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B&B Resolutions (Part 1)

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New Year’s resolutions tend not to be very much fun: less ice cream/more exercise; less beer/more water; less TV/more treadmill. So when it came to putting together a list of 10 B&B resolutions for the New Year, I made sure to focus on the good stuff: meeting new people, have new adventures, sleeping in and learning new skills. They’re all achievable in the new year, especially if you stay tuned this About.com site or subscribe to our newsletter!

1. I will skip breakfast.

Yup, you read that right. You CAN go to a B&B and skip the second “B.” Many people naturally assume that when you stay at a bed and breakfast, you MUST wake up and sit down to the inn’s breakfast during the proscribed hours. But the secret is: you don’t. You’re paying for your stay at the inn, so you are perfectly entitled to sleep in, even if it means skipping breakfast. But here’s the thing: make absolutely certain you tell your innkeeper that you’re planning on ditching the morning meal so that she doesn’t expend wasted energy prepping food for the next day.

2. I will take my dog.

Bringing your dog along to a bed and breakfast can make the weekend particularly memorable. Your pooch can help you meet new people both in and out of the B&B, and having a dog along usually ensures a healthier vacation as you’ll spend more time outdoors. Check out this document to help you prepare, then find a pet-friendly inn here.

3. I will stay at an urban B&B.

When people think of B&Bs, they tend to think of great old manor houses surrounded by woods and fields. While escapes to rural B&Bs can be a great way to recharge and escape the hectic pace of daily life, urban B&Bs have a certain appeal as well. They can help make cities seem less impersonal by giving you a true “at home” experience even in the busiest metropolis, and the innkeeper’s insight can lead you to experience the city as a true local -- rather than following the more typical tourist path laid out by a concierge at a big hotel. Check out this list of New York City B&Bs for a small sample of different kinds of urban inns.

4. I will strike up a conversation with someone different than me.

One of the most appealing things about bed and breakfasts is that it’s easier to talk to your fellow guests than it would be at a mega chain hotel. Yet oftentimes we seek out quiet nooks at B&Bs, avoiding the parlors or porches if other guests are already there. But this year, your challenge is to engage with at least one other guest at a B&B, and if it can be someone from a different walk of life, so much the better. Many people have made lifelong friendships at inns simply by starting with an easy “hello.”

5. I will attend a class or special event at a B&B.

Sure it’s nice to get away to a B&B for some R&R. But this is a list of New Year’s resolutions and such initiatives are usually aimed at self-betterment. So why not use a weekend away at an inn to learn or experience something new? Check out this list of B&Bs that offer cooking classes to their guests and you’ll be able to take a little of the inn experience home to your own kitchen. If you’d truly rather stay out of the kitchen on your holiday, you can still treat yourself to an enriching experience at a B&B by seeking out a property that is hosting a special event. For example, The Churchtown Inn in Lancaster, Pennsylvania hosts an annual “Wedding Vow Renewal” weekend; the Jeremiah Mason House in Limerick, Maine offers special weekends for quilters; and the Jabberwock Bed and Breakfast in Ontario Canada, has invited guests to attend “Weight Loss Wellness Weekends.”

See Part 2 of this article here.

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