Inn Consultants and Brokers Since 1993

Rick Wolf and Peter Scherman (that’s Rick on the left and Peter on the right) are both experienced speakers who have presented on a range of innkeeping related topics at the state, regional, and national level. They gather and analyze research for the Innkeeping industry and welcome the opportunity to share it with others. Contact Us

The B&B Team
 

Archive for the ‘Innkeeping Business’ Category

Put an Egg on It!

February 15th, 2017 by Janet Wolf

Put an egg on it

Ultimate ‘put an egg on it’ cuisine By Dana Moos

Having a background in commercial food preparation or even chef training is not a prerequisite in becoming an innkeeper. But many of our clients that are now innkeepers were professional chefs.  In many of their backgrounds, breakfasts were never a part of their repertoire. Therefore some AM cuisine creativity was in order.

At the recent InnSpire Summit in Long Beach CA, I was chatting with new innkeepers Nadine Pinto and Brad Ipsan, innkeeper/owners of the Atlantean Cottage B&B, Bar Harbor Maine. Both are trained chefs. In fact it was Nadine who gave me the idea for the title of this blog. “Prepare a savory entrée…put an egg on it…voila, its’ breakfast.”

Take this example from The Inn at Pleasant Lake, New London New Hampshire. This dish was voted one of the ‘Best B&B Breakfasts Tournament 2016’. Bed and Breakfast. com.

put an egg on it

New England Johnny Cod Cake- Poached Egg, Oven Roasted tomatoes, Lemon-Tarragon Aioli

Before becoming an Innkeeper, Phil Crispo was an Associate Professor at the world-renown Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY for over eight years. With partner Sue Walser they became innkeepers of the Norumbega Inn, Camden Maine in 2012. He is a master of ‘put an egg on it’ cuisine. Here is one of his breakfast creations.

put an egg on it

Norumbega Inn Breakfast WOW

A potato nest, spinach, smoked salmon, a poached egg and sauce. Now I know that Phil and Sue describe it much better than I did but it looks delish and it tastes the same. Rick and I were lucky to have sampled this creation.

Very trendy these days are breakfast toasts. These can be savory or sweet. The presentation tends to be very simple and many boast energy boosting qualities. My favorite go to breakfast toast: one slice 9 grain bread, ¼ sliced avocado, fried egg and Shiraca sauce. This simple recipe can be transformed into B&B breakfast worthy. Take a look.

put an egg on it

Kate Parisi at The Inn at English Meadows prepares and presents some spectacular breakfasts. The art of using simple ingredients with artistic presentation equals WOW in her kitchen.

put an egg on it

Parmesan French toast with super crisp bacon!

I could go on and on with some wonderful B&B breakfast examples. From Benedict variations to simple ingredient toasts. Planned creatively and executed properly, the variety is endless. Just remember, whenever in doubt…just put an egg on it.

Find more creations by Dana Moos, Broker, The B&B Team and author of The Art of Breakfast. Dana’s creation in lead photo; Fried green tomatoes with poached eggs, lobster, remoulade sauce and fresh chives!

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

Day 3-InnSpire Summit & Marketplace

February 6th, 2017 by Rick Wolf

Day 3-InnSpire Summit & Marketplace

What a great conference. Thank you AIHP, CABBI and Select Registry

Day 3-InnSpire Summit & Marketplace.

The B&B Team was so happy to see so many of our recent clients attend this conference. Between all of us we counted about 12 to 15 couples and singles, aspiring innkeepers and new innkeepers. All of them have attended one of our Aspiring Innkeeper Seminars. We always advise our attendees to attend conferences, and this group listened!

Morning sessions Day 3 included another well attended New Innkeeper Path session. ‘Marketing for the New Innkeeper: What You Need to Succeed’ Led by both professional consultants and seasoned successful innkeepers. This session’s goal was to help new innkeepers answer the question, ‘where do I start’?

‘Dealing with the Skeletons in your Digital Closet’  Lisa Kolb, Acorn Internet Services knows her Google! Your listing placement is influenced by so many factors. And it is constantly changing. Knowing where you land and how to rid yourself of the skeletons that may be holding your placement hostage. Good stuff to learn.

“Rooms Reborn” presentation with a nearly full room. Mathew Lovette, Jumping Rock Photography

The remaining sessions were culinary, staffing, more marketing, guest spaces and preventive maintenance.  Last day is a half day. Total of 10 sessions.

Marketplace closes and we are all off to the closing general session and lunch. The speaker at the lunch was Joshua Evans, ‘Enthusiastic You! Rediscovering Your Passion and Energy for Hospitality’. We all need to rekindle our enthusiasm from time to time. Being engaged in what you do and having fun doing it! A good thought to end the conference.

Day 3-InnSpire Summit & Marketplace

So long! Queen Mary, Long Beach – California

Tough to say goodbye. Hugs all around. Check to see if we all have our Deneen conference mugs and those collected business cards.

From all of us at The B&B Team.

Thanks for Listening, Thanks for Attending and just Thanks!

 

 

Day 2-InnSpire Summit & Marketplace

February 1st, 2017 by Rick Wolf

Day 2 InnSpire Summit & Marketplace. Good Morning -Unique Angles, Marcus Berg Photography

Day 2-InnSpire Summit & Marketplace.

The conference this year is a collaboration with the Association of Independent Hospitality Professionals, AIHP, The California Association of Boutique & Breakfast Inns, CABBI and Select Registry. This took organization and hours and hours of work. As in any non-profit organization much of the work is done by volunteers. To list all of them would be tough, especially if I leave someone out! So here is a BIG shout out to them all, in all three of the organizations.

The morning sessions included branding, cleaning, OTA’s, revenue management and yield management and ADA. I took some time and wandered through thhe crowd and did a mini survey, talking to innkeepers to see which sessions talked to them.

‘Financial Benchmarking-Getting More Profit from Your Inn’. Presented by Terry Hammer, Hermann Hill Vineyard Inn & Spa. Terry always gets high praise and respect from innkeepers that attend his sessions. “Terry is amazing…his attitude and respect towards his staff and guests is primary. I would not only stay at his Inn but would also work for him anytime.” Profitability for Terry is never at the expense of his staff. “The intent and actions of an individual (cause), influence the future of that individual (effect)”.Good karma works every time.!

‘An In-depth and Personal Look at ADA and How It Affects your Property’ An innkeeper from New Orleans commented that she had to become ADA compliant when she did renovations on her property after the hurricane damage. She said if she had been more informed about the process she could have saved a lot of time and angst! Education can take away the fear of the unknown. Especially when it comes to the bureaucracy of compliance.

Peter Deneen, Deneen Pottery working the floor!

Lunch in the Marketplace. Time to refuel and visit the booths.

Afternoon Sessions:

‘Did Someone Say Insurance?’  A subject that is often avoided, perceived as boring and scary. But so necessary to our business and something that should never be avoided. The conversations included real case studies and their ultimate happy endings. Learn and the scare goes away.

Now there are some fun food sessions. A feast for the eyes and the soul. ‘Tablescapes and Pretty Plates’. We all need some new ideas in this category.

16 sessions in all for this day.

InnSpire Summit & Marketplace

AIHP CEO Rob Fulton and Kelly

6:30 to 11:00  Inspire Summit Gala and Live Auction  Time to dress up and have fun!

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

The InnSpire Summit & Marketplace-Value Added

January 31st, 2017 by Rick Wolf

the InnSpire summit & Marketplace

The InnSpire Summit & Marketplace, Queen Mary. Long Beach CA

Day 1…The InnSpire Summit & Marketplace, The Queen Mary, Long Beach CA. Ran into and old friend and colleague. Started chatting about innkeeping conferences, current and past. He told me about a comment from an innkeeper that he would never forget. He asked this innkeeper, what is the value you get from attending an innkeeping conference?

“Attending a conference gives you the opportunity to place yourself high on a mountain top and view the battlefield landscape to help plan your attack. The alternative is to stay bogged down in the trenches, trying to dig yourself out and getting nowhere.”

Love this!

Here is a sample of some of the sessions offered, the landscape.

There are different paths or categories to choose from.

New Innkeeper Path

Guest Experience Path

Heads on Beds Path

Back of the House Path

The InnSpire Summit & Marketplace

Peter Scherman-The B&B Team

One of the first sessions was for the newbies, ‘Benchmarks for the New Innkeeper: How do I Measure my First Year in Business?‘ The room was packed with new and seasoned innkeepers. Peter Scherman, and innkeeper Don Lynch presented some tools and stats to help you gauge your business success. Ways to work ‘on your business’, not just ‘in your business’. Big difference.

The ‘Guest Experience Path’ offered, ‘The Dynamics of Creating Consistency’. A panel of seasoned innkeepers talked about their approach to brand consistency at their inns. How they deliver on the promise their marketing presents. Their experiences triggered lively audience participation with questions and more great examples. You could see light bulbs go off.

The InnSpire Summit & Marketplace

Chip Conley-Airbnb

Heads on Beds Path. ‘How Airbnb and Professional Bed and Breakfast Can Collaborate and Win Together.’  Now you can imagine how packed this session was! Led by Chip Conley, Head of Global Hospitality and Strategy, Airbnb. How the future of a collaboration between B&Bs and Airbnb is one that can benefit both. The presentation and discussion, among many, involved the plan for Airbnb to launch a ‘Professional Designation’ category on their website. This has been promised in the past and is still in the working stages.

Lunch was served in the Marketplace for attendees and Allied Partners. Time to shop and network with variety of old friends and new. 58 booths in total. From Amenities to Website Design. The buzz and enthusiasm in the hall is invigorating.

After we all refueled, back to education. How about some help with Social Media?  ‘Mastering Social Media Advertising’. Alex Cameron, founder and CEO, Signature Marketing Consulting offered great ‘how to’ advise on Facebook Ads. Step by step tools, simply presented and applicable for our business.

Late afternoon sessions. Time to grab some coffee at Starbucks. The landscape is broadening.

Back of the House Path offering, ‘The State of the Marketplace: Are Inns Selling? Are Banks Lending? Are There Buyers and What Are They Looking For? Rick and Peter are finishing this session as I am writing. I hope they left time for plenty of questions.

There was a total of 23 sessions today. Most innkeeper couples and/or staff divide and conquer the battlefield then gather to plan their next attack. Day 1 coming to an end. See you tomorrow.

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

 

New York State Country Inns Reboot

January 25th, 2017 by Janet Wolf

new york state country inns

New York State Country Inns

“I think 2017 will be a banner year for U.S. B&Bs and guesthouses, rebooting the classic American inn experience.” O boy, do we love to read these kind of predictions! This is coming from Ben Pundole writing for A Hotel Life. Hoteliers writing about small lodging properties, very interesting.

The article’s focus was on a New York Catskills property described as “relaxed, rustic, off the grid elegance“. The experience described,“beautiful walks, seasonal food and a cheese and wine hour by an open fire-unpretentious, but heavenly.”

Recently properties like the one described here are being called ‘lifestyle-design’ hotels. Note that they are using ’hotel’ to describe anything from 6 to 30+ guest room properties. B&Bs in this category, you bet.

New York State has fantastic regions that offer the rustic and unpretentious elegant experience travelers are seeking today. Catskill Mountains, Adirondacks, Hudson Valley and the Finger Lakes are names well known to tourists. These regions became the summer heat-escape destinations for early city dwellers. Now, any time of year is a good time to escape!

The B&B Team offers New York Inns for sale that are prime for new owners to take to a new level for that 2017 banner year! Take a peek at our current listings.

New York state country inns

1890 Victorian Lady

Southern Adirondacks steps away from Lake Luzerne lies a beautifully kept Victorian lady B&B set among a grove of pine trees. A quiet village locale yet near Lake George and Saratoga Springs if anyone wants step up the volume.

nEW yORK STATE COUNTRY INNS

In the New York Finger Lakes is a distinctive historic inn. Built in 1833, this stone mill became an inn in 1982. Located near Rochester, NY. The property is graced with lush grounds that include a trout stream, and a sparkling pond.

A classic Finger Lakes property sits on a verdant hilltop above one of New York’s famous Finger Lakes, sparkling Honeoye Lake. Purpose built in the 1990’s. In the heart of Wine Country with more than 120 wineries and 50 breweries dotting the surrounding countryside.

Any of these three New York Inns for sale by The B&B Team are ready for a reboot from new owners. We know that travelers today are looking for that unique experience that small lodging properties can provide. That classic American inn experience.

Can you give an 1890 Victorian lady some modern flourishes while keeping her historic charm, you bet. I’ve seen it done in many historic B&B’s, it works and guests love it.

And what about that ‘relaxed, rustic, off the grid elegance’. The Finger Lakes properties are prime for this kind of transformation. If you have that kind of lifestyle-design vision, go for it.

There may be other New York State country inns we are aware of that are not listed here. Learn how to get in touch with a specialist in finding a bed and breakfast for sale in New York that’s just right for you.

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

 

Innkeeper’s Stories or Life’s Little Tests

January 19th, 2017 by Janet Wolf

innkeepers's stories

Fast approaching storm clouds…life’s little tests

A few years ago at an Innkeeping conference, innkeepers were asked to submit their ‘most fantastic and unusual innkeeper’s stories’. This was a contest and judges picked a couple of whoppers. Now unfortunately they were also X-Rated and as a result not to be retold for this publication. Sorry, they were good ones!

Now we all get Holiday greetings, some with letters chock-full of family news replete with photos in holiday regalia. This past holiday we received one from an innkeeper going into their third year of innkeeping. Not filled with news of kids and pets but of their year of innkeeping stories. Let me pass some on to you. I am sure they will sound familiar.

Scenario #1

Summer time and the livin’ is busy… Inn is full, so is restaurant. 20-minute micro-storm crops up and trees down, power lines follow and electricity out. Inn did not come with a propane generator. Oops!

Quote from innkeeper’s letter. “One of our guests emerged through the blur to ask, “Can you charge my cell phone, the power just went out?” “While gauging where on the priority list of disaster protocols I should stack this item, I thought to myself, this was one of those rare moments when you realize the words you are thinking of saying are the exact wrong words for the situation at hand.”

What do you think the innkeeper response was? “Of course.” Great answer. A small generator brought along with them when they purchased the inn was keeping the essential kitchen equipment going so he was able to keep the guest happy. As a result…happy ending.

innkeeper's stories

MY family’s guest room since 1985, don’t change ONE thing!

Scenario #2

As innkeepers you most likely have a loyal customer base, many of whom are repeat guests over many years. In this case we are talking about 30+ year, second generation guests! (It was their parent’s room). Now these guests were not only loyal but shall we say obsessive?

Quote from Innkeeper’s letter. “The fact that these 30+ year guests made the reservation for a different room, online and by their own hand, with multiple confirmations, is hardy relevant, right? From their vantage point it might appear completely rational to suggest that those who have trespassed to reserve your room by inexplicably overcoming the obstacles of online booking to reserve your room while they weren’t looking, should be forcibly removed, cast in chains, and flogged for their insolence! We didn’t do that…” A soft pedaled explanation was offered and rational thought prevailed.

Hey, maybe this couple has a new favorite room. Who knows?

I like these two stories because they resonate with all innkeepers. Innkeepers are flexible (you better be). They learn to hold their tongue and smile, often. This is how innkeepers function, how they deal with life’s little tests. And they LOVE to tell innkeeper stories.

We would love to have you respond with your Innkeeper’s stories. No X- Rated please.

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

Note: Credit where credit is due…photo of guest room from the Harry S. Truman Library & Museum

Vermont is a Strong Brand

January 12th, 2017 by Janet Wolf

Vermont is a strong brand

View of Bromley Mountain, Vermont

As US states go, Vermont is a strong brand. What comes to mind this time of year is Snow, with a capital S.  For downhill skiers, snowboarders and snowmobile enthusiasts, Vermont’s snowfall is the envy of the nation. This according to the Burlington Free Press.

In fall it is the ultimate leaf peeper locale. Early spring brings maple syrup and the prospect of the most spectacular lush shades of green seen anywhere.

Vermont is also synonymous with country inns and cozy fireside bed and breakfasts. To prove this, here are a few quotes from an early Country Inn & Back Roads directory by Norman T. Simpson. For those of you who may not know, Norman and his directory were the foundation of Select Registry. Norman passed away in 1988 but his words and legacy live on.

Vermont is a strong brand

Country Inns and Back Roads

Describing a country inn in Stowe. “The gentle summer mood of northern Vermont is reflected in this gracious Green Mountain hostelry.”

I love Norman’ descriptions and how he identifies the simple pleasures of the Vermont inns he visited .

  • The laden book shelves set by the gathering room hearth.
  • Fresh muffins with small pots of country butter.
  • A friendly maple outside your guest room window.
Vermont is a strong brand

Kitzof Inn, Mt. Snow

Now here is another quote from Norman that many innkeepers and guests can identify with.

“The floor has an engaging list to port but that’s part of the game of country inns.” I have never heard anyone describe a tilting floor in such an appealing and positive way! Beautiful.

This is Vermont’s brand. Rich in a legacy of hospitality (and tilting floors). Allot has changed in the 40 plus years since Norman’s Country Inns & Back Roads was published. Many of his featured country inns and bed and breakfasts still exist and some are…just history. Many have undertaken expansions and renovations keeping the strong Vermont hospitality brand alive. Yet many are in a prime position for new owners to add their creative touch, their own personalized legacy. This is where The B&B Team can assist you, the aspiring innkeeper. We invite you to start your search for bed and breakfast inns for sale in Vermont right here.

Vermont is a strong brand

Hearthside at the Shoreham Inn & Gastropub

Whether it is a local landmark country inn in Chester,Vermont…an authentic lodge style bed and breakfast in Bromley Mountain ski country…a custom built resort lodge at the base of Mt. Snow…a classic historic country inn in Shoreham, Lake Champlain Valley …or a Main Street village boutique country inn in Quechee. The variety of these offerings is as rich and varied as the state of Vermont!

Vermont is a strong brand

Melding of modern & antique at this Quechee boutique country inn

If you are looking for Vermont inns for sale, we welcome you to give us a call. The Vermont brand is strong and enduring. A good place to build your business and your home.

Another Norman quote. “We were looking for the ‘lost Vermont” and we found it here. Gardens, trees, peace, history, laconic natives, covered bridges, mountains, lakes, antiquing, auctions…a sort of warm feeling of coming home.”

Chester VT country inn blanketed in snow. Watercolor by Debra Webster Irons

I will end this writing with how I started…Snow. 2017 Vermont state predictions from the Farmer’s Almanac.

“…slightly above-normal precipitation and near-normal snowfall. The snowiest periods will be in mid-November, late January, mid- and late February, and early to mid-March.”

Sounds about right to me and Vermont innkeepers are thrilled.

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

The Solo Traveler- A Perfect Fit for Bed and Breakfasts

January 4th, 2017 by Janet Wolf

solo traveler

The Solo Traveler

Have you seen an increase in the solo traveler over the last two or more years? Lonely Planet reported that; ‘solo travel will be the key trend in 2017.

Now to be clear this study is not relating to the business traveler but the leisure/adventure seeking traveler. In this blog I will focus specifically on women travelling solo.

I see this as a trend that comes from an evolving lifestyle change. Listen to this insightful quote about the solo woman traveler.

“What if she is simply indulging in her curiosity for other cultures and looking for enrichment? Gasp! In this day and age, she’s probably even married or in a relationship and just wants to get out and explore on her own.” From Visa Global Travel Intentions Study 2015

She is also confident and independent minded. In past decades a woman travelling solo would be looked upon stereotypically as sad and lonely. Poor dear! Not today.

Another great quote.

“I travel solo several months out of the year, and I am of the firm belief that you truly have not lived if you have not been out on the road alone. It is life altering, educational and enriching, and wildly freeing.”

This is from an article entitled; ‘Traveling Alone Does Not Make You Sad or Lonely’ by Kristen Tice Studeman. The author writes about her experiences traveling solo. This article offers an honest and useful insight into the solo woman traveler.

For decades bed and breakfasts have been a choice for solo women travelling on business. I believe bed and breakfasts are also a wonderful choice for the adventurous, confident and independent solo woman traveler. Now is the time to target them.

Your room, just for you! Sugar Hill Inn, New Hampshire

Innkeepers are the best equipped to offer the best informed choices for dining, shopping, entertainment and historical places. Making these experiences personalized and easily accessible to the solo traveler (and all your guests of course) is what you do best.

I would suggest creating a personalized travel package for the solo woman traveler. Promote it every which way on social media and see what develops.

Hint: Use a good searchable term like ‘solo travel ideas’.

Pre-arrival communications is another service that is trending. Finding out your guests dining and entertainment preferences ahead of their arrival can really enhance their experience.

We all like to feel special and welcomed when we check into our destination. Your solo traveler may be independent and confident but making her feel special with a pre arranged personalized package delivered to them at check-in…a real winner. Now she may want to change the arrangements, but that’s OK. It is a women’s prerogative. (I apologize for this stereotype, I couldn’t resist).

The B&B Team has also seen an increase of solo aspiring innkeepers in our seminars. They are confident and independent too. Many are women who have traveled solo and want to offer their guests the enriched travel knowledge they have experienced. If you are thinking about this solo path, you are welcome to sign up for one of our 2017 ‘Better Way to Learn Innkeeping’ seminars. We can guide you on your new adventurous road.

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

 

2017 New Year’s Resolutions for Innkeepers

December 16th, 2016 by Janet Wolf

2017 new year's resolutions

It is only mid December and I am writing about 2017 New Year’s resolutions. Why?  Didn’t your parents often advise you to ‘plan ahead’ or not to ‘short cut’ your homework? Just think of your homework as your ‘innwork’.

I got some good tips from Sojern, a travel tech company. Some of the 7 resolutions this article suggests are a good match for our industry. Here are my picks.

    1.”Germans are some of Europe’s earliest travel planners, with an average lead time of 80 days. That means that some of your customers are looking for their spring, and even summer travel, now. Don’t wait until April to engage with your customers, you may miss them!”

I would also suggest engaging with your entire foreign guest list. An email newsletter with some great news about your property and your area. Don’t forget to include great photos.

2017 new year's resolutions

See the USA

     2. “If your website isn’t optimized for mobile, your customers are likely to leave your site as soon as they arrive. Though most bookings occur on a laptop, research on mobile is rising at impressive rates. If you want to get (and stay!) on the radar of in-market travelers, make sure that your website experience is tailored to their device.”

This is not anything new but…some of you may have been putting off optimizing your site for mobile. So maybe NOW is the time to put this on your 2017 New Year’s resolutions list. Reaching customers that are ready to buy is key.

     3. Get involved with Social Media. Now I am really sounding like a broken record. Social Media presence and importance for engaging with your guest is more important than ever. The following stat fact makes the point…”with 76% of travelers posting vacation photos to their social networks, it’s essentially free advertising.”

Most innkeepers today are involved in Social Media to some extent but I often see postings on social media platforms that are not current. Social Media marketing must be an ongoing process. Stay current and post often. You must stay relevant or your guest will go elsewhere.

So make your list and make sure you check it more than twice during 2017.

  • Engage foreign travelers early √
  • Optimize for Mobile√
  • Revaluate your Social Media√

Looking to educate yourself on marketing trends, technology improvements and strategies? The best 2017 New Year’s resolutions you can make is to attend an innkeeping conference. Some of the smartest innkeepers and allied partners will be speaking at the InnSpire Conference and Knowledge Shari Summit & Marketplace. This inaugural joint event will take place aboard the Queen Mary in Long Beach, California, January 29 – February 1, 2017. Attending a conference will not only educate you but energize you. And we all need that!

Let’s make 2017 a productive a smarter innkeeper New Year.

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

Main Streets and Tourism

December 7th, 2016 by Janet Wolf

Maine Street and tourism

Ashland Oregon-Festival of Lights

America’s main streets and tourism go hand in hand, our main streets are the heart and soul of our communities. A recent travel blog entitled ‘America’s most beautiful streets’ spiked my interest. The streets featured were very beautiful and respectfully preserved but were in large cities like Boston, NYC and Los Angeles. The B&B Team travels to many much smaller (and beautiful) towns and villages where our client’s inns are located.  In a recent blog I wrote about the importance of preservation, not only for the individual inn but for the entire community, including it’s main streets.

“Preserve and restore historic buildings, neighborhoods and landscapes — these are what make our communities unique. Communities that don’t preserve their history, or encourage development that’s not in keeping with the community’s character (think chain stores and restaurants), lose their cultural memory and their soul.”

I love this quote! It says so much. Guests that stay in B&Bs love leisurely walks through towns and villages. Taking time to explore, something they may not have time to do in their own communities. With the knowledgeable guidance of innkeepers, guests can learn the history and culture of the town and area. Innkeepers that take pride in the preservation of their property also take pride in their community. It is a real win, win for them and their guests. Innkeepers know all about their main streets and tourism, and they love to share!

mainee streets and tourism

Montrose CA. My childhood hometown in the 60’s. Changed? Yes, but still vital and beautiful!

Many of us can remember when our main street scenes changed dramatically in the 70’s. Suburban mega malls were built and the smaller ‘Mom and Pop’ stores went out of business. It was tough to see the soul of these streets disappear. Luckily some have come back. It takes community effort to achieve this change. But the results can be inspiring.

Main Street America is an organization who’s mission is to “help communities revitalize their downtowns and commercial districts. Made up of small towns, mid-sized communities, and urban commercial districts, Main Street America™ represents the broad diversity that makes this country so unique.” It is all about getting back to Main Street, the soul of our communities.

Main street and tourism

Waterhouse Center, Kennebunk Maine

One example is in Kennebunk, Maine. A few years ago a local resident, Geraldine Waterhouse, donated a large sum to build the Waterhouse Center, an ice rink where a gas station once resided. Families and young adults gather to skate in the winter and the area is used for concerts, craft fairs and community events in the warmer months. There are plans to open a bowling alley and restaurant in a long time empty building. Home based businesses can not only benefit the community’s economy but help increase tourism. Tourism may not be the sole reason a community becomes economically sustainable, but it sure helps.

To add to the holiday spirit I included some beautiful street scenes. All dressed up with the spirit of the season. Festival of Lights, historic home tours, concerts and boat parades. It’s that ‘most wonderful time of the year’ to show off our beautiful main streets.

main streets and tourism

Christmas Prelude, Kennebunkport Maine. Robert Dennis Photography. 20,000 tourists and locals gathered this past weekend.

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

 

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