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Peaceful Places: Longwood Gardens plus Faunbrook Bed and Breakfast


The East Conservatory Complex at Longwood (Property of Longwoodgardens.org)

Lately I’ve been thinking about some of the places that I’ve enjoyed visiting. Longwood Gardens (in PA, 13 miles from Wilmington, DE, 30 miles from Philly) is one of those places.  I was at a conference for the Northeastern Association of Grad Schools sponsored by the University of Delaware and the banquet was held at Longwood.  These gardens were stunningly spectacular. So much so that I’m longing to go again just to see the beauty of the flowers.

Breakfast Table at Faunbrook (Property of Faunbrook.com)

As I’m contemplating my trip, I found that Longwood is near another peaceful place … a Bed and Breakfast Mansion called Faunbrook. I stayed at Faunbrook twice and even took my mother there when I was invited to give some workshops at nearby Westchester University.  Faunbrook  was my first Bed and Breakfast experience.  I’m used to big hotels, but this mansion with just a few rooms made working away from home feel fun and relaxing! It was different to come down to breakfast with a group of strangers around a large banquet table (like those in the movies) and enjoy breakfast conversation over fresh squeezed juice, eggs, and homemade streusel coffee cake (absolutely delicious). In addition, the innkeeper was very friendly and took time to give me a full tour and discuss the business.  I’d like to have a Bed and Breakfast of my own one day. It’s one of my little (big) dreams.  I love large houses and large spaces that can entertain and provide relaxation. I appreciated my times at Faunbrook.

Since Faunbrook is a Bed and Breakfast, you would have to find your own dinner, but my hosts from Westchester introduced me to Simon Pearce, the nearby restaurant and that includes a factory that makes handblown glass and pottery (and yes, they have a fabulous store on site!) The food is delicious and the restaurant uses all of Simon Pearce’s handmade dinnerware.  I enjoyed it so much with my host that I took my Mom there one year. It ranks among my list of “peaceful places” because the dining room at this Brandywine location allows you to look out onto streams, grass, and ducks. The food is expensive, but it is very good. I recommend that you eat (very) slowly, enjoy the tastes, and the conversation.

These memories make me smile. Longwood, Faunbrook, and Simon Pearce. I hope to go back someday.

2 replies »

  1. On the Bed and Breakfast – – I, too, had a desire to own a Bed and Breakfast. I even thought of having my grandmother’s home in Arlington re-zoned for such. These were my thoughts years ago as I travelled and stayed in wonderful B&Bs in PA, NC and MA. However, when I sat down and had a long conversation (with a proprietor of the B&B in NC) about owning and running sameI determined the risks were many (upturns/ downturns/ staffing/ keeping food prepared/ uncertainties in the economy/ and just plain having to do most of the work yourself because of all of the above, I gave the idea up. Yes, there are some beautiful places and bravo to those who’ve made it through in the black.
    I say to you, with your large network of potential guests: “Whatever you mind can conceive you can achieve.” Of course, you already know that!!!!! Love you and as your husband reminds you, learn how to cut it off or eventually you will burn out. LOL

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    • Hi Cousin Glo,

      Thanks for the words of wisdom! I think that if I do it, I’m going to outsource certain parts and it might be more of a conference styled BandB. I visited a facility in Maine that had a huge conference room/living room, a dining room, and sleeping quarters. I’m aiming for something like that … By group reservation only, and by season.

      Take care!

      -Renetta

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