Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Bed & Breakfast - Nestled Coziness?

"Nestled" is defined as drawn or pressed close to someone or something for, or as if for affection or protection, from Middle English to make a nest.

Bed and breakfasts walk a fine line between cloying sweetness and old-fashioned comfort. They don't always get it right. Have you ever read a bed and breakfast ad that doesn't have something nestled somewhere?! This no doubt accounts for one of the great B & B Myths, a fear most accutely felt by the male half of the species, that staying in a Bed and Breakfast is going to be like a weekend at Grandma's. You know, like back when you were 14 and Grandma seemed ancient and had nothing to offer you but ancient humbug candy. Worse - her house seemed cramped, doily, kitschy and smelled of mothballs!

Personally, I swore from the get-go that Nelson House was not going to be dressed up as Grandma's House. Let's take a breath and realize that an innkeeper is usually a professional businessperson living very much in the 21st century too. Sometimes, we just get carried away with painting a picture of relaxation, of slowing down just a bit, of stopping to smell the roses and the fresh-brewed coffee.

I was lucky enough to live in The Netherlands for two years and the Dutch have a word called "gezellig". As I tried to learn the language, I was told that the quick translation in English would be "cozy". However, English lacks a single word that captures ALL of the Dutch meaning. I think that innkeepers and bed and breakfasts are striving for that true meaning of gezellig. We are trying to create a space, an atmosphere or ambiance, something that exists in the company of others, which is friendly, fun, pleasant, cozy, and sociable. Now that's nothing to be afraid of - is it?

Valentines home-baked by Briana and photographed by Matthew at the B & B. The chocolate hearts melted in your mouth....


  1. Im a fellow Innkeeper too. Own a B & B in WV, and I don't really put the doilies and such....

    Its a wonderful life, snowed in at this time, we close for the winter but looking so forward to spring. Have gotten much more snow than I've seen since moving here in '04 in this ol house.

  2. Thanks for reading. I felt the same way about the snow back in December - Let It Melt!

    Cheers, David.


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