applewoodmanorGotta tell ya’ about this bad baby of a B & B! Hubby and I recently took a little jaunt to North Carolina. Our destination was Asheville, the home of beautiful, custom-made hickory and cedar furniture. A real treasure if you can afford custom-made,unlike most of us who are relegated to hand-me-downs or, at best, the “$500 for three rooms” establishments. (Just kidding. The stuff disintegrates in three months time.)

Asheville is also famous for the fabulously gorgeous Biltmore Estate, a sight to see, if I do say so myself. We had heard over many years about the Biltmore and decided to grab Poopins (JoJo, our Prince of Petland) and make the trek. Of course, it was necessary for me to go to my life-saver website, www.takeyourpet.com, and check out what was available in the Asheville area that was pet friendly and close to almost everything. Well, talk about luck, guardian angels and The Force Be With You, we found the best of the best!

It’s called The Applewood Manor, owned by Larry and Nancy Merrill. The area is loaded with history, but the inn has its own lineage that was pretty interesting in and of itself. Not to mention Larry and Nancy who have their own life story of historical events within their family ancestry. It is a beautiful colonial home that sits on a crest right in the middle of a residential district right in the middle of town. What a score! Finding it was not difficult as we did our trusty Mapquest search and were able to zero right in.

The place is gorgeous! Larry and Nancy are most hospitable and friendly and best of all, are staunch animal lovers. They have their own little brood consisting of Miss Maggie and Mr. Monty who pretty much run the joint. They have a wine gathering every evening in the parlor before folks head out for dinner and the breakfasts are always massive and scrumptious. The grounds are an ongoing project with Larry as he continues to plant and prune, build pergolas, place stone fairies and, I’m sure, romp in the moonlight when no one is looking. Hey, I would, too, if I had that beautiful fairy garden to romp in!

The best of all is that they have a special cottage which is specifically designated as the “pet cottage.” It is magnificent with beautiful furniture, a big fluffy, king-size bed, and a heart-shaped Jacuzzi tub.   There’s a fridge and coffeemaker, hair dryers, irons, everything you could possibly need to spend a bunch of days in Asheville. JoJo loved to walk around the grounds sniffing the area for scents of squirrel, possum, raccoons and whatever roams the Asheville perimeters. Even in town there was plenty of wildlife to be had. Lots of bluejays, cardinals, robins, finches, all kinds of tweeters to get your morning blood surging and ready to roam the area for shopping or sight-seeing.

Our little guy has somewhat of a separation anxiety problem thereby making it a little difficult to leave him in the room when we go out for various activities. We usually put on a body harness and carry him with us as certain areas, and Asheville is certainly pet friendly and don’t’ mind if you take your pet in stores shopping if you have him body-harnessed. That’s on you, by the way. You know, the carriers that strap to YOUR chest or back and you put little Poops in there and carry him around. Also, in Asheville, if the weather is right, a lot of places have outdoor eating areas where your pet is very welcome to sit and dine with you. Love, love, LOVE that!

But back to the separation thing. When we leave, JoJo will carry on for about a half hour until he gets tired and realizes his tantrum will not bring us back immediately. This can be a huge problem in some places. Not so with Larry and Nancy. Turns out, Nancy heard him, went into the cottage with a treat, sat with him for a while, talked with him for a bit and then left after he was in a calm state. Now I ask you, is that the best, or what? Gotta give these guys a try. Great little town, great tours, great restaurants all over, and a fabulous B & B with a fabulous couple who own it and are ready and willing to make your stay comfortable, pleasant and more than enjoyable. They make you feel like family. Their website is www.applewoodmanor.com. Get there or be square! And remember, just say Arf!