Just across Cedar Point Road from Maumee Bay State Park in Oregon, stands a hidden jewel – one that many locals may not even know is there.
Jim and Dee Davies have transformed their property into an oasis for travelers as well as those looking for an overnight getaway.
From the outside, the BayView Bed & Breakfast looks like many of the farmhouses that dot the northwest Ohio landscape.
Stepping inside, it’s clear the innkeepers designed the B&B with comfort in mind.
The great room has a handsome hunting theme complete with mounted “trophies” bagged on Jim’s hunting trips. It’s hard to tell which is more inviting – the plush sofas with built-in recliners or the ‘ginormous’ TV, which splits into two screens for those who can’t decide what to watch.
“It’s hard not to just plop down in the sofa when you come in here,” Dee said. “When we had an open house, the men who walked through with their wives were kind of dragging along, but as soon as they saw the TV, they were like, ‘wow.’”
Just at the top of the stairs, a cozy loft area provides a comfy nook for delving into a good book or testing your mental prowess on Sudoku.
Guests may choose from one of four bedrooms in the inn. There’s the Romance Room, (note the nightstand fashioned from stacked suitcases); the silver room (aka the Phantom of the Opera Room), the Hemingway Room; and the Isabella room, named after the Davies’ granddaughter.
This is an extremely comfortable room,” Dee said, in the Isabella Room. “If you sit in that rocker and put your feet up, you’re home.”
For added comfort and privacy, each room has its own bathroom. They all have cushy beds, great to sink into after a day at the lake or sightseeing. Little touches, like books in the bathrooms, make the rooms feel like a home. All but one room has a TV.
“Originally I wasn’t going to put televisions in the rooms,” Dee said. “But Jim thought that people who are traveling like to be able to watch TV.”
Heading back down to the great room, it’s hard not to stop and take in the view of the lush gardens and the pond at the rear of the property.
In the dining room, where guests enjoy their breakfast around the large family table, antiques and family heirlooms add to the homelike feeling.
“My mother can remember her parents bringing those chairs in, and my mother is 84,” said Dee, with her soft Southern accent. “You might have guessed I’m from the South – Virginia. Jim has lived here his whole life.”
The couple has owned the property for 10 years. They honeymooned in the tiny cottage that Dee now uses to host festive afternoon teas. Just outside the cottage, a cutting garden boasts flowers and assorted herbs that find their way into Dee’s recipes.
The assorted plants are marked with teaspoons, upon which Dee has written the name of what’s growing. “I love using them – you can get them anywhere for a nickel,” she said.
Nearby, horses roam in an adjacent pasture.
The property also includes an Amish-built potting shed and a carriage house, which holds two additional guest rooms.
The two rooms – larger than the guest rooms inside the main house – each feature a large bed, assorted hand-painted and antique furnishings, plus a jetted tub and separate bathroom with a shower.
“We named one room after Nellie Carter, whose father was a longtime owner of the property,” Dee said. “We were so thrilled that Nellie got to come and see the room before she passed away – she loved it.’
The second room is named for Josephine Fassett, a local educator and prominent Oregon citizen. “Nellie told us she can remember the first time she ever rode in a car was with Josephine Fassett – so that’s why we chose that name,” Dee said.
The carriage house’s wrap-around deck provides a view of the pond and gardens in the back and of Maumee Bay in the front.
Down the garden path is the potting shed, which always piques the interest of guests, Dee says. The shed, with its bright pine-paneled walls, provides a cheerful place to work on crafts or other projects. It also houses treasures in just about every nook and cranny, including an eclectic collection of pots and crocks, Dee’s family “4th of July” bench and antique quilts stacked on a chair that belonged to her great-grandfather.
“People always want to know if they can stay in the potting shed, but we don’t have a bathroom in here,” Dee said. “This one of my favorite places – there’s always a wonderful breeze blowing through.”
The cost to stay at BayView, located at 7250 Cedar Point Rd., Oregon, is $100 for the main house and $125 in the carriage house. Reservations and more information are available by calling 419-836-1444.
More details about Tea at BayView are available by calling 419-836-1847. Teas are generally held on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The cost is $15 per person, which includes a luncheon served with a variety of teas.