Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The B&B Experience

Hello all - I hope everyone had a nice weekend, whether it was a holiday where you were or not. :)

As I mentioned last week, the BF and I had a "staycation" (a vacation where you stay close to home) over the weekend. We went to Williamsburg, which is about an hour from where we live.

I wanted to save a small amount of money, and try something new, so we stayed in a B&B. The Boxwood Inn was a beautiful home within walking distance of both the College of William and Mary and Colonial Williamsburg (though that would've been quite a walk.) The rooms in the Boxwood Inn were named after presidents that had attended William and Mary - the Jefferson room, the Tyler room, etc. (though, let me just say that Jefferson WENT to W&M, but he BUILT UVA. Ha.) The decor was impressive - a feast for the eyes.

There was a porch to relax on, and a beautiful garden outside.

I think there were some good things and some bad things about our stay here. The BF felt really uncomfortable, as he kept saying it was like being in someone's house (which we were). The Website said that each room had a private bath, which was technically true, but our room (the Tyler room, which was $125 per night) didn't have a bath in the room. It was "private," but it was in the hallway. Another thing I noticed, was that while B&Bs are promoted for "romance," you can hear everything in the adjacent rooms. Exhibitionists only need apply for the romance category.

Breakfast was included (clearly) and there was one serving at 8:30 a.m. That wasn't my favorite thing either. I can understand serving breakfast until a certain time, but making someone get up early on their vacation to eat breakfast was a bit annoying. Plus, the BF didn't like that we had to be all friendly with the other guests. (He's fairly private.) You felt like you had to talk to these people, but we had absolutely nothing in common with them. The breakfast consisted of eggs, sausage and - oddly enough - some kind of apple pie fritter. Apple pie for breakfast was a new one for me.

So my review of the American (or at least Williamsburg) B&B experience was this: The Boxwood Inn was beautiful. I couldn't complain about the home or the rooms or the cleanliness or the atmosphere or the decor. However, I don't know if the experience as a whole was right for us.

Here are some photos of the Inn.


Mar said...

I like to have a bathroom in my room...but this B&B looks wonderful! I have no experiences with B&B's, I would have thought you had some choice to eat breakfast and not one serving and that early!!
That would bother me...

Janet said...

I stayed in a B&B once...and I feel exactly the same way as you :-)

Did you have a molasses cookie at Williamsburg?

Cheysuli and gemini said...

Well Carmen, when you find that sunny day in Seattle come to the Wild Iris Inn about two hours from North in LaConnor (finding a non rainy day in April is tough but worth it for their tulip festival). The Inn is considered a B and B but about as unlike your experience as possible--whirlpool tub in the room (for the expensive room). Rooms that seem like hotel rooms but the size is smaller than the average hotel and it is run by a family.

Also breakfast is served until 9:30 or 10. I was completely comfortable as person staying as a hotel guest and not at all like staying in someone's house. I have seen B and B's that remind me of that but this was the best of both worlds (oh and breakfast was DIVINE!)

Goofy Girl said...

I would agree about B&B, it's a little too much like a home with chatty guests. It looks very pretty though!

Renee said...

I'm thinkin that the B&B experience just isn't for me either. Luckily everywhere that I've tried to find one has been WAYYYY out of our price range.

Getting up that early for breakfast??? No way. We get upset when our hotel w/ breakfast only serves to 10am...sometimes we just not bothered and went out someplace like Ihop for breakfast instead. Oops it was a Bob Evans, we could see it from our hotel window.

Sorry the BF wasn't happy there, but I hope you had fun in Williamsburg.

Hootin' Anni said...

I would hafta SO agree with your BF...not my style. But none-the-less, and experience to have. I think by looking at your slideshow, the only thing that would appeal to me would be the garden and the antiques. LOL

This 'staycation' is just the thing I'm talking about on my blog today. It's a shame this society has put up with all the crap of our government. I don't like it.

But, in any case, dear Carmen...have a terrific Thursday.

Red said...

The thing that would have annoyed me the most (apart from being able to hear the rooms next door) would be having to have breakfast at a set time. I think the decent thing is to have a window of at least a couple of hours, say 7.30 to 9.30. That way, the early birds can get on with their sightseeing nice and early, and the lazybones can have a bit of a lie-in.

The fact that you felt compelled to talk to the other guests... haha! I wonder if that's an American thing, just because you guys are so much more sociable than us, you know? Whenever we stay at a B&B, we say good morning to the other guests, but that's it -- we've never had to engage in a conversation with anybody.

So maybe the solution is: when in England, B&B; when in the States, hotel!

Melli said...

I've always wanted to try a B&B - but I think the end result would be the same for me. I'm pretty sure I would PASS on the breakfast UNLESS I was already naturally awake and ready for it at the time that they were serving. I do think that's the common practice at B&B's though - just one serving. It's NOT a restaurant - the people running it are living their life there too. I think it's worth trying once... but I really AM a hotel girl!

~Virginia~ said...

we stayed at a b&b in mexico once. we had our own little cottage type place which was nice, but the breakfast thing was a pain. it was bright and early and you had to let them know in advance if you were coming. our first morning, we didn't know and the owners were slightly ticked that they'd "made extra" for nothing. whatever. you hard-boiled 2 extra eggs--get over yourself.

whoops! went on a rant there.

pretty pictures! :)

*~Tey~* said...

We went to a B&B in Wellington New Zealand. It was a beautiful place. And yes I can understand the weirdness of feeling like you're in someones home. We were really good friends with the owners of the B&B which was less weird and why we stayed there. But if we didn't know them I probably wouldn't of enjoyed it as much.

Geggie said...

Oh, you're back. I didn't realize you were back blogging. I have some catching up to do.

I love a good B&B, even without a private bath. That's generally what I do in Europe, too. Not to everyone's liking.

Bone said...

So it wasn't anything like Newhart?

I like the idea of a staycation. Did it really feel like you were getting away?