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The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast
The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast

The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast

The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast is a Victorian-style home that rests on a large, half-acre property in the town of Bonham, Texas. The main house contains four bedrooms available for rent, and they have two cottages nearby that are also available for customers to choose to stay in. The home was initially constructed in 1888 and has had only three previous owners throughout the years. The house is now on the National Register of Historic Places due to its age and historical significance. Steve and Karen Halbrook, the current property owners, work to create an experience in which customers feel "pampered" and as if they have "stepped back in time" during their stay. The property has received various reviews throughout its time of operation, with the breakfast and the overall experience of their visit being the most highly praised items commented on in those reviews.


The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast is located in northeast Texas, in the town of Bonham. The Victorian-style home sits on a larger property of a half-acre with a private garden for guest use. The property resides in a suburban neighborhood on the northwest side within walking distance of the town center with a newly restored Courthouse. The two cottage homes are within a few blocks of the Main House.

The main house of The Carleton House is equipped with four bedrooms. Each of the bedrooms in the main house is outfitted with various amenities for customers to use and enjoy throughout the duration of their stay. The pampering amenities available in each room include stocked private bathrooms, air conditioning, Wi-Fi internet connection, Roku TV, robes, reading materials, writing desks, pillow topped queen-sized beds in two of the rooms, and king-sized beds in the larger two rooms. The Carleton Suite, with a sitting area, mini refrigerator, coffee maker, Jacuzzi tub for two and a rooftop deck is the most frequently reserved room out of the four.

The two cottages nearby, The Carleton Casual House and The Willow Cottage are both outfitted to either host families or just a couple wanting their own space and kitchen. The Carleton Casual House has the capacity to host 8 or more people with children and The Willow Cottage has the ability to hold up to 6 people including children. Each of the cottages are equipped with the same pampering amenities as each of the rooms within the main house but only continental breakfast is provided unless other arrangements are made.

At the main house a custom breakfast is served to guests in the morning at the time they request. The owners of The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast strive to meet the individual needs of their customers for their breakfast, so they work to ask the patrons of the property about their specific dietary needs and wants for breakfast along with a time schedule and the opportunity to dine in-room or in one of the many dining areas inside or outside.

The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast is open year-round, with its busiest months of operation occurring during the spring. While guests are staying at the property, there are multiple activities available on-site for them to spend their time at the house. These attractions include a gift shop on the property that sells a variety of bath products and memorabilia, a gazebo, a large patio for enjoying nature or concerts on Holiday weekends mostly, a pond in the gardens behind the house, multiple porches, games available outdoors and inside of the home, and a fire-pit where customers can also choose to spend their time visiting during their stay.


Karen and Steve Halbrook, the owners and managers of The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast, strive to create an atmosphere where their customers feel "pampered" and as if they are "stepping back in time." In order to achieve this goal, Karen and Steve have instituted specific policies and practices in the bed and breakfast that they feel enable their guests to have that desired experience.

Upon arrival to the Bed & Breakfast, guests are offered complimentary refreshments and snacks, and Karen and Steve make sure the guests are comfortable with their rooms' amenities. Tours are offered at this time if the guests’ schedule permits.

Karen and Steve have instituted specific policies that each visitor of The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast is required to follow throughout the duration of their visit. These policies include a smoke-free environment and a quiet time for all guests starting at 10 PM each night. An additional approach is that children under the age of 12 are permitted at the cottages only in order to maintain a peaceful relaxing environment at the main house. They also ask that visitors find a pet boarding facility for their "fur babies" as they are not set up to accommodate pets within any of the houses.

In addition to the home policies, Karen and Steve Halbrook provide various services to their customers that they believe helps them feel "pampered" and as if they have "stepped back in time." These services include historical tours of the house, a ride in their 1931 Model A car, massages that are available for an additional charge, and live music. Karen and Steve strive to interact with their guests, but try not to be overbearing.

Steve and Karen feel that The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast is known for its historical significance and the music that is performed at the property. The property has received various customer reviews throughout its time of operation. One previous guest described their experience during their stay as such: "Each room is tastefully decorated, and the provisions of bed, bath, and breakfast were equally enjoyable."


The building that eventually became The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast was originally constructed in 1888 by A. J. Clendenen, a local merchant who owned a dry goods store in the town itself. After the death of the first owner of the house in 1913, the property was inherited by his children, who all lived in the house until 1914. The house was then purchased by Dr. James Carleton. Members of the Carleton family, the namesake of the current bed and breakfast, lived in the house from 1914–1979. Dr. Bill King and his wife purchased the house but never lived in it. The current owners and founders of The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast, Steve and Karen Halbrook, purchased the home in 1993. Since purchasing the property, Steve and Karen have done a total restoration of the house in keeping with its’ historic nature but adding modern amenities such as air conditioning and bathrooms to each guest room, resulting in the product that can be seen today. The business has been operating since its renovation by the Halbrooks for 26 years up until the present day.

Steve and Karen Halbrook were residents of the Dallas, Texas, area prior to opening The Carleton House Bed and Breakfast. In their own words, they moved out of their previous home to "get away from the big city." They eventually found the property during their search and purchased the home from a church that was planning on demolishing the house to put in a parking lot.

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803 N. Main Street
Bonham, Texas 75418
United States




Steve and Karen Halbrook

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