Brookside Inn Abbotsford

How hospitable.

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From the Midnight in Paris suite at Abbotsford’s Brookside Inn, it is not unlikely to see Mount Baker gloriously peeking out in the distance. With a wraparound balcony that overlooks a nearby vineyard and mountains in virtually every direction, the room immediately puts guests at ease.

Then again, so does everything else about the small property.

Located in a residential neighbourhood, the bed and breakfast is operated by Chris and Sandi Buis. The warm, friendly couple runs the four-suite place, right down to making the beds and cooking the (delicious) breakfast in the morning. Each room is named and decorated after a favourite movie (Under the Tuscan Sun, The Secret Garden, A Good Year in the Vineyard) and comes complete with kitchenette, living room, four-poster bed, and gorgeous bathroom fitted with bath salts and other amenities. The Buis duo lives on site, and attend to every need, at every hour, even anticipating some (a welcome platter of snacks following a late check-in is particularly appreciated). Sandi clearly loves to host, pointing out a whole bookshelf of movies (yes, the four films the rooms take inspiration from are there), and stopping to sigh happily at the Midnight in Paris view. “That’s what we do to relax: we go up to Paris for a glass of wine,” she says. That is, when the room isn’t being occupied. Which is most of the time.

Voted one of the top 25 small hotels in the country by TripAdvisor users, and the best hotel in Abbotsford, Brookside is an easy place to cozy up. The property does not allow smoking, pets, or children under 12, allowing for a truly peaceful escape, whether the stay is for business or leisure. Close proximity to Tanglebank Gardens, a charming plant nursery, and its adjoining Brambles Bistro, where everything is made from scratch—plus Tracycakes bakery for scrumptious cookies—means there is fun to be had the next day, too. (Though, it is worth filling up on the Brookside homemade breakfast, such as poached eggs with ham and blackberry scones, which is, naturally, served in the Breakfast at Tiffany’s dining room.)

Simple touches run the show here, right down to each suite’s décor, which offers subtle throws to its namesake movie—a vintage typewriter in Midnight in Paris, a rustic key in The Secret Garden. It all wraps up wonderfully to leave guests feeling less like they stayed in a hotel and more like they stayed at an extended family member’s house. And that is true hospitality.


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July 12, 2016