Southern Idaho has a number of beautiful and unique Bed & Breakfast establishments located in mostly off-the-beaten-path locations for the discerning consumer looking for peace and quiet. Nearly all of them are in historic buildings with lots of character, but not all of them.
Bernard and Marguerite Janes, for example, turned a former private home into the Thousand Springs Bed & Breakfast and Winery along the Thousand Springs Scenic Byway, east of Hagerman. It’s a modern, spacious one-story home, with large picture windows looking out at the Snake River, and an outdoor deck next to the river.
“Last winter with all the snow and ice, the scene was like an Ansel Adams photo,” says Marguerite Janes. “It’s just phenomenal. I saw 17 different species of birds just this morning.”
Their brand, Feathered Winds Wines, was created from a combination of all the waterfowl and birds that reside in the Snake River area, and the gentle winds that blow up and down the river. They grow grapes and make their own red and white wines on the 10-acre property.
They have three rooms available at their Bed & Breakfast, priced between $155 to $250 a night, including taxes and a home-cooked breakfast. They have nine different varieties of wine for sale in their tasting room, located down the drive. Their favorite is a 2014 Rose, which received a recent award.
In Twin Falls, the Fillmore Inn is a classic B&B, a Tudor-style home with four suites priced from $85 to $235. Owners Dean and Julie Beaudet completed remodeled the home about 10 years ago before opening for business. Dean Beaudet was a custom home-builder in the Wood River Valley. He modernized the utilities and installed venetian-plastered walls throughout the home. The light fixtures fit the historic nature of the home.
Guests come from Salt Lake City, the Pacific Northwest, China and Boise. Some stay there on their way to Yellowstone National Park; some are business travelers. The Inn is located close to downtown Twin Falls, and the Beaudets can recommend all of the fun things to see and do while they’re in the area.
“People love the house, and they love the food,” Beaudet says.
Dean and Julie travel a lot, and they noticed that a lot of B&B’s serve “pancakes, pancakes and pancakes.” They try to offer a unique variety of breakfast items. Some recipes have been adapted from a favorite breakfast eatery in Ketchum, the Kneadery, one of Dean’s all-time favorites.
Another pet-peeve they found staying in other B&B’s were soft beds. They put extra money into high-quality beds with firm mattresses. “Our beds are very comfortable,” Julie says.
East of Twin Falls, Henry’s at the Drift Inn is a charming establishment in historic Rupert Square. They have six modern rooms priced from $95 to $125. The Drift Inn is not a B&B per se, because they don’t serve breakfast. They send people to Sophie’s Chatterbox for that, just a block away across the park in Rupert Square.
But the Drift Inn serves lunch and dinner in a full dining room, and they also have a bar with outside patio seating. They often have live music on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and they’ll fire up their smoker for ribs on Thursdays.
The Drift Inn is located in a stately building that’s on the National Register of Historic Places. The First National Bank was one of the long-time occupants of the building back in the day. I stayed in the Presidential Suite (only $125/night), named for a former bank president. The large suite has a sitting room with a large HDTV, a master bedroom, a walk-in shower, and bathrobes for him and her.
The Drift Inn is a popular place for locals to have dinner and drinks on a Friday night. When I visited, the place was full of happy people ready to loosen up after a busy week.
Locals in Rupert put up friends and family at the Drift Inn for family reunions, weddings or other events, business travelers like to stay there, as well as tourists and people traveling from Salt Lake to Boise, and tourists looking for historic places to stay. The historic Wilson Theatre is located across the street.
Owners Charlie and Lori Creason clearly have a sense of humor, noted by the many plaques in the bar and patio with humorous messages. One of them said, “Complaint Department 200 miles that way.” Another said, “Public Notice: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas and oil, plus the current state of the economy, the light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off. Have a nice day!”
For people looking for a very quiet place to stay in a remote mountain community, the Haight House Bed and Breakfast in Oakley or the Albion B&B in Albion – both very small, historic communities — might be the perfect destination.
The Haight House B&B is located in a classic Victorian home, built in 1895 by Hector C. Haight. It has two rooms in the main house and one in the loft in the garage. Rates range from $90 to $150/night. There’s also an option to rent the entire home. They have a total of 9 beds and can accommodate up to 15 people, says Amy Mallory, the manager.
The home has period furniture that fits the historic home, listed on the National Registry. “It’s very quiet and peaceful,” Mallory says. “It’s totally different than being stuck in a hotel room. People enjoy hanging out in the house … they love the look and feel of it.”
Guests get a $20 discount if they attend a program at the nearby Opera House.
The Albion B&B has eight rooms in the historic town of Albion, on the way to Castle Rocks State Park and City of Rocks National Reserve. It’s owned by Chad and Susan Manderscheid. The building was a teacher’s college at one time, and so each room in the B&B has an educational theme – there’s the Principal’s suite, the Biology suite, the Science Studio, and so on. Room prices range $85 to $154 a night.
The Manderscheid’s decided to settle in Albion after living in the Netherlands. “Here, we have four people per square mile,” Chad says. “In the Netherlands, everyone lives on top of each other.”
Skiers going to Pomerelle Mountain Resort may stay there in the winter, and they get tourists heading to Castle Rocks and City of Rocks in the summer. But some folks like to stay there just because of the peace and quiet, Chad says. “It’s very quiet and clean. It’s homey, comfy and friendly. You don’t get much riff-raff down here.”
For more information on lodging in Southern Idaho, see our listings on the Southern Idaho Tourism web site.