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Knowles House B&B

The Knowles House Bed and Breakfast is located on Key West, an island located off of Florida. The house was built in the early to mid-1850s by the Knowles family. The house was passed down a couple of generations before it was sold off to a different family. The previous owners bought the property 25 years ago and converted it into a bed and breakfast. It has been functioning as a bed and breakfast ever since. The Knowles House Bed and Breakfast has eight rooms, each with its own theme. Breakfast is served every morning, often consisting of something savory and something sweet. The establishment most often gets visitors who are looking to get away from the snow in December.

About

Located on the island of Key West, the Knowles House Bed and Breakfast is a historic house that was built in the 1850s. The house has eight rooms, three of which were added years after the original house was built. Each room provides a blow-dryer, shampoo, body wash, makeup removal wipes, air conditioning, ceiling fans, and a small container in the bathroom that holds Q-tips, cotton swabs, and Band-Aids. Each room has a unique theme. Some of the rooms include the Caribbean Room, the English Colonial Room, the Country Cottage Room, the Country French Room, the Italian Room, the Malibu Room, the Tropical Room, and the Paris Room. The most popular units are the Italian Room and the Country Cottage Room.

The house is yellow with a brick driveway, two parking spots, and a parking area for loading and unloading. There are no on-site parking spaces for guests, but there is nearby street parking available. The property has landscaping that is described by the owner as "luxurious with palm trees." There is also a large mango tree on the property. On the premises, there is a small pool area with a swimming pool, chairs, and trees. Added to the house were multiple features, including three rooms, an outside shower, a sun deck, and a spa pool. These are available to the guests during their stay. Other rooms guests can visit include the parlor area, sun deck, the courtyard area, the covered porch, and the spa pool area.

The Knowles House Bed and Breakfast is located on Key West, an island that is located off of Florida. The island is made up of a city landscape with many buildings and neighborhoods. The property of the bed and breakfast is located on the north side of the island near the Key West Bight. The surrounding landscape consists of a city. Many things are within walking distance of the bed and breakfast, including Azur, Old Town Bakery, and the SALT Gallery. Christina, a worker at the Knowles House Bed and Breakfast, suggests guests eat at Azur, Café Sole, and the Schooner Wharf Bar.

Breakfast is served every morning at the property. Christina, a worker who makes breakfast, tries to prepare different meals every morning, usually consisting of one savory and one sweet. Other things are always available for the guests to eat, including almond milk, cereal, bread, fruits, and yogurt. The owners of the establishment strive to set out foods that accommodate food allergies.

Culture

At the Knowles House Bed and Breakfast, the staff strives to create an environment where their guests can feel comfortable. The house has been described as "cute and clean" by one of the workers. The main goal of each staff member is to make sure they are taking care of the guests and making the guests' stay pleasant, welcoming, and informative. "It's all about them; it's not about you," said Christina, a worker at the Knowles House Bed and Breakfast.

The workers and owners of the establishment try to interact with their guests as much as possible. According to Christina, they are "intimate but not evasive." They try to be respectful of their guests and know that not every guest will want to interact with them.

At the Knowles House Bed and Breakfast, no pets, children, and smoking are allowed in the rooms. Smoking is available on the porches and in the garden but is otherwise not permitted.

On the property, there are multiple events that occur throughout the day. Breakfast is served each morning, and there are "happy hours" where wine and beer are served. Also available to the guests during the day is coffee. According to Christina, guests have complimented the quality of the coffee, along with the fact that it was available all day.

Most of the guests that come to the property are single travelers or couples. There are no families because children are not allowed on the premises. The property gets a lot of repeat guests. Some of the guests have been coming for roughly 20 years, while others are more recent repeat guests. Christina has said that about one-third of the guests are repeat guests. The guests come from around the area, as well as most parts of the United States. During the summer, the establishment sometimes gets visitors from Europe. The busiest season for the Knowles House Bed and Breakfast is the wintertime because the area does not get snow. People often come to enjoy the warmth of the area, along with the many attractions on the island.

Guests who have stayed at the Knowles House Bed and Breakfast have complimented on the coffee being available all day long, the quality of the breakfast, and the overall temperament of the hosts. One guest, in particular, said, "The place is a few blocks from Duval street and the heart of key west; you can get to anywhere on the island from the b&b. It’s not loud at night though you’re not far from the action. The prices are affordable and are at a competitive rate compared to similar places on the island. There is breakfast in the mornings and happy hour in the late afternoons. There is a small pool and a rooftop to lay out on. The place is very quaint and cozy. You feel at home. Both times I made friends with other guests staying there. Perfect for a trip with friends or for a romantic getaway—I did both. There is street parking close by as well. Christina runs the place, and she is very nice and personable."

History

The Knowles House Bed and Breakfast became a bed and breakfast 25 years ago when the previous owners, Les and Paul, converted it into a B&B. The house was built in the 1860s when Key West was still a young settlement. The Knowles House Bed and Breakfast building is a classic example of houses that were built in the time period. When the house was originally built, it consisted of a one-story cottage with a pitched roof. In 1935, the house was altered by the owner, Rupert Knowles. The house became two stories high instead of just one. Rooms were changed to have different purposes, and electricity and modern plumbing were installed. In 1997 the previous owners added on more rooms to the house and began to function it as a bed and breakfast.

The history of the Knowles family is well known by the current owners of the property. The Knowles family originally emigrated from the island of Eleuthera, which was located in the Bahamas. They moved from Eleuthera to Key West and built their house in the 1860s. Rosa lived in the house with her son Rupert Knowles, who was born in the house in 1896. In 1928, Rupert met a young woman named Rosalie Weisser, who went by the name of Nancy. Rupert and Nancy were married soon after they met.

Rupert's mother died in 1929 after living in the house for many years. During the Great Depression, the tropical fruit business Rupert owned failed. In 1935 Rupert won the equivalent of $10,000 in the Cuban National Lottery. The money allowed him to start a restaurant on Caroline Street. The Florida Keys suffered from the Labor Day Hurricane in the same year. Key West was spared from destruction, but there was a storm. Unfortunately, at the time, the house was being remodeled, and part of the roof was torn off. Despite the storm, the remolding of the house was finished. Rupert and Nancy's children grew up and moved away from the island. Rupert later died in 1961, and Nancy survived him until 1983. After Nancy's death, the children sold the house out of the family. Les and Paul bought the house in December of 1996 after it had been bought and owned by several different people prior to them. They converted the house to a bed and breakfast, and it has been functioning as one ever since.

The current owners have in mind several changes that will be made to the property, the main one being to replace the mattresses and pillows for the beds. They also want to make the house more modern but wish to keep most of the historical aspects of the house the same. Under the current owner's decision, new table cloths and chairs have been added, along with seat cushions, plates, glasses, wine glasses, and pictures. The current owners also repainted the house to make it look brighter and more modern. The current owners hope is to upgrade the house to make it more modern and comfortable for its guests.

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Location

1004 Eaton Street Key West, FL 33040
Key West, Florida 33040
United States

Type

Bed and Breakfast

Previous Owners

Les & Paul

Phone
305-296-8132
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