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Meet Frederick and Rosemary James of Under the Elm B&B in Northwood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Frederick and Rosemary James.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Frederick and Rosemary. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I was an Marketing Manager employed by the Digital Equipment Corp. (DEC). Dec was second to IBM in IT market share. DEC struggled with its market share and was forced to reduce its employment from 150,000 to 50,000 by 1995. I was laid off and soon discovered due to the large number of former colleagues a looking for employment that finding new position to be most difficult.

At this time our four children were young adults and had moved on leaving us with four empty bed rooms. Recognizing that it might be some time before obtaining a new position Rosemary and I considered our options. Recognizing we needed to meet our financial obligations we sold our vacation home and considered opening a B&B.

We look at the our marketability. Our house sits on 40 private acres that once constituted NH’s largest peach orchard before the trees were killed by a frost in 1956. Our home also sits at the highest point in Northwood on Ridge Road. Our home is listed as a historic house in Northwood since it was in part built in 1841. The town is known for its Antique Alley, four lakes, the Northwood State Park and hiking to local mountains. Northwood is also centrally located to the Capital, Concord, the port city of Portsmouth, the University of NH and the NH Speedway.

We then considered what else we could do to make our home an attractive B&B option. We put in a dormer and added a new large bathroom with an oversized shower and Jacuzzi tub, a large deck, fire detectors in each room and had the front area landscaped for curb appeal. Rosemary had an interest in antiques and went in to this business buying and selling at four different venues and planned to use our future B&B as another sales location.

After these actions we received zoning approval, state health and safety approval and state licensing. We then developed marketing materials and made our advertising decisions. We then opened for business.

Fortunately, I then obtained a position with IBM in NY  but it required me to live in NY during the week. Rosemary did not want to move to NY so she decided to continue run the B&B and her antique business.

After working for IBM for 7 years I retired.

Has it been a smooth road?
Obstacles were:
1) Competing with the many NH tourist attractions in the White Mountains.
2) Many of the antiques stores in Northwood’s Antiques Alley closed.
3) The advent of Airbnb
4) The Town of Northwood failure t0 promote the many attractions in the town.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Under the Elm B&B – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
B&B a full breakfast with fresh baked goods served in our 1841 Dining Room with wide pine floors, Shaker dining table and chairs by DR Dines and large crane fireplace; or our three season porch overlooking the back pasture where wildlife are commonly seen.

What role has luck (good luck or bad luck) played in your life and business?
We have been fortunate to have guests of all walks of life from many states and countries. Countries include Canada, Ireland, England, Denmark, Israel, Saudi Arabia and others.

Our guests like to share their experiences and culture. Many have stayed with us several times and are almost like family.

At times we miss out on events since we have guests.

Pricing:

  • West Suite with separate sitting room. large bathroom with Jacuzzi tub $140/ night
  • North Suite with sitting area with sofa, arm chair and large flat siren TV $130/night
  • Family Rooms. Two rooms with shared bath $200

Contact Info:

  • Address: BandBonline
    Trip Advisor
    NH Tourism
  • Website: www.undertheelm.com
  • Phone: 603-942-8318
  • Email: info@undertheelm.com
  • Facebook: Undertheelm

Getting in touch: BostonVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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