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No more adjoining door phobia

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JBloggs

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The door is gone...we are officially in our 8th year and it has plagued us from day one. And guess what, the guests first in for the new look tonight were here 5 years ago on their wedding night. Same Room. They did not notice much that night, they said, but DID notice the adjoining door and told me "yeah it was creepy" so there ya go! Good riddance.
(Absence of proof is not proof of absence...shall I say the door NEVER bothered anyone because no one complained about it in over 7 years? See this is what I mean.)
Little by little these pro-jects get done. Sure feels good to have accomplished these things, let me tell ya.
What are the things that bug you, things you are embarrassed about, things you try to not draw attention to at check in? Is there anything you can do about getting them to the front of the list?
 

Gingerbread Latte

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The Inn I'm working on buying has one bathroom that opens into 2 rooms. Current owner has it blocked with furniture so that it only opens to one room (and locked.) I will definitely look into removing it, if I get that far.
 

JBloggs

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The Inn I'm working on buying has one bathroom that opens into 2 rooms. Current owner has it blocked with furniture so that it only opens to one room (and locked.) I will definitely look into removing it, if I get that far..
Gingerbread Latte said:
The Inn I'm working on buying has one bathroom that opens into 2 rooms. Current owner has it blocked with furniture so that it only opens to one room (and locked.) I will definitely look into removing it, if I get that far.
a shared bath? I think this is where this all began with this room (it is the same one in the glogster poster) wherein the house had been added on to accommodate two more bathrooms, so I think this room shared a bath with the other room - the it didn't go INTO the bathroom, it went into the other room.
And worse...both sides of the door had at least 4 locks on it. An adjoining door with big locks and deadbolts on both sides (ridiculous). One side would say "Hey what's in here?" and not relock their side and then the other side would open it and see the other room. (this happened once that I know of). I spoke to the guest when this happened, they were in bed watching telly. They were ticked off. I said, Did you open it? They said "Yes" I said "Did you relock the door?" No. So ???
 

Gingerbread Latte

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There's probably something deeply psychological about a locked door.... LOL.
The house was built in 1880, so over the years owners have done a good job of including bathrooms. They managed to add a bath (across the hall) that goes with one of the rooms. So, they all have a private bath, just not an adjoining bath. Whoever did it didn't bother to close off the extra door. I can imagine guests opening it just out of curiosity.
 

Alibi Ike

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There's probably something deeply psychological about a locked door.... LOL.
The house was built in 1880, so over the years owners have done a good job of including bathrooms. They managed to add a bath (across the hall) that goes with one of the rooms. So, they all have a private bath, just not an adjoining bath. Whoever did it didn't bother to close off the extra door. I can imagine guests opening it just out of curiosity..
You will need to spend a fair amount of time explaining that a bathroom across the hall is a private bath. Take my word on that. A bathroom across the hall is, to a guest, in no way 'private'. No matter how many different ways we have tried to explain it, guests will insist, to my face, that the bathroom is not private. They have confused 'en suite' and 'private' to the point I'd like to tear my hair out.
The most often asked question when the guest sees where the bathroom is in relation to their room and the other rooms (and put on your best 'this woman must be an idiot' tone of voice), 'Well, if this is a private bathroom (sneer), then where are the bathrooms for those rooms?
Telling them the other bathrooms are in the other rooms still doesn't really get the point across.
They think they've been snookered. That I pulled a fast one and removed their bathroom from the room just before they arrived. (Yes, it's on the website, in the confirmation, told to them on the phone and it's the cheapest room in the place. There's a reason for the low price, folks, give it some thought.)
What terminology do they use for that on the website right now?
 

Alibi Ike

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There's probably something deeply psychological about a locked door.... LOL.
The house was built in 1880, so over the years owners have done a good job of including bathrooms. They managed to add a bath (across the hall) that goes with one of the rooms. So, they all have a private bath, just not an adjoining bath. Whoever did it didn't bother to close off the extra door. I can imagine guests opening it just out of curiosity..
Gingerbread Latte said:
There's probably something deeply psychological about a locked door.... LOL.
BTW, if you think there is something deeply psychological about a locked door, try putting a 'Private' sign up sometime and see what happens. You unleash something deep and dark in a lot of otherwise normal, happy people.
 

Gingerbread Latte

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The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
Speaking of private, there is no door into the kitchen. How would you handle that? I was thinking of a pretty folding screen, with the "health dept doesn't want you to eat all my food" sign on it. They would have to actively move the screen to get in.
 

Bommelhoeve

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It depends, do you want your guests to come into the kitchen to take coffee or other drinks? If not, I would get a door in place, with a lock. Otherwise they will come in at the most inconvenient time and take your food at night. The more signs you put up the greater the interest and challenge........
 

muirford

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The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
Speaking of private, there is no door into the kitchen. How would you handle that? I was thinking of a pretty folding screen, with the "health dept doesn't want you to eat all my food" sign on it. They would have to actively move the screen to get in..
Gingerbread Latte said:
The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
I have one of those rooms - I say on the website, on the phone and in the confirmation that the bath is private but detached from the room, located a few steps across the hall. This will NOT eliminate all of the problem children who just automatically book online the cheapest room without reading, but it does help. On the phone I can go into a more detailed explanation, and do - I usually start by saying that the bath is across the hall from the room, and then explain that it is private and not shared with another room. Americans hear private and think that means ensuite. That room is our cheapest but not our smallest - both the bedroom and the bathroom are pretty large.
I am thankful every day that my kitchen is behind the door to my owners' quarters - having an open kitchen is a real challenge.
 

Don Draper

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There's probably something deeply psychological about a locked door.... LOL.
The house was built in 1880, so over the years owners have done a good job of including bathrooms. They managed to add a bath (across the hall) that goes with one of the rooms. So, they all have a private bath, just not an adjoining bath. Whoever did it didn't bother to close off the extra door. I can imagine guests opening it just out of curiosity..
You will need to spend a fair amount of time explaining that a bathroom across the hall is a private bath. Take my word on that. A bathroom across the hall is, to a guest, in no way 'private'. No matter how many different ways we have tried to explain it, guests will insist, to my face, that the bathroom is not private. They have confused 'en suite' and 'private' to the point I'd like to tear my hair out.
The most often asked question when the guest sees where the bathroom is in relation to their room and the other rooms (and put on your best 'this woman must be an idiot' tone of voice), 'Well, if this is a private bathroom (sneer), then where are the bathrooms for those rooms?
Telling them the other bathrooms are in the other rooms still doesn't really get the point across.
They think they've been snookered. That I pulled a fast one and removed their bathroom from the room just before they arrived. (Yes, it's on the website, in the confirmation, told to them on the phone and it's the cheapest room in the place. There's a reason for the low price, folks, give it some thought.)
What terminology do they use for that on the website right now?
.
This happens rarely here, but we do have the one small room with the adjacent private bath. It happens when people book this room because it's the cheapest, then get here and realize everyone else's bath is in their rooms. Now dontcha' wish you'd forked over the extra $20? They don't feel snookered, they realize they did it to themselves.
We make a point to say that the bath is private and detached, just across the hall and that we provide robes so you don't have to waste room in your suitcase to bring your own. Most people arrive knowing what they are getting (i.e., because they bothered to READ what they were getting before they got it!).
 

Don Draper

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There's probably something deeply psychological about a locked door.... LOL.
The house was built in 1880, so over the years owners have done a good job of including bathrooms. They managed to add a bath (across the hall) that goes with one of the rooms. So, they all have a private bath, just not an adjoining bath. Whoever did it didn't bother to close off the extra door. I can imagine guests opening it just out of curiosity..
Gingerbread Latte said:
There's probably something deeply psychological about a locked door.... LOL.
BTW, if you think there is something deeply psychological about a locked door, try putting a 'Private' sign up sometime and see what happens. You unleash something deep and dark in a lot of otherwise normal, happy people.
.
"Oooh, "Private", that sounds so nice"! They can't resist it. "Employees Only" has worked much better...if you go through there I get to put you to work.
 

Don Draper

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The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
Speaking of private, there is no door into the kitchen. How would you handle that? I was thinking of a pretty folding screen, with the "health dept doesn't want you to eat all my food" sign on it. They would have to actively move the screen to get in..
Get a door, get a door, get a door...and make sure it locks! Morticia can chime in on this one...
 

Morticia

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The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
Speaking of private, there is no door into the kitchen. How would you handle that? I was thinking of a pretty folding screen, with the "health dept doesn't want you to eat all my food" sign on it. They would have to actively move the screen to get in..
Get a door, get a door, get a door...and make sure it locks! Morticia can chime in on this one...
.
Don Draper said:
Get a door, get a door, get a door...and make sure it locks! Morticia can chime in on this one...
I can definitely shed some light on not having a door to the kitchen. 6 years of no door and going strong.
5 years ago we added baby locks to all the cabinets in the kitchen and a sign on the fridge to keep out. We seriously considered adding a lock to the fridge & freezer.
About 4 years ago we built a peninsula across the opening to the kitchen, a little visual 'no' which many guests realized immediately when they saw it and actually said, 'You put that there as a 'keep out' didn't you?' Love the astute ones!
2 years ago we added a sign that tells guests to 'keep out'.
We still have a small sign on the fridge directing guests to the guest fridge in case they breach the 'keep out' sign.
How many guests have gone into the kitchen, past the sign and into the fridge? While I am standing there? More than I care to number. I have had guests drinking a glass of milk asking why I had the sign on the fridge? Did guests really go in there and take food?
Having a door would be the best way to avoid this, but you'd have to keep it locked. Other innkeeping friends have a lock on their kitchen door because the kitchen leads directly into their private quarters. They can hear the guests rattling the door trying to get in. Not needing the innkeepers, just wanting a midnight snack or to see what's in there. Privacy sign and all.
If a door is not in the offing, make sure everything the guest could need is not in the kitchen only. We added a microwave, ice machine, coffee machine, plates, silverware, glasses & fridge to the 'guest' side of the peninsula. It has slowed the traffic down immensely. Hasn't stopped it as we still get the ones looking for lobster pots to cook up their 'catch'.
The first time you try to make breakfast and there isn't a plate or fork to be had, you will totally understand.
Probably the worst one was the family who demanded we get up and make 2 of them breakfast at 4 AM. And then breakfast again for the other 2 at 10 AM. We explained 4 AM was too early, but please help themselves to the cereal and milk (milk is in the guest fridge, too). They demanded a refund if we wouldn't cook them a hot breakfast. We declined to refund any money as breakfast is 'free' eat it or don't. They trashed the kitchen, used all the milk in the house, helped themselves to juice, toast and had they been able to get the pots & pans cupboards open probably would have cooked themselves all the eggs as well.
We had to clean the whole kitchen before even starting breakfast prep for everyone else and we had to go to the store to get milk. We waited until 9:30 for the 'other 2' and it turns out they all left together at 4 AM. Wonder why? They knew what they did was wrong and didn't want anyone left behind who would have to be responsible.
 

Morticia

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The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
Speaking of private, there is no door into the kitchen. How would you handle that? I was thinking of a pretty folding screen, with the "health dept doesn't want you to eat all my food" sign on it. They would have to actively move the screen to get in..
Gingerbread Latte said:
The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
Speaking of private, there is no door into the kitchen. How would you handle that? I was thinking of a pretty folding screen, with the "health dept doesn't want you to eat all my food" sign on it. They would have to actively move the screen to get in.
We also have a bath across the hall. After years of dithering around and too many times having to clean the detached bath even when there were no guests in that room, we installed a lock on the door. At night, when we close up, we lock that bathroom door. We explain to guests that they get a key and they can lock the door. That has helped immensely. We also provide bathrobes. This is the only bathroom in the house with a tub so we also provide rubber duckies.
A screen might work. It won't work completely as you will find a small percentage of guests who truly and sincerely believe that no sign or deterrent is directed at them. They will move the screen to gain access to the place they believe they have the right to go. We also state the board of health mandates guests are not allowed in the kitchen. There are those who will look at you and query, 'Are they here right now?' and you know they're the ones who are going to make you a crazy person.
We have a dog. The dog is not allowed anywhere near the food. Guests will come for breakfast and ask where is the dog? We explain the health dept rules and they will ask the other guests, 'Are you from the health dept?' and then smirk at me when they all say they aren't. There are days that would try the patience of Job.
 

EmptyNest

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The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
Speaking of private, there is no door into the kitchen. How would you handle that? I was thinking of a pretty folding screen, with the "health dept doesn't want you to eat all my food" sign on it. They would have to actively move the screen to get in..
I believe Morticia can give you some advice on a kitchen with no door... :) I have been telling her for years she needs a screen up there to keep them out :) You have the right idea....get a door if you can
 

EmptyNest

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The current website is NOT clear about where the bathroom is ~ something I will fix pronto. I don't know what the owner says on the phone if anything. It is the smallest room and lowest rate.
Speaking of private, there is no door into the kitchen. How would you handle that? I was thinking of a pretty folding screen, with the "health dept doesn't want you to eat all my food" sign on it. They would have to actively move the screen to get in..
Get a door, get a door, get a door...and make sure it locks! Morticia can chime in on this one...
.
Don Draper said:
Get a door, get a door, get a door...and make sure it locks! Morticia can chime in on this one...
I can definitely shed some light on not having a door to the kitchen. 6 years of no door and going strong.
5 years ago we added baby locks to all the cabinets in the kitchen and a sign on the fridge to keep out. We seriously considered adding a lock to the fridge & freezer.
About 4 years ago we built a peninsula across the opening to the kitchen, a little visual 'no' which many guests realized immediately when they saw it and actually said, 'You put that there as a 'keep out' didn't you?' Love the astute ones!
2 years ago we added a sign that tells guests to 'keep out'.
We still have a small sign on the fridge directing guests to the guest fridge in case they breach the 'keep out' sign.
How many guests have gone into the kitchen, past the sign and into the fridge? While I am standing there? More than I care to number. I have had guests drinking a glass of milk asking why I had the sign on the fridge? Did guests really go in there and take food?
Having a door would be the best way to avoid this, but you'd have to keep it locked. Other innkeeping friends have a lock on their kitchen door because the kitchen leads directly into their private quarters. They can hear the guests rattling the door trying to get in. Not needing the innkeepers, just wanting a midnight snack or to see what's in there. Privacy sign and all.
If a door is not in the offing, make sure everything the guest could need is not in the kitchen only. We added a microwave, ice machine, coffee machine, plates, silverware, glasses & fridge to the 'guest' side of the peninsula. It has slowed the traffic down immensely. Hasn't stopped it as we still get the ones looking for lobster pots to cook up their 'catch'.
The first time you try to make breakfast and there isn't a plate or fork to be had, you will totally understand.
Probably the worst one was the family who demanded we get up and make 2 of them breakfast at 4 AM. And then breakfast again for the other 2 at 10 AM. We explained 4 AM was too early, but please help themselves to the cereal and milk (milk is in the guest fridge, too). They demanded a refund if we wouldn't cook them a hot breakfast. We declined to refund any money as breakfast is 'free' eat it or don't. They trashed the kitchen, used all the milk in the house, helped themselves to juice, toast and had they been able to get the pots & pans cupboards open probably would have cooked themselves all the eggs as well.
We had to clean the whole kitchen before even starting breakfast prep for everyone else and we had to go to the store to get milk. We waited until 9:30 for the 'other 2' and it turns out they all left together at 4 AM. Wonder why? They knew what they did was wrong and didn't want anyone left behind who would have to be responsible.
.
:) I told her to seek your advice...hadn't scrolled down far enough to see YOU ALREADY DID :)
 

JBloggs

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If I had an open kitchen I would wear a big tall chef's hat and apron and make it very goofy and fun.
 

JBloggs

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Having doors with locks still will not stop them!
Closed doors mean OPEN THIS DOOR, even with a private sign right there!
Those without boundaries think no rules apply to them. So, for what it is worth, they will do what they want, and then you can have signs and rules and reg's that put off the other guests who don't like being treated like idiots or children. It is a fine line.
Years ago, we had a wedding night in this room (back to the subject) where the couple arrived late after their reception. I had left the side door from the gardens unlocked and lights on low so they could arrive at their leisure...she entered the room in her gown, with full hoop skirts underneath. I recall her telling me "I paid so much for this dress I was going to get full use out of it!" and never changed for the reception or afterward, wore it to the B&B.
When they came up the stairs there was a long grey tail sticking out from under the skirt.
Yes, a neighborhood cat who we named Clae. A sweet cat who the guests would give TIPS to help pay for her kibbles, to which I would say "But she doesn't live here! So Clae stayed in the room that night with this couple, in the bed, on their wedding night.
THIS IS THAT COUPLE! It was 2005.
Of course Clae moved on with someone else, and I had to put a sign up after that to NOT ALLOW ANY ANIMALS IN THE ROOMS, EVEN IF THEY SNEAK IN!
 

Gingerbread Latte

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I think I'll get the doors AND the hat! The kitchen entrance isn't well suited for a door (guess that's why there never has been one) but I think I can add 2 narrow swinging doors w/locks. They could remain open when needed and not be in the way.
My 18 year old (who has wanted a B&B ever since she stayed in her first one at age 10) has already made out her wish list and the HAT is on there. She loved baking and is into those decorative (& very fattening) cupcakes. I told her they hadn't even accepted my offer yet. Her response, "Think positive, Mom. Order my hat and apron." (And all the fancy baking pans her heart desires.)
 

Samster

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Congrats! I have to say that I stayed in that room twice (or maybe 3 times?) and never gave the door a second thought. :) But it's one less thing for you to worry about...so good job!
Our transoms over the doors seemed to bother some people (in terms of worries about noise conduction, so somehow insulating them for sound was something that we had put at the top of our list before we closed.
I think that anything that addresses trying to make the guest more comfortable is a good thing to prioritize.
 
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