You don’t have to be a weary traveller to book a stay at a bed and breakfast or boutique inn. Everyone needs to get away from the bustle of daily life once in a while. Why go on a long journey when beautiful accommodations in Durham Region offer more than just a bed for the night. Each is as unique as their owners.
3440 Beacock Road, Nestleton
Northeast of Port Perry is the Nestleton Waters Inn; a family run establishment located on a 96-acre farm. Though owners Deborah and Erik Kiezebrink initially received skepticism about the viability of establishing an inn far from any popular destination, they have proven that exceptional hospitality and luxury, along with a serene and picturesque setting, makes the Nestleton Waters Inn a destination all on its own.
Experience the fantastic cuisine of executive chef Aaron Moss as an add-on to your stay or during one of the inn’s monthly dinner dates – a five-course culinary feast. Or you can host your next event in the island marquee tent, which holds up to 200 guests and is popular for weddings. While you’re staying in Nestleton, the Kiezebrinks encourage you to take in all that the surrounding community of Scugog has to offer.
“There are so many interesting things to do,” Deborah exclaims. “We encourage our guests to book a massage at Revelations Spa in Port Perry, and then head across the street to Old Flame Brewing Company and have a nice, locally made brew. There are unique boutique shops as well, and we have partnerships with some of the local retailers to provide our guests with vouchers and other promotions.”
A stay at Nestleton Waters Inn is about detaching from the daily rigours of life and reconnecting with what you value.
“Being a special place, a hidden gem, people can enjoy themselves and recuperate their energy,” Deborah says. “That’s a special kind of business, and it’s something that makes us feel very proud. Our work isn’t done just providing a bed and a room. It’s about providing heart and care.”
3392 Concession Road 8., Leskard
If nature is what you crave, book your next weekend getaway at the Hive Centre Bee and Bee in the Village of Leskard. Surrounded by the lush shade of a nature reserve, the Hive is a dual offering of a charming home which comprises the main bed and breakfast and a heritage church for events and additional overnight accommodations.
“We often hold retreats, or people rent out the entire spaces for family functions,” says Elsii Faria, who co-owns the establishment with her partner, Kevin Craddock. “We also do some programming, such as frequency meditation, barefoot walks, wild food walks and forest bathing.”
Initially, the church was the couple’s private residence, and the house next door was purchased when they found they needed more space for their marketing and design business. Due to an unfortunate period of illness for Faria, the duo decided they needed to find a way to make their properties self-sustaining as they faced personal challenges.
“We thought this would be a great space for people to get away and retreat into themselves a little bit,” she says. “To learn about ancient healing methods and other practices that could help with well-being.”
The Hive Centre Bee and Bee provides a multi-faceted experience. Some guests come to enjoy the peace and quiet the bed and breakfast offers, while others come to experience the workshops and events. In a gesture of appreciation for all of nature’s creatures, the Hive Centre Bee and Bee is a quirky reference to the fact that the church has a living beehive.
“There are honey bees that lived in the walls of the church before we arrived, and we thought we could cohabitate,” Craddock explains. “There was one particularly hot day in July one year where the walls leaked honey.”
217 Queen Street, Port Perry
Speaking of heritage and history, the Piano Inn is another fine establishment located in three heritage buildings in downtown Port Perry. Run by owner Christy Stone-Curry and her husband Rob, the buildings have been in Christy’s family for over 50 years.
Previously private apartments, the five suites that make up the inn were meticulously renovated, with care and attention given to preserve and showcase the historic features of each one.
“All of our suites are interesting,” Christy says. “They’re weird dimensions; nothing is square. We have lots of exposed brick, one has a huge original fireplace, and some have 18-foot ceilings.”
It was during renovations that the family discovered the existence of hundred-year-old skylights, which had been covered up, the result of an old photography studio from a long-ago era.
Guests of the Piano Inn can expect to enjoy first-hand attention from the owners themselves, who live on site and manage the day-to-day operations.
“We have huge pride of ownership,” she says. “If you want something to improve your stay, you get us. I would say that 70 per cent of our business is from repeat bookings. People keep coming back because they love it here so much.”
Written by: Katie Ryalen