Furnishings were period and in good repair. The bedroom was dirty. The entry door to the bedroom was cracked as if it had been broken into and poorly repaired. The bathroom door into the hallway would not stay locked and closed due to the wind from the bathroom window, which also wouldn't remain closed. The windows appeared to be rotted; we were told a carpenter would be there to repair it, though he never appeared.
Breakfast was prepared and served by a man wearing a robe and dewrag. Juice on the last day consisted of a concoction made of the rinds of oranges, melons, etc from previous days, so thick that it was chewable.
Parking cost was $10/day, not unreasonable, but there was limited room for our vehicle and we ended up with door dings.
Never again will we stay here.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
The guest’s review is pretty devastating, so we want to address each complaint in appropriate detail.
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Cleanliness: The room the guest is referring to is the original master bedroom, one of the grandest spaces in the house. We go out of our way to make sure that it and the rest of the house is spotlessly clean, and often receive compliments on this point. The guest did not say what exactly was dirty, but if something was, it was an anomaly, and we apologize.
Door: Every so often a guest pushes against that door before they have completely turned the key. The result is that the decorative door-jam facing (on the inside of the room) separates a fraction of an inch from the jam. The door was just not made to withstand rough treatment. Fortunately, this happens infrequently. The only way to permanently fix it would be to replace the whole door-jam assembly, which dates (like the rest of the house) to 1883; and we are trying to keep all the original architectural details intact. In the past we have always repaired it promptly by re-nailing. It’s not damage that is readily apparent, however, and we must have missed seeing it before this guest arrived. In light of this complaint, we will try using screws, which we will countersink to hide, and hope that will be a more robust solution. However, as we tell everyone, this is an historic house with irreplaceable period details and furnishings, some of which do not stand up well to rough treatment.
Hallway door: We are puzzled by this complaint. The bathroom door to the hallway is kept permanently shut by a latch that locks positively from the inside of the bathroom. (The bathroom is private: It connects directly with the bedroom by another door.) There is no way the door to the hallway would not remain closed unless the guest unlocks and opens it.
Bathroom: The arched window, with articulated 6/1 mullions, is original to the house and an important part of its Victorian character. It is not rotted: It is just old. The top half had slipped down about one-half an inch during a period of extremely high winds. We (the owners) were out of town at the time. The staff person dealt with the problem by closing the window and keeping it tightly shut by using a piece of lumber as a prop. He also installed insulation materials around the frame to keep out any draft. A permanent repair was done the day after the guests left.
Breakfast: The morning meals are served by one of three different people, all of whom have professional chef experience. We spare no expense on breakfasts. In addition to Starbuck coffee, tea, fruit, cereals, squeezed orange juice, etc., our oven-cooked main courses vary from day to day, and are always yummy and healthy. We also offer a house specialty in keeping with President Arthur’s penchant for convivial living: a cocktail of artfully mixed juices, reminiscent of a tropical island. The cook was trying a different recipe when these folks were here. The guests said nothing about this or any other offering at the time. In fact, they enjoyed one of the cooked dishes so much that they requested the recipe. However, in the case of the juice, the cook decided on his own that the original recipe was better, and has gone back to that.
Attire: The guests did not tell the whole story. These folks made a number of special requests which our staff member went out of his way to accommodate. One of these was to have breakfast at 7 a.m.—an hour earlier than our customary serving time—to accommodate their tourist schedule. Our staff member agreed to be at the house by 6 a.m. to make this happen, and told them that because he lived some distance away, he would have to sleep overnight in our kitchen. He did take the liberty of serving breakfast in a dressing robe. He apologized for his attire at the time, and the guests insisted it was not a problem since he was going out of his way to accommodate their needs. Either they were not being candid, or they changed their minds afterwards.
All that said, we agree with the guests about this. No matter what the circumstances, or how familiar our staff member felt he had become with them, he should have worn regular street clothes for breakfast, and he has been so informed. We are confident that this will not happen again.
Parking: We provide off-street parking at a modest rate as a convenience. We can accommodate as many as three cars in spaces typical of many parking lots. According to our records, only one other car, which belonged to us, was parked there at the time, and it was never moved, since we were out of town. If the guest claims door dings, we can’t dispute it, but such a thing was not mentioned at the time, and in our 18 years of operation, no one has ever made such a complaint before.
Don and Pat- Owners
Chester A. Arthur House B&B
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.