Going back to school has never been such a treat as when you stay at an historic Schoolhouse Bed and Breakfast. While Labor Day means back to school and some sad faces, you won’t mind a bit when you’re heading for one of these converted schoolhouses that are now outstanding inns. They’ll be no complaining about staying late, or dozing off, as these charming properties will have you reminiscing for the simpler days of small communities school. And these fine establishments will be swapping the three R’s from Reading, Writing and ‘rithmatic, to Rest, Relaxation and Romance. So take notes on the Best Schoolhouse BnB’s across America.
Peppermint Cottage and Jackson Schoolhouse B&B, Lyons, NY
What could be more inviting than an historic one-room cobblestone schoolhouse that has been lovingly crafted into a romantic retreat in Upstate New York, in the Finger Lakes and Erie Canal region. The old Jackson Schoolhouse which dates back to 1829, is part of the Peppermint Cottage Bed and Breakfast property which sits on Pleasant Valley Road – how appropriate! The school welcomed children for 116 years and now the property welcomes travelers who are visiting New York’s famed Finger Lake Wineries and historic Erie Canal.
Carr Manor, Cripple Creek, CO: One of only 17 original Mining District Schools still remaining, the Cripple Creek High School is today a lovely inn. Welcoming classes for over 70 years, the original school educated even taught former Colorado Governor Ralph Carr a thing or tow. Today, the boutique inn retains its high ceilings and blackboards in every room. Take your turn to scroll romantic messages to your partner.
The Davie School Inn, Anna, IL: In 1869, the town of Anna constructed an elegant three-story brick building to educate the growing town’s young population. It remained in operation until 1996, and remained shuttered until Gary and Andrea Dahmer gave it a new mission in 2002. The Dahmers preserved the integrity of the old schoolhouse while updating the building with modern conveniences. Each former classroom has its original chalkboard and bookcases, and the hardwood floors still show the marks made by students’ desks. But you’ll also find private bathrooms with double whirlpool tubs, and air-conditioning for guarantee comfort. The motto here is “make a homeroom your home away from home”.
School House B&B, Rocheport, MO:
This luxurious historic inn originated as a schoolhouse built in 1914 which educated children ages 5 all the way to 18. The beautifully decorated inn and combines the charm of old-fashioned school desks and blackboards with modern day luxuries like double whirlpool tubs and in-room fireplaces. This inn is so lovely that Hallmark used it for inspiration for a series of greeting cards, and it has been featured in cookbooks, guidebooks, magazines, TV shows and newspapers. Guests an choose to stay in schoolhouse inspired rooms like the Show & Tell Room or the Dick & Jane Room.
Old Schoolhouse, Fort Davis, TX: This circa 1904 inn, was built of adobe and served as the schoolhouse for Fort Davis’s children right up until the 1930s. The original girl’s outhouse has been preserved as a reminder of earlier days. The 22-inch-thick adobe walls, bead board paneling, and ceiling-high windows still convey the traditional soundness of the original construction as guests choose to enjoy the three R’s – the Reading, Riting or ‘Rithmetic Rooms offered here.
Torrey Schoolhouse B&B, Torrey, UT: Built in the early 1900’s, the Torrey Schoolhouse housed both a school and cultural center. Three large classrooms for grades one through eight occupied the first floor and a large reception room was on the second floor. The building sat empty for nearly 50 years until the present owners had a new vision for the property. The school was renovated and restored and re-opened as an inn in 2004.
Barclay Cottage, Virginia Beach, VA:
This building constructed in 1895 was originally a private home. but was converted to Miss Barclay’s School in 1921, as well as a guest house. Miss Lillian Barclay taught kindergarten through third grade here for 50 years, while continuing to accept overnight guests. The school closed in 1972 when Miss Barclay was 80, but she continued to welcome guests and live in her home until her passing 1989. After restoration and renovations the property reopened as Barclay Cottage with totally modernized facilities. Guests are invited to borrow a book from the inn’s lending library and rock away on the inn’s lovely front porch.
Wilson Schoolhouse Inn, La Crosse, WI: This one-room rural schoolhouse originally built in 1917, educated the children of Wilson until it closed in 1965. Restored and decorated with elegant furnishings, the B&B still exudes much of its original character and charm, complete with the original slate blackboard and school desks. The inn sits on 10 rural acres surrounded by woods, hills and gardens, where many a child played hide-and-seek. Now guests wander through the gardens without worrying that the recess bell will call them in.
We suggest you visit www.BetterWayToStay.com for ideas and to learn what makes inns and B&Bs the ideal alternative to hotel lodging.