This is the B&B experience I’ve been waiting for! Some people love bed and breakfasts for their quaint local charm and character. I’m all for that, to be sure. But I also don’t like sleeping and eating in a stranger’s house. It kinda creeps me out. That’s where Olde Bridge Place improves on the B&B formula. It’s all the quaint, with none of the creepy.
Yes, there’s an old bridge.
Olde Bridge Place is named for the big, old, red covered bridge that sits immediately adjacent to the property. It’s really something to see, and the only one of its kind left in Ontario. The covered bridge crosses the Grand River, the bank of which forms one of the property lines and it’s just one of the killer features of this remarkable place to stay. Sitting in a chair on the bank, watching the river run by as you sip a beer or cocktail is the perfect way to end a day. Waking up with a hot coffee and watching the sun rise over the trees, reflecting off the river’s rippling water and illuminating the big, red bridge is likewise the perfect way to start one.
Okay, okay… I’m up! Now what?
Olde Bridge Place is situated in the middle of Amish country, and as a result there’s lots of quaint sights to see and things to do. In fact, if you happen to stay over on a Saturday night you’ll be treated to a parade of horse-drawn carriages passing by on their way to church as you sip your Sunday morning coffee.
Once the day’s started, you can head over to St. Jacob’s market, find some horse back riding to do, go see some of the region’s many museums or art galleries, or go shopping. If you love antiques, you’ll be in heaven, there’s a bevy of antique shops to nose about in nearby.
We drover over to Elora and had a fantastic meal at the local Elora Brewing Company, and completed our evening with exceptional beers, of course.
Elora’s downtown is quaint, and worth a walk through, but there’s also the Elora gorge nearby, with hiking a sites to see.
This area is the outdoorsy-foodie’s playground. There’s no excuse not to be exhausted and full at the end of your stay.
A different spin on the two Bs.
What makes this B&B different from others? For a start, you don’t actually stay in the host’s house. Olde Bridge Place has a separate building for guests, housing two suites for rent. You have your own place and your own door, there’s no need to creak about in the main house here. Come and go as early or late as you please without disturbing a soul. We stayed in the Kissing Bridge suite, and it was fantastic. So named for the covered bridge’s nickname, it has a spacious deck overlooking the Grand River. If you can’t find a moment where you exhale stress and breathe in tranquility here, then there’s no helping you.
Another benefit of being in Amish country is the fact that there is a plethora of fantastic local food just steps or minutes away. This is something that owner and operator Dee Brun exploits to deliver one of very best parts of the Olde Bridge Place experience: breakfast. If you opt for the “with breakfast option”, Dee will fill your fridge with fabulous (or “faboosh”, as she would say) breakfast ingredients.
You see, this B&B has a DIY breakfast component. You cook your own breakfast in your room, which conveniently has a full kitchen in it. Fancy some fresh toast from the local bakery – toast it up. Want some of the best locally-sourced bacon you’ve ever tasted? Pull out the fry pan and get sizzling. Do it your own way, at your own pace. This is my kind of B&B.
And yes, your kids will love it there, too.
We have two relatively young kids: 6 and 9 years old. Would I take them to a traditional B&B? Not a chance. But they probably enjoyed Old Bridge Place even more than we did. They poked and prodded the river bank for hours, looking for fish and other things that move.
They roasted marshmallows over the river-side fire at night and generally forgot all about their “screens”. The iPads must have felt neglected this trip, because the kids had no time for them here. When it was time to go, we were treated to the whining and tears that only come from making them leave a place they loved.
In a nutshell.
You gotta go here. It’s not just a place to stay, it’s a destination.