July 2008

The INNside Scoop

Page 3

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Ames, IA


The Oaxaca Room (w/a skylight)

“Sharing a Mexican Heritage”

       I never walked through a corn field or saw a single stalk of corn during my trip to Iowa. However, by the time I left this Midwestern state, I felt as though I had journeyed to ancient Mexico’s most beautiful vicinages.

      Designed to operate as a bed and breakfast inn, Montebello B&B hosted its first guests in 2001. Daphne and Jaime Reyes, the gracious owners and resident innkeepers of this prairie hacienda, have effectively woven a Mexican theme (in honor of Jaime’s heritage and the country in which they met) throughout their B&B. An extensive collection of high-quality Mexican artwork is attractively displayed at Montebello, but it is done in a tasteful manner that complements rather than distracts from the overall decor.
     An extensive resource library on Mexican arts, architecture, history, and culture is also available at the inn. Each guest room is named after a favorite area in Mexico and accented with authentic Mexican arts and crafts. The bathrooms feature Mexican tile sinks.


     Breakfast is served to guests each morning in the festive dining area. Whether the meal consists of Mexican or American cuisine, the meal is always hearty and delicious.

     I learned more about Mexican art and culture on my trip to Iowa than I learned about Iowa. But, I enjoyed every minute of it—especially the B&B.


Strong Points

Hospitality plus, full breakfast, picturesque prairie setting, private lake, wildlife, colorful Mexican décor, original art work, WiFi, abundance of live plants inside the inn & on the patio, special discounts, Mexican/ hand-painted tile sinks in bathrooms, bike paths, media-equipped meeting room, hosts functions and events of all sorts (including weddings & receptions).


INN: Montebello Bed & Breakfast Inn

LOCATION: 3535 South 530th Ave.

Ames, IA 50010

TEL.: (515) 296-2181

E-MAIL: info@montebellobandbinn.com

WEB SITE:  www.montebellobandbinn.com

ACCOMMODATIONS:  4 rooms w/pb               

BREAKFAST: Full breakfast

RATES: $97-$125

INNside Scoop’s Rating of Inn:  ***

*** Lucullan's Italian Grill


*** Olde Main Brewing Co.





Guest House



Galena, IL


Pete & Eleanor's Whirlpool Suite

Features 19th Century Americana Charm

  A handsome Italianate structure built in 1867, the Farmers Guest House has operated as a bakery, store, and hotel since that time. In earlier years, local farmers often spent a night here when bringing their goods to market in Galena. Lugging my paraphernalia up the stairs to my room, I wonder if any of those farmers ever brought along as much stuff when going to market as I do for a short visit.
     Kathie and Jess Farlow, the genial and obliging owners/innkeepers of Farmers Guest House, purchased the property in 2001 and proceeded to pursue extensive remodeling and renovation work to it. Their efforts resulted in an inn updated with modern conveniences and characterized by Americana charm.
     My favorite guest accommodation is Pete and Eleanor’s Whirlpool Suite, the only accommodations located on the main floor (next to the dining room). This spacious suite includes separate bedroom and sitting areas (with a skylight in each), a whirlpool for two, a
gas fireplace, a king size bed, and lots of ambience.   There is also a private entrance to the suite and a patio/porch adjoining one of the inn’s gardens.


    Across from the inn, there is a path leading directly to Galena’s popular shopping district—just another one of many reasons for staying at Farmer’s Guest House when visiting this delightful and historic area.

Strong Points

Hospitality plus, location (within easy walking distance to downtown shopping area & restaurants), historical significance, early coffee, full breakfast, complimentary snacks (including bottomless cookie jar) & beverages 24/7, evening wine and cheese, hot tub, patio & garden areas, off-street parking, WiFi, DVD/CD/book library & board games, special discounts available, gift shop, private entrance / porches available, individual climate control, fireplaces & whirlpool tubs available, creative packages,  hosts weddings & events.


INN: Farmers' Guest House
LOCATION: 334 Spring Street
Galena, IL  61036
EL.: 1-888-459-1847
E-MAIL: farmersgh@galenalink.net
WEB SITE:  www.galenabedandbreakfast.com
ACCOMMODATIONS:  6 rooms w/pb, 3 suites, 1 guest cottage
BREAKFAST: Full breakfast
ATES: $115-$250
INNside Scoop’s Rating of Inn:  ***
Recommended Area Restaurants:
*** Fried Green Tomatoes
*** One Eleven Main
(815) 777-8030)
 *** Vinny Vanucchi's
(815) 777-8100