Are You Ready To Break Free?
Bed and Breakfasts Are Waiting for You
You are chomping at the bit to hit the road. You earned this time away. Why would you want to stay in a templated, cold, corporate hotel? You vowed to shop local, why not stay local? Staying at a bed and breakfast will provide that change of environment you crave.
When you stay at a bed and breakfast you stay in someone’s home. It may be a larger, Victorian type home with many customized rooms, and beautifully elaborate furniture. It may also be a smaller establishment, with more intimate interactions with the owners. Wherever you stay it won’t be corporate. Each bed and breakfast is unique, and your experience will be as well.
“Holstein House is our home-share bed and breakfast,” says Robin Holstein, proprietor. “We offer a single guest room, housed in our 1920’s era, Dutch Colonial home, with a gambrel roof. We purchased the house in 2016.
The clawfoot bathtub and the cast iron sink are over 100 years old, dated 1918. The original hardwood floors are in place. Throughout the house we have tried to create vignettes that recall a simpler time. Vintage items are everywhere. We want our guests to feel like extended family.
We listed the room on Airbnb in 2017. People thought we were crazy. How could I let strangers come and stay in our home?”
Since that time, the Holsteins have welcomed guests from ten countries to stay in the simple guest room with full-size antique iron frame bed.
“We’ve had a lot of young people stay. Students from Ireland, and Europe traveling the U.S. between school years. A film major studying the coal mines for his doctoral thesis. A music major traveling between summer symphony performances, headed back to the Northeast.
A female welder stayed with us more than once as she traveled from her home in New York to Louisiana and back, for pipeline work. A newspaper editor moving to the area from Virginia stayed with us a couple weeks. A traveling physical therapist working for a local nursing home stayed for two months. There have been so many that stick out in my mind, but we can’t list them all here.”
Holstein adds, like bigger bed and breakfast establishments she provides breakfast. “I always have a light Continental style breakfast ready, complete with breads, homemade jellies and spreads, and fruit. I often bake muffins, or breads. It depends on the season. Not everyone eats, but it is available.”
Travel restrictions, and government mandated shutdowns in early 2020 significantly impacted the travel and tourism sector. A small state that saw over 16.6 million overnight trips (2020 WV Tourism Report) watched them all but dry up overnight. “From December 2019 to February 2022 we’ve had just four bookings through Airbnb.”
Online travel agents, like Airbnb or Booking.com, may be convenient but they exact a fee from both the traveler and the proprietor. Booking directly with the establishment alleviates the fees, creating a better value for the guest.
“We are creating new offerings, special discounts, and treats for direct book guests. All guests can purchase fresh chicken or duck eggs, homemade jellies or fruit butters, and unique breakfast menu items like brown rice porridge with blueberries or strawberries, corn mush with molasses, or potato cakes with cheese. Direct book guests get early notice of specials, and access to discounts not offered elsewhere.
Soon, Holstein House will offer elopement or small wedding packages as well. We have some work to do in the back. Once that is complete, and the covered platform is constructed we plan to offer small packages. I am a licensed officiant so that helps keep the costs down for the couple.”
To learn more about Holstein House go to www.robinholstein.com and click the Holstein House link.