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CONTACT: Marti Mayne, 207-846-6331 or
Sandy Soule, 512-322-2706,

Advice for successful family B&B vacations and ideas for affordable summer getaways

Austin, TX -- You love inngoing and have decided the kids are ready to try it too. Take some advice from Sandy Soule, Marketing VP of, the largest online B&B directory and reservation network worldwide. As a successful child-toting B&B guidebook author and mom, and now a B&B marketing expert and grandma, Soule offers advice and encouragement to families wishing to enjoy an affordable summer inn getaway.

  • Convenient location: Choose an inn with plenty of activities for good weather and bad -- sand castles to build, boats to row, mountains to climb, farm animals to feed, horses to ride, and museums to visit. Minimize travel time; cramped kids are cranky kids.
  • Appropriate accommodations: A family suite, cabin or cottage will give you extra space and privacy, so the kids' lack of "volume control" won't disturb others or make you tense.
  • Food: Hungry children whine and fuss. Find innkeepers who understand that kids prefer teddy bear pancakes to eggs Benedict. A refrigerator for snacks and afternoon refreshments and a bottomless cookie jar are also welcome.
  • Family-friendly furnishings: Combine museum-quality antiques with young children for guaranteed stress. Teach your kids to respect property, but select accommodations with sturdy, comfortable durable furnishings.
  • Built-in fun: Look for games, puzzles, outdoor play equipment, cribs and even special children's programs and/or baby-sitters. An extra plus for children is the new friends they'll make. On the other hand, remember that close supervision of your children is your responsibility as a parent.
  • Family-friendly pricing: Select properties with rooms or cottages that sleep four, and include family-oriented extras in the rate.

This year, B&B means Budget and Bargains, not Break the Bank with nearly 75 special offers for value-filled family fun on For details, go to and click on the photo of the smiling kids for a complete list of fabulous family-friendly B&Bs and packages, including the ones below, listed alphabetically by state. 

Small Hope Bay Lodge, Fresh Creek, Andros Island, Bahamas: Beautiful beaches, fabulous scuba diving and snorkeling, plus one- and two-bedroom beachside cottages welcome families to this island lodge. Look for complimentary evening babysitting in the game room for kids over 2 and free introductory surface scuba lessons for kids age 6-9 years plus a free snorkel or dive lesson for kids 10 and older. Through 12/18/09, all-inclusive rates are $209 per person for adults and $95 child (2-12) nightly, including accommodations, meals, beverages, kayaks, bikes, windsurfers, nature trails, Hobie Cat, hot tub on the beach, and taxes.

Villa Paggi Country House, Carasco, Italy: Just eight kilometers from the shores of the Tigullio Gulf, this eco-friendly home is a perfect base for exploring the Italian Riviera, including the renowned aquarium in Genoa, one of Europe’s biggest, and a guided tour of the Mine of Gambatesa, where everyone dons a helmet and rides a small train several hundred meters into the earth. The family-friendly guest rooms accommodate up to five; a family of four can enjoy seven nights’ accommodations, buffet breakfasts, and nightly dinners at a nearby restaurant-agriturismo with beautiful views, and self-raised meats and vegetables for €1250 through October, 2009 – that’s about $250 per day for the family, including meals!

The Ruby of Crested Butte, Crested Butte, CO: Join leading scientists and students observing the area’s wild ecosystems while operating a Kids Nature Camp at the nearby world- renowned Rocky Mountain Biological Laboratory. Nature-loving families will enjoy the Butterflies, Tots and Forget-me-Nots package in July, including five nights’ accommodations for two adults and two children, daily breakfast for all, and half-day participation for two kids in the Kids Nature Camp Program. Through exploration, games, hikes, crafts, and scavenger hunts, kids will learn all about nature in a gorgeous setting, equally perfect for adult hiking and biking. Package prices start at $1565 per family of four (mention this package when booking). Ask about rafting, horseback riding, and family fly fishing packages too.

Southern Cross Ranch, Madison, GA: Home to over 150 horses, the ranch is best known for its exceptional hands-on horseback riding program, unguided riding opportunities, and comfortable setting. For kids, the DVD library, game room, pool and hot tub, mountain bikes for private trails and fire pit for evening fun add to the fun. Rates for four days/three nights midweek Family Ranchin' Package start at $425 per person (double occupancy) including three meals and two rides daily.

Camden Windward House, Camden, ME: Entertain the whole family with a hiking, kayaking and sailing holiday on Maine’s Midcoast. The Family Fun package includes four nights’ lodging in the two-bedroom Crow’s Nest Suite, daily breakfast for all, hiking trail maps, four tickets for a historic schooner tour, and four kayak rentals with a guide for two hours on the Penobscot Bay for $1,330. Add plenty of activities from visiting lighthouses to letterboxing for the perfect affordable coastal Maine getaway.

Gallets House B&B, Allegany, NY: Bring the whole family and Fido too. Two- and three-bedroom pet-friendly accommodations are available, including a cottage with a large living room, TV/VCR, and a full kitchen stocked with breakfast foods for the whole family. The two-night package includes accommodations for a family of six, pizza delivered to the door on one night, a visit to scenic Rock City Park and fresh cookies upon arrival for $525; extend the stay to three days for just $150 more through September 8, 2009. For geocaching fans, there are more than 325 caches in a 25-mile radius. 

Lafayette Inn, Easton, PA: Enjoy a colorful family getaway for four with the Color My World Package including four tickets to the Crayola Factory, two Crayola gift packs, a snack tray with homemade cookies, one night’s accommodations in a suite for four, and a full breakfast for $299 for the whole family. In addition to the tour, watch a free DVD, enjoy afternoon refreshments, and linger on the wrap-around porch while playing board games with the kids. Perfect for grandparents-grandchildren getaways too. Offer valid through 2009.

Sunrise Farm B&B, Salem, SC: Bring the “young’uns” for a family farm vacation; wake by the rooster's crow and enjoy hearty homemade breakfasts, then help feed the llamas and brush the miniature horses. Learn gardening from a farmer and then relax on the porch with homemade cookies and lemonade. The Country Boys and Girls Package includes two weekday nights in the Rose Cottage, breakfast daily and farm fun for $280 for two adults and up to three children under 12 ($10 extra for children 12 and older).

15 Acres Retreat, Quitman, TX: Gather up the whole brood and head to East Texas for a family reunion. Enjoy swimming or relaxing by the pool. Challenge other family members to a friendly game of croquet or bocce. Book all five rooms for a family reunion and receive a 30% discount off rates of $110-$170 through September 7, 2009. offers plenty of ways for families to save on summer vacations and getaways year-round. For great package deals, visit the Specials section and click on Family Fun, Family Reunions, or Grandparents – Grandchildren Packages or book online by July 6 and save up to $100 on a four-night stay (use promo code BBSIZZLE100); click here for details.  

Founded in 1995, is highly recommended by The New York Times, Real Simple, Forbes, Travel & Leisure, USA TODAY and many others. To learn about The Getaway Gift Card from and more than 7,500 other perfect choices for your own B&B getaway, visit, the leading online bed and breakfast directory and reservation network worldwide. A variety of search functions and extensive maps enable inngoers to find the perfect B&B. Travelers can make reservations online, purchase The Getaway Gift Card, read up-to-date trip reports on The Blog, read and write independent reviews, and post questions on expert-hosted message boards.

Additionally, for information on a range of independently-owned distinctive lodging, visit's sister site,

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  • B&B Industry Facts, Figures, and FAQs: Here are the backgrounders you need, from "How many B&Bs are there?" to "What's the difference between a B&B and an inn?"  For details, click here.
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