in its sixth edition, "How to Open and Operate a Bed &
Breakfast" by Jan Stankus is considered to be one of the
authoritative guides in the B&B field. If you contemplate
opening your own B&B, you will find the book helpful in writing
business plans, pricing your services, complying with codes and
ordinances, marketing your business, and most importantly, helping
you determine whether a B&B is the right life choice for you.
from this book, prospective B&B operators can tap into another
valuable source of information: the "people who know the most
about bed and breakfast — the hosts who open their homes to
guests, the people who travel the B&B way, and the managers of
reservation service agencies that help hosts and guests get
exactly is a bed and breakfast? Part of the problem in defining a
B&B is that "the term has become so commonplace that it’s
applied to all sorts of things." To clarify matters the book
makes several distinctions among lodgings that label themselves a
B&B. For purposes of discussion, a "bed and breakfast
home" is a private residence used for overnight accommodations
by paying guests. It is not a rooming house, hotel or motel,
restaurant or country inn.
eight chapters provide an instructive tutorial on the B&B
industry as well as the pitfalls and rewards of this business.
You Become a Bed & Breakfast Host?" explains many of the
right reasons for going into the B&B business: meeting
interesting people, developing a home business, profiting from
unused space and generating extra income.
"What Does It Take to Run a Successful Bed &
Breakfast?" Stankus identifies five important characteristics
one must have to succeed: location, comfort (noise, pets, children,
smoking, atmosphere), cleanliness, lifestyle (this is your home; are
you prepared to take in strangers?) and the working host
(integrating the B&B style into your daily life and work
Started" covers what are generally agreed to be the basic
requirements in a B&B: the bedroom (beds, linens, pillows,
furnishings, etc.), bathroom (plumbing, bathing facilitates, hot and
cold water, towels and cloths, etc.), amenities (the author’s
checklist includes 83 different offerings) and the price schedule.
"Getting Connected" the author identifies the best avenues
for increasing awareness of your B&B. They include the
all-important RSAs (reservation service agencies); special focus
B&B groups; the national, state and local B&B associations;
and other resources (newsletters, Internet groups and workshops).
[to top of
second column in this review]
Business of B&B" explains the legalities when converting
your home into a business operation. The issues addressed include
zoning ordinances, insurance coverage, health and safety
regulations, taxes, and record keeping.
Your Bed & Breakfast" contains a list of the different
outlets for marketing and promotion. Sources include creating and
distributing in-house publications (brochures, stationery), listings
in B&B guidebooks, press coverage, advertising, off-season
marketing and marketing on the Internet.
can learn how to attract and satisfy your visitors in "The
Perfect Guest." Screening your guests, attention to special
guests (one-nighters, single travelers, children, pets and foreign
guests) and making your B&B accessible contributes to a
successful visit and the potential for repeat business.
any B&B to properly accommodate the perfect guest, one must
strive to be a gracious host. In "The Perfect Host"
Stankus discusses the duties and responsibilities of every host:
welcoming your guests, the orientation process, the welcome letter
(which covers the rules, facilities and services), visiting with
your guests, comments and preserving special memories.
that dining is sometimes greeted with anticipation, "A
Memorable Breakfast" reminds you that the special touches — a
nice tablecloth, good china, a vase of flowers — can enhance the
pleasure of your guests’ visit. Setting the right mood at
breakfast means attention to a scenic setting and serving delicious
food and beverages.
to Open and Operate a Bed & Breakfast" is essential reading
for anyone contemplating this kind of a business enterprise. The
book’s true value lies in its "combined knowledge,
experience, and advice of hundreds of B&B hosts, managers of
reservation service agencies, B&B consultants across North
America, and guests who enjoy B&B hospitality."
the forward, Arline Kardasis, the former president of Bed and
Breakfast—The National Network, writes: "A B&B home must
provide quality accommodations and genuine hospitality to its guests…
‘How to Open and Operate a Bed & Breakfast’ offers the
reader a complete course on the nuts and bolts of hosting, including
all of the pitfalls as well as the many joys and benefits."
more information visit the library at 725 Pekin St. or call (217)
Sumrall, Lincoln Public Library District]