Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Why Choose a B&B rather than a Hotel

Daniel Edward Craig wrote July 8 in his blog, "Soul is an essential part of any hotel, and of lifestyle hotels in particular. It is everything abstract: personality, culture and spirit, that intangible feeling that prompts a guest to remark either 'It just felt right' or 'Something was missing.' Soul is often overlooked by hotel executives because we can’t see it, write it into an operating manual or charge a fee for it. Some hotels have all the right elements-beautiful design, quality amenities, competent service but feel like the other definition of soul: the spirit of a dead person. Soul cannot be factory-produced or mass-marketed; more than anything it’s shaped by employees. By defining the hotel's vision and values and using them to guide every decision, management develops the hotel's culture and, over time, its soul evolves organically." Mr. Craig has just made the perfect case for staying at a B&B. Know why? No hotel employee can compete with an innkeeper. I like to think of what we offer as “kid-glove care.” First off, we answer only to ourselves – no boss. Second, you have to be a pretty unusual individual to invite strangers into your own home on a regular basis. Each bed & breakfast experience is unique, based on the personality of the innkeepers, the location, the physical aspects of the B&B, and, most of all, certain choices the innkeeper has made. Chez Sven differs from most in type of breakfast (fresh fruit salad, yogurt, granola, as well as home baked goods), natural amenities, organic cotton sheets, being “green,” the fact that we accept children, our BEDS – no joke, the quality of a bed is really important. How many times have I heard guests come down in the morning, totally relaxed, and declare, “What a great bed!” That special something a good B&B possesses cannot be duplicated. If it could be bottled, we would be millionaires. Good B&Bs have more than Mr. Craig’s “soul.” Think of it as soul, plus. In fact, Sven and I approach our guests as if they were long lost relatives. No hotel can do that. Hands down, B&Bs are the way to go.