Staying in a Bed & Breakfast is one of the most popular types of lodging in countries around the world. There is a huge array of B&B options to choose from, and properties vary dramatically. The owners need to strike a perfect balance between inviting, professional, comfortable and affordable. All that, and deliver a delicious breakfast, too!
To help you select the perfect B&B for your next vacation, here are five features to look for when you’re considering a Bed and Breakfast.
1. Bedroom Amenities
The whole reason you’re at a B&B is to sleep there, so the bedrooms deserve great attention to detail. The bed needs to be comfortable, the room should provide adequate space for your belongings, and everything must be clean. Check on the amenities provided. Does the room have a TV, DVD player, alarm clock, or coffee/tea maker? How about internet access?
Decor can vary tremendously with the taste of the owner, so make sure it’s going to appeal to you. Some people go for heavy dark wood, some prefer neutral tones and minimalistic artwork, and others like frills, lace and delicate antiques. Check the photos of the rooms, and make sure you’ll feel comfortable there.
2. Service and Cleanliness
Service and cleanliness are vital. Nobody wants to stay in a place that’s less than sparkling clean, or where the service is slow or surly. Happy customers spread the word to their friends and on review sites, and unhappy customers do the same.
Check reviews online, and find out what people say about the B&B you’re considering. Take reviews with a grain of salt, but get the overall impression of previous guests. Make sure the place you select takes cleanliness seriously, and provides the extra touches on service that make you feel welcome.
3. Breakfast Options
Breakfast is the second B in B&B, so it’s an important element of the service. This is usually the only meal of the day that is served at the property, and a good B&B takes it seriously. There should be at least two breakfast options for guests, including a full breakfast and a lighter continental option.
Fresh juice should be provided, and an enticing display of fruit is a welcome sight in the morning. Locally sourced products are always a good choice and guests appreciate the extra effort. If the owner has a talent for baking, homemade biscuits, pastries, and cakes are a delectable addition to start your day.
4. Sharing Local Knowledge
When you’re at a B&B, you’re usually new to the area, and don’t know much about where to explore or the best places to dine. This is where a B&B owner can add a lot of value. Some places give guests a welcome pack, detailing local restaurants, attractions and events. Other places ask their guests when booking if there is any particular interest that they may have, which can be catered for during their stay. A friendly host who’s happy to share local information can add a lot of enjoyment to your stay.
We all know that traveling isn’t always straightforward, and things don’t always go as planned. What happens if you arrive late at night? How about breakfast if you need to leave early in the morning? Is the property flexible enough to meet your needs when things don’t fit their normal schedule? Having flexible check in and out times at a B&B is a big bonus. You never know when something could impact your schedule.
Next time you’re looking for a Bed & Breakfast, consider these five elements. Find a property that fits your needs in all five categories, and it’s sure to make your vacation more enjoyable.