by Sandy Goes
Staten Island, New York
August 21, 2007
Royal Oak House Bed & Breakfast was a great place to stay and discover St. Michael's. Our hosts, Hugo & Carol Rizzoli immediately welcomed us to their lovingly restored home (circa 1883) with ice cold glasses of lemonade. The house was immaculately cared for with nicely landscaped grounds. An old-fashioned swing in the back-yard made us chuckle like kids as we took our turn on the swing. The welcoming front porch with rattan furniture was perfect to enjoy our evening sherry (included with our nightly rate.) We selected a midweek sail-crab package for two nights, total cost $369 + tax for two people. The package included a beautifully presented breakfast two mornings, a two hour sailboat ride and a $50 certificate to a waterfront restaurant for crabs or whatever.
There are two bedrooms with private baths. We stayed in the larger Linden room. The clean and nicely appointed room had a sofa and coffee table books, hair dryer, bright white fluffy towels, central AC, 4 poster bed with antique furnishings. Room was bright and furniture not stuffy. We did not miss having a television. The quiet was blissful as we enjoyed reading, talking, and relaxing.
Breakfast choices were offered either in the dining room or a lighter breakfast basket delivered to your room if desired. We ate in the dining room at a table for two, nicely set with blue theme dinnerware and served by Carol. A very tiny vase of fresh flowers was set out daily. Hugo prepared a lovely breakfast of fresh fruit topped with mint from his herb garden, croissants filled with strawberries and cream, maple glazed ham, coffee and juice the first morning. We were so full from this delicious breakfast that we skipped lunch.The second day, he asked if we preferred eggs. A variety of different fresh fruit topped with fresh mint was served. We were the only guests and were served poached eggs with toast points, bacon, potatoes with bay seasoning and a small salad, topped with fresh herbs. Everything perfectly seasoned and served with loving detail and eye appeal. A key was provided to the front door leading to a small living room with piano where we sat and enjoyed the paper and our evening sherry. Our bedroom was upstairs. We explored the grounds and was delighted to find a huge cornfield right out behind the house.We loved our stay at Royal Oak House and cannot wait to return. The small touches made the difference and make huge points with us. The hosts are quite interesting and engaging to talk with. Hugo is a transplanted book store owner, trained chef, and caterer. Carol, a journalist and book editor is in the process of writing a book about B&B experiences called "White House Yellow Field."The hosts were quite helpful giving us ideas of things to do around St. Michael's and they directed us to many area restaurants. Service was good and not obtrusive.
From journal Historic Waterfront Town of St. Michael's