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am 1. Juni 2000
This a Bed & Breakfast guide which assumes that the Bed & Breakfast itself is a signficant part of the vacation. It tends to focus on accomodations in quaint and stately houses in quaint and stately locations. For this reason, you will find listings for historic Galena, Illinois (a small town, nearer to Iowa than any major center in Illinois) but none in the Chicago area (even the more historic older suburbs). Although there was nothing for Chicago, there were listings for B & B's in New Orleans and San Francisco.
This is also not a budget guide. The examples mostly seem to be top-of-the-line. There isn't any attempt to identify best buys, for example. These are accomodations for major vacations, not improptu stopovers.
That said, the descriptions of the various B & Bs are very thorough and attractive- they make you truly want to go there. They include historical information about the buildings and information about what the owners bring to their businesses that makes them special. The editors take pains to note that the entries are not paid advertisements but included only because of the writers' judgement.
One detail I often found to be missing was information that would help me orient myself quickly in a major city. There wasn't a whole lot of "close to downtown." I've been to New Orleans, so I know what "near City Park" means. By contrast, I could sort of tell that some of the San Francisco listings were in urban neighborhoods but it was often hard to tell how convenient to the center of things one would be. A map, of course might quickly resolve this problem but it's even more helpful to have it right there in the text- especially since the book has no maps of its own.
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