Wow! To say we were surprised would be an understatement.
2020 has been a very stressful year for us. In March, all of our future reservations were cancelled, due to Covid 19, and I will admit, I totally panicked. How would we pay our bills? How would we survive?
We were incredibly grateful for the outpouring of support that came in the way of gift certificates purchased for future stays. Kim and I are both very frugal people and we live a very simple life. We only have one vehicle, which is a 1999 model van, and neither of us has a smartphone. Our only indulgence was to enjoy our weekly dinner out at the 1800 Mexican on “Fajita Rita” night so that our bill including tip was under $30. In the almost 18 years of innkeeping we had not taken a vacation. Every penny earned was put right back into the business.
This was going to be the year we finished some of our big projects. However, when business came to a screeching halt, we realized we could not spend that money on projects. We needed it to pay our expenses.
And then, we had an epiphany. The whole reason we became innkeepers was to improve our quality of life and to provide joy to others. From the beginning, we had always said “it is not about the money” and it was never about the number of “heads in beds”. It has always been about sharing and caring. Providing a warm, loving oasis from the cares of the world. We were reading posts on forums about innkeepers staying open to survive but worrying about their own personal safety and their guests. Many have adopted totally contactless service to adhere to public health guidelines. We made a very serious decision and have not looked back.
We decided that our guests expect and deserve the same level of service and hospitality that we have been delivering since December 2002. They deserve to be greeted with love, kindness, and respect. They deserve the experience of warm hospitality served with smiles and hugs. If we have to assume that every guest has Covid 19, we have to treat every guest with trepidation. That is not how we choose to treat our guests. Until we can safely provide the high level of hospitality that we have been recognized for, we will remain closed.
Then, yesterday, we received a Google alert stating that the 2020 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards for the Best of the Best had just been announced and the Americus Garden Inn Bed and Breakfast was named as the Number One Best Bed and Breakfast in the United States and Number 3 Best Bed and Breakfast in the World.
We did not expect it, and we are both feeling incredibly blessed to have been recognized by our many guests as their favorite B&B. Winning this award has reinforced our dedication to delivering the highest possible level of personal service which cannot be accomplished in the current Covid 19 environment. We have truly missed sharing our home and look forward to the day we can, once again, welcome you with open arms. Until that time, we want to thank all of you for your continued friendship, love, and support.