We recently had a magical getaway that we are excited to share with you.
We wanted to go to Lake Geneva for the weekend. However we learned that finding lodging there at the last minute was a challenge.
We had to get creative.
We had the idea to stay at the Cherry Tree Inn located up north in Woodstock, IL about half hour from Lake Geneva, WI. This is the bed and breakfast where Bill Murray’s character Phil Connors stayed in the movie Groundhog Day. It recently reopened as a bed and breakfast under new owners, George and Lori. We contacted Lori and made a reservation for the following weekend.
We arrived Friday evening and pulled up the driveway onto the property. We walked up the wraparound porch and through the front door where we were warmly welcomed by the owners as they were putting out some warm, home-made cookies. We got a prompt tour of the place and were told to make ourselves at home.
The Victorian style home is grand with classic features. The front of the property is surrounded by a white picket fence, with an archway at the gate. The walkway has hydrangeas on either side, with flowers all about. The wraparound porch had ample seating with padded seat rocking chairs, benches and tables.
Leslie and Ed on the front porch at The Cherry Tree Inn
Inside there is a large foyer, a grand staircase and fireplace. In the adjacent room was a grand parlor. The parlor had classic furniture with numerous seating options. There was also a dining room and modern kitchen.
We unpacked our things and went to a local eatery, the Red Mill Tavern, and enjoyed a delicious meal. We ordered the tater tot nachos appetizer, which was surprising delicious, and split a chicken wrap which was fresh and mouthwatering. This place offers live music throughout the summer, but we passed on it and headed back to the Inn.
When we got back to the Inn we learned that while it was an old fashioned and romantic environment, it also had modern amenities. We got the WiFi password, and then learned that the music playing in the parlor was courtesy of Amazon’s Alexa. We requested that Alexa play some Sam Cooke and Johnny Ace songs, taking us back in time to the 1950s, and moving us to dance to several songs right there in the parlor.
The rooms were very nice with a modern smart TV, WiFi and a modern bathroom.
Saturday morning we got up and strolled to the farmers market in the Woodstock town square. We got some zucchini bread and apple cider donuts. We returned to the Inn and enjoyed a wonderful complimentary breakfast. We were served farm fresh scrambled eggs, orange juice, fried potatoes and sausage.
We drove up to Lake Geneva and spent the afternoon sunning on a blanket on the grass of the town shore. It was a gorgeous day. After a couple hours we moved under a nearby tree for some needed shade. Late afternoon we dined al fresco at the Tuscan restaurant in Lake Geneva, and enjoyed salmon and salad dishes.
After dinner we headed back to the Inn and talked to the owner on the porch for a spell, learning about our host and their story of how they came to own the Inn. We headed into town for some ice cream, then called it a night.
Ed and Leslie on the path to The Cherry Tree Inn
Sunday morning we sat on the porch on a beautiful morning and talked. It was bliss. Birds were singing. The sun was shining. The wind was blowing through the trees. It was idyllic.
It felt like we went back in time, to a time when life was much simpler and wholesome. We danced in the parlor, we rocked in rocking chairs on the porch, we strolled through the grounds and gardens, and into the nearby town square. We spent quality time talking and listening to nature, each other, and other people.
Leslie and Ed on the porch at the Cherry Tree Inn
We enjoyed another wonderful complimentary breakfast. Our hosts served poached eggs over bacon sourdough toast topped with avocado. There was a fresh fruit cup and fresh jams to spread on whole grain toast. We were told that the offerings were made by local farmers and merchants to ensure they were at the peak of freshness.
We enjoyed some friendly conversation with our hosts and the other guests at the Inn. Our hosts took a commemorative photo, which we later learned was used on their inaugural website which was published a couple days later. Where’s Ed and Leslie? Maybe you can find us there. Their website is at https://cherrytreeinnbnb.com/.
We came for the nostalgia, as we love the Groundhog Day movie, but loved the simple pleasures of the Inn that transported us back to a simpler time of living. We were grateful for the warm hospitality that our hosts offered us, and look forward to staying there again in years to come.
And we think you’ll love it if you arrange to stay there too. Maybe you too will find the bliss that the Cherry Tree Inn has to offer!