1795 Acorn Inn Bed and Breakfast (Canandaigua, New York)

Category Archives: B & B Stories

Bed And Breakfast – Why Stay?

March 9, 2018 by Innkeeper

Why Stay At A Bed And Breakfast? If you have ever asked yourself that question, then here are a few answers. There are so many options out there today. Hotels. Motels. Airbnb (which really has nothing to do with a B & B). Vacation Rental By Owner (VBRO). And I am sure countless more I do not even know about.

Why Stay At A Bed And Breakfast?

This is not your Innkeeper.

Why Stay At A Bed And Breakfast

I am an Innkeeper. I’ve owned and operated the 1795 Acorn Inn Bed and Breakfast in upstate New York for over thirteen years. So, I may be just a tad biased. Having grown up in the Orient, I’ve traveled extensively and stayed in many different types of lodgings. Though, admittedly, I’ve never stayed at an Airbnb property.

The basic principle of all of the above is the same… you are renting a room, probably in an area that you do not live. In the case of Airbnb or VRBO, you could be renting and entire house. But you could also rent an entire Inn and have the house to yourself so that is not all that different.

With a hotel or motel, there is a staff on hand, most of the time, to assist you. Some more professional than others. And, some without a vast knowledge of the area. Perhaps students during summer vacation. With Airbnb or VBRO, you may have a phone number to call if you have an issue. There my even be someone living in the house if you are just renting out a room.

But, with a Bed and Breakfast, you have an Innkeeper. More than likely, someone who owns the property, lives on the property and as someone who lives locally, is a vast resource at your disposal. Both prior to, during and after your stay. Most of the time, the Innkeeper is someone who has opened their home. Someone who is warm and inviting and happy to assist you.

Your Innkeeper

Your Innkeeper is going to be the person you see at the beginning and end of your stay, no matter how short, and all the time in between. They are going to be the ones welcoming you and getting you settled. Answering your questions about where to eat and what to do in the area. They are going to advise you from a locals’ perspective and share all the secrets about the best places to go and see.

Furthermore, your Innkeeper is more than likely going to fix your fantastic, gourmet breakfast. They are going to have shopped for your food, prepared it and serve it. Taking care to serve you what they would enjoy themselves. And, be very careful about any and all dietary restrictions you may have.

More often than not, your innkeeper is going to be doing the laundry, cleaning your room, answering your phone calls or responding to your emails and providing special touches along the way. Why Stay At A Bed And Breakfast? Because of your Innkeeper. Worth every penny.

There’s More

Breakfast. Not only is it usually delicious but depending on the B & B, most often it is served family style. All guests sit together and believe it or not, talk. There is often much laughter and interesting discussion among various age groups. It’s the highlight of this Innkeeper’s day to see strangers speaking to each other about what to do or what have they done, learn a little about each other and have stimulating, interesting conversation.  Of course there will always be those that are not comfortable with such interaction. And we do understand. For those, a Bed and Breakfast such as this Canandaigua lodging may not be appropriate, but you can always select our Bed and No Breakfast package and receive a reduced rate.

Visit our Packages page for additional special values.

Not Your Grandmother’s House

February 18, 2018 by Innkeeper

Yesterday morning at the the breakfast table, a comment was made which made me think… We’re Not Your Grandmother’s House. The comment was from a couple in their late 50’s/early60’s that was looking for a book to read. They mentioned when they visited B & B’s before, they always have books. I said in 2004, we used to have books but found that no one actually read them. Seems like, these days, guests bring their own books and more often than not have an iPad or an e-reader. And that got me thinking…

And that got me thinking… We’re Not Your Grandmother’s House

Maybe when I first took over the 1795 Acorn Inn Bed and Breakfast in 2004, it may very well have been my Grandmother’s house. Built in 1810, it was full of stuff. Too many things hanging on the walls. Doilies. Full canopies on beds. Even a crocheted canopy in the Angell Room. Gingham checked swags for window coverings with matching tissue box holders. Bookshelves in every room, including six wall-to-wall shelves on the upstairs landing. And a decent collection of VHS tapes. Consequently, this Finger Lakes accommodation was all nicely decorated in a Country Colonial theme, but it felt old. And it wasn’t me. So often a Bed and Breakfast is a reflection of it’s owner.

Not Your Grandmother's House

Your Grandmother’s House – Bristol Suite 2004

Not Your Grandmother's House

Not Your Grandmother’s House – Bristol Suite 2018

The Evolution of Bed and Breakfasts

Years, actually decades ago, women stayed at home to raise a family. As a result, when the kids got older and went off to college, they found themselves with not much to do. Hence, in an effort to keep busy at something they were good at and consequently earn a few extra bucks, they started renting out rooms on a short-term basis. Providing breakfast was easy and eventually Bed and Breakfasts came about.

Eventually, it soon became something older couples could do together to supplement their income and make use of their large home. Often it was decorated with wallpaper and years of memories. It was warm and welcoming and a cozy option to staying in a chain hotel. At some point, not too long ago, it became a livelihood for some and businesses were born. Papers were filed with local entities. Income was reported. Taxes paid. Inspections passed. Standards maintained. And marketing plans put in place.

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Breakfast In Canandaigua, New York

August 23, 2016 by Innkeeper

In August, 2004 I embarked upon my journey as an Innkeeper. It’s been twelve years and this year has brought about a tremendous increase in special dietary needs. Probably the biggest issue has been gluten-free. But, there is a lot of dairy-free, soy-free, vegetarian, nut allergies, low fat, whole grains, high fiber, the list goes on… It would be more easily managed if there was just one out of ten with special dietary needs. However, that is not the case. Two out of six this morning. Four out of ten last weekend. Two our of four a few weeks ago. And, they are all different often times necessitating multiple staff in the kitchen. Some of these dietary issues are so severe, the responsibility is frightening. There is probably more food in my fridge, freezer and cupboard that caters to dietary issues than not. Twelve years ago it was mostly diabetic. I haven’t had one low sugar diet in years. Things have changed and so must I.

In the past twelve years, I’ve increased my prices once. I think that was about six years ago. So I struggle with how to cover costs for a business that makes no money other than to support itself. I know, most think it’s a glamorous, easy life. Let me assure you, it’s not. It’s a nice lifestyle, but it’s not an easy one. This old house needs a lot of TLC. Things get worn and ruined and need to be replaced. The gardens, gorgeous in their full bloom, require hours of work each month and I am not even counting the fall. And then there’s winter… shoveling, plowing. Food and utility costs continue to rise, as does marketing and advertising. I’ve resisted paying online travel agencies such as tripadvisor.com, expedia.com and bedandbreakfast.com commission for their assistance in helping to book rooms. That is a game of raising your prices to absorb the 15% or more commission and I don’t want to play, but don’t know how I can resist much longer. I will put my toe in the water this winter with a few rooms and see what happens.

A few months ago we started charging a surcharge for gluten-free diets. A few weeks later I added dairy-free. Then a few weeks later vegan. Today, I have changed it to any special dietary needs that requires us to purchase special food or prepare a separate meal for guests. This $5 surcharge per day hardly covers the cost of food, let alone labor. But what’s the option? Raise prices? Not fair to those that don’t have special dietary needs and being a AAA Four Diamond rated Bed and Breakfast, I am already high for Canandaigua and the Finger Lakes (though others are catching up, even the Holiday Inn Express). Being gluten and dairy-free myself, by choice, I understand not many have a choice. And I feel bad charging guests extra for their struggles. I am empathetic. It’s not fun to always be thinking about what you CAN eat as opposed to what you really WANT to eat. And for some, there are truly severe consequences.

I hope I haven’t offended anyone or deterred anyone from making a reservation at the 1795 Acorn Inn. No matter what your dietary dilemma or if you have none, you will get a wonderful breakfast each morning and meet new friends.

We make a great Gluten-Free French Toast Creme Brulee

We make a great Gluten-Free French Toast Creme Brulee

Can be prepared Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Nut-Free

Can be made Dairy-Free, Soy-Free, Nut-Free

August 2016 Riesling Festival Canandaigua, NY

August 8, 2016 by Innkeeper

Deb & Bill & Cathy & Kurt grape stompin’ at the Riesling Festival in Canandaigua, New York. So much fun. Wine. Beer. Food trucks galore. And so much more. There’s always next year…

Deb & Bill & Cathy & Kurt grape stompin'.

Deb & Bill & Cathy & Kurt grape stompin’.

Breakfast at the 1795 Acorn Inn-August 5, 2016

August 5, 2016 by Innkeeper

Fresh peach and blueberry parfait with vanilla yogurt and whipped cream followed by a Baked French Pear Pancake. Clean plates. Laughter. Now off to explore the Finger Lakes.

Red Breasted Robin Fledgling in the Finger Lakes

May 25, 2016 by Innkeeper

Every spring she nests on the light above the office door. At first I feel terrible as every time I open the door, and it’s a lot, she flies off. Eventually, she stays put. Could be because I talk to her all the time, as she will fly off if others come and go. One day not too long ago I noticed half of a blue shell on the ground. My first thought is that I hope something didn’t get the eggs. My second thought is that they are hatching. Well, this year, she had three. I say she but I think he helps a lot as there are always two around.

It was quiet at first. I caught site of the ugly little buggers not long after birth. Then, their beaks peaking out. Then the constant activity and chirping and feeding. I’ve caught he/she will a beak full of live worms. Many, many times. And now they are off. Until next year, or maybe again this year. It doesn’t take long. Love living in the country and at the 1795 Acorn Inn. Such a wonderful time of year.

Grapes

September 27, 2015 by Innkeeper

Your Innkeeper doesn’t get a chance to get out on the weekends too often but yesterday was an exception. Beth and Lydia were taking care of guests at breakfast. There were no new guests checking in. So, your Innkeeper had a free Saturday and it just happened that it is the weekend of the Naples Grape Festival in upstate New York’s Finger Lakes. I had been one other time in the past 11 years and it was cold and wet that year. This year, the weather could not have been more perfect… a cool 70 degrees and sunny, perfect fall weather.

Naples is a quaint town on the South end of Canandaigua Lake. Home to Inspire Moore Winery, Artizanns (a local Gallery), Joseph’s Wayside Market, Roots Cafe, Naples, NY and a few other shops and restaurants. It’s generally a sleepy town. But, one weekend a year, the tiny town is crowded beyond belief by visitors that want to experience all things grape. Grape pie, frozen grape custard, wine, concord grapes, Niagra grapes and more grapes. And even purple fire hydrants. There are tons of food options, music and many vendors and artists. Your Innkeeper even got a henna tattoo.

For at least a mile or more, vendors line the street, even before you get to the Festival, selling anything and everything… crafts, yard sale items, baked goods. It’s hard to walk as there are so many people. I don’t know where they all come from, but they come from miles to experience this Festival and it couldn’t be set in a more picturesque valley in the Finger Lakes.

Of course, a visit to the Naples Grape Festival wouldn’t be complete without a grape pie and some grapes. This year, I purchased Jeni’s grape pie and some grapes from Jerome’s U-Pick. Both were served at this morning’s breakfast much to the delight of our guests who had never tasted grape pie before. A grape day was had by all.

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1795 Acorn Inn Innkeeper Celebrates Her 10-Year Anniversary In The Finger Lakes

August 1, 2014 by Innkeeper

Look what my wonderful, lovely, thoughtful guests gave me in celebration of my 10 year Anniversary.  It made me cry.  Thank you Heather, Ginger and Kristin for making my day.  Let’s pop open the champagne!

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Finger Lakes Coffee Roasters Coffee @ 1795 Acorn Inn

June 7, 2014 by Innkeeper

My standard order of twenty five pounds of Finger Lakes Coffee Roasters Out of Africa coffee for my guests. That should last about a week. — at 1795 Acorn Inn.  I love going into the facility where they roast the coffee to pick up my order when I can.  The smell of the coffee roasting is to die for.  Almost as good as waking up to it already brewed after spending the night at the Inn.  Coffee is ready at 8:00 if you want to join us.  See you soon.

I Love Spring – Part IV

May 20, 2013 by Innkeeper

Well, my relief was short lived this morning when we found a poor, little chick on the ground beneath the nest.  It was on the brick floor and unfortunately will never know what it feels like to fly.  I gently put it in a box and Amanda and I will have a burial service for it later this afternoon.  I have to keep reminding myself that this is nature.  But it still hurts.  There are some things this city girl will never get used to in the country.

On a positive note, just after we noticed that one didn’t make it, another baby was on the ground.  This one was hopping around, flapping it’s wings and following mama/papa.  There are still two left in the nest and I’m sure they too will soon be taking that leap.  Once out of the nest, they don’t really know how to fly.  They will spend the next few days hopping around on the ground and learning how to fly.  Of course, this is when they are most vulnerable but I think they will make it as we are pretty protected in our beautifully lush perennial gardens.

Will there be a Part V?

I Love Spring – Part II

May 20, 2013 by Innkeeper

On Wednesday, May 15, I noticed a little head popping out from under mama/papa.  It was still very cold in the morning and I didn’t think the eggs would have hatched yet.  But apparently they did.  A few hours later Amanda noticed two heads.  And a few hours later, we saw her/him feeding them… all four.  She or he (I think they take turns) would land on the edge of the nest with a worm in his/her mouth and all four heads would reach out of the nest and chirp for food.  It seemed like there were constantly flying to and fro.  Did you know a baby robin needs to be fed every 10-20 minutes?  With four in the nest, that’s a worm every five minutes.  And I still can’t figure out how she/he knows who got the last worm.

I think they grow into their beaks.

I think they grow into their beaks.

Just finished feeding

Just finished feeding.

Can I have some more please?

Can I have some more please?

Part III to follow…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Love Spring – Part I

May 20, 2013 by Innkeeper

Spring feels like the shortest of all seasons and passes with a blink of an eye.  Case and point…  This is the third year in a row that a robin has chosen nest atop the light just outside of my office door.  The first year we took her nest down because we painted the outside of the Inn.  The next year she/he rebuilt it.  This year she/he made a few modifications and reused the old nest.  It’s pretty safe there but wonder why she chooses to lay her eggs there given the amount of traffic in and out the office door.

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I don’t think he/she knows what to think of me and my camera.

 

Always close by…

 

Part II to follow…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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