Sometimes people need to escape their busy lives and enjoy peace and quiet, and luckily for them, Cherokee County has a couples of "homes away from home" where they can find relaxation and solitude.
While the area boasts several resorts and hotels, some might enjoy a more intimate setting at a bed and breakfast. And while the 1904 home has changed over the years, Blue Fern Bed and Breakfast offers guests a chance to stay in a luxurious Victorian farmhouse.
Guests have their choice of three rooms at the Blue Fern. Room one, the Clementine, features a queen-sized bed and is on the ground floor. In one of two rooms upstairs, Little Ann, guests might enjoy a longer stay, since it features a kitchenette, two double beds, and a loft bed children are likely to appreciate.
The third room, the Savannah room, might be appropriate for couples, with its queen-sized bed and double slipper tub.
Unlike some bed-and-breakfast establishments, the house provides ample seclusion, said owner Cordelia Dixon.
"We actually have a fairly large number of people who have never been to a bed and breakfast," said Dixon. "You have as much privacy as you would any other hotel. Each room has its own bathroom."
Guests at the Blue Fern might enjoy sitting next to the fireplace after having a breakfast made on site by Monica VanDonkelaar. On the second floor, a window-lined sun room is available for playing games or conducting business. The sun room also leads out to the balcony porch, where guests can sit among the trees and enjoy the outdoors.
"In the summers, it's kind of secluded because the trees fill in," said VanDonkelaar. "It's a great place for a morning coffee or evening glass of wine."
The Blue Fern Bed and Breakfast is in Tahlequah, and guests are provided with local activities and sites to check out. The site is suitable for anyone on vacation, coming to town for work, or celebrating a special occasion. Visitors can make reservations by calling 918-316-6973, and for more information, can visit bluefernbedandbreakfast.net.
Lake Tenkiller draws thousands of visitors every year and provides an abundance of activities.
While the area is home to many resorts and campgrounds, recreationalists might prefer staying a few nights at Terrapin Peak Bed, Breakfast & Beyond. Owner Genny Maiden said the establishment goes beyond guests' expectations.
"We sit on nine acres, and instead of having all the rooms in the house, we did three buildings out across the property," said Maiden. "Each building has two private bedrooms, so that way, everybody gets their own space and privacy, versus everybody in the same house. That's part of the 'beyond.' It's more than what you would expect."
Although technology and the internet has made people more connected than ever before, they still don't always like to sit down and eat with strangers. At Terrapin Peak, guests schedule their own time to eat in the morning at the main house.
They can also choose to eat breakfast in their rooms.
One of the guest buildings has king-sized beds and a two-person whirlpool. Each bedroom in the building has its own private entrance, bathroom, and covered deck.
The second building features a queen-sized bed in one room, while the other room has two full-sized beds. Maiden said it's good for families who want to stay near the lake.
A third building has only one bedroom, featuring a queen bed.
However, it also features a full-sized kitchen and adjacent eating area.
Terrapin Peak sees a variety of clients. The bed and breakfast draws more couples than anyone else, but it has also provides space for family reunions, weddings, and lake goers. Maiden's partner is a chef who can make "a special dinner" for guests who give a two-week notice, and "a special breakfast," including a four-egg omelet that is "out of this world."
Guests can play horseshoes outside, and if inclement weather hits, the main house features a pool table, 120-inch screen for TV or movies, and an area for visitors to listen to music or play card games. What many appreciate, though, is the seclusion and close proximity to nature.
"They tell us what they enjoy the most is the peace and quiet," said Maiden. "They get to sit on their deck and watch the deer and all the different birds that come by. And they like having their own space. If people are looking for something different, but still want to be close to the lake, we'd be the place."
For more information about Terrapin Peak Bed, Breakfast & Beyond, call 918-457-4906, or visit terrapinpeakbbb.com.