Tag Archives: Bed & Breakfast

oldstonecottage

The Olde Stone Cottage at The Artist’s Inn & Gallery

Being born and raised in Lancaster County, you’d think I would have experienced just about everything here, right? Well, I am embarrassed to admit that I sometimes catch myself thinking there is nothing in PA Dutch Country that I have not seen. Ridiculous, I know. So anytime I’m presented with an opportunity to be surprised by one of Lancaster’s hidden treasures, I welcome it.

A few days ago I had the wonderful treat of visiting Terre Hill and spending the night at the Olde Stone Cottage, part of the Artist’s Inn & Gallery. Remember how I thought I had seen everything there is to see in Lancaster? This just in… I was wrong.

Meeting the Innkeeper

After I checked in at the cottage, I took a short stroll (about five doors) down Main Street to see the Artist’s Inn & Gallery. I was greeted by the property’s innkeeper, Jan Garrabrandt, and taken inside to see all of the wonderful artwork lining the walls of this beautiful, 19th century home. Jan’s husband, Bruce, is a full-time artist who specializes in finely detailed, colored pencil drawings. He is also the artist behind all of the pieces in the Inn’s gallery. Bruce’s drawings are the perfect addition to the Garrabrandt’s Federal-style home, providing visitors to the Bed & Breakfast with a unique glimpse into the Pennsylvania Dutch lifestyle.

Speaking with Jan about her husband’s work and their adventures running the Inn was fascinating. It didn’t take me long to understand why guests love staying here.

An Evening to Relax

It was soon time for me to head back down the road and settle into the Olde Stone Cottage. Priority number one: finding the fully-stocked cookie jar in the kitchen. Mmm. Guests of both the cottage and the Inn are always welcomed with homemade, chocolate chip cookies. They are delish! I then played through a couple of choruses on the cottage’s upright piano while belting out the lines of “Love Song” by Sara Bareilles – the only song I know how to play on the piano. If playing tunes isn’t your cup of tea, don’t worry. The cottage provides cable TV, a DVD player, wi-fi, and an open living room where you can watch your favorite movie or simply relax with a good book.

Venturing upstairs, I noticed some interesting photos on display. A small collection of photographs signed by Hollywood stars like Doris Day and Dick Van Dike line the wall leading to the cottage’s second floor. I peeked into “the yellow bedroom” first, and was impressed with room’s cozy atmosphere and welcoming reading nook. Proceeding around the corner I found the master suite. After having a long workweek, it didn’t take much time for me to settle into the suite’s king sized bed. The next morning, I cooked up an egg breakfast and enjoyed the quiet morning outside on the porch.

Terre Hill and Beyond

My stay at the Olde Stone Cottage was just what I needed to relax after a stressful week; but it is also the perfect place for a couple’s getaway, or for guests looking to enjoy Lancaster County from a cozy town like Terre Hill. Guests who stay at the Artist’s Inn or the Olde Stone Cottage enjoy bicycling through miles of scenic farmland, antiquing in nearby Adamstown, taking brewery tours, and tasting the many flavors of Lancaster County restaurants. Terre Hill is a great place to relax and enjoy rural Pennsylvania while being close to countless shops, attractions, and restaurants. The Artist’s Inn & Gallery is located just minutes away from Shady Maple Smorgasbord, Maple Grove Raceway, Antiques Capital, USA, and more! Guests can also drive to attractions like Rockvale Outlets, Kitchen Kettle Village, and Bird-in-Hand Farmers Market within 20 minutes.

Terre Hill is definitely the kind of hidden treasure I was looking for. But this small town is no secret to the guests of the Artist’s Inn. Jan and Bruce have gotten to know many repeat guests who have been coming to the Inn for almost ten years. In fact, some visitors enjoyed their stay so much they decided to move to Terre Hill! I definitely recommend giving the Artist’s Inn & Gallery a visit.

To learn more, go to www.artistinn.com.

airyview

The perfect Valentine’s Day

About mid-January Valentine’s Day hit my radar screen. I discovered years ago that if you want a nice dinner out and overnight accommodations, you have to plan ahead because things book up quickly.

Since I started my search early, I found a restaurant that I knew my wife would love and made reservations. The next challenge was to find nearby accommodations.

I was a worldwide sales manager for many years and I’ve literally stayed in more hotels than I can remember. Consequently, I’ve come to appreciate the uniqueness, charm and hospitality of Bed & Breakfasts and boutique hotels. I checked out regional accommodations, but nothing jumped out as unique or special. I continued looking for B&Bs online but was having a hard time figuring out how far away they were, if they required two night minimums and whether or not they were clean, well-kept and hospitable.

When I was at the Lancaster County Visitor Center for a meeting, I decided to ask if the travel consultants could recommend a B&B. Bingo! These Lancaster County experts grabbed a Getaway Guide, pulled out the map and we took a look together. There were several B&Bs in the area, but the one closest to our restaurant was Airy View Bed & Breakfast.

I’ve stayed in B&Bs when traveling, but this was my wife’s first stay at a B&B and she was delighted. Our room was warm and very comfortable and included a Jacuzzi bath. The sitting room is large with a cozy fireplace and surrounded with windows overlooking a pond with a resident swan, Joey. The entire experience was delightful!

The past two years our Valentine’s Day had been disappointing. In fact, last year we’d decided to avoid going out all together. But this year I decided to give it one more try and with the aid of the Visitors Center staff and the hospitality of Airy View B&B, our Valentine’s Day was absolutely perfect!

This blog post was written by the Visitors Bureau’s Board Chair, Scott Miller. Scott is the Chief Marketing Officer at Garden Spot Village.

pondview

A Bed & Breakfast to rave about

I received this wonderful review of a visitor’s stay at the Pond View Farm, and asked her permission to share it with you, our readers! If you’ve ever thought about staying at a B&B, especially one where you can learn more about the Amish way of life, this would be a wonderful one to try!

“We stayed one night with Pondview B&B.  John and Nancy Fisher and their children were lovely.

The guest house is 4 bedrooms, 1 1/2 bath, huge kitchen (full kitchen with all appliances except a microwave oven) electricity throughout the house, living room, huge dining room.  Beautiful grounds.  The family gave us a tour of their dairy farm operations which was very informative.

There’s plenty of things for kids to do.  The farmer’s kids can take children on a pony ride, and to visit with their pet rabbits, cats, dogs, etc.  We fed the calves with giant baby bottles and that was fun for us as adults, but of course, it would be a lot of fun for kids to do.

It was $95.00 for the two of us (2 adults) to stay there, but the house is huge and can accommodate a lot more people.  I think they said the price is different for a larger group. They accept cash or money orders only.

One of the bedrooms is downstairs, and the rest are upstairs.  There’s no air conditioning, but we opened the windows and they had box fans for us to use, so we were comfortable.

Their 63 acre property is beautiful, well manicured, and there’s a shaded area for a picnic.  Most importantly, the family was really sweet, and answered all our questions about Amish life.  They were a real joy to meet.”

HurstHouse

An awesome recipie for pumpkin squares

I’m always looking for new meals to make for my husband, whether it’s asking friends for recipes that they’ve tried, or searching the internet. Little did I know, I’ve got a great resource right here in my own backyard – our Bed & Breakfast owners!

I came across a great recipe for Pumpkin Squares on the PA Dutch Inn’s blog, which you can find here. Lancaster County has tons of great Inns and Bed & Breakfasts, where they’ve got lots of yummy breakfast recipes. You’ve got to think, they’re always refining them for their guests, so they truly have the best of the best! The Hurst House, an absolutely gorgeous Bed & Breakfast in Ephrata, is where Mrs. Bert Hurst serves a delicious breakfast for her guests.

If you’ve never been to a Bed & Breakfast in Lancaster County, PA, you should definitely check out the Hurst House – it’s beautiful! It’s an elegant Victorian Mansion, located on top of a hill overlooking beautiful Amish & Mennonite farmland. Right now – while there’s snow covering the fields, it is a spectacular sight! Enjoy the pumpkin squares!

Pumpkin Squares
Mix 1 1/3 cup crushed graham cracker crumbs, 1/3 cup sugar, and 1/2 cup melted butter and press it into an oblong cake pan until you’ve lined the entire bottom.

Beat 2 eggs, 3/4 cup sugar, and 8 oz. of cream cheese together, and pour it over the graham crumb crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Cook 2 cups pumpkin, 3 egg yolks, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup milk, 1/2 tsp. salt and 2 tsp. cinnamon in a saucepan until thick, about 5 minutes.

Sprinkle 1 envelope of plain geletin into 1/4 cup water. When dissolved, add it to the pumpkin mixture, and let it cool until it mounds.

Beat 3 egg whites until stiff. Add 1/4 cup of sugar. Fold it into the pumpkin mixture. Pour that over the cooled crust. Refrigerate. Top with cool whip before serving!

VerdantView

Verdant View Farm

This morning was unlike any other for me. Although I have lived in Lancaster my entire life, I never had a hands-on, personal experience with the farming lifestyle that has surrounded me for the past twenty-one years. While I am probably more of a city girl, there is something about living and working on a farm that I truly appreciate, so much that I think I could easily get used to this way of life.

There was something comforting about Verdant View Farm Bed & Breakfast - the smells, the food, and the people I encountered during our visit – that made me feel at home, despite me being completely out of my element.  Everything there is a direct product of hard work. To me, it is a clear and beautiful portrayal of creation, the way we interact with it, and the way it is intended for our use, given that we respect it. Owners Don and Ginny Ranck could not paint a better picture of this concept through the way they run their farm and share it with others.

I knew the morning started once I stepped out of the car and realized how cold we would be. I had missed out on my cup of coffee before heading out, but the temperature certainly kept me awake and ready for the morning events.

We were immediately welcomed by the farm’s tiny dog, Rosco, a Wishbone look-a-like that followed us everywhere throughout the morning. Ginny came outside right as we pulled up and greeted us with a big smile. It was milking time, and she explained that we would be accompanying her and the other workers and family members in their routine chores just like any morning on the farm. Although I am normally a huge ditz with things I’m not comfortable or familiar with, my first attempt at milking the cow proved to be quite successful. As more guests joined us in our visit, the morning continued with various other chores such as feeding and letting out the animals.

Even Aaron, one of Don and Ginny’s sons, shared a new hobby of his with us as he explained the art of cheese-making and allowed us to sample some of his homemade cheeses. We were joined by other family members and some guests who had stayed overnight for a wholesome breakfast, and my favorite – meadow tea made just that morning. It was just what I needed to warm me up a bit for our wagon ride around the farm.

My visit to Verdant View Farm left me feeling thankful for the people I had just met and appreciative for the sense of community I experienced within just a few hours of being there. Not only did the Ranck family welcome us into their home, but they shared with us a huge part of themselves and what they know so well. It was a morning well spent, and that says a lot considering I missed my morning cup of coffee.

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