Bed and Breakfast Offers Secret to Success, Southern Porch Parties, Book Direct Letter to Guests

Wicky-Up Ranch, Calif.

Wicky-Up Ranch, Calif.


What We Heard This Week

“I’m in the CELEBRATION business. I dare any man to take their wife to an airbnb for their 25th wedding anniversary.” Penn. Innkeeper


“Hi, gang. Dave used to be such a help to me when we were in your directory. We stopped all advertising about 3 years or more ago…then eventually joined B& Then the explosion: Expedia. We’ve made the transition successfully so far, but we’ve run into communication glitches. We are so happy that you’ve been so successful. I remember you when you were YOUNG.” Monica Pizura, Innkeeper, Wicky-Up


“We learned that FACEBOOK is utilized by a much older group (the bed and breakfast clientele) but INSTAGRAM is for the younger demographic so we use both to target both age groups.” Bryce, Virginia Innkeeper


“Per a brilliant suggestion in the last newsletter, I’ve been adding my B& reviews manually on the ( site via the guest book feature.” Sharon, New York Innkeeper


“We just got a new king bed for one of our suites from JCP and I’m super happy we had the coupon code!! Saved a ton!”


He Wants All Innkeepers to Send This Letter To Guests

This Innkeeper asked for anonymity:


Dear Guest:
You know the names.,, Expedia, Priceline. Collectively termed Online Travel Agents, or OTA’s, they control an ever-increasing share of all hotel, inn and bed and breakfast bookings – currently almost 40% share in the United States. Hotels pay commissions of between 12% and as high as 30% in Europe. And just two players, Expedia and Priceline control a staggering 95% of the OTA market! And now AirBnB is moving into the traditional hotel arena.


Of course, OTA’s make it easy to search a destination on a single site, so I am sure that many of you make reservations using these online services. So why is all of this important to you as a traveler – or as our guests? Caveat Emptor (‘buyer beware!’).


For starters, OTA’s don’t greet you at the door, they don’t cook your breakfast or clean your room and they don’t make your dinner reservations – but of more practical importance to you, they are not able to guarantee the best rooms or add those little complimentary extras.


OTA’s also seek to control your contact information, creating a barrier to the personal communication that is the hallmark of the guest experience at many independent hotels and inns. (7 more paragraphs in this letter to guests – will print all next week.)


Here is his call to action to all guests: If you have read this far, you may agree that booking direct is something you will want to consider when making your next hotel booking – wherever in the world that may be. We are collectively involved in a silent revolution. Happy travels. More of this letter next week…


Camelia Inn Shares Secrets of Up To 10 Reservations* Per Email

Camelia Inn Shares Secrets of Up To 10 Reservations* Per Email


Camelia Inn is an iLoveInns newsletter client with D. Ringler as her customer support. This is a recent interview.


Deborah: How do you pick your topics?

Lucy Lewand:

  1. I like to think in threes such as 3 very small wineries, 3 restaurants, 3 staff members to feature.
  2. We have a publicist for our hotel group and she sends us trends such as “Solo Travel”  (big right now) and drinks made with grapefruit.
  3. I always scan the chamber of commerce news


Deborah: How Do You Get Such Good Results?

“When it looks slower than usual and just a little bit ahead, I’ll do an email note about Sales Days – I send it close to the dates available. It works!, We will get 2-3 sales from this alone. 


But Our Regular monthly newsletters always result in *5-10 reservations.


“We also do resends a couple days later – Resends are easy and cheap – $50.”


Stroudsmoor Country Inn Decides On 4 Separate Newsletters

As seen in this week’s Stroudsmoor newsletter: “New choices for our loyal subscribers! Thanks to the more than 11,000 subscribers that are currently receiving our newsletter. We are making changes to give you better information, and just the information you’re looking for. Starting next week, we are separating our newsletters into these four specialty lists.

  • Weddings and Wedding Planning
  • Dining, Holidays and Music Events
  • Lodging and Spa Packages
  • Stroudsmoor Inn Towne Bakery Specials

If you still want all four, do nothing! You will continue to receive all of our regular email content.”


Alyssa House, Cape Charles

Alyssa House, Cape Charles

Art Rocks the Inns – (With Tourism Grant)

This is the sixth year, the porches and front yards of half a dozen Cape Charles inns features talented artists for “Art Rocks the Inns.” Art work of all kinds will be on display ranging from knitting, to painting and Eastern Shore décor.
Alyssa House Bed & Breakfast Manager Kathy Glaser said the once-a-year event is a great opportunity to see all your favorite local artists work in one venue.
“Ninety percent are Eastern Shore artists,” said Glaser.


Cape Charles Bed & Breakfast Association sponsors Art Rocks the Inns, while a $1,000 tourism grant from Northampton County helps promote the event.


Porch Parties at The Inn On Tiffany Hill

Porch Parties at The Inn On Tiffany Hill

1st Thursday Porch Parties

“We have been having a great time on Tiffany Hill with our 1st Thursday Porch Parties! Guests enjoy the music of Carver & Carmody on our front porch with complimentary wine & cheese. Only 2 left for the year and several rooms are still open…”


Big Push for Summer

We gathered a few photos from inns’ last push for Summer. Here’s what they showed and said.


Captain Farris - “Summer Comes Only Once a Year”

Captain Farris – “Summer Comes Only Once a Year”


Hidden Pond, Kennebunkport, Maine

Hidden Pond, Kennebunkport, Maine


Spanish Garden Inn, Santa Barbara

Spanish Garden Inn, Santa Barbara


Sweet Onion QuicheSweet Onion Quiche – Inn at Abeja, Washington State

Serving Size: 10


  • 3 Walla Walla sweet onions, caramelized
  • 3 slices thick sliced bacon, browned until fat has rendered but not crisp (I use Hill Meats apple smoked)
  • 3/4 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
  • 3/4 cup manchego cheese
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 6 fresh farm eggs (these make all the difference)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg, freshly grated
  • 1 par-baked pie crust, see note below


Also check out their beautiful knockout Eggs Benedict with Local Asparagus, Morel Mushrooms