The peace of the Granaries

B&B’s of B.C.

Each week throughout the summer the Vancouver Sun will visit one of the province’s unique lodgings. Today we visit Dawson Creek in the Peace River.
by Jeff Lukovich, special to the Sun

Bed and breakfasts have come a long way in the last few years. Many boast amenities that rival the most luxurious hotels. Others offer a wide range of value-added features including bodywork and spa treatments, romance packages or kayaking and cycling adventures.

Despite the upscale trend, unlike hotel chains, no two bed and breakfasts are alike. Each has it’s own personality, and that personality is usually a reflection of the owner’s interests, passions and sensibilities.

Each Saturday over the summer, we will take you inside a different B&B in B.C. that reflects some of this diversity. Hope you enjoy your stay.

The Granaries on Bear MountainWhat: The Granaries on Bear Mountain

Where: The Granaries are on Bear Mountain, just outside of Dawson Creek and 1200 km northeast of Vancouver. This is the Peace region – rolling prairie landscape east of the Rockies. Hawkair has daily flights to Dawson Creek from Vancouver.

What’s the Attraction – Inside:

The Granaries bills itself as the Peace Country’s most unusual B&B. I think it’s one of the most unusual anywhere.

The owners have taken three nearly derelict wooden outbuildings from a nearby farm and transformed them into luxury accommodations and a very private retreat. Each building has a function and the three together form a single B&B unit. The circular granary is the dining-lounging pavilion. One of the flanking rectangular granaries is for bathing and the other for sleeping. A circular deck connects all three. They share viewed over a small lake in the one-hectare park-like grounds, as well as an enclosed courtyard. Multiple French doors, skylights and windows brighten each building. Antique furnishings, knickknacks, interesting fabric treatments and artwork provide visual interest.

The sleeping room contains a deluxe queen-size bed with custom linens and down duvet, robes and slippers as wells a TV-VCR and video collection.

The large skit bathroom has a double jacuzzi tub, bath salts, vintage fixtures, CD player and CD collection. The room is an invitation to relax and soak away stress.

The pavilion is skylit and decorated with a Tuscan themed mural by a well known local artist. A mini-kitchen is cleverly hidden in an antique buffet. A foldout queen bed provides a second sleeping area.

The grounds feature a small lake, rock gardens, walking paths, bridges, and native trees and shrubs that support a variety of birds and other wildlife.

The weather was perfect for our visit.It poured rain. We lounged in the jacuzzi tub, read and relaxed in the pavilion, listened to the sounds of rain on the roof and deck, and watched the mist floating above the water while birds flitted from tree to tree. In short, we did nothing – yet everything for which we usually have no time.

Breakfast was delivered to our door at 8:30 and was one of the best we’ve had. The menu included cinnamon oat pancakes with maple creme faiche, triple berry crush, bratwurst sausage and Starbucks Sumatra coffee.

What’s the Attraction – Outside:

If you’re wondering what might inspire someone to turn old granaries into a retreat, an exploration of Dawson Creek might provide a clue. The town has a long history of heritage preservation.The art gallery is in a former grain elevator. The museum and Tourist Info Centre is in the old train station.

Dawson Creek is perhaps best known for being at Mile 0 of the Alaska Highway. It’s a good home base for exploring other attractions of the Peace region such as W.A.C. Bennett Dam and Tumbler Ridge as well as the abundance of lakes, provincial parks and hiking trails.

What’s the cost:

Rates are $160/night weekdays and $180 on weekends and holidays. Extra guests are $20. Packages available at extra cost such as “Honeymoon Night”, “Romantic Evening” and “Weekend Getaway”  provide extras that may include fresh flowers, champagne, dinner and late checkout.

Contact Info: Heather & Bob Newman, tel: 1-888-782-6304/250-782-6304, email:info@thegranaries.com, web: www.thegranaries.com

Jeff Lukovich is a Delta freelance writer    jlukovich@ultranet.ca

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