(541) 432-0230  |  Email

Would you stay somewhere without seeing your room first?

This is a true story and lesson in the importance of good photography. A long time ago someone called looking for lodging in Joseph, Oregon. We were full that weekend and I referred him to another Joseph Oregon bed and breakfast. “Oh, I won’t stay there,” he replied. “They don’t have pictures of their rooms on the website and I’ll never stay where I can’t see the room first. The Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast has great room photos which is why I picked your inn.” I thanked the caller and made another suggestion to a bed and breakfast in Enterprise, Oregon, and made a mental note to talk to the Joseph, Oregon lodging about their website photography.

Even though it was just one person, it got me to thinking about the importance of good photography, Would you stay somewhere unless you could see your room first? Our goal here in Joseph, Oregon is to ensure that our photography is current and accurately reflects what you’ll see during your Eastern Oregon vacation.

Most of our photography is done by Marcus Berg. Marcus has his own company, Unique Angles Photography, based in Keizer, OR.  He periodically visits the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast to update our photos when we’ve made some changes to our rooms. Most recently, he was here to document the new look for our Chief Joseph Mountain Room. I just wish it had been a little closer to summer. If you look carefully at the room photos on the website, you’ll see quite a bit of snow on the Wallowa Mountains in the distance!

Here’s an example of a “before,” “intermediate” and “after” shot:

older photo of Chief Joseph Mountain Room at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast in Joseph OregonThis is the “before” image of the Chief Joseph Mountain Room that dates from 2001 when we first opened the bed and breakfast.  It’s not a bad photo per se–but there’s definitely room for improvement.  Some notes: Birds eye view isn’t realistic (who sees a room from the ceiling?).
Light scatter from windows.
Lighting is uneven (single source).
Lack of warmth, drama, interest.

 

Here’s the “intermediate” image Marcus took in November 2008.
Chief Joseph Mountain Room at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast by Unique Angles Photography
What’s fixed here?  Camera angle is more appropriate to human eye.  Clutter removed from flat surfaces.  The bed is more of a suggestion rather than a dominant element (“Everyone knows what a bed looks like,” says Marcus).  Lit candle, sherry & chocolates draw the viewer into the photo.  Lighting from multiple sources creates warmth and depth of field. The robe hanging in the bath shows the viewer that there’s more going on behind the image.  The pillow in the chair echos the blue color of the tray on the bed.

And here’s how the Chief Joseph Mountain Room looks today, and Marcus’ image of it from December 2017.

Chief Joseph Mountain Room at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast in Joseph Oregon

Chief Joseph Mountain Room

Some furniture items are changed, but the bed frame is the same, just in a different location in the room. But notice in this photo that you can actually see what’s outside of the window. In the previous photos, you had an idea that there’s a window in there, but there was no image of what’s outside. We’ve also added multiple photos on the Chief Joseph Mountain Room webpage so the viewer gets a good idea of the room from different angles plus more detail about the adjoining bathroom.

The Lesson is see your room first:

“Pictures say a thousand words” and it’s definitely true in the lodging industry.  Innkeepers who don’t pay attention to the quality of photos on their websites are asking for problems.  We’ve had guests who’ve told us they chose the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast because of our website content and photography.  We’ve also had guests who’ve stated that they would not stay at a bed and breakfast if they could not see photos of the rooms on the website before booking their reservation.

Can you see yourself enjoying this lovely guestroom? Would you stay somewhere without seeing your room first? We hope you’ll click on “RESERVE NOW” and visit one or all of our guestrooms in person!

Free Stay in Joseph, Oregon

Want to give your favorite someone a free stay in Joseph, Oregon? We honor a variety of gift certificates here at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast! Let us help you figure out the gift of relaxation, adventure and connection–everything your special someone might want or need!

Here are some super ideas at all price points. It’s up to you to decide:

The Oregon Bed & Breakfast Guild sells $25 Lodging Gift Vouchers through its website. These vouchers are good at any Oregon Bed & Breakfast Guild member–including the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast–and work just like cash. The Guild mails out the Lodging Gift Vouchers along with a guide to the best inspected and approved inns in Oregon. All shipments are traceable for security.

Select Registry is an United States based collection of more than 300 fine lodging establishments featuring B&Bs, inns and hotels. The added bonus? You can get this certificate as quickly as you can order it! Through the website, you set the amount of your e-gift certificate and choose to either email to yourself or to your recipient. Select Registry also offers an opportunity to purchase a gift certificate together with the coveted Select Registry Guidebook. This comprehensive guidebook will help your recipient decide where to spend that special gift. Want to go all out? Add one or more of the Select Registry branded luxury bathrobes to your order for that special someone!

Of course, the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast also has its own custom gift certificates. You choose the amount, or select a standard amount, and fill us in on the details. We’ll generate a nice custom gift certificate, pack it together with a bundle of visitor information and maps for Joseph, Oregon, and our surrounding area, and we’ll mail it in a traceable priority US Postal Service mailing flat to you or to your recipient. You’ll find the order form in the Room Reservation area of our website, just click on the “Gift Certificates” tab and we’ll take it from there.

About that free stay in Joseph, Oregon:

Seems like your choices are pretty well laid out. And about that free stay in Joseph, Oregon? You can fashion your gift at any level, so a free stay could well be in your special someone’s future!

Garden bench with floral cushion next to a garden table with a recorked bottle of wine and one wine glass. A straw hat hangs on the back of the bench. Colorful lupines and blue forget-me-not flowers are around the bench. From the northern perennial garden at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast in Joseph Oregon. Photo by Unique Angles Photography

Chief Joseph Days 2017 last minute room

If you’ve been putting off looking for lodging for Chief Joseph Days 2017 in Joseph, Oregon, have we got a room for you! Our luxurious, modern Mirror Lake Suite has come available for Saturday night only, July 29, 2017. This guestroom is not just a place to crash after the rodeo performance. It’s got all the bells and whistles and a little bit extra: private entrance, air conditioning, king-sized poster bed. Plus, the bathroom is really more like your private spa: pipeless jetted tub for two and a new Aston steam shower with one setting lovingly christened the “car wash” by our bed & breakfast guests who’ve enjoyed it.

steam shower

Can’t you imagine yourself kicking off those cowboy boots after a long night of dancing in the Chief Joseph Days Thunder Room and slipping into this ultra modern steam shower? Curling up in the crispy percale sheets after a night of revelry with your rodeo friends? How about a nice cup of coffee to start your Sunday morning followed by a full breakfast served in the dining room with other rodeo fans?

The rodeo festivities started today with the Wild Horse Stampede down Joseph’s Main Street (here they are right in front of the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast). Rodeo performances start tomorrow evening through Saturday night.

Still need a little more convincing? Here’s the link to the Trip Advisor reviews about the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast including many about the Mirror Lake Suite.

If you’re interested in reserving the Mirror Lake Suite for Saturday night only of Chief Joseph Days 2017, you’re welcome to book online through our website or call us at 541-432-0230. Put the phrase “CJD2017blog” in the reservation details to earn yourself a 10% discount on the room rate. Or mention this blog post when calling to book your reservation over the phone.

We look forward to hearing from you soon. And enjoy the Chief Joseph Days Rodeo! Feel the Thunder!

The Surprising People You Can Meet at a Bed & Breakfast

One of the things we love about owning the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast is the opportunity to meet some very interesting people. Our guests come from all over and have such interesting stories to share around the breakfast table. The surprising people you can meet at a bed & breakfast might range from musicians to artists to neighbors you didn’t know lived nearby in your own city, to small business owners, or even someone who might’ve graduated from the same high school as you many years ago.

This week we hosted Brad and Debora Lorang of Lorang Fine Art & Gorge-ous Gifts from Cascade Locks, Oregon. How many times have you driven by the Cascade Locks exit on Interstate 84 going to or from Portland, Oregon, without a stop? I know for us it’s been many times. But now we have reason to stop in after meeting Brad and Debora. And I think the other bed & breakfast guests that had the pleasure of sharing breakfast with Brad and Debora will as well. Their gallery is full of original pieces of art in nine major media collections (metal art, photography, jewelry, sculpture, pottery, mixed media and recycled art, paintings, woodwork and glass art) representing over seventy artists.

Inside view of gallery

Lorang Fine Art and Gorge-ous Gifts in Cascade Locks Oregon

Debora’s focus is photography and Brad concentrates on working with metal. One afternoon he pulled out a tablet and shared images of some of his larger commissioned, custom designed metal installations (made me think of what could we possibly need to add in the Bronze Antler gardens).  Tremendous!

Another aspect, which they shared with other guests around the breakfast table, is how involved they are in the community of Cascade Locks and the surrounding Columbia River Gorge area. Debora makes it a point to promote other Cascade Locks businesses on their Lorang Fine Art website and is very active in representing Cascade Locks with their local Chamber of Commerce. Our Bronze Antler B&B guests who wanted to learn more about waterfalls in the Columbia River Gorge learned some insider information from someone local to that area. Where else can you have a casual conversation over breakfast with someone you’ve just met and learn some tips about a place you’d like to visit?

Even our cat, Madigan, the kinky-tailed greeter of the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast, got into the mix. She graced Debora and Brad with her presence in the dining room one evening and even agreed to pose for a photo session and a quick sketch. It was fun watching the transformation before our eyes and Brad deftly captured Madigan’s features in pen on his sketch pad. They were nice enough to leave this quick pen & ink sketch of Madigan and we are sharing it.

Portrait Sketch of Madigan our long haired tabby housecat

Pen Sketch of Madigan by Brad Lorang

The next time you’re contemplating where to stay on your vacation, you might consider a bed and breakfast lodging in your options. The surprising people you can meet could become new friends, or at least interesting acquaintances for a shared meal in a lovely appointed dining room. It’s an opportunity to connect, learn a little something about someone else, perhaps share a little something about yourself, or just be quiet and listen to the other guests around the table. It’s a more intimate experience than dining in a restaurant or even in the breakfast bar of a chain hotel or motel. Take the opportunity and join in!

Get Your Local Wallowa Valley Fix Here

Want more local Wallowa County at your fingertips? Ready to plunge in and know what us folks out here in Eastern Oregon know? There’s a new blog here in Wallowa County, Oregon, that regularly accumulates posts from some of the best and brightest blogs written about this corner of Northeastern Oregon. You’ll find it as “Oregon’s Wallowa Valley” and it aggregates blog posts from some local websites you’ll want to explore:

  • Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast (in Joseph, Oregon, writing about activities, events, and the bed & breakfast, of course)
  • Josephy Center for Arts & Culture (in Joseph, Oregon, and home to a variety of arts classes, exhibitions, events, and the Alvin & Betty Josephy Library
  • Winding Waters River Expeditions (based in Joseph, Oregon, with fly fishing trips, specialty rafting trips, guided fly fishing and more)
  • Plus the added bonus of plenty of fresh content about local places to discover like the M. Crow & Company Store in Lostine, Oregon, or what’s going on in the local music scene from the Wallowa Valley Music Alliance

The blog is sponsored by the Wallowa County Chamber of Commerce and maintained by Janis Carper at Second Chance Productions (another Wallowa County based person that you’ll come to know if you spend any amount of time researching this place).

Subscribe to this feed, bookmark this place, or drop in from time to time to find out what’s new!

Fishtrap Fireside Is the Friday Night Number One To Do in Fall & Winter in Joseph Oregon

So it’s a chilly second Friday night of the month in Joseph Oregon, sometime between October and April, and what’s a body to do? If you’re a guest at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast, we’ll suggest a short 10-minute drive to Enterprise for a low-key literary arts program. Fishtrap Fireside is an opportunity for three local writers to read and share their new work, plus an “open mic” period for anyone attending to read and share for their five minutes of local fame.

For a $5 donation at the door, you can shed that big-city Portland, Oregon, persona and immerse yourself in one of the more popular indoor wintertime activities that we Wallowa County locals enjoy. The setting is the living room of the Fishtrap House, a converted home that houses this literary nonprofit group. The atmosphere is warm, non-judgmental, supportive. The aroma is spiced from the light refreshments and the crackling wood fire.

The 2015-2016 Fishtrap Fireside season is posted at the Fishtrap website and updated regularly as more writers are identified. All events at the Fishtrap House, 400 E Grant Street, Enterprise, Oregon. Or contact Mike Midlo, Program Director at Fishtrap, 541-426-3623 or mike@fishtrap.org.

Become the local you’ve dreamed of becoming in this very remote part of Oregon. Enjoy!

Fishtrap-Fireside-Poster2015-Oct9-01

A Tropical Mexico Connection via Sisters Oregon

Bill & I never tire of the conversations we have with our guests.  It’s a good portion of why we enjoy being innkeepers as much as we do–the genuine connections we can make with our guests enrich our lives and theirs too.  Take, for example, this little story:

It’s always slow in March in Joseph Oregon because the weather isn’t the best for outdoor activities, but a couple returning home to Sisters, Oregon, decides to spend the night with us on their way home.  As it turns out, TR and Jenny McCrystal own a restaurant in Sisters called Jen’s Garden.  It’s an “intimate cottage cuisine” setting with food inspired by the South of France with 5-course, 3-course, or a la carte menu choices.  We have a nice time talking about the restaurant, about Sisters, about Central Oregon, and all is fine.  I make a mental note that we will definitely plan for dinner at Jen’s Garden the next time we visit Sisters and to mention this same restaurant to other guests headed that way.

Tropical Mexico in Pomona California in 1972 as a small restaurant Over breakfast, somehow I mention my alma mater, Pomona College.  Often one or more guests will recognize Pomona College as one of the Claremont Colleges in Southern California, but I cannot remember when I heard a guest say, “Yes, and I was a student at Cal Poly Pomona.”  Turns out TR McCrystal was a Cal Poly hospitality program student studying restaurant and hotel operations.

But here’s where it gets even a little more odd.  Knowing that he’s a restaurateur, I added, “I’ll bet you never had dinner in Pomona at a little pink restaurant called Tropical Mexico.”  His eyes widened.  “Trop Mex!” he exclaims.  “Yes, a great place for college kids to go and the dishes–the mole, the menudo, everything I can remember–top notch.”

How serendipitous is this?  Here we are, the restaurant owner and the innkeeper, talking about a place each of us remembers from decades and lifetimes ago.  What we each remembered were sweet, college year memories.  As I started to write this blog post, I wondered if Tropical Mexico was really now just a memory; that it isn’t the hole-in-a-wall restaurant it used to be.  Surprisingly, it’s still there (and with a web presence). Tropical Mexico has changed and grown significantly from that little pink bungalow I remember from the late 1970s.  But TR and I made that connection across the years and across the miles.  

Will TR and Jenny remember us?  Probably.  Will I remember them?  Undoubtedly.  It’s these kinds of intimate happenings you probably won’t discover staying at a hotel–one of the beautiful little connections about the bed and breakfast experience.

Hi, I’m Heather!

Heather Tyreman owner of the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast in Joseph Oregon sitting in a coffee shop and smiling for the camera phone.

Heather Tyreman owner of the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast in Joseph Oregon

My name is Heather Tyreman. My husband and I are the innkeepers of the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast here in Joseph Oregon near the shores of Wallowa Lake.  We purchased this Craftsman bungalow in 2000, spent 9 months remodeling, and opened our retirement dream job in June 2001 on Main Street.  And it has been and continues to be a lot of fun!  We enjoy meeting new people, introducing them to our beautiful Wallowa Valley, providing them the best hospitality experience we can, and watch them relax as they slow down to their Eastern Oregon vacation pace.

When I’m not busy with our Joseph Oregon lodging, you’ll find me outside working in the perennial gardens or on my way to rehearsals and performances with regional music groups.  I play oboe and English Horn with the Grande Ronde Symphony Orchestra, the Oregon East Symphony, Wallowa Valley Orchestra, and smaller ensembles when we can put them together.  The musical life in Eastern Oregon can be challenging but definitely worth it.

In this blog I highlight local events and information as well as stories about our Joseph Oregon bed and breakfast.  I hope you’ll come back often to read the latest–and either come see us in person or enjoy your vicarious Joseph Oregon vacation.

Reserve Your Summer Fishtrap 2014 Rooms and Lodging Right Here Right Now

Summer Fishtrap 2014 at Wallowa Lake Oregon postcard imageAre you attending Summer Fishtrap 2014 at Wallowa Lake, Oregon?  Still trying to decide where in Eastern Oregon to stay for the week?  If you don’t want to stay “on campus” in one of the yurts or in the bunkhouse at the Wallowa Lake Camp and Retreat Center (affectionately known to longtime Fishtrappers as the “Methodist Camp”) and you’re used to staying in nicer bed and breakfasts or hotels when you travel, then allow us to propose a stay at the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast nearby in Joseph Oregon.

The writers conference Summer Fishtrap 2014 starts on the afternoon of Monday, July 7th, and concludes at brunch on Sunday, July 13th.  As of today, February 12, 2014, we still have two guestrooms and our fabulous Mirror Lake Suite available for a 6-night stay (nights of July 7-12, 2014, departing on July 13, the closing day of Summer Fishtrap 2014).  What can that mean for you as a Summer Fishtrap Gathering of Writers attendee?  A really comfortable, air-conditioned, private place to stay at good price.  And we can offer you a without breakfast option in case you’d prefer to take your breakfast meals at the Wallowa Lake Camp.  And since we’re rated 3-Diamonds by AAA, we also offer a 10% discount to current AAA members.  What’s not to like?

For example, these are the prices for lodging and meals during Summer Fishtrap 2014 (taken from the Summer Fishtrap 2014 brochure):

  • Summer Fishtrap 2014 one-bedroom deluxe yurt (includes private bath): $795 per cabin
  • Summer Fishtrap 2014 two-bedroom deluxe yurt (includes shared bath): $595 per bedroom
  • Summer Fishtrap 2014 bunkhouse (bring your own bedding, bath house nearby): $130 per person
  • Summer Fishtrap 2014 Lunch only package (Tuesday through Saturday): $60 per person
  • Summer Fishtrap 2014 Lunch & Dinner package (Tuesday through Saturday): $160 per person
  • Summer Fishtrap 2014 All Meals package (Monday dinner through Sunday brunch): $225 per person

Here are options at the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast (full price quotes with lodging taxes included) in our Ferguson Ridge Room (other currently available guestrooms are higher):

  • Single occupancy with breakfast: $840.56
  • Single occupancy without breakfast: $775.16
  • Single occupancy with breakfast and 10% AAA membership discount: $756.44
  • Double occupancy with breakfast: $943.60
  • Double occupancy without breakfast: $812.80
  • Double occupancy with breakfast and 10% AAA membership discount: $849.26

Garden scene at the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast in Joseph Oregon with bench and bottle of wine and wine glass near the bocce courtIt’s true there are some conveniences to staying at the Wallowa Lake Camp.  You’re right there and don’t need to drive home once the evening open-mic session is over.  You’re in the middle of the action.  You’re close to the Bailey Lodge dining hall where meals are served cafeteria style.

But, we’re only 10 minutes away by car at the other end of Wallowa Lake.  You’re in your own space with your own attached private bathroom, with or without your traveling companion (if you have one). Your room is comfortably air-conditioned to your liking  Your breakfast, if you choose to have breakfast, is served in our dining room plated and accompanied by your choice of fruit juices and hot beverages.  And we do our best to accommodate special meal requirements (gluten-free, dairy-free, food allergies, etc.)

And if you’re bringing along someone who is not participating in Summer Fishtrap 2014, they’re right here in Joseph to see and do all that the town has to offer in summer (shops, art galleries, foundries, artist tours, or just hanging out here on our grounds under the apple tree with the bocce court nearby (see the photo).

There are a limited number of yurts available at the Wallowa Lake Camp.  If you miss your opportunity to reserve one on February 20, 2014 (the day that online registration opens for Summer Fishtrap 2014), then you might want to consider spending your nights with us here at our (nearly a) Wallowa Lake hotel.

And who knows what summer 2014 will be like?  You might be very glad you have air-conditioning!

Don’t forget:  Summer Fishtrap 2014 online registration opens on February 20, 2014, at 9 am Pacific Time!

Cake for Two at the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast? Yes!

German Chocolate cake with a blue rose on top from Melanee's Cakes in Joseph Oregon

German Chocolate cake with a blue rose on top from Melanee’s Cakes

We enjoy helping our guests plan the perfect getaway–romantic or otherwise–when they stay at the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast.  And we enlist as many local Joseph Oregon businesses as we can to procure items for our guests.

Melanee’s Cakes is one of those providers.  Melanee creates all sorts of cakes,  large or small, in a variety of flavors and with great enthusiasm for the decoration.  Small birthday cakes suitable for a couple are pretty popular.  As are special anniversary cakes.  But she’ll create a cake for any occasion and deliver them right here in Joseph, Oregon, so you don’t have to worry about making a surprise.  Let us know what flavor you’d like, what inscription (if any), what type of frosting, and your budget–and let Melanee run loose!

We’ll have the cake awaiting you in your guestroom complete with plates, forks & napkins (although I think we might’ve had a few guests opt for the romantic  “eating cake with their fingers” option).

One of our oft-returning guests, Teri, commented about the birthday cake she selected for her husband’s surprise, “She does beautiful work and her cakes are scrumptious.”  Unfortunately we don’t have a photograph of said cake–it disappeared too quickly!

Melanee’s Cakes doesn’t have a website, but if you’re a Facebook user, you’ll find Melanee’s Cakes on Facebook.  Her latest creation: Superbowl Denver Broncos versus Seattle Seahawks!