Saturday, April 12, 2014

For your (wired) convenience!

New this year, we've added bedroom lamps that have two electrical outlets right in the base, so you can plug in phones, tablets or other gadgets, right where you can reach them.

Enhance your stay!

Here are today's hand-dipped chocolate dipped strawberries. Treat your special someone to a special getaway! See a list of our add on packages at

Friday, April 11, 2014

A View from the Top

I've always been a big believer in Associations, of people working together to achieve more as a group than each individual could by themselves. It was because of Alaska's Mat-Su B&B Association ( that I chose to move to Alaska, and Palmer specifically. After being involved in AMSBBA for a couple of years, I ran for the board of directors and ended up President. I became involved, too, with the B&B Association of Alaska ( I've been a member of both for over a decade. It has been a great pleasure to have served as the President of BBAA now for nearly four years. My term as BBAA's president is drawing to a close, so I'm looking back on my time at the helm.

What stands out? That I've gained far, far more than I've given! From all the meetings and conversations and chances to hear smart people share, I'm so grateful for all the tidbits and giant "ah-hah's." I learned the new-to-me art of becoming an innkeeper from the ladies and gents who knew far more than I did.

It's been a great pleasure to serve and lead these two groups of bed and breakfast owners. While I brought some new thoughts about websites and marketing and such, these members have taught me so much more! Some of my favorite take-aways are: making a guest feel at home and comfortable, how to clean so a guest would swear no one had ever stayed there before, and how to take it all in stride when we're stressed out and tired! And I doubt I'll ever find a yummier breakfast dish than Mary Littlefair's cheesy hashbrown casserole--mmmm.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Where can you find a gift certificate to Alaska Garden Gate B&B and Cottages?

Giving back in our community is one of our values -- and you could score a great deal on a stay at our B&B!

Coming up:
Travel Auction with KAKM Channel 7, May 1-3. Look for our $1000 Gift Certificate as part of their special Grand Alaska Collection. See
Recent fundraisers:
Our Lady of the Valley Catholic School - a one night stay to the highest bidder!
Mat-Su Miners baseball team - up to $250 toward a stay at our B&B

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Snips and Quips--News from the March 25 ATIA meeting

Besides doing the business of the Alaska Travel Industry Association, the news tidbits that get shared are interesting!
--"Employee hoarding" is an issue in Alaska, where there is a limited pool of potential employees. Wanatta Ayers from the AK Dept. of Labor spoke to us about state programs that offer workforce development. She explained some jobs like boat captains are in high demand, so creative companies have gone so far as to offer incentives like full-time benefits for part-time seasonal jobs in order to keep employees from wandering...
--Also regarding an already tight job market, Ms. Ayers also shared that for each year of graduates from the University of Alaska system, about 1/3 of them do not enter the workforce in Alaska (they move elsewhere, go on to next studies, or simply don't work). That represents a significant loss to the state, considering the state invests $1 billion a year to run those institutions.
--One political item we'd been tracking was a proposal in the port town of Whittier to steeply increase the tax for those arriving in Whittier, whether by motor coach or cruise ship or car. The city manager who proposed that new tax had quite a learning curve to learn about the legalities of interstate and intrastate taxing. The proposed tax has been re-thought by the Whittier City Council. As a side note, they are now accepting applications for the City Manager job. Having the cruise lines pull out of Whittier would have been an unimaginable worst-case scenario, had that tax proceeded. John Binkley, head of the Cruise Line Industry Association-Alaska did note that for other reasons Norwegian Cruises decided to make Seward their port destination instead of Whittier.
--Juneau tourism companies are on the countdown: 36 days until the first "revenue" ship docks in Juneau--that'd be the first cruise ship arriving for the summer season.
--The news from Alaska Airlines is that it's almost time to start up the summer schedule of 19 daily flights from Seattle, with three daily flights from Anchorage to Fairbanks. After cruisers, the next largest number of summer visitors arrive by air.