The Inn at 410 is located at 410 N. Leroux Street in Flagstaff. For more information, call 928-774-0088 or visit www.inn410.com.
© Nick Berezenko
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Bed, Breakfast & BeyondThe Inn at 410 is no ordinary B&B. It's a honeymooners' delight, complete with homemade cookies, hiking tips and a champagne toast or two.
By Keridwen Cornelius
Flagstaff "Would you like some champagne?" the honeymooners ask as they flutter between breakfast tables, inviting complete strangers to share in their bliss. Guests are petting Ginger, the resident Cavalier King Charles spaniel, and anticipating the menu, marked café-style onto a mirror: artichoke Gruyère frittata, pineapple streusel muffins, baked tomato, Canadian bacon. Co-owner Gordon Watkins is poring over a map, advising two Frenchmen about the best viewpoints around Sedona. When he goes to refill coffees, a California couple shows him a book on romantic getaways that features the Inn at 410.
As it should. This 19th century Craftsman-style home has been transformed into a B&B filled with the kind of generous personal touches that inspire camaraderie among guests, including spontaneous champagne-sharing.
The home was built in 1894 by J.A. "Slow" Wilson, a member of the Second Boston Party, which hoisted the original flagstaff that gave the city its name. In 1907, the home was revamped by wealthy banker Thomas Pollack, who added a carriage house in the back — that building is now home to an antiques shop and the much-lauded Brix restaurant.
After Pollack's death, the property changed hands several times, even becoming (gasp!) a frat house. In 1989, it was transformed into its current incarnation as an inn.
Over the next several years, guestrooms were decorated to reflect the inn's history and Southwest location. The Observatory Suite, complete with a full kitchen and two-person shower, is an ode to Northern Arizona's night sky. Canyon Memories, another room, features a Grand Canyon mural, arts and crafts décor including Stickley rocking chairs, and views of the San Francisco Peaks. Monet's Garden boasts a Jacuzzi tub and private porch overlooking the inn's flower-filled garden, where guests breakfast in summer. And all the rooms have fireplaces, down blankets and pillows, and bathrobes.
"It's a labor of love," says Watkins, who brought the inn into the 21st century. He added a DVD library, Wi-Fi and a complimentary cyber café, while still keeping it old-school with homemade cookies at afternoon tea. Watkins and co-owner Kim McCasland also lend their expertise on hiking and biking trails, local restaurants and Northern Arizona travel secrets.
"This is a beautiful building in a great location, but the experience is really about the people," Watkins says. "That's why we work really hard to anticipate people's needs and go beyond what people expect."
Now that's something worth toasting. Pass the champagne.