Bed and Breakfasts are my favorite places to stay on trips. Jake likes the complete anonymity of staying in a hotel. I prefer feeling like I’m staying in someone’s home. Bed and breakfast hosts have always gone out of their way to share hospitality and travel advice. I’ve also met some really interesting people around the breakfast table ranging from a pair of retirees chasing Frank Lloyd Wright architecture, a couple who just returned from serving in the Peace Corps, and an aircraft engineer.
During this Northfield leg of my fall Minne-RoadTrip, I spent one evening at the Contented Cottage Bed and Breakfast.
The Contented Cottage is located a short distance from the main street area of Northfield on a peaceful property on a hill shaded by trees. Make sure you look for the cottage’s sign so that you don’t arrive at the neighbor’s house. The cottage offers two rooms; Ayla’s Room is equipped with a clawfoot tub and handheld shower, while Olivia’s Room is located next to a private bathroom. I stayed in Olivia’s room that featured a small sitting area and a balcony.
Rates are comparable to the other B&Bs in town.
A couple of things to know:
- You will encounter some stairs that lead up to the front door.
- The inn keepers ask guests to be aware of their policies regarding guest behavior and cancellations.
Innkeepers Lisa and Steve live in a separate suite of the cottage. If you need assistance, they are easy to find and happy to help, but if you prefer privacy, you’ll hardly know they’re there. I heard the quiet pitter patter of dog feet behind one of the doors. They were happy to let me pop behind the scenes to meet their dogs. The pets don’t wander into the sitting areas or guests rooms and are very quiet.
- Beverage station and mini fridge located between the two rooms. Help yourself to coffee, tea or a cold beverage. If you dine out, you are welcome to stop your leftovers here, too.
- Welcome refreshments: I found iced lemon water and chocolate chip cookies in my room, plus a couple of chocolate truffles on the nightstand. Other TripAdvisor reviews also mention welcome treats.
- Tourism information and brochures to help you plan your Northfield visit.
- Sitting areas including the living room, dining room, and porch.
- Wi-fi password
- Three course breakfast. Served between 7-10 a.m. Inquire with the innkeeper about a continental breakfast if you can’t attend.
The breakfast Lisa prepared was excellent. Of all of the meals I’ve eaten at bed and breakfasts, this ranks in the top-tier. Beverages included coffee, orange juice, and water.
The first course included a giant muffin served with honey butter and baked pears with a blueberry sauce. Lisa provided the other guest and I bags so that we could the rest of our muffins home.
For the main course, Lisa served sweet potato hash browns and a baked egg, cheese and spinach dish (eggs from their chickens).
And if that wasn’t enough, Lisa served us a little dish of sherbet with a cookie straw for dessert.
The other guest was visiting Minnesota for the first time. She had stayed at the inn for a few days to attend and present at the Africa in the 21st Century Classroom” conference at St. Olaf. While her colleagues opted to stay at a hotel, she treated herself to a stay at the cottage. She said breakfast the day before was also fantastic and enjoyed her stay.
Overall, I found my stay relaxing and appreciated all of the special touches the innkeepers provide. If you are looking for a relaxing place to spend the night in Northfield and enjoy a bed and breakfast-style atmosphere, consider the Contented Cottage.
5 Walden Place
Northfield, MN 55057
Phone: 507 301-3787