Posted by: Kath Usitalo | March 22, 2011

Pillow Talk: At Home At The Kalamazoo House B & B

Cajun Corned Beef Hash topped with poached eggs, a Kalamazoo House favorite

“It’s all about the breakfast,” explains Bob Piskoty on why he books The Kalamazoo House Bed & Breakfast on his frequent business trips to Kalamazoo.

He and Mark Van Allen, his associate at an Indianapolis engineering and architectural consulting firm, were sipping adult beverages and catching up with B & B owners Laurel and Terry Parrott when I joined them in the parlor for the inn’s late afternoon ritual. “This is the best part of the day for us because we get to meet our guests,” says Laurel. Over a glass of wine or local brew everyone shares tips on where to dine and what to see and do.

Laurel Parrott in the breakfast room; an original chandelier is reflected in the mirror

All of the guests I met on my two-day, mid-week visit were in town on business and some, like Bob and Mark, discovered the B & B when they wanted to stay downtown but the nearby Radisson Plaza Hotel was filled.

They opt to return to the inn with its nine rooms, all with private baths but “no doilies…no stuffiness” because, says Bob, “When you have hosts like Laurel and Terry, you just feel at home.”

The first-time innkeepers moved from Indiana to Michigan with the intent of opening a B & B Up North. But they fell for the 1878 Victorian in the city, which was built by the owner of a cigar company when Kalamazoo was a cigar-making center.

The couple balances the historical nature of the home, with its original etched glass, wide woodwork, and 12-foot ceilings, and modern comforts including free WiFi and flat screen TVs.

The Chihuly "night light" as seen from guest room #4

When Laurel showed me to spacious guest room #4 she pulled the curtain aside to point out the “night light” outside the second story window: Dale Chihuly’s “Red, Orange and French Yellow” chandelier, visible in the entry of the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts next door.

She gave me instructions on how to operate the new, jetted spa tub for two but I never did soak in it. I enjoyed the flickering light of the electric fireplace, though, as I munched the freshly baked cookies that are left out for each guest in the evening; there’s also a fridge with milk and a selection of hot beverages at a self-serve station.

I visited during snowy February

Breakfast is made to order and favorites on the changing menu include Crustless Spinach Feta Quiche and the two I ordered (no, not at one sitting; I was there for two morning meals!): a zippy Cajun Corned Beef Hash topped with poached eggs and the house specialty, sweet and syrupy Banana Nut Crunch French Toast. All are served with fresh fruit, pastries, and good, strong coffee. Delish.

I have to agree with Bob on both counts: at The Kalamazoo House, it’s all about the breakfast. And the hosts. And the night light isn’t bad, either.

Visitor Info Clicks: Kalamazoo

Pure Michigan

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Responses

  1. Totally agree with you on the Cajun Corned Beef Hash, but how come you didn’t mention the heavenly sheets on the beds? Best ever!

    • You’re right…that bed was co comfy it was hard to crawl out in the morning!

  2. What a night light! You sure don’t see that everywhere — or anywhere!

    • It is special.

  3. I stayed here (and blogged about it) last year. I loved the hosts, the building…and you can’t beat the location. It was nice to be able to walk next door to the art museum, or just a few short blocks to downtown shopping, Bronson Park, and a number of art galleries.
    I had the crustless quiche, but it sounds like I need to go back for the Cajun hash for sure.


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