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Choosing the Perfect Bed and Breakfast for You

Edited information from Wikpedia and Elizabeth Arneson - Your Guide to Bed & Breakfasts

Is there a perfect bed and breakfast? Of course -- in fact, there are hundreds, probably even thousands, of them! The trick is finding the perfect one for you on your next getaway.

Travelers often spend a lot of time looking for accommodations. In general, they look for hotels that are close to their destinations. The bed and breakfast is one option many travelers may overlook. A bed and breakfast is a type of lodging that is often in an older home or building. These accommodations are usually family-owned and feature personalized service that is often not available in any but upscale corporate hotels.

Many cities feature the local bed and breakfast inns on their websites, and the traveler should always check out the links. Often, a bed and breakfast costs very little more than the local chain hotels, with the added bonus of a delicious home-cooked breakfast and lovely surroundings. Many B&B's, in fact, are famous for their food. A bed and breakfast may average about US$10 more per night than a hotel. When a couple considers they would spend nearly that much on a fast food breakfast, the added charge at the B&B doesn't seem like a great deal of money.

A bed and breakfast inn will usually have four to ten rooms, depending on the size of the building. Most B&B rooms also have private baths. Another advantage of the bed and breakfast is comfort. These inns don't rely on standard hotel mattresses that are hard as rocks. They use home mattresses, since their facilities don't have the volume of guests that hotels do. As a result, the beds are usually much more comfortable. Rooms at a B&B will usually have a television and many have books available or movies for guests to watch in their rooms. A bed and breakfast will usually have a living room or parlor for guests to socialize if they wish, or front porches ideal for reading or relaxing.

Travelers looking for a bed and breakfast should consider location, amenities and price. Some B&B's are in older neighborhoods, but within walking distance of downtown attractions. Some inns are in rural areas. The traveler's choice will depend on what he is looking for.

Amenities offered at a bed and breakfast also vary. Some bed and breakfast inns have activities such as horseback riding, bicycling, or canoeing available. Some may have hot tubs or spas guests can use. Some inns have a snack or cocktail hour in the evening, in addition to breakfast. A traveler also needs to be aware that some B&B inns allow children, while others do not. It is always wise to ask in advance.

The price for a bed and breakfast stay will vary according to region and proximity to a large city or tourist/resort area. In general, prices range very similar to area hotel pricing. Travelers staying at a bed and breakfast will meet their hosts and usually feel welcomed right away. This warm hospitality, along with the quiet atmosphere and good food, make for great accommodations.

Here's How:

Give yourself plenty of time to plan. The less time you have to choose an inn, the more difficult it is to find a great one.

Decide the general area you'd like to visit. Don't get too specific yet -- there's still lots to explore and learn.

Choose a general price range. Some inns would be perfect -- if only you had unlimited cash. But there's almost always a wonderful inn that fits your budget.

Start your serious research. The Internet is the best place to do this.

Don't believe everything you read on the Internet. Much of it is advertising, which doesn't make it necessarily unreliable -- but should cause you to evaulate it carefully.

Email or talk to the innkeepers before making a reservation. If there's anything you're not clear about after visiting their web site, ask. (e.g. Do you serve a full or continental breakfast?) Be sure you're clear about check-in and check-out times, and any other features you're interested in.

Ask for other opinions. Post a note in the Bed and Breakfasts Discussion Forum or other discussion groups on the Net to get input from other travelers.

Be sure to give yourself enough time to enjoy the inn. Staying at a B&B for just one night can defeat the purpose.


Spend time browsing an inn's web site before you make a final decision. Most quality B&Bs have all the information you would want to know on their web sites. If an inn's web site is sub-par, it doesn't mean that the inn will be -- but it should cause you to be extra careful before making a reservation.

You can never ask too many questions. Don't waste innkeepers' time, but make sure you feel comfortable spending the night in their care. Email is great for this.

Decide early on what's more important -- the inn, or the inn's location. A great B&B in a sub-par destination might be better than vice versa, but it depends on your tastes.

Go to River House HOME pageTips Advice & FAQ about Illinois Bed & Breakfast Accommodations

Getaway Lodge and Timeaway Lodge
11052 Ventura Boulevard
Rockford - Machesney Park, IL 61115
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RIVER HOUSE BED and BREAKFAST GETAWAY RETREAT located in ROCKFORD, ILLINOIS-- Two waterfront B&B lodges offer northern Illinois travelers luxury Jacuzzi and fireplace suites for romantic getaways as well as child friendly vacation lodging, group retreat, family reunion accommodations, or short term weekly rental. Whether romantic weekend, business stay, or entire house rental, find bed and breakfast packages: Romantic Getaway, Murder Mystery, Scrapbooking Retreat, Cooking Getaway, Weddings, Group Rentals and Furnished Apartment for extended stay. Guest Notes & REVIEWS.