Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Rod’s new project

As recent guests have no doubt already heard, Rod has had aproject of his own going on. The Hemingway House B&B! That’s right, for those of you who have not been by to see us lately may not know is that Rod has been busy on a new bed and breakfast for St Augustine. It’s called the Hemingway House Bed and Breakfast Inn, at 54 Charlotte Street Saint Augustine Florida.

Yes, you are right; it is very close the Inn on Charlotte who is at 52 Charlotte St. As a matter of fact, it’s right next door! She is that grey building we share the driveway with, that’s the one! We had the opportunity (of a life-time) to buy her this past Feb and took it. Since then we have been pouring money & sweat into the little old building. Rod wanted to be sure it was up to his standard, before it opened. (It’s a nightmare doing it after)

For those of you who have not heard the story of that building, it use to be a Bed and Breakfast. It was called the Whale’s Tale B and B and was run by a husband and wife team – no employees – for 15 years! (I know crazy, right?) But they told me their secret of such long term success; they took 2 days off a week. Yup, they just got in the car after day 5 and didn’t come back for 2 days. And while we don’t drive off, we have found the secret to making inn keeping a long-term vocation, is the necessity of taking 2 days off a week.  So we get it. But the no employees part! That we don’t get, that’s just crazy.

Anyway – back to Rod and his project. The building was turned into a B&B 20 years ago, and while now that we are pushing 50 years old and this does not sound like a long time ago to us, in bathroom-years its forever. So new cabinets and new tile was desperately needed and we called the best in St Augustine, Ivan, and he made each bath, and its bed room, just beautiful. But there was so much more to do. We washed the house, purchased dishes and everything else for the kitchen, dining room, parlor, systems, and yesterday we finally got a Business License from the City (no easy task). It Looks like we are about to open 6 months after we got it.

Some might think that sounds like a long time, and trust me, it was not due to Ivan and the cosmetic changed that were made. No, there was so much more to be done, approvals to get, and inspections lead to replacement parts and upgrades we deemed ‘vital’ (new AC system for the bedrooms). And each and every step of the way took one more week. As a matter of fact, this has been called the project of “Next Week”. Something that is not good on the nerves, we can assure you. But we think we are in the final stretch and might be able to open… wait for it… Next week!

Yes, we still have to get pics up on the site, no one like to see bad pics of a B&B, so we have held off on those until the very end. Our dear friend (and once-upon-a-time co-worker) Linda will be coming down from St Simmons Island to take some great pics for the website this weekend, and we should have them posted soon after. In the mean-time, go to Hemingwayhouse.net, yes that .NET, and see what we have named the rooms. Oh the rooms – we have yet to tell you about our rooms. Let’s fix that now.

The Hemingway house Inn has 7 rooms total, 4 are in the ‘Main House’ and 3 are in the back over the old 1920s garage. Each has a covered balcony and each park on-site. Returning guests will know the importance of that last item. Each of the main house rooms were named by a new friend, Cheri with Budget Blinds of St Augustine (Great folks – great product and service too) who is a Hemingway fan. It was she who came up with the idea of naming rooms after his wives. And she wrote the descriptions as well. So check them out, we think you will enjoy learning a little bit about the illustrative writer.

So now that you know what Rod has been up to these past months, we hope you will understand the panic look on his face, and hope that you will come and see for see for yourself what he has done to the little old building next door to the Inn on Charlotte. We hope that you approve, and welcome your reviews. Come see St Augustine’s latest [re-opened] bed and breakfast, Hemingway house bed and breakfast Inn at 54 Charlotte St.

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