2016 Winter Projects at Inn on Mill Creek

It’s winter. What we call the Quiet Season. And when it gets quiet around here, you know what that means…we start on our list of excellent B&B projects we have planned for the year.

Inn on Mill Creek remains open while our winter projects are going on, albeit with fewer rooms at the moment. And most of the heavy lifting is complete as we write this, so impact on our guests is very minimal in February and March while the work is finished up.

A set of stacked stones with circles of sand around them

Finding our zen at the Inn with some winter projects

So let’s take a look at what’s been happening at Inn on Mill Creek in January and February:

The Carolina Room and Azalea Room are getting bathroom upgrades! For the past few years it seems, bathrooms have been our thing. Like many bed & breakfasts, Inn on Mill Creek started out as a private home. It was built around 1980, so we don’t have to worry about converting a Victorian home’s bedroom closet into a bathroom or dealing with 100-year-old wiring, but 1980, well… it was 1980. The ’80s had their day and we’ve been working hard since we arrived to upgrade the rooms. Since 2012, four out of six of our bathrooms have been updated (for example, heated floor tile in the Oak Leaf Room bathroom, oh la la), and now it’s the Carolina Room and Azalea Room’s turn.

The Azalea Room, our room for solo travelers, has a brand new, bigger, tile shower in the bathroom. And since the ceiling is 14 feet high, we extended the tile upwards to really show off that high ceiling. The Carolina Room bathroom has been getting a more extensive face lift, with new tile throughout, a brand new shower, and a new sink vanity. Bathtub lovers, no worries, the lovely deep jetted tub is still in the bathroom. Both rooms should hopefully reopen sometime in mid- to late March. For now, take a  sneaky peak at the Carolina Room shower:

Shower walls with beige tile and blue glass tile accents

Carolina Room’s new shower tile

The Solarium Zen Garden is happening! So we’ve talked about doing this for two years. OK… maybe three years. This is the year we’re making it happen. A fishpond was put in the dining solarium before our time. As you might imagine, an indoor fishpond in a sunny room full of windows where temperatures can fluctuate seasonally made for a challenge in keeping the water, and the fish and plants in it, in tip top shape. We have not had fish in the pond for a few years now, just plants, so it has really been more of an indoor water garden. But that still left a lot to be desired. So, we are now converting the fishpond into a zen garden thanks to Innkeeper Dave, who is always ready to put his mad engineering skills and power tool prowess to good use.

The Solarium Zen Garden will continue to be a work in progress through the springtime, when we put fresh plants in the garden, but for now, here are some pics to share with you of the process so far:

Plywood covering empty oblong fish pond

Fishpond to Zen Garden with the help of a little plywood

Man applying duct tape to plywood seams in fishpond

Always a productive day when Dave gets to use duct tape!

Man spreading sand into small zen garden

Sand going in!

Seven stones arranged in a small zen garden in the form of the Seven Sisters Range in Black Mountain

How do you like our depiction of the Seven Sisters Range?

Outdoor sculptures are being planned! Just because it’s a little bit chilly outside and the gardens are asleep, that doesn’t mean we can’t think ahead to our outdoor improvements. With more than seven acres, we have been working on expanding our garden spaces for the enjoyment of our guests. This year, we’re hoping to install some outdoor sculptures done by local artists. Nature’s the theme. Details coming soon!

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