By Susan Sims, Publisher FIDO Friendly magazine
Wow. And then wow again. Did someone say “French Chateau?” I could stop right here but I won’t. Prepare to be dazzled and pampered. Situated in beautiful Arch Cape, Oregon, the Arch Cape Inn & Retreat welcomes both you and Fido with open arms.
Owners Cynthia and Stephen Malkowski have lived on the Oregon coast for many years. After Cynthia pondered how she could make a difference in the second half of her life and to the land and lifestyle of the beautiful coast she calls home, a thought began to brew.
“We have lived here for decades and love this place in our bones,” Cynthia said. “I wanted to create a mechanism that would allow me to give back.” In purchasing the Inn, giving back includes donating a portion of the Inns’ revenue activity to the North Coast Land Conservancy. “I believe the North Coast Land Conservancy single-handedly is responsible over the last 30 years for preserving the beauty and integrity of the north coast, swapping fragile ecosystems with the developers, making sure there is a contiguous habitat corridor where animals can actually travel that’s not broken up by development. It’s a very pure organization.”
After reading a study completed by National Geographic and TIA (Travel Industry America) about geo tourism, things started clicking into place. With that in mind, Cynthia and Stephen bought the Arch Cape Inn and began the process of remodeling and creating an experience like no other. For individual travelers or special interest groups, the Arch Cape Inn and Retreat can create a rewarding experience tailor-made for their specific interests. As part of a retreat event, portions of the proceeds are donated to the North Coast Land Conservancy.
There is also on property an Eco Tour van to be scheduled for outings and tours. “That’s an oxymoron, an eco van,” laughed Cynthia. “Now we can incorporate these amazing people from the land conservancy with all this knowledge to act as field guides for outings and day trips.”
Because the 10-room bed and breakfast is like a big home, Cynthia wondered, “What systems could I put in place that would demonstrate what changes we can all make in our eating and living habits and how we clean our homes?” Her pride and joy is the 220 dishwasher in the kitchen, which uses a 90-second cycle. “The dishwasher uses no chlorine; it just disinfects with heat.”
The other thing near and dear to Cynthia’s heart is the fact that after their first year they applied for and were accepted by Select Registry Distinguished Inns of North America. Cynthia beamed, “This is a huge honor and there are only 400 of these inns in the nation. So that was wonderful, after all that hard work of restoration, we were high-fiving all over the place.”
“The Arch Cape Inn and Retreat exemplifies the high quality and service championed by this Association,” says Select Registry Membership Director Carol Riggs. “Select Registry assures the traveler that each of its inns is regularly inspected-anonymously and with an overnight inspection that measures the quality of hospitality, as well as the physical plant. Our members share a high standard of excellence, and each of our country inns, luxury B&Bs, and unique small hotels has its own distinctive character.”
Morning begins with the chef who prepares a thoughtful, healthy gourmet breakfast suited to your dietary preference. You can share breakfast at your own table with other guests in the Conservatory overlooking the lawn and garden. Graham and Treena Kerr of the Galloping Gourmet series have helped with their food program, making it the winner of the Iron Chef award and voted Best Fine Dining by BeachConnection.net. Before dinner, you can mingle with other guests by the fireplace and enjoy appetizers and wine tasting. Dinner is by reservation and not included in your stay, however you will not want to miss a delicious three-course meal prepared by Chef Noah Kaufman where you can enjoy a magnificent feast in a beautiful setting enhanced by candlelight.
The wine selection is outstanding and along with the fresh local foods, you will have a hard time justifying a trip to nearby Cannon Beach to experience their many restaurants.
Just south of the inn you can drive through a tunnel and in a matter of minutes, you will be able to park your car at Oswald West State Park. We thought this the most beautiful nature trail leading down to the beach and visited it each day with our dog Junior. The pebbled path winds through an old growth forest where you walk beside a stream. The flora and fauna are amazing. You will cross a bridge before reaching the spot where the trail ends ocean side. Dogs are allowed off leash and Junior had no problem finding new friends to play with each day.
Each of the three designated Fido-friendly room enjoys its own private entrance, tiled floors and special bedding. We stayed in the Tuscan Spa room that includes a sauna, open shower with double rain fixtures, custom stone sink, king bed and large flat screen TV. Words cannot describe how beautiful and luxurious this room is. Take a look at their website for more details and great images.
The Arch Cape Inn and Retreat is a very special place and one we will be sure to return to again and again. Our host Cynthia said it best: “People who live here are addicts. You may try to move away but you always come back. It gets under your skin.”
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