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JLeslie's avatar

What's the deal with all these very expensive Bed and Breakfast's?

Asked by JLeslie (47071 points ) August 15th, 2012

I usually stay in hotels, but when none of the hotels are really suiting my needs I search B&B’s. I think of B&B’s as usually being less expensive than a hotel, but so often they are very expensive, more expensive than nearby hotels. I guess they are getting their prices? I do sometimes pay the high price when I dislike the hotels around, but complain about it a little bit. One of our members in the club I belong to owns a B&B and we as a club are driving out there for a club event; I have had a few complaints about his room prices, and I agree.

Is this a new phenomenon these very high B&B prices? Or, was I just unaware all these years since I don’t stay in them often.

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16 Answers

syz's avatar

I have always had the opposite impression, that B&Bs are more expensive due to the exclusivity, small size, and quality of service.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

B&Bs usually have fewer rooms than a hotel and you get a higher level of service. To survive they need to charge a little more than a hotel.

JLeslie's avatar

My first experience with B&B’s was in England, and we stayed there because the prices were more reasonable. This was many years ago. I don’t know if it varies by country? Or, if we had a unique experience in England, and even there B&B’s typically are more expensive.

I really don’t think of a B&B as having a higher level of service, and usually I dislike the smaller size, so I guess that is why I don’t see the value.

cookieman's avatar

We have stayed at many B&Bs around New England and they’re always kind of pricey. But, as has been stated, the rooms are very nice, impeccable service, and often offer amazing homemade/gourmet food.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Just like any hotel, B&B owners target a specific market. If the owner is smart, they conduct a feasibility study to figure out if they are more likely to make a profit by going the economy route or top line or somewhere in between. There are those that start out in the economy arena and upgrade as the money comes in, if the market will support it.

JLeslie's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer I’m sure it is primarily market driven like any business, but I do wonder your opinion since you worked in the business. Would you pay more to stay at a B&B in an area than a hotel?

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

The simple answer is yes. It is all a matter of personal priorities. I’m willing to pay more for location than service. Cleanliness is important, but I don’t freak out like some hotel guests do. When a hotel stay is being paid out of a personal pocket, then people should make the choice based upon what is important to them.

JLeslie's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer So you find B&B’s to typically be in better locations? That is true for the one place I consistently stay in a B&B, the location is very good for us. I actually would prefer the resorts in that town, but the resorts are extremely expensive. The resorts are on a lake, and we spend the entire day out racing, so it wouldn’t be worth it. I have thought about staying at the resort and sharing a two bedroom suite with friends (that would be ideal in my opinion) but our friends don’t plan far enough in advance for me to be comfortable with securing such an expensive room, with a not so great cancellation policy.

funkdaddy's avatar

Bed and Breakfasts seemed to go from lucky finds to a whole industry as a result of the internet. There seem to be a lot more, they’re nicer, and the prices reflect it.

Have you tried services like HomeAway? You generally don’t get the services of a bed and breakfast, but they are personal residences for the most part so you have a choice of location and amenities.

For popular locations, it’s a lot of people renting their vacation condos or homes to make some extra cash and take some of the costs of having the place. I’ve been able to find some really great deals, especially last minute.

These aren’t professionals for the most part, so if you like things “just so” it may not be for you, but I really appreciate the laid back check in/check out, homey feel of the places, and pricing.

JLeslie's avatar

@funkdaddy Thanks for that link. A girlfriend of mine used a similar type of website recently, I was going to ask her about it.

wundayatta's avatar

What is expensive?

It seems to me that prices are going up, but that’s because of inflation.

I like B&Bs. Hotels make me nervous. All those stories of bedbugs and so on. Plus they are huge and impersonal. You’re likely to be in the middle of some parking lot or highly urban area. Hotels have these long, anonymous corridors and they just creep me out. Give me something small and personal any day.

JLeslie's avatar

@wundayatta $175 – $330 a night in Arkansas. Actually, there is an inn that goes up to $500 a night. Does that seem high to you? I think I paid $280 a night at Torrey Pines in La Jolla.

I think I am paying $135 a night in Wisconsin. It’s not a terrible rate. I wish it was a little cheaper. But, no pool, no gym, just good location, breakfast of course (but I often get that at the hotels I stay in) and we do like the room.

Plus, add all the taxes of course.

wundayatta's avatar

Hmmm. I spent a few nights in La Jolla, across the street from the ocean, in a B&B, for something like $150 a night. Maybe less. That was two years ago. Just got back from a trip to the Jersey shore where we spent a couple of nights in a B&B for around $180. That room was smaller, but the season is different and I don’t know. So many variables.

$500 a night? Must be a suite. Fancy bath and lots of other amenities. Maybe a great view. I don’t know. Prices go all over the place. I paid $350 a night in Miami and was not happy about it. But there was a big music festival going on and we just couldn’t get anything for less by the time we were looking. When we got down to Key West, we only paid $175 or so. That was much nicer, except the landlady was a drunk and couldn’t find the key to our room.

I guess $175 seems to be the going rate for a minimally decent room. The innkeepers usually really try to take care of you. They tell you where to eat. Give out bikes and kayaks and beach chairs and whatever else is appropriate. Sometimes you get great breakfasts, and sometimes it’s just continental, like the hotel. Sometimes no breakfast at all. It’s pretty quirky.

So you’re going to Wisconsin? Checking out the land of our new Republican Veep nominee? Let us know what you find out?

JLeslie's avatar

@wundayatta $150 a night in La Jolla when the big fancy resort is $280+ sounds lije a good price to me. And, $180 on the Jersey shore. It is the beach.

I double checked the Akansas prices. Here is one of the pricier B&B’s. It looks very nice, but still. Arkansas. The $500 is a “condo” separate from the main house. But, the king suite can be as high as $330, and that is not two rooms, it is just a large room with a sitting are from what I can tell. I really object to hotels and B&B’s calling that a suite. To me a suite has a door separating the bedroom and the living area.

Yes, Wisconsin. I love it up there! Really looking forward to it. We used to say Wisconsin has conservatives who will smoke a J and chill. They have a libertarian streak in my opinion up there, but it is mostly bent to the liberal side. Less government, but it is more focused on the social issues in terms of less government. (Sometimes it is wierd to me that Libertarians are so lined up with the Republicans.) So, I guess that means the Wisconsoners I know are basically Democrats. They are into nature, can find a few tree huggers. Really nice people up there, midwest nice sort of thing. Beautiful lakes, resort towns, surfing on Lake Michigan, good food, cheese, maple syrup, farmers markets. Oh, and of course Road America racetrack, which is the main reason we go up there.

wundayatta's avatar

I can see what those are more expensive. Bigger rooms. Fancy views. Pretty fancy furnishings. It looks really nice. Nice lake. Great for a romantic getaway. It also looks like the inn is in the middle of nowhere (although pictures can easily be deceiving on that), which means it could be quiet, too.

There’s a lot in the middle of the country that I haven’t seen. Never really been to Arkansas or Wisconsin. I do know people from Wisconsin, but they are all liberals. I thought Wisconsin was reliably liberal, so it is a surprise to hear the things coming from there since their last governor was installed.

JLeslie's avatar

The Ozark mountains in Arkansas are very pretty, the Clinton Library is fantastic, and Hot Springs Arkansas is very campy with the history of mobsters coming down there to the baths.

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