Have you ever stayed somewhere where there were signs everywhere with instructions and do’s and don’ts? You know how the song goes . . . “Sign, sign, everywhere a sign, blocking out the scenery breaking my mind, do this, don’t do that can’t you read the sign.” Glenn and I stayed at some bed and breakfasts and rental properties that had them, and even when my parents had a family vacation house at the shore in Avalon, New Jersey, we’d tease my mother about all of her rules posted throughout the place. Glenn’s parents had similar notes in their place in Treasure Lake, Pennsylvania. Somehow, I thought, it just takes away from the atmosphere of the place. I vowed when we had our bed and breakfast there would never be such signs!
Now in our 7th year of business, and growing, we’re entering a phase in our business history where with just the two of us, we can’t do it all, and somehow we still need to be sure our guests have it all.
With the addition of a Keurig Coffee machine for coffee needs other than breakfast, and a freezer with ice for individual glasses and ice buckets, there are just too many amenities now that would have to be reviewed at check-in, a time when our guests rightfully just want to get settled in their room.
I understand better now, that self service amenities can illicit some questions, which if not answered can not only diminish the enjoyment of the amenity, but can also cause accidents.
Our Keurig machine was with us for only 2 weeks (without a sign) when a guest changed the cup size setting and this Innkeeper experienced a burn from trying to stop a hot water overflow due to the changed setting. Enter (UGH!) the signs.
Amenities should increase the positive experience a guest has, not complicate it, so we’re giving the signs a try, and I must concede to all those sign makers I criticized in the past, that there is a time and place for them. (Sorry Mom)