Starting your bed and breakfast could be one of the most rewarding types of business. However, in order to be successful with this type of business venture, there are certain things that have to be accomplished to ensure that the bed and breakfast inn would be ideal for customers. Here are the essential things you need to have if you want to invest in this kind of business:
1. Friendly atmosphere – Travelers would often choose to go to a bed and breakfast inn because they want to experience the hospitality of the people residing in that area. This means that the receptionist and the people working at the inn need to be friendly. It is what separates the inn from other hotels.
People who own this type of business can forge lasting friendships between hosts and guests and this type of business have a higher chance of surviving through repeat customers and those who will leave a favorable referral for the inn.
2. Uniqueness and Creativity – Hotels look standard and will usually have standard looking furnishings, which is why a bed and breakfast inns need to be able to provide creative and interesting decorations inside their establishment to give the travelers a feel of something new. Apart from the quality lodging, the guests should be able to take something unique with them when they go home.
There should be interesting paintings and sculptures or handicrafts that tell a story about the place and the country where the establishment is.
3. Comfortable beds- The most important thing in any lodging is the bed. Everything must be in good condition. The guests should be able to get a good night’s rest. The sheets should be changed every day and the pillows need to be comfortable to use. Guests should be given enough closet space to make the experience worth their while. Owners of the inn should try to use the rooms and sleep there for one night to check if the place is conducive.
After testing how it feels like to sleep in the room, the owner needs to make necessary changes in order to make sure that the guests will feel safe, happy and comfortable.
In sum, getting into the bed and breakfast business is all about creating a homey feel for your guests. They should feel like they never left home when they check into your lodge. They should get a unique experience from staying there.
The concept of Bed and Breakfast inns started a long time ago though it was not until the 1980s that the term was also used to refer to ‘self catering’ establishments. Bed and breakfast inns are also known as BBs. The term is used to refer to small lodging establishments that offer breakfast and accommodation. They usually do not offer any other meals. The term can also be used to refer to private homes that have less than ten bedrooms that are available for commercial use. Guests are given accommodation in their own private rooms and they also get private bathrooms. In other cases depending on the class of the BB, they might also get a suite that includes a bathroom. There are others though where the guests have to share the bathroom with other people.
Breakfast is often served in the confines of the bedroom though there is also the option of having it in the host’s kitchen or the dining room. These can either be operated as a primary or secondary source of income depending on the owner. Bed and breakfast inns operators are responsible for cleaning and cooking giving guests’ time to attend to other matters. People from all walks of life can use the accommodation offered in these inns. Consequently, they are ideal for families, romantic getaways and individuals who want to get tucked away from the rest of the world.
There are rules and regulations used to run most inns. These are put into place in order to ensure management is smooth and guests staying in the inns at the inns have a good time. It is precisely for this reason that it is always advisable for anyone interested in staying at one to weigh their options carefully and ensure they stay in one that meets their needs and requirements. Apart from the rules and regulations, the cost of staying at bed and breakfast inns varies from one to another. This is dependent on a couple of things such as where it is located, the kind of services and after services they offer as well as the management. Consequently, it would also be appropriate to take into consideration personal budget when looking for an inn to stay.
Majority of these inns are known to offer guests peace and quite. It is for this reason that they preferred by most people interested in having a quite and enjoyable time. In essence, inns are known to have few people going out and in and for this reason, it is considerably easy for the inn-keepers to keep a close eye on the premises. This makes most guests feel at ease when staying there and they can relax and have a good time since they are assured of topmost security. Inns are not like hotels where guests receive the same kind of treatment. They are known to personalize services when the need arises and as such, quite attractive to most people. When looking for this type of accommodation, you will come across different options to choose from and consequently, the best thing would be to compare what each has to offer.
Whether you are going on your honeymoon or simply looking for a romantic getaway, or wish to be spoiled and felt cared for, a bed and breakfast inn is definitely a place you should stay. These inns offer a more personal touch than the standard hotels and motels. They are known for their excellent breakfasts and one on one service. I’ve been all across the United States and I’ve stayed at bed and breakfasts from the Napa Valley to the Ozarks in Missouri, and I’ve yet to be disappointed. Some were small, having only one or two rooms, while others were much larger. But the one thing they all had in common was the warm and friendly service from staff who tried to get to know me and make my stay an enjoyable and pleasant experience.
What You Should Expect
When reserving a room with the staff, be sure to ask for specifics about the room size and number of beds. Sometimes a “single” may refer to a single twin bed, or it might be a room which has one double bed. The term “double” might refer to a room with two twin beds or one double bed.
The bathrooms could include anything from a small closet with only a toilet, sink and shower to two rooms having a separate bath and shower. The reason for the sometimes odd configurations is because of the fact that many of these inns are old homes that had no indoor plumbing when originally built, and the bathrooms were later added wherever space could be found. Some inns have shared baths in one common area. If you would rather not share a bathroom with other guests, it might be worth paying the small extra fee to reserve a room with its own bathroom.
Most traditional inns will not have a television or telephone in the rooms. Most will have these objects in public areas for all guests to use. But in the age of smart phones and laptop computers this may not be such an inconvenience to people as it once may have been.
You will find that the food is one of the greatest benefits of staying at a bed & breakfast. You can expect to receive the freshest of everything including the eggs, muffins, and fruit. These innkeepers pride themselves on serving the freshest home made meals. Before you reserve your room, make sure the inn offers exactly the kind of meal you prefer, whether it be a continental breakfast (coffee, cereal, toast, pastries), or a fully served breakfast including things like eggs, bacon, pancakes or french toast.
Other Things To Consider
Payment Accepted: Most inns will accept most major credit cards and cash. They might not accept all credit cards or checks though, so be sure to ask ahead.
Cancellations and deposits: Some inns will require at first night’s deposit. If you cancel the reservation before your stay you may lose the deposit. Be sure to ask about these policies when reserving your room.
Length of visit: Many inns will require that you book more than one night on weekends.
Children as guests: Most inns only prefer older children to stay as they are usually more quiet than the younger ones. Again, ask about any age restrictions the bed and breakfasts may have.
Smoking: A lot of bed and breakfasts have a no smoking policy and will even charge your credit card for cleaning fees if any smoking is discovered in the room or on the premises.
Pets: Although some inns will welcome small well-behaved pets, they usually will not. Call around for pet friendly B&B’s.
A bed and breakfast can provide accommodations that will give a personal and truly unique travel experience with a touch of hometown flavor. These cozy and charming bed and breakfast inns or an excellent choice for a getaway or business trip.
A bed and breakfast inn is a definitely a good option if you are looking for a place to stay at during a romantic weekend, honeymoon getaway or when you just want to feel cared for and spoilt. These inns are in most cases very nice in that they often have a personal touch in more ways than the standard motels and hotels. The inns are well known to have one on one services and great breakfast. Having been hosted at various B&B inns throughout the country, I am yet to be disappointed as I have always enjoyed the brief stays at the inns. Some of these were very small and had only one or two rooms, while others were bigger. One thing that I can say for sure is that they all had one thing in common and that is there was a friendly and warm service from polite staff Who did everything possible to make my stay a great experience.
What to Expect
It is advisable to always ask questions related to room specifics such as the number of beds and room size when you are making reservations. At times, a “single” could refer to a twin bed single, or a room with one double bed. A “double” may refer to one double bed, or two twin beds.
The bathrooms may be anything from a small room with just a shower, toilet and sink to two separate rooms with a separate shower and toilet. In many cases, the reason for these often odd configurations is the fact that some inns are old homes turned inns and some did not have indoor plumbing and so these were just added as space was created. In some cases, you will find an inn with a shared bathroom facility and for those who do not like sharing; it could be worth the extra fee to have a room that has its own built in bathroom.
In most cases, you will not find telephone or television facilities in traditional bed and breakfast inns. Some usually have these facilities in a central area where they are accessible to all guests. In today’s technology driven world, this may not be much of an inconvenience as many people own smart phones and travel with their laptops.
One of the advantages of staying at a bed and breakfast inn is the food. This is mainly because they will in most cases have very fresh food, from muffins, eggs and even fruits. The inns pride themselves in the fact that they are able to offer the freshest meals that are homemade in style. It is nevertheless important to ensure that the inn you are booking into offers your kind of preferred food, be it a full breakfast which may include bacon, eggs, pancakes or French toast or even a continental breakfast (cereal, coffee, pastries).
You may need to ask questions about payment when booking, but most bed and breakfast inns will accept cash and any major credit card. There is always a chance that they may not accept checks or all credit cards, so it is always good to ask in advance.
Regarding cancellations and deposits, you will find that some inns do require at least a one night’s deposit. In some cases you could lose your deposit should you make a cancellation prior to your stay. Ensure that you are well advised on policies relating to this issue when making reservations. There is also a policy in some inns that may require you to make a booking of more than one night during the weekends.
It is always good to also ask about any age restrictions that may be in effect in case you are traveling with children. Some inns prefer having older children as guests as opposed to younger children who may be very noisy.
Pets: Most B&B’s will not tolerate pets, but a select few may be okay with some small and well behaved pets.