Bed and Breakfast the Movie (available on Amazon Prime at the time of this writing) had mixed reviews when it was released in 2015. However, I wanted to watch it from the perspective of observing what to do (and what not to do) when you are a hospitality provider.
Both Dean Cain’s character (Jake) inherits a bed and breakfast, but wait so did Brazilian Ana (played by Juliana Paes). Bill Engvall plays Jake’s brother (a police officer that likes to drink beer when he is off the clock). This is a romantic comedy. While the plot line is not realistic, I did observe some things:
- While the sign changes three times in the movie, it is an important reminder of how essential is to have a visible sign to welcome guests.
- The maid takes the picture of Jake and makes the valid point that guests need to see that they can trust you (the innkeeper) if you are asking them to come to your house (however not all inns share pictures of the innkeepers).
- The Certificate by the California State Commission gets put up a couple and made straight a few times, a reminder that innkeepers should proudly display their licenses as well as awards and honors.
- There was a mess everywhere since they were not supposed to open for week (somehow an ad showed an earlier date) this demonstrates the importance of being on top of your advertising and promotions (it is good to have a press kit).
- The maid could not cook (it is a necessity for at least one person on staff to be skilled in cooking) and the maid snooped into Ana’s luggage (a major violation of guest privacy) to discover that Ana was not who she said she was.
- When a guest pointed out that there was “a hole in the floor where the toilet should be” Jake tells them to take a wine tour (at his expense) and when they return everything will be fixed (the inn would never be authorized to open unless inspection standards were met) but that was quick thinking on his part (which innkeepers often have to do but not for missing a toilet).
- When asked how it “got in such awful shape”, Jake admitted, “It was left for a long time and obviously I’m still fixing it.” There are situations when an inn is open for business as it is being restored, but there could be a better way to word that improvements are still going on.
- The couple that was on their honeymoon was making loud noises which annoyed the other guests (at breakfast time Jake suggested that they eat breakfast in bed to avoid their public display of affection).
- It was only several days later that their landline phone worked (it was not realistic that calls were not being received on Jake’s cell phone). Yet guests were coming because of the wine festival in town.
- Jake’s legal dispute with Ana was mediated by a retired judge who was meditating when they arrived and he led the meeting (from his cramped trailer home) more like a couples therapy session. No lawyers were present which would not have been the case in real life.
- When Jake learns that the most famous reviewer in the state of California is staying with them, he and Ana work together to see if “his dream would have worked” and they throw a very successful couples dinner party.
- They picked fresh produce from their garden and Jake found two bottles of fine wine. Towards the end of the evening, they asked the reviewer (played by actor Eric Roberts) what he thought.
- The reviewer said, “You put together the perfect blend of both the exotic (being the most risky or risque) and the familia (being the most comfortable). Keep it up and you’re bound to go far. And to think if there would have been a room anywhere else, I might have missed the best meal of my life. I guess that’s what you call serendipity.” (It was not realistic for the “best reviewer in the state” to not have a place to stay.)
- Being from Brazil, Ana did not know what the word serendipity meant (nor how to pronounce it correctly), and Jake explained that it is when something pleasant happens unexpectedly. It is known as a “happy accident.”
I won’t spoil the ending for you (in case you want to watch the movie). If you have seen the movie (or you do end up watching it), please feel free to share your comments about it.