Sometimes the things you ignore at home are the very same things that seem charming in a far-away destination. Such was the case with June and Keith. Leaving Minnesota’s ten thousand lakes behind, there they were in Europe where they found the bed and breakfast places on the waterfront to be so appealing. In a small hamlet in Holland they came upon a place where you slept in wine casks. To be sure, you didn’t sleep in the casks full of wine, though that could have been an interesting experience. These were discarded wine casks that had been shipped from wherever to be turned into comfortable guest rooms.
While chatting with other guests, they met a couple who took it as a mission to find unusual bed and breakfasts around the world. These people had been in the U.S. where they had stayed in a bed and breakfast in Idaho that was shaped like a dog. June didn’t believe such a place would meet the building codes but sure enough, the couple showed them photos on their computer. This couple had also visited Turkey where they had stayed in the Cappadocia cave dwellings. The Turkish government had decided it was embarrassing to have its citizens living in caves but now entrepreneurs had seen a unique business opportunity, turning the caves into bed and breakfasts.
“You know,” said June, “I have always wanted to run a bed and breakfast. What if we found an unusual angle for our own venture?” Keith was not thrilled with such an idea. “People aren’t here just for the novelty. They’re here for the sights and pastries and the smell of fresh flowers. They’re here to see something new and do things they wouldn’t do at home.” And June reminded Keith that really, lakes and loons and wilderness may be everyday stuff for him but they would be uncommon for people from other places.
Eventually, June again raised the idea of a bed and breakfast. She had been reading about an unusual event center in a sheep barn. To which Keith responded in disbelief, “The sheep barn? Are you crazy? Who would stay there? The smell alone…” But June had done her research and at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, the Wade family had donated their farm. The university had re-purposed all the barns, turning a sheep barn into an event center. It’s not like they were going to have people and sheep living together, June commented.
Then Keith decided he would contact Sherman Pole Buildings to discuss the idea of a pole building bed and breakfast. The design team at Sherman can do almost anything. June was lukewarm to the idea. “Can we have a pole building shaped like a sheep and it’s a bed and breakfast?” It’s not so much about the shape, Keith argued. It’s about making people comfortable, serving them those amazingly good blueberry muffins and on and on he went. “What about a horse shaped building,” June continued. Keith and June are still discussing the possibilities while the design team at Sherman is seriously contemplating a sheep-shaped pole building and those blueberry muffins.