Lessons in Innkeeping: Don’t Forget the Tray!

With every great bed & breakfast comes with the perfect Anniversary Package … or at least that is what Tom and I decided as we planned the features of The Cedars Davidson. This is the package intended to make the life of every man a little bit easier … the package that includes fresh flowers, champagne and strawberries, and of course, the option to have your made-to-order breakfast served in bed!

We opened The Cedars Davidson last year with the ideal Anniversary Package advertised as a special on the website. We were ready and waiting for the flood of happy couples looking for a romantic weekend … or so we thought. After a few months of patiently waiting for the first bite on the anniversary special, we finally got a reservation from a couple excited to curl up in the Magnolia Room and enjoy a weekend in our cozy B&B.

A little confession … it is possible that Tom and I might have gotten just a little complacent in thinking about the anniversary special since it took a bit of time for it to take off.

We were eager to be part of an anniversary weekend. We decorated the room with gorgeous fresh flowers and readied the glasses of bubbly and plump red strawberries. Our lovely guests arrived and upon check-in, they requested to take advantage of the breakfast in bed option!

We made sure we were up early to prepare for our dining room guests as well as the happy couple wanting to eat under the covers. I was in the kitchen setting up everything that needed to travel to the bedroom — coffee, juices, jellies, butter, utensils … not to mention several plates of hot food.

And then I had THE MOMENT. That split second when I thought, ‘just how are we going to get all of this breakfast to the bedroom?’

Yes. We had forgotten a rather critical aspect of breakfast in bed … the trays!Sue and Tom

So here we are, with a lot of items that need to make it from the kitchen to the bedroom and absolutely nothing to carry it with not to mention serve it. We are running around, experimenting with TV trays, cookie sheets, anything flat that we could find!

The ultimate winner? A broiler pan!

We tried our best to disguise the pan as a tray, lining it with a pretty, flowered cloth napkin and stacking the breakfast goodies on top. We added a covered TV tray to the mix to carry the additional condiments, and we made our first-ever breakfast in bed delivery.

Suffice it to say, we purchased some beautiful trays with feet on them shortly after we cleaned up the dishes that day!

As innkeepers we learn new things every day … about best practices, about our guests, and even about the ins and outs of serving breakfast in bed. Here are a few tips we have picked up that might be helpful in making your breakfast in bed experience the best it can be!

  1. Be awake! As a (type A) chef, I like you to enjoy a warm breakfast. So please, be awake!
  2. We prefer you aren’t in the shower when we arrive. Again, the warm breakfast thing.
  3. You need to let us in your room. While it is our home, we consider it your room during your stay, so when we knock with your breakfast in tow, yelling ‘Come in’ won’t work.
  4. We promise to remember to ask you if you want breakfast in bed when you request the Anniversary Package. Spoken from personal experience, it is never good when you forget to ask…

And for those of you who aren’t on a romantic getaway desiring breakfast in bed, remember that we invite you to come to the breakfast table in your PJs. Our home is your home and we want you to be comfortable! Everyone likes a pajama party!

Until next time… we invite you to come as guests and leave as friends.

Categories: Get To Know The Cedars