The B & B Boom in the United States
The B&B boom in the United States was influenced by several factors:
- Enjoyment of the B&B experience by millions of Americans who traveled in Europe–especially starting in the 1970’s.
- The U.S. Bicentennial in 1976 sparked a renewed interest in preserving America’s architectural heritage, and accompanying federal and state legislation provided tax credits for the preservation of historic properties. Many such buildings were on fairly busy roads, making them undesirable for private residences but ideal for conversion into bed and breakfasts.
- Similarly, the large size of thousands of Victorian-era homes made them inappropriate for single families, but perfect for B&B’s.
- The 1980’s saw a rapid growth in the numbers of B&B’s in the U.S., but despite considerable media coverage, advertising was expensive, and getting listed in the many B&B guidebooks took a year or more.
- The growth of the Internet provided the biggest boost to the B&B industry, and leveled the playing field so that a bed and breakfast could afford to compete with area hotels, by listing in directories like BedandBreakfast.com, establishing a first-rate website with pictures and virtual tours as well as offering a safe, secure online booking option.
- Bed and breakfast owners can hire professionals to give them an online presence in social media as well as to write professional search-engine optimized content in a blog.
With so many different ways to market their business online, it is the innkeepers that keep up with technology who will really thrive in this economy. For American citizens, it all started with the B&B boom in the United States.
Image by Marcus Berg of Unique Angles Photography