There is nothing quite like staying at a Bed and Breakfast for your vacation or staycation. Anyone who has done it before can attest to the fact that B&Bs have a certain charm that just can’t be found in a hotel chain. Airbnbs and other such vacation rentals may attempt the warmth of a Bed and Breakfast, but few come close in terms of comfort and level of care. If you’re unfamiliar with Bed and Breakfast hospitality, we’ve got a few tips on how to make the most of your experience.
You can trust our advice when it comes to making the most of your next Bed and Breakfast booking. After all, we run one.
Booking Your Bed and Breakfast Vacation
It may come as no surprise that it can be harder to get a reservation for a bed and breakfast than your usual hotel. B&Bs often have only a few rooms, which allows for more personalized guest service.
- If you’ve got your heart set on a certain B&B, make sure to reserve your spot at least six to eight weeks in advance of your trip. If you have your heart set on a certain room within a B&B, which may be themed or offer different views or amenities, you should allow yourself even more advance scheduling The travel itch is quite strong right now, so delay on making your reservation and you may miss out entirely.
- If your travel plans are extremely flexible, or you’re already in the area but maybe not loving your hotel accommodations, try calling the local Bed and Breakfasts to see if they have any last-minute availability. Oftentimes you can get a discount for same-day bookings.
- If you’re looking for a local getaway (or you just want to sleep in a nice bed and not cook breakfast the next day), see if your area Bed and Breakfasts offer a residents’ discount. Here at the Inn at Woodhaven, Louisville locals get 20% off their stay at any time.
- Last bit of advice on booking with a B&B: read the cancellation policy. Unlike hotels and private rentals that may allow for last-minute cancellations, the B&B industry needs more notice to accommodate schedule changes. Most require at least 7 days notice. If you’re concerned, look into the relatively low cost of travel insurance in case you need to make changes to your trip.
Breakfast Is In our Name
If there is one thing that truly sets a Bed and Breakfast apart from other accommodations, it’s the food. There is nothing quite like having a solid night of sleep in a well-made bed, only to wake up to a never-ending cup of hot coffee and a freshly made meal waiting downstairs for you. Often these breakfasts are made with seasonal ingredients and local flavors to ensure that you’re not only well-fed, but also well-educated about the culture of the area you’re staying in.
For us, in Louisville, Kentucky, that culture includes working bourbon into a recipe whenever possible. One of our most popular breakfasts to enjoy is our Caramel French Toast casserole, made with Buffalo Trace’s Bourbon Cream and locally made cinnamon bread from Wildflour Bakehouse. Pair it with some crisp, salty bacon and you’ll never look at breakfast the same way again.
But B&B hospitality extends beyond just breakfast. It’s not uncommon for B&Bs to host an afternoon tea or happy hour. In our own parlor, you’ll find fresh baked cookies and candies available to you all day long. We also offer complimentary cordials in the parlor and sherry in each of our rooms so that you can add a little happy to any hour.
Depending on the size of your visiting group, many B&Bs are happy to coordinate events for your party. We offer bourbon tastings, happy hours, or afternoon teas. Speak with your innkeepers before arrival and ask what additional services may be available to you during your stay.
One last, often overlooked, service of our Bed & Breakfast is that we can prepare you a picnic lunch with enough notice. Whether you’re looking for a romantic date in the park or just need a delicious meal to-go as you depart for the day, this is one aspect of a Bed & Breakfast you should be sure to take advantage of!
The Best Sleep Away from Home
If you thought the breakfast part of our name was good, wait until you flop down in one of our beds. Sleep is something we take very seriously, as it’s a vital part of having an enjoyable vacation. After a full day of touring the sites, Bed and Breakfasts strive to put together the most comfortable, home-away-from-home setting possible. Rooms usually include a comfortable seating area and may also include a fireplace (two of our rooms are equipped with remote-starter fireplaces).
But the real crown jewel of most Bed and Breakfasts is the bed itself. Our beds are Stearns & Foster mattresses, covered in high-quality linens. We offer a selection of pillows that vary in firmness, so that you can create your ideal sleep experience. We take care of every detail, down to ironing each pillowcase to ensure the most luxurious rest possible.
Making the Most of Your Vacation Tours
Your room reservation isn’t the only thing that requires advanced booking. If you are set on seeing certain popular attractions, especially the well-known bourbon distilleries, tours can fill up weeks in advance. Plan your entire trip in advance by visiting popular tourism pages or contact your B&B innkeepers and ask for recommendations BEFORE you arrive. For Louisville visitors, we recommend checking out GoToLouisville.com and the Louisville Downtown Partnership.
You can also message us directly through our website. We (and nearly all innkeepers) LOVE to provide our local knowledge and expertise on the best restaurants, historic sites, and shopping for you based on what you’re looking for, the weather that day, and your mode of transportation. All you have to do is ask.
If researching and planning aren’t really your thing, may we recommend one of our absolute favorite local companies that will give you the bourbon tour you’ve always dreamed of… the Kentucky Bourbon Boys. Their 9-hour tours will pick you up at our front door and take you to three different distilleries in the area, while providing entertaining commentary, food, and snacks along the way. Be sure to book with them as soon as possible, though, because services this good fill up fast!
It’s Going to Be Hard to Return to Hotels After This
We hope that if you haven’t yet experienced the comfort and care that comes with a stay at a Bed and Breakfast, you’ll give it a try. Bed and Breakfasts across the United States are typically independently-owned small businesses run by innkeepers who truly care about every guest that crosses through their front door.
Want to show your innkeepers some love for their stellar hospitality? Share their social media posts (or even… hypothetically speaking… blogs, like this one) and help spread the word that they’re out there. Write them a detailed review on TripAdvisor or Google, to let people know exactly why you enjoyed your stay.
And lastly, there is nothing that warms our hearts more than to see our guests return season after season. We’re proud to be the hosts in a place where so many happy memories are made.