Archive for April, 2010

Why stay at a bed and breakfast?

April 14, 2010

During the last ten years we have heard most of the reasons why someone doe not want to stay at a B&B:  “I feel like I’m in someones home.”  I don’t want to eat breakfast with other guests.”  “I need access to the internet.”  “I need a TV.”  These seem to be the top reasons.

All B&B’s are different.  That’s the good and the bad.  At Butler House on Grand,   we hope you don’t feel like you are in our home, even though it is our home.  We try to keep our common areas clear of personal items.   We also provide seating options that allows the guest to eat with other guests or at a table of their own.  We can do this by offering different breakfast times.  We have free WiFi.  We also provide cable television in every room.  B&B’s offer personal service and in most cases you always dealing the owners, so the care and attention to the business will be much greater than at the run of the mill chain hotels.

We are prepared for the single business traveler or the romantic couple.  We want everyone to feel comfortable at our B&B.  Since we have been open for ten years, we can easily fall into the trap of doing the same thing over and over.  We try to keep a fresh outlook on things. 

If you haven’t stayed with us, we hope you will soon.




Count your blessings

April 9, 2010

Lauren was getting her hair cut at the salon today.  She hears a very load crash.  They move to the front of the salon and there is a car sitting in the salon.  An elderly woman had crashed into the salon!  No one was injured.  But about a minute before the crash a woman had been sitting against the front window.  She had just walked back to the station.  Had she still been sitting in front of the window, she could have been seriously injured or worse.

Lauren and I laughed about what happened today.  I mean, the odds of this happening have to be about the same as getting struck by lightning.   But step back and think about it, and you have to thank the Lord that nothing worse happened.  Someone could have been sitting in front of that window.    Our whole family goes to this salon.  It could have been any of us sitting in front of that window.

What this reinforced for me was that we need to live each moment as if it is our last.  Lauren has faced her mortality this past year.    But we still end up getting caught up in the day to day issues.  We try to make money and work 18 hours/day.  Starting today I am going to enjoy my family more; try to get better organized;  see my friends more;  laugh a little more; donate my time  a little more, and have a lot more fun. 

So, grab your partner and head over to our B&B!  It’s time to relax.

Clark  866-455-4096.  We hope to see you soon.

We are a family business

April 1, 2010

Butler House on Grand is a very small family business.  The last eight months we have been challenged in these economic times.  Plus we had several cancellations this winter because of weather.  We are trying to figure out how to more aggressively market ourselves.  We definitely need more heads in our beds!

We hope this whole social media thing will help a little.    While lots of businesses can recover their losses by selling more product and unloading excess merchandise, we don’t have that luxury.  We sell days of the week.  When that day is over, we will never be able to make it up.  We can’t add 100 days to the calendar. 

Tomorrow night we will have a regular guest staying with us.  He works for one of the nicest chain hotels in the world.   I tease him that he stays with us because he isn’t allowed to stay with the competition.  The chain he works for does not have a property in Des Moines.    While I’m sure there is a little truth about the competition aspect, I also can assume he genuinely likes staying with us.  He has been coming regularly for four years.  He always brings other employees from other properties from around the world with him.  Tomorrow night his boss is coming for the first time.  I guess if we were a bad place, he wouldn’t bring his boss!  Right?    So, if we are good enough to take care of employees that work at one of the most elite hotel properties in the world, then we should be good enough for most folks.

If you haven’t stayed with us, we are an old house.  We do not in any way consider ourselves near the level of our guests hotel.  But, we do offer a clean, comfortable, quiet place to rest and relax.  This is our home and sometimes you might hear us scolding a daughter when you walk in.  You might smell what we are cooking for dinner.    But we strive to always making you feel welcome.    We are truly a family business!

When you visit Des Moines, we sure hope you will give us a try. 866-455-4096