West Hill House B&B

Category Archives: West Hill House B&B

To Cape Cod and Beyond

May 21, 2012 by Peter MacLaren

Cape Cod

Heading to the endless ocean at Nauset Beach

Heading to the endless ocean at Nauset Beach

Just a few weeks ago we headed off to Cape Cod to attend the PAII Northeastern Regional Conference. As our program did not start until late afternoon we decided to drive up the Cape and explore along the way.

We started our exploration in the town of Hyannis and by making a welcome stop for homemade ice creams at Katie’s, so many imaginative flavors it was hard to choose.

Peter loves the ocean so of course beaches and lighthouses were on the agenda. We stopped at the Veterans Beach in Hyannis and saw the Kennedy Memorial and the Cape and Islands Korean War Memorial, we walked the grounds at the Higgins Farm Windmill, stopped at The Cook Shop (yes, Susan bought a few items and could have stayed there for ages), enjoyed the view from the Highland lighthouse and read of the beach erosion which precipitated the moving of the lighthouse back several hundred feet from its original 1797 location. The view of the ocean from Nauset Beach near Orleans took our breath away and Peter could have sat there for ages. No land as far as the eye could see, no wonder early sailors were worried they would fall off the end of the earth.

So back to Hyannis for our PAII conference.

PAII? It stands for the Professional Association of Innkeepers International, which is a great organization which speaks on behalf of its member innkeepers on issues that affect this sector of the hospitality industry. Annual and regional conferences offer innkeepers and aspiring innkeepers a chance to meet others in the industry as well as meet with businesses which provide services and products to the industry. The focus of the conferences is offering workshops covering many topics from decorating (with or without doilies), to bread making, to website design to social media. Innkeeers also get a chance to be updated on the Better Way To Stay  program which promotes B&Bs as a great alternative to the traditional hotel/motel accommodations.Parked Car

Theme speakers, whose messages touch each innkeeper in some way, set the tone at both the opening and closing sessions and get us charged up for the coming year.

Departing Hyannis for West Hill House B&B. The QR code in our window received numerous comments.

We’re home now recharged after a few days of relaxation and an action packed conference.

Thanks for a great conference, PAII!

It’s the money, not the principle of the thing!

May 21, 2012 by Peter MacLaren

So we were on our way to Cape Cod for the New England PAII conference and decided to break the trip with the night at one of Boston’s luxury downtown hotels. The entrance was grand, the staff was friendly, the room spacious and a nice treat for us but my gosh, I do believe that a B&B is a Better Way to Stay.

We were serenaded to sleep (not) with the sound of roaring traffic along with police and firetruck sirens oh and a couple of ‘rice racers’ trying out downtown streets. Boston night traffic seems to calm down about 3AM and start up again around 5AM so not much sleep to be had – and we were more than 12 floors above street level.

I know life in the big city is expensive – if we weren’t blown away by the $12.50 per device charge to connect with the internet, and the $25 per person buffet breakfast (which we opted not to indulge in) we just about had to pick our jaws up off the floor and mortgage the farm to pay the $46 per night valet parking, which we were informed about only at check out! (Valet parking was the only option if you had a car.) Do we not get out enough or does something not seem quite right?

A Better Way to Stay? You bet…We encourage anyone from Boston, New York, Hartford, Toronto or any other big city to come enjoy the peace and serenity of West Hill House. Quiet nights (unless you count the peepers down by the pond), free phone calls and internet, free parking even if you are here for an event and we have valet parking, and our hallways don’t disappear into a vanishing point. Oh and of course, breakfast is included!

Need a break from the hectic life of the city? The Rx is a trip to Vermont.

Picnic by the pond

May 21, 2012 by Peter MacLaren

West Hill House Bed and Breakfast

Grace & Charlie enjoy a picnic.

A basket filled with Vermont cider, cheeses, crackers, home made cookies and other goodies brings smiles to Grace and Charlie who welcomed the warm spring weather with a picnic by our pond. Spring has indeed sprung in the Mad River Valley. Signs of the season are all around us; chipmunks are sunning themselves on the rocks, peepers are singing our guests to sleep each evening and our beautiful gardens are coming back to life with brilliant daffodils now in bloom. We won’t even mind a few April showers. Sugarbush has opened the golf course, folks are out walking and cycling as well as hiking on the many local Green Mountain trails.

Though we can’t guarantee that there will be warm picnic weather when you come, we can guarantee that a warm welcome awaits you.

See you soon!

Moose at West Hill House – the movie!

March 23, 2012 by Peter MacLaren

We had a rare experience this evening when we noticed a lady moose drinking from our beaver pond. We watched her for about half an hour, took lots of photos and this video – click on the image to play it.

This is only the 3rd time we have seen moose on the property since we arrived 6 years ago, though we know from tracks that they are quite frequent visitors.

Relaxation Plus!

March 16, 2012 by Peter MacLaren

Cat nap

Winter gives way to an early spring

Mountainside snow melts in the warm sun

The ground begins to thaw as we enter mud season

Crocuses, tulips, and irises poke their heads through the soil

Inside West Hill House B&B Smoky demos cat yoga and enjoys a relaxing nap.

Come join Smoky and Snowball, choose your own chair of course, and chill out.

For new bookings made after March 27th for between then and April 26th we are offering these two special deals:

  • Stay two nights and have the third night on the house! A 33% discount.
  • Stay one night and get the 2nd night at half price! A 25% discount.

These discounts are not available on-line. Please call us to book.

(may not be combined with other discounts)

 

 

Ski boots galore!

March 6, 2012 by Peter MacLaren

"We sure had a good day on the mountains."

After a busy day at Sugarbush and Mad River Glen, guests’ boots rest by the fireside while their humans enjoy their steam showers and jacuzzis.

A breakthrough in LED light bulbs

February 26, 2012 by Peter MacLaren

We are sharing here most of a review we posted on the Amazon web site, as we are just delighted with these amazing LED light bulbs – a real breakthough.  As noted in the review, you can see them in operation in our kitchen.

Review of 900 Lumen 9 Watt LED Light Bulbs

I have tried many LED light bulbs over the last year or so claiming to be replacements for 50W + incandescents for use in normal fixtures, and this is the first bulb to actually exceed my expectations, and at a lower price than most of the competition.

The bulb is slightly whiter than warm white and it is bright – definitely brighter than a 60W incandescent bulb. In fact I have used the first two I ordered to replace 50W halogen flood lamps in our kitchen and these LED bulbs provide a brighter light even though they are not directional like the halogen floods – they spread light over about 180 degrees compared to a typical flood’s spread of 35 degrees.

These are the first LED bulbs I have seen that produce 100 lumens per Watt. So 900 lumens from 9W. By replacing two halogen floods I have more light with 18W than I had before with 100W. These specs also make these bulbs among the first to truly exceed CFLs in efficiency, thus the review title of a “breakthrough in LED light bulbs”. And of course they bring the other major LED advantage of turning on almost instantly at full brightness, not to mention the lack of any mercury related disposal issues if indeed they ever need replaced.

(These bulbs are not dimmable so if your application requires that capability you will need another product. I have also purchased two Philips 409904 Dimmable AmbientLED 12.5-Watt A19 Light Bulbs and if the weird appearance is not a problem these are an excellent choice if dimming is required and you need 800 lumens plus from the bulb.)

The guarantee is spectacular – if the bulb burns out during YOUR lifetime return it for a free replacement. Of course this is only as good as the life of the company as well, but it does indicate the confidence that the vendor has in their product.

Also intriguing is that the bulb looks almost like a regular A19 incandescent bulb, with a silvery coating on the bottom half. It lacks the very visible and massive external heat-sinks of similar products. It remains to be seen whether this lack of a visible heat-sink will impact the bulb life and/or long term performance.

A Greener Green Mountain Magazine

February 5, 2012 by Peter MacLaren

Our Vermont,  is the new Green Mountain State’s Greener Magazine, and features articles about people, places, events, food, and local flavor offered in the great state of Vermont. Not only is this a paperless magazine, and you can subscribe for free on line, but they chose a 100% wind powered company to do their hosting.

Lucky us, West Hill House B&B has a featured ad in the magazine’s inaugural edition. Check us out on page 2-3, the full-screen option, and accept our invitation to come to Vermont to sample the wonders of our amazing state. West Hill House is a ‘Green Hotel in the Green Mountain State’. We offer Ski & Stay Packages. If you and your sweetie need a little pampering check out our Valentine’s Day special. Perhaps a proposal is in your future …let us help you make that a memorable event.

West Hill House B&B is where you’ll want to B&B.

The Pot of Gold

December 3, 2011 by Peter MacLaren

November Rainbow

We’ve found it! The Pot of Gold is in the Mad River Valley!

November brought us 11″ (28cm) of snow for our Thanksgiving Day guests to enjoy and 60°F (15°C) weather a few days later. November also brought us this magnificent rainbow on the 30th. While we can’t guarantee you a rainbow or a pot of gold when you visit West Hill House B&B, Sugarbush or Mad River Glen, we can guarantee you beautiful scenery and warm Mad River Valley hospitality.

White Christmas in Vermont

November 28, 2011 by Peter MacLaren

Christmas finery

Picture yourself doing your Christmas shopping and enjoying Christmas music in the quiet serenity of the green mountains of Vermont.

Saturday, December 3 marks the 13th annual Country Christmas Open House in the Mad River Valley. Over 30 local shops and services are offering special discounts which will make your pocketbook happy and may offer free refreshments which will make your tummy happy. Pick up a punch card at any merchants displaying the Participating Merchant sign then visit 5 businesses and have your card punched at each. When you leave your card with the 5th business it will be entered for a prize drawing. Check out the list of participating merchants and services.

On Friday, December 9 The Vermont Symphony Orchestra presents Holiday Pops “Fun and Games”  at the Barre Opera House, just under one hour from West Hill House. Favorite Christmas music with a twist as they take a look at the youthful side of the holiday. Fun for everyone. Tickets required.

Thursday, December 15 the Warren United Church will host the Vermont Symphony’s Brass Quintet and Counterpoint for a perfect mix of brass and voices to ring in the season. Free admission although tickets are required.(802-496-9714).

And of course the area also offers skiing and riding at Sugarbush, skiing at Mad River Glen, and cross country skiing at Ole’s and Blueberry Lake. Dog sled rides, sledding, skating, and moonlight snowshoe tours are just some of the other ways to enjoy a white Christmas in Vermont – oh and you can also curl up with a warm beverage and watch the movie White Christmas.

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