B St. House B & B, Virginia City, NV: Yesteryear Elegance
Built in 1875, the little Victorian home just a block off the main commercial street, was once home to Henry Piper, the proprietor of a saloon and an opera house during the heyday of this once-thriving boomtown. Toward the end of the 20th century, the house fell into disrepair and the county threatened to tear it down. Chris and Carolyn Eichin took one look and saw potential.
What they didn’t likely see was thousands of hours and thousands of dollars worth of work, including replacing the foundation, the roof, the windows, and moving the house a few feet. But they were looking for a project that Chris, a former transportation engineer, and Carolyn, a former history teacher, could tackle. Their work, which took several years, has earned the bed and breakfast a spot on the National Register of Historic Places. (If you go, ask to see their restoration photos, which are really impressive.)
During the summer months, Chris and Carolyn open B St. House to guests. They have three guest rooms, all up a narrow, steep flight of stairs (they’ll carry your luggage). Each room features a queen-sized bed, private bath with tub/shower combo, air conditioning with individual room controls, satellite TV with DVD player (a selection of movies is available), free wireless internet, and luxurious toiletries.
We stayed in the Sam Davis room, the largest guest room. Tastefully decorated in blue and white, the room has a window overlooking the street with the famed 100-mile view of Virginia City and central Nevada. It featured Eastlake antique furniture, including an armoire for clothing (this era of home did not have closets, and a queen-sized bed with an uber-comfortable mattress.
The other two guest rooms, while a bit smaller, are equally delightful and decorated in restful colors with Carolyn’s careful attention to detail. Unlike many Victorian B&B’s, B St. House is tastefully appointed without the suffocating fussiness of Victoriana.
Downstairs there’s a parlor where guests can relax with an ever-present cup of Keurig coffee or tea and snacks like nuts or Carolyn’s delicious cookies. She’s an award-winning baker with multiple awards from Better Homes & Gardens and Sunset magazines and her baking prowess is evident in the goodies she provides.
Breakfast is a highlight of the stay at B Street. Carolyn whips up a full breakfast for her guests that includes offerings like fruit, juices, herbed eggs, chicken sausage, and a selection of her delectable baked goods like scones or apple strudel. Returning guests are offered a copy of her delightful B St. House cookbook with many of the recipes she prepares for guests.
The prices at B Street are reasonable and the hosts are gracious and welcoming without being intrusive. It’s also centrally located so you can park your car and walk just a block down to enjoy all the shops and activities this old West town has to offer. – BH
Here’s the recipe for Carolyn’s Apple Strudel.
And for her delightfully lacy and buttery Queen Victoria’s Hearts cookies that have just a hint of lavender.