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Weaver

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As I inch closer to acquisiton I am confronted with the possibility of an extensive remodel of the main house. The square footage is awesome 5 bedrooms and 5K SF but the bath configuration/placement, wasted space, and general flow are not conducive to a comfortable guest experience. So since my opinion is often skewed by my personal likes and dislikes, and those can change I thought I would ask for a list of dreams. (I prefer an old claw foot tub to a jetted/whirlpool, I like a sauna more than a steam....)
What are the top things you love or wish you had as far as layout and the big ticket amenities are concerned.
Each room is large enough to handle a king bed comfortably, so that is a given. A utility closet houses a second floor laundry and storage area, that is staying. Each bedroom on the second floor has a private bath, albeit not a 4 peice bath with separate shower and tub there is room to make that happen. I am looking for things like does the 2 person jetted tub go in the bathroom, or in an alcove in the sleeping area? Are separate sitting areas perferred to a corner of the bedroom? Fireplaces? Wet Bars? Outside entrances? Big bathrooms? Double sinks?
The property has a large pond (no swimming - and NO POOL will be in the future!)
Any really cool things you have seen in your travels. Not that I can make it all happen but a list of "dream amenities" would be a great starting point. The owner's quarters are in a separate building on site so no need to create an owner's private space. This list will be the jumping off point for what may be an extensive remodel, some might be must have deal breakers other might be if the budget allows it. So please give me your wish list, your virtual dream BnB.
Thanks, can't wait to see what you all come up with, the architect may not like it but it won't be his! :)
For those of you that don't know the property is in a southern state, and is not currently a BnB, my target market is the "rural retreat from the hustle of city life" guest. Think "Green Acres" without Arnold running through the living room.
 

Innkeep

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If I had it to do over, I would have at least one room with two beds. Several scenarios where this helps - couple with a teenager, two girlfriends, couples who prefer sleeping in separate beds.
You will find lots of opinions on where to place the tub. Unless you're marketing Romance I don't think the tub should be in the room. A nice tiled bathroom with tub in the bathroom and a nice tiled floor would be less likely to turn off any sort of guest whereas a tub in the room will turn off some potential guests. If in an alcove in the room, there should be something of interest that can be enjoyed while bathing, like a real (or gas) fireplace. Some guests will not use jetted tubs due to perceived sanitation issues, others will not use soaking tubs. Clawfoot tubs are difficult for older folks to climb into. Having a stall shower in addition to a whirlpool tub both in the bathroom would be my choice.
You have a tremendous opportunity to offer several types of bathing options. Hotels are beginning to get away from tubs and having a generous size stall shower with a seat or a shower with body jets and rainshower head is an attractive alternative for perhaps one room. Remember, showers are much easier to clean than are jetted tubs.
Floor plans to consider that some innkeepers have found to be helpful: One or more rooms with private entrances; an area to do spa services or an area in the room itself large enough to set up a massage table to do in room massages.
I go back and forth about whether microwave, refrig and coffee maker should be in rooms. Currently I have a guest area in dining room for all that. If you have a potential for attracting guests who will stay for a week or longer, you might want to offer more along the lines of sink+refrig, etc -- much less of an issue for 1 or 2-night visitors.
The bathroom I have with a double sink in retrospect takes away from the amount of counter space available. Guests travel with lots of potions and toiletries and appreciate the counter space more than a double sink.
Are travellers already coming to your neck of the woods or will you have to market to let them know that you are the destination as well as the accommodation for that destination? If this is a rural retreat, is your target market just going to be couples/romance? Are you planning to let them bring their dog or kids to run around in the country? If you're going to allow dogs, one room might be arranged to make the cleaning easier--hopefully innmates who allow dogs might chime in.
If you want to emphasize rural retreat as in meditation and reading, then a reading nook with comfortable chairs and great lighting would be nice... Have you seen the fireplaces that are open into two adjacent rooms so that you could sit by the fire in the reading nook and also enjoy it from the bedroom? I think that would be awesome.
You may not have the luxury of knowing the actual kinds of folks you'll be attracting i.e. 1-2 nights vs 1-2 weeks (kitchenette vs romantic weekend), so having all rooms with great mattresses and linens, basic amenities, WiFi, etc, etc, then equipping one room for the possibility of longer stay, one romance with room for massage table, one romance without as much square footage but great fireplace, one for the folks who will be hanging around in the room as opposed to being out and around your property.
The other thing I think you need to need to consider is if you have amenities that should allow you to charge $$$$ and you find that the folks who actually become your target market think that going to Green Acres, even without Arnold is only worth $$, then it will be much more difficult to recoup all the expenses involved in remodelling. Part of that equation depends on how far the drive time is to a metropolitan area and how expensive accommodations are both in the city they're driving from and in the place that you're located.
 

Joey Camb

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what you have to remember as well is not every room has to be the same ie you could have 1 room with the jetted tub in the room, one with it in the bathroom and so on that way if guests have a strong particular preference you can accommodate it. I would also agree on the at least one room with a separate bed concept as many older couples prefer this and it seems like restless leg syndrome is becomming more and more common either that or they are all booking with me! (ie its a medical condition where your legs move about in the night and quite often you have to get up and walk about at night) walk in showers or wet rooms are very popular though I would be aware of how much glass you are building into the project as it all has to be cleaned. I like this idea http://www.argos.co.uk/static/Product/partNumber/8352767/Trail/searchtext%3ESHOWER.htm
as there are no moving parts however have nightmares about all that glass!
 

Generic

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I prefer glass shower enclosures. We coat the glass with Rain-X to minimize the cleaning time.
What would I add?
Small refrigerators - The guests otherwise want to use yours to put their leftovers and store a few drinks and ice. Don't forget ice. It's very popular in the US.
Desk - Small one. Just so that they can put up their laptop or do their makeup. If you put a mirror behind the desk then then desk can act as a vanity. Or a vanity mirror on the desk that they can use.
Extra Bed - The guests use these all the time, be it a sofa that opens or a twin bed set as a day bed.
 

JBloggs

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If I had a chance to do anything... I would NOT put in jacuzzi tubs, personally. People don't consider the water and energy used when a couple uses the tub two or three times in a visit. If you have jacuzzi tubs, by golly put in larger pipes to fill the dang thing so it doesn't take forever and the water goes cold (just sayin').
I would try to have a balcony or private entrance for the rooms. (If it is from scratch I would have every room with outside private entrance).
I would have a room or two with two queen beds (girl friend getaways!)
In the end I would go as green as possible, if it is a country retreat, and many of my guests might be 20-30-40 coming from DC, I would go environmentally friendly.
Having said that, if I had a choice to do anything in t he world, I would make it a dog friendly B&B. There is a real shortage of them. MANY would like to take their dogs along to go hiking and exploring.
 

Weaver

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd.
 

Generic

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd..
Menu? What the heck is a menu? Breakfast is what's being served or available. No short order cook around here. You have to consider the amount of rooms and the cost to produce a breakfast where you need a list of ingredients that may or may not be used because it is on the menu. For example, if you serve Eggs Benedict, then you have to be ready to either keep hollandaise ready or be willing to step up and make the hollandaise from scratch when they order. Not to mention the poached egg, having piemeal bacon around and of course the English muffin. Conversely, serving a specific omelette where they can request not to have something inside, will limit waste.
We do add small touchs for the kids, though. My favourite is we put popping sugar into the granola in their yogurt cup. We serve them smaller portions and we have hot chocolate for them as well. But they get served the same breakfast, generally.
 

gillumhouse

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd..
I do not do anything special for lids other than removing the enticing breakables from the rooms - not from the rest of the house though. Re breakfast I ask what %milk to get and I will probably have a box of cereal on hand but that is all. I have high chair & pac n play and will set of a spring-loaded canvas cot for a kid but that is all I do extra. I do not do dogs because I do not want to deal with possible fleas (BTDT with my own) and allergies with the next guest.
I do not have the fancy, schmancy whirlpools or hot tubs. I tell it like it is here - small town 100 year old house and I do prominently display Children Welcome. I would, if you plan to also appeal to the romantics, put the families in a different area from the romance. And I would not put dogs where there are going to be kids.
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
 

Samster

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Inkeep put together a great list!!
We had 2 of our rooms with steam showers - VERY popular!! I wish that I had hand held shower heads for cleaning them though which would have made it alot easier. (It was on the list to replace them before we closed.) If you are going to be near lots of outdoor activities (hiking, biking, etc.), your active guests will really appreciate them. We are urban but near a river and also had lots of biking enthusiasts here. Those rooms also had 2 person jetted tubs in the bathroom which should be self cleaning or easy to clean (like Riki's). I would not have a claw foot tub again - for every guest that thought ours was cool, there were two that didn't want to climb into it. One of my favorite B&Bs has a gorgeous room with a very narrow but long clawfoot tub, no overhead shower...I would not book that room again, even though it was nice to soak in the tub. (Claw foot tubs really hold the heat for a long soak.) I'm also not a fan of jetted tubs in the room and I can say that our guests commented that they liked the fact that all our jetted tubs (5 total - 2 one person & 3 two person tubs) were in the bathrooms.
I absolutely think that individual fridges and coffee making ability should be in rooms now. I like our new forum member in Idaho's setup very much.
Also, a comfortable sitting area with room for a table to either have a snack, cup of coffee, or use a laptop.
Even people who want to get away from it all, like to connect - so WiFi and TVs (where they can check weather, news, and watch movies) are priorities.
Private entrances would be ideal.
And don't forget the pampering...
 

JBloggs

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd..
You might be surprised who your guests end up being. So be alert about that, you may have a whole scene painted that will be different. Case in point, the couple who have the blue ridge yurt not too far from your area, they have had nothing but young couples - even with a newborn baby, or dog, who stay there. They had anticipated 30's-40's maybe, but all early 20's, almost entirely, and are booked solid. From the DC metro area.
Dogs
I would much rather have the grapenuts dog place than the foo foo piddle pads dogs. Staying at Virginia State Parks, which are pet friendly unlike most other state parks, I can share plenty of stories with you about dogs in cabins and camping. Stories for another time. But people who travel with their family dog look after them. I would build a fenced in doggie area, which works great as dogs go and sniff and "go" and sniff, in that area. You can let them off the leash to do their thang.
Do you want this to be family friendly with kids? That is a consideration and might 86 those who want a romantic getaway. Just to be clear. One time I allowed a kid and the other couples approached me immediately and stated quite firmly "You said no kids, why is there a kid here?"
Background - the dad arrived at the door with this little boy - who had a high pitched voice that could shatter glass - at 10pm at night. I allowed them in, they traveled 7 hours and I couldnt' turn them away. Then I paid for it...with the other guests.
 

Weaver

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd..
I do not do anything special for lids other than removing the enticing breakables from the rooms - not from the rest of the house though. Re breakfast I ask what %milk to get and I will probably have a box of cereal on hand but that is all. I have high chair & pac n play and will set of a spring-loaded canvas cot for a kid but that is all I do extra. I do not do dogs because I do not want to deal with possible fleas (BTDT with my own) and allergies with the next guest.
I do not have the fancy, schmancy whirlpools or hot tubs. I tell it like it is here - small town 100 year old house and I do prominently display Children Welcome. I would, if you plan to also appeal to the romantics, put the families in a different area from the romance. And I would not put dogs where there are going to be kids.
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
.
gillumhouse said:
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
One of the rooms is large enough to be multi bed configured. In everyone's vast experience ... 2 twin or 2 doubles? I am thinking 2 doubles.
 

Generic

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd..
I do not do anything special for lids other than removing the enticing breakables from the rooms - not from the rest of the house though. Re breakfast I ask what %milk to get and I will probably have a box of cereal on hand but that is all. I have high chair & pac n play and will set of a spring-loaded canvas cot for a kid but that is all I do extra. I do not do dogs because I do not want to deal with possible fleas (BTDT with my own) and allergies with the next guest.
I do not have the fancy, schmancy whirlpools or hot tubs. I tell it like it is here - small town 100 year old house and I do prominently display Children Welcome. I would, if you plan to also appeal to the romantics, put the families in a different area from the romance. And I would not put dogs where there are going to be kids.
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
.
gillumhouse said:
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
One of the rooms is large enough to be multi bed configured. In everyone's vast experience ... 2 twin or 2 doubles? I am thinking 2 doubles.
.
My experience, at least one needs to be Queen or King. Does anyone do doubles anymore?
 

JBloggs

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd..
I do not do anything special for lids other than removing the enticing breakables from the rooms - not from the rest of the house though. Re breakfast I ask what %milk to get and I will probably have a box of cereal on hand but that is all. I have high chair & pac n play and will set of a spring-loaded canvas cot for a kid but that is all I do extra. I do not do dogs because I do not want to deal with possible fleas (BTDT with my own) and allergies with the next guest.
I do not have the fancy, schmancy whirlpools or hot tubs. I tell it like it is here - small town 100 year old house and I do prominently display Children Welcome. I would, if you plan to also appeal to the romantics, put the families in a different area from the romance. And I would not put dogs where there are going to be kids.
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
.
gillumhouse said:
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
One of the rooms is large enough to be multi bed configured. In everyone's vast experience ... 2 twin or 2 doubles? I am thinking 2 doubles.
.
Weaver said:
gillumhouse said:
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
One of the rooms is large enough to be multi bed configured. In everyone's vast experience ... 2 twin or 2 doubles? I am thinking 2 doubles.
You cannot find beds in doubles, only kids beds. Very few beds are out there in doubles. Don't do twin, don't waste your time and money.
 

Weaver

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd..
You might be surprised who your guests end up being. So be alert about that, you may have a whole scene painted that will be different. Case in point, the couple who have the blue ridge yurt not too far from your area, they have had nothing but young couples - even with a newborn baby, or dog, who stay there. They had anticipated 30's-40's maybe, but all early 20's, almost entirely, and are booked solid. From the DC metro area.
Dogs
I would much rather have the grapenuts dog place than the foo foo piddle pads dogs. Staying at Virginia State Parks, which are pet friendly unlike most other state parks, I can share plenty of stories with you about dogs in cabins and camping. Stories for another time. But people who travel with their family dog look after them. I would build a fenced in doggie area, which works great as dogs go and sniff and "go" and sniff, in that area. You can let them off the leash to do their thang.
Do you want this to be family friendly with kids? That is a consideration and might 86 those who want a romantic getaway. Just to be clear. One time I allowed a kid and the other couples approached me immediately and stated quite firmly "You said no kids, why is there a kid here?"
Background - the dad arrived at the door with this little boy - who had a high pitched voice that could shatter glass - at 10pm at night. I allowed them in, they traveled 7 hours and I couldnt' turn them away. Then I paid for it...with the other guests.
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Joey Bloggs said:
You might be surprised who your guests end up being. ...
Dogs
I would much rather have the grapenuts dog place than the foo foo piddle pads dogs. ...
... But people who travel with their family dog look after them. I would build a fenced in doggie area, which works great as dogs go and sniff and "go" and sniff, in that area. You can let them off the leash to do their thang.
Do you want this to be family friendly with kids? ...
JB tough questions to answer. I want to educate about farm life, the whole green thing but I don't want to exclude the romantics.
I am so on the fence about this, can't be everything to everybody. Need to find what I like, and do it well and not try to cover all the bases, just my target.
I know from past marketing in small businesses that targeting your niche and doing it well serves your marketing dollar better than a shotgun approach.
My concern is kid friendly almost excludes the romantics. Dog friendly can be an issue if not handled properly. Honestly if I were to ask myself the hard question about kids over dogs, I would take the dogs. However maybe a better indication should be me. I am the house where all the kids hang out, when mine were little we had the neighborhood kids with us more than their parents it seemed, now I regularly have 5-7 teenagers that are not mine in my house, spending the night, and begging for something baked from scratch.
 

EmptyNest

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Thanks for the start of a great wish list. Looking forward to everyone's further comments.
I would especially like to hear from those folks that are dog and kid friendly.
Dog
Are the guests in your experience good about yard clean-up?
Good about keeping Fido leashed? (my Fido is actually a cat) But I do have a large dog (Belgian Malinois).
Because this will be a farm stay I am to say the least concerned about the livestock.
Kid
Do you go out of your way at breakfast for the kids (special kid friendly menus)?
I was thinking in some of the larger rooms offering a murphy bed configuration for the 3 to a room crowd.
Should I make the main house with the 5-6 bedrooms kid friendly or the second house with currently two bedrooms and possibly a third (making the second floor a 2 bedroom suite)?
Do any that allow or market to families have rooms without the fancy dancy bath amenities (whirlpool tubs) that are specifically for guests traveling with children?
GREEN is on the top of the list for any and all construction/remodeling. Passive solar, tankless hot water heaters for each room, recyled barn wood for one of a kind furniture, farm to table for food. The property already has in place a large recreation building with indoor basketball, tennis, pool and foosball tables, and an exercise room, NTM a large system of trails for running/riding/biking. The trail section alone covers 50+ acres.
The property is about 10 miles outside of the town which is the gateway to several area attrations, lake, ballooning, quilts, art & music, the region's wine country. So I suspect the guests will be the 30-50 set looking for an alternative weekend break-a-way.
The thing I am having the most diffculty with is designing for my target market. WHO do I want as my guests? The potential for a great niche is there but do I go for the romance weekenders, or the family vacationers?
The theme in my head now is luxury for the grapenuts crowd..
I do not do anything special for lids other than removing the enticing breakables from the rooms - not from the rest of the house though. Re breakfast I ask what %milk to get and I will probably have a box of cereal on hand but that is all. I have high chair & pac n play and will set of a spring-loaded canvas cot for a kid but that is all I do extra. I do not do dogs because I do not want to deal with possible fleas (BTDT with my own) and allergies with the next guest.
I do not have the fancy, schmancy whirlpools or hot tubs. I tell it like it is here - small town 100 year old house and I do prominently display Children Welcome. I would, if you plan to also appeal to the romantics, put the families in a different area from the romance. And I would not put dogs where there are going to be kids.
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
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gillumhouse said:
If you could have at least one room with 2 beds, I would do that. I have had many calls for 2 beds.
One of the rooms is large enough to be multi bed configured. In everyone's vast experience ... 2 twin or 2 doubles? I am thinking 2 doubles.
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Twins beds are a waste. Most adults don't want to sleep on a twin and if you want them for kids, then you have to be sure and charge for them.
Doubles for sure but even better would be queens if you can fit them in.
 

Weaver

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To K, and others....
Do your horse people travel with their dogs?
When I was in the business the barn dog always went to the shows. But that was west coast and not the hunter/dressage set.
It seems a bit contrary in my own mind about the kids/animals thing. Since this will be a farm stay it would be natural to have child guests to learn about the critters. But since it is a farm stay dogs are also part of that equation. Forgot to mention there are existing kennels on the property, 3 runs off what is now the caretaker quarters (2 bedroom, 1 bath, living, kitchen) in the barns (new construction insullated metal pole building).
HOWEVER my issue is the dog/kid factor a bigger headache than it is a draw?
Maybe the draw should be the farm and let the rest shake out in the wash. See who my guests really are, offer a kid friendly room and a dog friendly room, but not in the main lodging building.
 

JBloggs

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To K, and others....
Do your horse people travel with their dogs?
When I was in the business the barn dog always went to the shows. But that was west coast and not the hunter/dressage set.
It seems a bit contrary in my own mind about the kids/animals thing. Since this will be a farm stay it would be natural to have child guests to learn about the critters. But since it is a farm stay dogs are also part of that equation. Forgot to mention there are existing kennels on the property, 3 runs off what is now the caretaker quarters (2 bedroom, 1 bath, living, kitchen) in the barns (new construction insullated metal pole building).
HOWEVER my issue is the dog/kid factor a bigger headache than it is a draw?
Maybe the draw should be the farm and let the rest shake out in the wash. See who my guests really are, offer a kid friendly room and a dog friendly room, but not in the main lodging building..
If I were you I would plan some getaways and check out a few places to see how it feels. One that comes to mind is a farm stay let me find the url. Here it is family and pet friendly, super nice people! People want weddings on these farms too... will you accomodate weddings? http://www.cornerstonefarm.net
and here is one that came up I had not heard of, http://www.farmstayus.com/farm/Virginia/The_Funny_Farm_Inn
I am sure you have done all this. Just thought of these to share.
 

Weaver

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To K, and others....
Do your horse people travel with their dogs?
When I was in the business the barn dog always went to the shows. But that was west coast and not the hunter/dressage set.
It seems a bit contrary in my own mind about the kids/animals thing. Since this will be a farm stay it would be natural to have child guests to learn about the critters. But since it is a farm stay dogs are also part of that equation. Forgot to mention there are existing kennels on the property, 3 runs off what is now the caretaker quarters (2 bedroom, 1 bath, living, kitchen) in the barns (new construction insullated metal pole building).
HOWEVER my issue is the dog/kid factor a bigger headache than it is a draw?
Maybe the draw should be the farm and let the rest shake out in the wash. See who my guests really are, offer a kid friendly room and a dog friendly room, but not in the main lodging building..
If I were you I would plan some getaways and check out a few places to see how it feels. One that comes to mind is a farm stay let me find the url. Here it is family and pet friendly, super nice people! People want weddings on these farms too... will you accomodate weddings? http://www.cornerstonefarm.net
and here is one that came up I had not heard of, http://www.farmstayus.com/farm/Virginia/The_Funny_Farm_Inn
I am sure you have done all this. Just thought of these to share.
.
Joey Bloggs said:
If I were you I would plan some getaways and check out a few places to see how it feels. One that comes to mind is a farm stay let me find the url. Here it is family and pet friendly, super nice people! People want weddings on these farms too... will you accomodate weddings? http://www.cornerstonefarm.net
and here is one that came up I had not heard of, http://www.farmstayus.com/farm/Virginia/The_Funny_Farm_Inn
I am sure you have done all this. Just thought of these to share.
Knowing how most innkeepers feel about weddings and going in with eyes wide open, YES weddings were on the list. I have lived on ranches/farms, in fact the milking barn of my neighbor's is about 75' from my front door. With that said I have never done a b n b farm stay, and I think you are dead on....gotta try it rather than live it.
I have been all over the farmstayus site, spoken to the very nice lady that manages/owns the site. Been doing some serious homework, just can't reconcile the kids and dog part. As long the dogs are leashed and a nice place is provided for some free roaming, I am good with them.
Maybe the solution is just give them both (kids and dogs) what they need in a location where their natural noise won't disturb other guests. I mentioned in a previous post about cottages, and maybe that is the way to accommodate without leaving anyone out.
The property is probably telling me what to do, I am just not listening. There are the three kennels - professionally designed for the current owner's hunting dogs. So guests would have a place to leave Fido should they choose to leave the farm for a while. The CO have also installed a large high end playground for the kids/grandkids. So to ingore that would be foolish.
Maybe it is just a matter of segregation. I don't mean that in any way negative, but as a dog owner, and parent I know what comes with those guys.
 

gillumhouse

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To K, and others....
Do your horse people travel with their dogs?
When I was in the business the barn dog always went to the shows. But that was west coast and not the hunter/dressage set.
It seems a bit contrary in my own mind about the kids/animals thing. Since this will be a farm stay it would be natural to have child guests to learn about the critters. But since it is a farm stay dogs are also part of that equation. Forgot to mention there are existing kennels on the property, 3 runs off what is now the caretaker quarters (2 bedroom, 1 bath, living, kitchen) in the barns (new construction insullated metal pole building).
HOWEVER my issue is the dog/kid factor a bigger headache than it is a draw?
Maybe the draw should be the farm and let the rest shake out in the wash. See who my guests really are, offer a kid friendly room and a dog friendly room, but not in the main lodging building..
Sorry to be late with this - been getting ready to leave tomorrow and there is too much to do at the last minute!
Re horse travelers & dogs - Yes, they do travel with their dogs. The dogs either stay at the barn or in the horse trailer overnight. No one has had a problem with that. The only exception was Katie because she was up in years and it was December. Would never have known she was in the house. She came 3 of the 6 times they stayed and the last time almost had to be carried updatirs and down (golden lab). The rest of the times, travel was too difficult for her.
The horse people will be OK with the kennel - but FiFi's mommy will not. Sounds like the best of both world's to have both covered. If it is separate entrances, you will probably be OK with both kids and dogs. I suggested not both (and you may not have both at the same time anyway) because kids (some of the freaking brats anyway) will pester the heck out of a dog and Mommy goes Apesh** because the little darling got snapped or growled at - we told my cousin's wife & the kids our dog did NOT like little kids and the dog was in his area of the house but the brat (who was supposed to be in the yard) went where she should not and the dog had enough and nipped her. Guest dogs must be leashed unless
The kids we have had here have been great. No kiid has ever bothered anything - including a doll sitting on the edge of a shelf at a 2-year old reach level.
Re beds - if room king or queen with double if king/queen will not fit or 2 queen. Double beds are almost history except at motels.
These are just my Podunk opinions.
 

Weaver

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To K, and others....
Do your horse people travel with their dogs?
When I was in the business the barn dog always went to the shows. But that was west coast and not the hunter/dressage set.
It seems a bit contrary in my own mind about the kids/animals thing. Since this will be a farm stay it would be natural to have child guests to learn about the critters. But since it is a farm stay dogs are also part of that equation. Forgot to mention there are existing kennels on the property, 3 runs off what is now the caretaker quarters (2 bedroom, 1 bath, living, kitchen) in the barns (new construction insullated metal pole building).
HOWEVER my issue is the dog/kid factor a bigger headache than it is a draw?
Maybe the draw should be the farm and let the rest shake out in the wash. See who my guests really are, offer a kid friendly room and a dog friendly room, but not in the main lodging building..
Sorry to be late with this - been getting ready to leave tomorrow and there is too much to do at the last minute!
Re horse travelers & dogs - Yes, they do travel with their dogs. The dogs either stay at the barn or in the horse trailer overnight. No one has had a problem with that. The only exception was Katie because she was up in years and it was December. Would never have known she was in the house. She came 3 of the 6 times they stayed and the last time almost had to be carried updatirs and down (golden lab). The rest of the times, travel was too difficult for her.
The horse people will be OK with the kennel - but FiFi's mommy will not. Sounds like the best of both world's to have both covered. If it is separate entrances, you will probably be OK with both kids and dogs. I suggested not both (and you may not have both at the same time anyway) because kids (some of the freaking brats anyway) will pester the heck out of a dog and Mommy goes Apesh** because the little darling got snapped or growled at - we told my cousin's wife & the kids our dog did NOT like little kids and the dog was in his area of the house but the brat (who was supposed to be in the yard) went where she should not and the dog had enough and nipped her. Guest dogs must be leashed unless
The kids we have had here have been great. No kiid has ever bothered anything - including a doll sitting on the edge of a shelf at a 2-year old reach level.
Re beds - if room king or queen with double if king/queen will not fit or 2 queen. Double beds are almost history except at motels.
These are just my Podunk opinions.
.
Thanks K, I avoided the word "brats" but honestly I have seen so many that I wonder who raised them cause it certainly wasn't a respectful adult.
I doubt FiFi would be a happy puppy on a farm, but at least there is a segregated area for dogs and kids as to not disturb the more serenity seeking guests. I think that since I have the kennels and the big playground is in place I will just designate the proposed cottage kid/dog friendly. Then no one in the main house or manor house will be bothered.
That would leave the other rooms for more adult accommodations. I see nothing wrong with segregating to make the non-kid toting, non-dog loving guests happy. The rooms in the manor are more than large enough to have two queen beds and perfect for a gf weekend, as is the third floor of the main house.
Thanks, back to the wish list!
Have a safe and fun trip!!!
 
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