Posts Tagged ‘Bed and Breakfast’

Crepes Come out Victorious: Danielle Savard Wins Conference Cooking Competition

Thursday, March 20th, 2014

Things heated up at the 2014 Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia (BBAV) Annual Conference Cooking Competition. After the fierce competition, Danielle Savard of Le Bleu Ridge B&B in Afton, Virginia was declared the winner with her breakfast creation of crepes.

This was no ordinary competition, however. Along with the time restriction and miniature cooking accommodations, (lots of toaster ovens to be seen!) the chefs and innkeepers were also under the limitation of designing a gluten, vegan or dairy free dish. Though a number of breakfast foods meet this criteria, (fruits, meats) to stray beyond the norm can prove challenging.

Victor, Savard, took a gluten-free approach, skillfully using gluten free flours, seeds meal, vanilla, milk and eggs to achieve her delicious crepe batter. Three other contestants also chose to accommodate this allergy.

Les Cooper of Coopers Landing Inn in Clarksville, Virginia whipped up miniature egg spinach casseroles. Chef Dunalap of the Ashby Inn in Paris, Virginia created a poached egg centered dish. Finally, Nickie Aldridge of Tree Streets Inn in Waynesboro, Virginia presented coconut pancakes.

With new and innovative gluten-free breakfast dishes, contestants rose to the occasion. The final contestant, Rachel Worsley of the Waypoint House in Berryville, Virginia, heightened the challenge even more however, creating a Tofu Scramble, which accommodated all three dietary needs.

The competitors were seen chopping, whisking and dicing their way through the time, pausing in moments of calm to share tips and inspirations with the admiring audience. As the minutes dwindled, wide arrays of dishes were starting to form.

After time was up, the dishes were sent to the judge’s table where they were to be ranked on three key components: taste, appearance/presentation and originality. After some tough deliberation, Savard was named the winner.

Savard and her competition inspired the audience (and judges) to think outside the box when it comes to cooking for guests with dietary restrictions. BBAV properties now have some helpful tools to cook up tasty and allergy-accommodating meals!

Congratulations to Danielle Savard!

Congratulations, Danielle Savard!

Dreama Travis: InnVirginia Member of the Year

Thursday, March 13th, 2014
Steve and Kathi Walker present Dreama Travis with the 2014 Member of the Year Award.

Steve and Kathi Walker present Dreama Travis with the 2014 Member of the Year Award.

On the evening of Feb. 23, Dreama Travis of the Old Mill House Bed and Breakfast in Graves Mill, Virginia was awarded the Bed and Breakfast Member of the Year, an honor to be added to her many recent accomplishments.

Travis, a nine-year member of BBAV and the Inns at Montpelier, has shown her fellow innkeepers the true meaning of perseverance, proving to be an inspiration.

Four years ago, Travis was diagnosed with Stage IV Endometrial Cancer. Inoperable and incurable, Travis was given limited time to live. Wanting to get the most out of life, she embarked in a holistic approach to battle the disease.

Travis’ lifestyle changes proved helpful, but unfortunately could not stop the inevitable. After months of sporadic operation, the Old Mill House Bed and Breakfast eventually closed, a decision Travis thought would be permanent.

Even with the devastating loss of her business, Travis was not ready to quit and began defying odds. Feeling strong enough, Travis found herself attending a mission trip to Nigeria where she provided medical care and educational support to natives.

Locally, Travis stated a support program called the First Responders Cancer Team. The team aims to provide support to newly diagnosed cancer patients. To be a team member, one must have cancer or be a cancer survivor. Initially, they were reaching out to patients in surrounding countries, but are now counseling patients around the globe.

“Being an innkeeper has afforded me the opportunity to meet people from all over the world,” Travis said. “Sometimes guests will go home after a stay at The Old Mill House and later learn about a friend or loved one being diagnosed with this most dreaded disease. They call and ask if I will talk with them. Sharing my success story gives them hope where there was no hope before.”

Although Travis still battles cancer, she has already overcome tremendous obstacles, most recently in the re-opening of the Old Mill House Bed and Breakfast, which is now back in full swing.

Congratulations Dreama on all your hard work!

Congratulations Dreama on all your hard work!

Travis was proudly awarded her honor at the 2014 Annual Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia Conference in Richmond, Virginia where she was accompanied by a standing ovation of fellow colleagues. The room was evidently full of great admiration for this outstanding member, not only with her Bed and Breakfast, but life.

Daughter of the Stars Bed and Breakfast Passes BBAV Inspection

Friday, November 22nd, 2013
Daughter of the Stars Bed and Breakfast Passes BBAV Inspection

Daughter of the Stars Bed and Breakfast Passes BBAV Inspection

The newest B&B to pass the Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia’s inspection into membership is the Daughter of the Stars B&B in Stanley, Virginia. Patrick Burns the owner, decided to have a BBAV inspection in order to help them connect with BBAV’s experienced knowledge base, and thus provide a better experience for their guests, as well as to set their B&B against an outside standard of inspection that ensures guests of the B&B’s high quality.

 

Daughter of the Stars began as an endeavor to “to do something interesting, unique, enjoyable and memorable” while “creating a unique, interesting, educational, fun, and successful travel experience” for guests. Indeed, this B&B does all of the above with its specialization in “The lesser known stories of the Shenandoah Valley”, which allows guests to celebrate and explore the history of foods, cultures, and customs native to the valley. Innkeeper, Misty Henderson, will delight guests with her cooking, and hospitality.

 

Civil War currency

Civil War currency

“In our Authentic Art and Artifacts Gift Shop,” Patrick described, “we have items like real Civil War currency and authentic Native American art and artifacts for sale. This way our guests not only hear the History, but they can touch it and own a piece of it. All of the Native American artifacts are from tribes that are known to have been in the Shenandoah Valley.”

 

Every guest room contains a private baths with Whirlpool tubs, queen-sized beds, and fireplaces that combine to create a romantic and comfortable atmosphere. Thus, guests looking for a vacation with a significant other or friend, or some alone time, the Daughter of the Stars B&B is perfect for a uniquely cultural and relaxing experience in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley.

The Red Chair travels to Virginia B&Bs!

Thursday, September 19th, 2013

 

The Red Chair

The Red Chair

The Red Chair was born at the Woods Hole Inn, where proprietor, Beth Colt, took a snapshot that would change the simple red chair into The Red Chair that now travels the nation. “I took a picture of this red chair perched out on a frozen pond in Woods Hole last winter,” she says. “I posted it on Facebook and my computer lit up with ‘likes.’” Julie Cramer, a California-based photographer, came across the photo and was inspired. Cramer’s own picture of The Red Chair solidified the object as, what Colt describes, “A symbol, a metaphor for connections made across invisible boundaries.”

Now, The Red Chair travels to B&Bs of different regions in the U.S., and B&B owners chronicle the Chair’s travels with pictures that are then posted on the Red Chair’s website. From Sept. 23-Nov. 10, 2013, the Red Chair visits B&Bs in Virginia, 12 of which are  InnVirginia members.

Celeste Borel, Innkeeper of L’Auberge Provencale, White Post, VA, expresses her excitement at being a part of the Chair’s movement. “It makes me think that guests can envision themselves sitting in the chair,” she says, “enjoying the view and appreciating the countryside.” She and Humminbird Innkeepers, Patty and Dan Harrison, welcome anyone to come see the Chair at their establishments, even non-guests.

These Innkeepers, in addition to those of the Arcady Vineyard Inn, Charlottesville, VA, have specific plans for the Chair, including: a wine tour, a carriage ride, a photo-op at the tomb of Robert E. Lee, the overlook on Skyline Drive, and so much more! Samuel and Sharon Elswick, of the Holladay House, say: the “Red Chair will experience everything our guests experience – and take photos of everything just like they do! A comfortable room, at the breakfast table with a locally-sourced meal, sneaking homemade cookies from the cookie jar, and the classic photo every one of our brides and grooms take: on our portico with our historic house in the background and the sign waving in the wind.”

The Red Chair has become an icon of hospitality for B&Bs across the east coast, and will continue to be so for B&Bs it has yet to visit across the nation. Don’t miss the chance to be a part of the Red Chair’s journey!

Follow the InnVirginia Facebook page to see the photos of The Red Chair as it travels Virginia.

Healthcare Career Leads to a Fresh Start in Hospitality

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

New owners of Prospect Hill Plantation Inn are excited for their new adventure

 

Prospect Hill Plantation Inn

The Historic Manor sites on 40-acres of land

Prospect Hill Plantation is the newest establishment to pass the Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia’s property inspection (BBAV). Prospect Hill, set outside historic Charlottesville, VA was originally an 18th century plantation. It is now owned by Dr. Bobby and Paula Findley, who bought the Plantation in the search for a new and exciting lifestyle to follow Dr. Findley’s 25 year long career in chiropractic healthcare. The property itself includes 40-acres of land as well as the historic Manor House, which boasts eleven guest rooms and cottages complete with modern amenities. Prospect Hill prides itself on its vast history, as another one of the guest rooms is the “original cabin, built in 1699, is still used for housing overnight guests… some 314 years later” according to owner Dr. Frindley.

IMG_0022

Dr. Bobby & Paula Findley, owners of Prospect Hill Plantation Inn

When asked why membership with the BBAV was important, Dr. Findley stated “All inns are unique in their own way and offer a compelling experience to their guest… what separates one inn from another, though, is the level of quality… both in the experience and in terms of cleanliness. Being inspected simply helps us stress that we value our guests’ experience over everything else.”

Aside from offering unique guest rooms and a lavish setting by the Blue Ridge Mountains, Prospect Hill Plantation also offers a wonderful culinary experience in the form of a 4 course prix-fixe dinner for it’s guests and members of the Charlottesville community.

    Dr. Findley explains that his favorite aspect of being a bed and breakfast owner is the opportunity to meet the interesting guests that are constantly staying at Prospect Hill. For the future, Dr. Findley notes that he hopes to “restore Prospect Hill to its former glory as one of the premier dining and lodging destinations in central Virginia!”

    BBAV President Heidi Lanford is extremely happy about Prospect Hill’s addition to the Association. When asked about her thoughts regarding Prospect Hill, Lanford explained “it is so wonderful to have such a historic, and beautiful property pass our property inspection. Prospect Hill is another great example of the impressive establishments that are associated with BBAV.”

Black History Month in Virginia

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

“The African-American experience is one of the most important threads in the American tapestry.”  –Bill Frist

When one thinks of the month of February, the first event that comes to mind is probably Valentine’s Day. However, February also possesses a celebration of much more historical and hereditary significance—it is Black History Month.

Virginia will be celebrating Black History Month with music, films, lectures, dramas, tours, and many more events and gatherings. So, while you’re enjoying a much-needed vacation at one of our B&Bs, why not celebrate the culture, traditions, and heritage of our African-American citizens?

Locomotion, February 28, 2012, Virginia Beach, VA- This theatrical production is written by Jacqueline Woodson and is based on her Coretta Scott King Honor book of the same title. It follows the story of Lonnie Collins Motion, his triumph over hardships, and his passion for writing. (Click here for inns near Virginia Beach).

Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra Presents Buddy, Woody, and Stan, February 25, 2012, Fairfax, VA- This musical event is a must-see for admirers of jazz classics. The program features renowned alto sax virtuoso Jim Carroll, the founder of the Met Jazz Orchestra. (Click here for inns near Fairfax.)

12th Annual Virginia Black History Month Formal Dinner, February 25, 2012, Fredericksburg, VA- The Keynote Speaker for this event is Hollywood actress and producer Vivica A. Fox. Enjoy a night of delicious food, wonderful speakers, lively dancing, and a number of other features of entertainment. (Click here for inns near Fredericksburg.)

Ezibu Muntu African Dance Group, February 18, 2012, Richmond, VA- Gather the kiddies, take them to the Children’s Museum of Richmond, and delight in a performance by this renowned African dance group. (Click here for inns near Richmond.)

Performing Arts Live Presents Ladysmith Black Mambazo, February 14, 2012, Winchester, VA- Make your Valentine’s Day special with a performance by this Grammy Award-winning, all-male, a capella group. (Click here for inns near Winchester.)

 

 

 

By Tara Stoll

Bed and Breakfast Babymoons in VA

Wednesday, January 25th, 2012

They say that pregnancy is beautiful, that the glow of an expectant mother is one of the most simplistic forms of natural beauty. Of course, “they” don’t take into consideration the morning sickness, the stretch marks, the mood swings, and the many other forms of nine-month-long discomfort. While pregnancy may be beautiful, it certainly can be stressful for both the mother and the father.

Don’t worry; there is a point to that seemingly irrelevant introduction. You may be asking yourself, “How does that relate to the Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia?” I’m glad you asked. If you are an expecting couple in desperate need (or in not-so-desperate need) of a getaway, then reserve a few days for a babymoon at one of our BBAV inns.

Magnolia House Inn, Hampton, VA- Your babymoon at Magnolia House includes homemade desserts, a picnic with sparkling cider, a full breakfast, two nights’ accommodations, and a gift for your little one. (Add a massage to the Babymoon Package if you’re needing some muscle relaxation.)

South Court Inn Bed and Breakfast, Luray, VA- South Court Inn’s Babymoon Pakcage includes a one-hour, in-room massage for both the parents, a dozen roses, two lead crystal champagne flutes, a gourmet dinner for two, and decadent chocolates.

The Hummingbird Inn, Goshen, VA- Enjoy your time together before the baby arrives by spending an amazing two nights at the Hummingbird Inn. Delight in roses, chocolate-covered strawberries, sparkling cider (and wine for Dad), a massage for two, a carriage ride through Lexington, dinner at Bistro, and a special gift for your baby.

Chestnut Hill Bed and Breakfast, Orange, VA- Chestnut Hill’s add-on package consists of an aromatherapy facial massage for Mom, a deep tissue massage for Dad, chilled sparkling cider, and gourmet chocolates.

© Stuart Miles

By Tara Stoll

Valentine’s Day in VA, 2012

Tuesday, January 10th, 2012

Virginia is for lovers, right? Then Valentine’s Day is certain to be extra special for those romantic couples who choose a Virginia bed and breakfast for their holiday destination. Picture, if you will, a lavish suite, scarlet rose petals carefully strewn about the bed and crystalline glasses of champagne set atop the table. The room is bathed in the soft glow of candlelight, and further embellishment includes lusciously ripened strawberries with a shell of fine chocolate.

This little, fictional scenario can quickly become your reality. Quite a few BBAV inns offer Valentine’s Day packages or romantic getaway specials, and what significant other would not be thrilled to spend a few days away, engulfed in romantic relaxation?

Summerfield Inn, Abingdon, VA- “Treat your special sweetheart to a memorable Valentine’s break during the entire month of February.” This package includes a beautiful flower bouquet, decadent chocolates, and a delectable gourmet breakfast.

Cooper’s Landing Inn and Traveler’s Tavern, Clarksville, VA- This B&B offer a Valentine’s Day package through the whole of February. Treat your loved one to a one- or two-night stay, an in-room massage, a bouquet of long-stemmed roses, and a gourmet breakfast in bed.

Mark Addy Inn, Charlottesville, VA- Take advantage of this inn’s Valentines Sweetheart Getaway. Enjoy a candlelit dinner, gourmet chocolates, a gift basket with wine, and various other treats.

Corner Stone Farm, Clarksville, VA- Unwind with the rural romance of a two-night stay, cider and cheese, flowers, and chocolates. What better place is there than the country to relax with your special someone?

Holladay House, Orange, VA- All of the Holladay House’s Romance Packages are included in their Valentine’s Day special during the month of February. Stay for three nights at this bed and breakfast, and receive your third night at half price.

 

By Tara Stoll

12 Reasons to Visit Virginia in 2012

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012

“The country is not mountanous not yet low but such pleasant plaine hils and fertile valleyes, one prettily crossing an other, and watered so conveniently with their sweete brookes and christall springs, as if art itself had devised them.” –Captain John Smith, “A Map of Virginia”

Why should you visit (or re-visit) Virginia? The reasons could quickly conglomerate into a great novel that would require hours of your time to read. Since neither you nor your humble blogger has the time to compose and study a novel of such great proportions, enjoy another of our increasingly well-loved BBAV lists.

12 Reasons to Visit Virginia in 2012:

  1. The historical sites. Virginia has Jamestown/Yorktown, Monticello, Montpelier, and a vast number of other sites that explore our rich history.
  2. The wineries, vineyards, and breweries.
  3. The amusement parks and theme parks.
  4. The state parks and hiking trails.
  5. The museums and exhibits.
  6. The theatres. (Did you know that Virginia boasts the only replica of Shakespeare’s Blackfriar Theatre? Yep, we do, and along that that theatre, there are many, many more scattered about the Commonwealth.)
  7. The scenic drives.
  8. The mountains.
  9. The family-friendly activities.
  10. The beaches.
  11. The shopping centers, malls, outlets, downtown boutiques, and locally-owned shops.
  12. The Bed and Breakfasts. What kind of association would we be if we didn’t highlight the wonderful businesses that comprise our organization? Virginia has some truly wonderful, individually unique bed and breakfasts, and no trip to and around Virginia would be complete without staying at one of them.

By Tara Stoll

BBAV Holiday Packages

Tuesday, December 13th, 2011

If you read our last BBAV blog entry, you know that we encourage you to shop and buy locally to acquire all of your holiday gifts. And did you realize that the Bed and Breakfast Association of Virginia is also a local business??? You could purchase a BBAV gift certificate if you would like, or you could partake in one of the holiday packages that some of our bed and breakfasts offer.

1. Serenity’s Edge!- The beautifully romantic cottages of Serenity’s Edge are located in Braxton, Virginia (near Roanoke). For a $35 add-on during the month of December, you can enjoy a Holiday Escape Package, which includes a holiday basket, cookies, assorted snacks, a keepsake collector’s ornament, and a CD of holiday music. Contact Serenity’s Edge for more information.

2. Belle Hearth B&B- Belle Hearth in Waynesboro, VA is another inn that offers a holiday package, which includes the following: “Reserve any room, anytime, for two nights and take 50% off the second night rate. Must mention this special when reserving by phone or online and cannot be combined with any other offer or special.”

3. South Court Inn Bed and Breakfast- This lovely inn offers a 3- or 4-day Fantastic Christmas Getaway and Dinners for $680. This includes a Christmas Even dinner, a Christmas Day lunch buffet, a Christmas present opening breakfast buffet, and a Christmas evening tea. Contact the South Court Inn for more information.

These are only two of the BBAV’s many inns, and there are many more offering holiday specials. If you would like to know if a bed and breakfast offers a special or package, check out our website, find an inn, and give them a call!

Photo by JJ Harrison

By Tara Stoll