A New Brunswick-based stamp dealer has opened the Cosy Cottage Inn, which he believes is the first bed and breakfast aimed at philatelists.
Chris McFetridge, president of Brixton-Chrome, is a former accountant with Sloan Partners. He left the group in July 2015 and ventured into the stamp business full time. Soon after, McFetridge and his partner moved from Toronto to Saint John, N.B. with a dream of operating a bed and breakfast in conjunction with the stamp business.
McFetridge, the ongoing author of canadianphilately.blogspot.ca, said they bought a “lovely” 140-year-old house that was formerly used as a bed and breakfast in the city’s west end.
“We decided that it would be a fabulous idea to operate it as a Bed and Breakfast with a twist: it will be the first Bed and Breakfast that I know of, which is aimed at providing a quiet and cozy, stamp filled getaway for those of you philatelists looking to immerse yourself in your stamps, while having all your needs catered to,” writes McFetridge on his blog.
There are two guest bedrooms, each of which has its own self-contained bathroom so “you can be assured of complete privacy in your room,” reads the blog.
“Our room rates range from a low $95 per night for our Rose Gold Room, to $105 per night for our large Grandma Green Room. You can bring your stamps with you and sit in our comfy office, at a large table, with excellent lighting, and access to all the equipment you could want or need to aid you in your study: watermark trays and fluid; a signoscope; micrometers, ultra-violet lamps, instanta gauges, colour keys and so on. You will have access to our bar and coffee and tea station at all times, so that you can sip a cup of tea, coffee or a glass of spirits while you work. We provide a tasty range of fresh baked goods throughout the day as well, so you never have to go hungry while you are here. We will also provide you with most any philatelic literature that you request to have available during your stay.”
If you don’t want to bring your own stamps with you during your stay, then you can always browse McFetridge’s extensive and specialized stock of Canada and British West Africa material.
“Our Nigeria stock is one of the most extensive in the world, and contains many rare items.”
What’s more, McFetridge is available to discuss “any philatelic topic that you wish to discuss.”
The philatelic package costs $100 and includes all the accoutrements described plus a “scrumptious” breakfast and a 10 per cent discount on any stock items.
“We can recommend a variety of restaurants for lunch and dinner,” writes McFetridge. “For those wanting the ultimate, pampered experience, we offer an unlisted deluxe package, which includes lunch and a gourmet dinner with your choice of drinks for each day of your stay.”
LARGE CORNER PROPERTY
The bed and breakfast sits on a large, corner property with an expansive yard, in which guests can relax with a book and a drink while they’re not working with stamps.
Carlton Martello Tower is located about 400 metres away from the property of the bed and breakfast and offers a beautiful view of the city, according to McFetridge.
“It dates from the War of 1812, and was built as a fortification to defend the city against outside hostilities.”
Some attractions that are “well worth the day trip” include Hopewell Rocks Park which features “some of the highest and most rapidly rising tides in the world,” according to McFetridge. It’s located only two hours away from Saint John to the east of the city.
There’s also the Hartland Bridge, which is the oldest and longest covered bridge in the world at 390 metres long. It’s also located two hours away from Saint John.
For those who like to golf, there’s the Royal Oaks Golf Club in Moncton, which is an hour and a half to the north-east of the city.
About 10 minutes away from the bed and breakfast is a large, covered market in downtown Saint John, which offers a large selection of organic produce and artisan goods.
Irving Nature Park, which is the second largest park in the province, is located about 10 kilometres from the property (about a five-minute drive).
“We believe that New Brunswick is one of Canada’s best kept secrets, and we are confident that once you experience it for yourself, you will agree. The temperatures here during the summer months are always between about 20 and 25 degrees Celsius, which is ideal.”
The bed and breakfast accepted its first bookings this May.
For more information, visit thecosycottageinn.ca.