Innkeepers say Hollywood 'reality' show unreal


Last updated 5/24/2007 at Noon

When removing the Hollywood spotlight from Chateau La Rue, and shining it on other Fallbrook bed and breakfast destinations, many will notice how this quaint town offers charming quarters and warm hospitality. Each bed and breakfast in the Friendly Village provides a unique invitation to its guests.

Located on Live Oak Creek and pond, visitors will be enchanted by the Fallbrook Bed and Breakfast. This historical destination offers guests the opportunity to stay at an 1885 remodeled farmhouse. Though the living quarters are situated in the vintage farmhouse, the owners of the Fallbrook Bed and Breakfast have fast-forwarded to the twenty-first century, offering the most up-to-date luxuries to its guests. Aside from gazing at the picturesque farmhouse, patrons can enjoy the year-round stream on the property.

“We also have a pond, where guests can take out our row boat,” said owner Mary Polopolus. “It is just a lovely site.” Polopolus said her guest book overflows with joyous customers, expressing what a wonderful time they had in such a beautiful and tranquil setting.

Bird watching enthusiasts are drawn to the Blue Heron Farm Bed and Breakfast for many reasons, but the main one is apparent -- birds.

“I have had bird watching experts here,” said owner Andrea Peterson. Be it in the garden, the pond, at feeders, or other areas of the lovely grounds, bird watchers are amazed at the variety of winged creatures. When hobbyists have pressed their eyes to their binoculars, many have spotted the California Thrasher, Roadrunner, Lawrence’s Goldfinches, Lazuli Buntings, Hummingbirds, Chats, Blue Grosbeaks, Terns, and of course, the Blue Heron. Peterson said she especially appreciates the fact that her guests can really “get away from it all” and relax on her farm. Peterson prepares tasty, bountiful breakfasts at her establishment.

“I use as many as products on the farm as I can for the meals,” she noted.

For those who want to escape to their days of youth, it is possible to rent The Treehouse in Fallbrook. This solitary house, raised on tall stilts, rests underneath the canopies of mature trees. The Treehouse truly offers guests a relaxing getaway from the daily grind. The grounds of The Treehouse offer a lovely pond, surrounded by an inviting extensive lawn, so guests can sit and breathe in the beauty. Escaping to the sounds of nature is The Treehouse’s mission.

The newest Fallbrook bed and breakfast on the block is the attractive Santa Margarita Inn. This bed and breakfast, resting atop a hillside, overlooks the stunning Santa Margarita River Valley. The inn is quickly becoming a popular destination for equestrians.

The estate offers an on-site boarding facility, so riders can experience fantastic trail rides along the Santa Margarita trails. For those who shy away from a trusty steed, biking and hiking along these trails is an ideal spot.

“You can get to the trails from our own backyard,” explained Arlene Bourbonnais, co-owner of Santa Margarita Inn. Frank, Arlene’s husband and business partner, boasted about the trails, illustrating how guests have access to 12-miles of incredible pathways.

“The trails are maintained,” he explained. “People can see flowers, butterflies, hawks and Indian artifacts,”

Though each one of these bed and breakfast destinations offers its own unique qualities; one thing remains steadfast. They are all dedicated professionals in the bed and breakfast industry.

After the recent undercover story on Chateau La Rue (‘Actress hasn’t bought Bed and Breakfast,’ in the April 26 issue of The Village News) gained national attention, many bed and breakfast facilities across the nation have voiced their opinion in regard to the Oxygen network reality television show ‘Tori and Dean: Inn Love.’ Innkeepers have communicated to The Village News that they feel what has been portrayed on the show is not a true reflection of the day to day activities at a professional bed and breakfast. They also hope this Oxygen show is not deterring future bed and breakfast guests.

Stephanie Carlson, owner of the Albert Shafsky House Bed and Breakfast, attended The California Association of Bed and Breakfast Inns convention back in January 2007. She claimed that she was extremely pleased to see Tori Spelling and her husband at the conference, taking in all valuable information, especially for new innkeepers.

“They did give us the impression that they purchased the inn [Chateau La Rue],” said Carlson. Aside from saying she realized the reality show about the inn was nothing more than a ruse, Carlson said running a bed and breakfast is a professional business and not one that is done on a lark.

“The owners of Chateau La Rue are not giving a positive depiction of how hardworking and hospitable innkeepers truly are,” said Carlson.

In Tennessee, Prospect Hill Bed & Breakfast owner Judy Hotchkiss agreed with Carlson.

“We in the B&B industry find her [Tori Spelling] an embarrassment,” Hotchkiss said. Hotchkiss also said she hopes viewers do not think that professional bed and breakfast facilities “practice the inept hospitality and inefficient marketing and financial planning done at Chateau La Rue.”

The primary job of an innkeeper is to provide the best hospitality for their guests. And more importantly, they feel honored to serve others.


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