Inn Consultants and Brokers Since 1993

The B&B Team

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

Posts Tagged ‘Inn at English Meadows’

When Did Food Become So Photogenic?

February 29th, 2016 by Janet Wolf

Roasted Tomato Soup with Parsnip Chips

Roasted Tomato Soup with Parsnip Chips

When DID food become so photogenic? This question is in response to the most recent Bon Appetit issue with a great editorial by Adam Rapaport, Editor in Chief. It is their first ‘culture issue’. Cool.

Wait, When Did Food Get So Cool? March 2016

His thoughts on the subject:

  • Food has become a thing
  • Not just for certified foodies anymore…everybody was (is) getting into it
  • Food has gone wide, it has become cool!

My thoughts:

  • Not just cool but oh so photo worthy…why?
    • The phone camera and the ease to share (brag) on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram
    • It’s fun!

This issue is a real great source of articles that expand on the “finer points of Instagramming (natural light only, directly overhead preferred!) Because if you don’t snap and share a photo of your meal, it never happened, right?” I have done this and I know you have too! In fact we did this at a recent Pop Up Dinner at the Inn at English Meadows.

Inn at English Meadows Pop Up Dinner

Inn at English Meadows Pop Up Dinner

For a special one night stand food experience, a pop up is perfect! What a great way to spot light one of your favorite local chefs or sous chefs. Local chef in Kennebunk, Chris Groman created this wonderful menu. A pop up is also a way to connect with your community. Invite the influencers, local press and businesses.

"everyone is invited to the table"

“everyone is invited to the table”

Yes trends come and go. Pop Ups may be replaced by something else, food trucks may thin out but our passion and obsession with food is here to stay and it is sure to grow. Just like trends in décor, trends in food change too, and rapidly because of the ability to share on social media with likeminded folks.

Mr. Rapaport ends his editorial with a great statement. “The fact is, food culture isn’t niche anymore. Nowadays, everyone is invited to the table, and we love that. It makes for a far more interesting dinner table conversation.”

So here we go ..lights, camera, action… can we eat now?

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf

Bed and Breakfast First Impressions Count

April 9th, 2014 by Janet Wolf

Sit, relax and connect

First Impression at The Inn at English Meadows. Sit, relax and connect.

“The lobby sets the tone for the overall guest experience, whether it is tone color, décor or ambience. It is the first impression that guests pick up upon entering a property.”From an article in Global Traveler, April 2014 entitled, ‘Form, Function and Finesse’.

Over the years The B&B Team has heard comments from innkeepers saying that not very many of their guests use their common living room/parlors.  Well…there may be a reason. Hotels have seen the same thing. Guests were not ‘hanging out’ in their lobbies. They were in the bars and lounges, but what if a guest wanted to just sit with friends or plug in their devices to ‘work ‘n play’, or have a casual business meeting without the bar buzz?  Many of the large successful hotel chains have been transforming their lobbies into spaces to relax, connect, meet, think, a place guests can make their own.


Westin Hotels & Resorts creates a modern day oasis in lobbies.

Westin Hotels & Resorts creates a modern day oasis in lobbies.

Bed and Breakfast successful design at The Inn at English Meadows

Entree… the Carriage House at The Inn at English Meadows

“Setting the tone for an overall experience” is also important for bed and breakfasts/Inns. Maybe even more important! Many small lodging properties are in historic buildings. They  have an advantage of a distinct sense of place. The aim is to emphasize the unique historical architectural details of the building, the entry and other common shared spaces. Create eye popping design while creating a comfortable and functional space.  It has been done very successfully in many bed and breakfasts. If you have been thinking about transforming your common areas and make your bed and breakfast first impressions a WOW then read on.

A great example is the Inn at English Meadows in Kennebunk Maine. Current innkeepers took a Victorian era farmhouse and transformed the exterior and interior with a contemporary design that is truly eye popping. The results were spectacular. This Inn was not only transformed but re-branded. Now not everyone has the need to tackle a total Inn transformation.  The Inn at English Meadows illustrates what can be done and the successful results. And their guests respond very positively. “It was lovely. The Inn is newly remodeled and tastefully appointed. The decor transfers seamlessly from the living room to the dining room and to the sleeping rooms.”

Traditional comfort at the Inn at Maury Place, Richmond Virginia

Traditional comfort at Maury Place at Monument, Richmond Virginia Bed & Breakfast

A more contemporary look may be trending but traditional is a style that is always in style.  And it may be your preferred style. The Maury Place at Monument, a Richmond Virginia Bed and Breakfast has created comfortable traditional style seating areas in their common rooms. The colors, contemporary hints blend well here and make the architectural details of the room pop.  “As soon as we stepped foot in the historic home, we understood why it had received an overwhelming amount of “excellent” reviews on Trip Advisor. The place is absolutely gorgeous, decorated in warm, masculine colors (chocolate, burgundy) with feminine touches of detail (crystal chandeliers, intricate ceiling medallions and crown molding).”

Beyond design there has to be function. Easy access to USB outlets is also a function guests are looking for in common rooms, not just their guest room. And good lighting everywhere, this should be your mantra! Creating multiple conversation areas is key if you have the space. This is both thoughtful and functional for guests.

Bed and Breakfast first impressions at the Birchwood Inn, Lenox, MA

Multiple seating areas. Room for more? Birchwood Inn Lenox, Massachusetts has an extended living room with enough space for three conversational areas.

Transform, re-brand, re-fresh or renew. Impress your guests with a bed and breakfast first impression. It counts.

Thanks for Listening,

Janet Wolf



B is for Fabulous Beds

October 14th, 2011 by Janet Wolf

Jasper Resting in His Nuzzle Bed


The focal point of a guest room is the bed.  I have always proposed that the bed should be the utmost enticement for a weary traveller’s eyes, for it most likely is the first thing they see when entering the room. A major part of the experience you provide for your guest is the sleep experience. What I call the Ahhh factor.  A sagging mattress, tired pillows, wrinkled linens and out of date fabric patterns are not contributing to A Better Way to Stay.

In a recent issue of Hotel Business there was an article about The Benjamin Hotel, a boutique hotel in New York City that recently completed a comprehensive renovation. The general manager said, “When it comes to the guestrooms, everything we do revolves around sleep and a good night’s sleep is all about comfort.”  We all want that and the best innkeepers out there go above and beyond to achieve that high level of comfort. Besides the 500 thread count Egyptian cotton linens and sateen down duvets, this property also offers a ‘Sleep Program’ that includes recommendations for pillows, a sleep-inducing massage and a night time snack. That sounds like an opportunity for a great package to me!

Like so many fashion trends, dressing a bed changes with the times. The mutible decorative pillow look with huge down comforters and lacy canopies was a wonderful look, the important word here is ‘was’. In its place a bed with crisp, clean lines, white or cream linens accented with a splash of color is a look that we see more and more of today.

Take a look at these two examples of beds I believe any guest would love to fall into.








So why should an innkeeper change their look and feel of their beds on a regular basis as well as the overall look and feel of their décor? Guests expectations are constantly changing, whether it is Gen Y or the over 60 crowd. We all like new and fresh. All of us at The B&B Team believes it is very important that innkeepers strive to meet today’s consumer’s needs. A new and fresh design can increase your guests’ intent to stay thus increase your bottom line. That’s reason enough.

By the way, those fabulous beds belong to the Inn at English Meadows and Captain Jefferds Inn. I’m not sure who the cat belongs too, just thought it was a great shot.

Janet Wolf

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