his area to get someting to show him - and turned around to find he had just followed him in to our area (which is a disaster (worse than my Library) of paintings, paintings in progress, muz zle loa ders in various stages of completion (at that time), and DH toys and books all over.....)! Same guest would come perch in the kitchen as I made breakfast each morning. I was guaranteed to break at least 3 Fos toria goblets every time that man stayed here.
 

Morticia

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Since we built we were able to make a good amount of common space. It's harder for those with historical homes. We have a sitting room, library, half bath, octagon entry, tasting room and back deck. Some have said that we are wasting space and should make the front rooms (sitting room and library) bedrooms but I don't agree. I like to have lots of common space.
Riki.
I sit here saying - I wish.......... The house that seemed sooo BIG when we bought it has shrunk. No room!!!
.
gillumhouse said:
I sit here saying - I wish.......... The house that seemed sooo BIG when we bought it has shrunk. No room!!!
and then they will walk into your areas anyway! blast it!

I have had a good run, they will be okay, it is one of those things like in the Pocono NASCAR race last night. One driver had to man-up for the other driver to realize he needs to back off. I set this guy straight here and marched right into his "space" when I addressed him. I do believe...he knew he made a mistake after that.
Someone BUY ME! I AM FOR SaLE! See the fun that can be all yours!
.
Years ago now, DH was talking to a guest and went into his area to get someting to show him - and turned around to find he had just followed him in to our area (which is a disaster (worse than my Library) of paintings, paintings in progress, muz zle loa ders in various stages of completion (at that time), and DH toys and books all over.....)! Same guest would come perch in the kitchen as I made breakfast each morning. I was guaranteed to break at least 3 Fos toria goblets every time that man stayed here.
.
We've had guests follow us into our bedroom. If I realize they are doing that, I stop, turn around and say again, 'I will be right back. Please have a seat.'
Funny thing is, they don't even seem to care. Not a one has ever walked in, seen the bed and said, 'Oh, excuse me,' and gone away!
We have NO private space according to some guests. The WHOLE building is on display.
 

JBloggs

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So basically the gist of this thread comes down to "the entire house is a COMMON AREA." d'oh
I just gave the old speech to the children stating SHUT the door on them, lock it and tell them to go to the front and ring the bell. I would not tell them to leave their zone and wander through with the guest following them to the front here, most guests never even see our kids (unless we know you!) What they END up doing is going to find me and the guest follows behind them. So we just restated to tell the guest "WAIT HERE AND I WILL GO GET MOM" or tell them to go to the front and ring the bell, like I already told the guest to do at check in.
PS Clarification INNMATES are always privy to the kitchen and our areas. Not guests. Innmates can search the fridge and see what kind of butter we use, they are more than welcome and we invite them in, they are like family! :)
 
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