Greetings from Charleston, South Carolina! Believe it or not, owners of B&Bs have conferences, too. The Professional Association of Innkeepers International (PAII) is holding their annual conference in Charleston this year and yours truly is in attendance representing the Addison on Amelia Island.
When I left Florida the weather was nice and I dressed appropriately in shorts (you know my aversion to wearing long pants). It started raining when I crossed into Georgia and was sleeting by the time I got to Charleston. Apparently there is a winter storm over most of the US that I was unaware of. Needless to say, I was the only delegate yesterday in shorts and a Hawaiian shirt. Today it is still cold so I broke out the long pants. I guess I’m getting soft in my old age.
Here is a photo of the trade show floor. The vendor shown here is Deneen pottery. You don’t have to go to the PAII conference to see their pottery, just look in our gift shop next time you visit the Addison.
What do 700 innkeepers find to discuss at a conference? Among other topics: blogging, search engine optimization, how to garnish your breakfast, marketing, food photography and how to maintain your sanity and relationships as an you run your inn. The trade show vendors are selling websites, housekeeping products, specialized insurance, soaps, robes, sheets and everything else you can find in an inn.
It is great meeting other innkeepers. When you own a bed and breakfast inn you don’t get out much and it is reassuring to hear stories from other innkeepers and realize that you are not alone. I ran into some friends from the B&B Team as well. Rick, Jan and Peter helped us out a lot when we were looking to buy an inn and they even consulted for us when we first opened the Addison on Amelia and it is always good to see them.
Afternoon break is almost over and I’ve got to run. The afternoon class is an advanced session in Google Analytics. Followed by a cocktail party. I wouldn’t want to miss either.