It took us a long time to get to Ærø -- a trip that included planes, trains, a ferry and shlepping some heavy suitcases up the hill of this lovely town -- so we were very glad to receive a warm welcome from Susanna, which included tea, lemonade and biscuits in her gorgeous garden. Susanna's hospitality was sincere -- we felt like guests rather than customers.
The historic and quirky home creaks with history. Originally built for a sailor's daughter, each room is lovingly and tastefully decorated in a classic style. Walking into the library and hearing the "tock tock" of the grandfather clock, I felt transported to an earlier century.
We stayed in the Red Room overlooking the garden, and we could not have asked for a nicer view. The bed was cozy and we slept wonderfully.
Susanna's breakfasts are sumptuous and delicious, and included fresh Danish rolls, tea, juice, cheese, fruit and hard-boiled eggs. There was always plenty left over. Susanna leaves bags in the breakfast room for her guests to pack rolls, cheese and fruit for lunch (as there aren't many restaurants on the island).
We had unknowingly arrived on a holiday weekend (Whitsunday/monday -- not celebrated in our home country). That meant almost all businesses were closed. We were worried we would not get to do what we really wanted -- rent bicycles and ride around the island. But Susanna knows everyone on Ærø. She made a phone call and persuaded her friend to open her bike rental shop for us. As we encountered island residents during our bicycle tour, they asked us where we were staying. When we told them "Pension Vestergade," they all said to say hello to their "dear friend Susanna."
As I mentioned, the garden is a stunningly beautiful refuge. It was the most peaceful place we visited during our vacation. What a lovely place to rest, sip some tea and enjoy the long rays of the sun filtering through the trees.
As we were departing (having already boarded the ferry), Susanna appeared with an envelope for me. She had accidentally overcharged us, and she hurried all the way down to the harbor and on to the boat to make sure we got our money back. We were so grateful for both her honesty and the effort.
I cannot recommend Pension Vestergade more highly. It exceeded all our expectations, and definitely deserves the TripAdvisor People's Choice Award.