We needed a place to stop for the night on our way to Chicago and prefer AirBNB to a generic hotel. There were several nice looking places in eastern Ohio, but The Kelby (River Road in Perry, Ohio; contact only through AirBNB) is interesting and the value is amazing for the price. The 1000 square foot cottage is located above the three-car garage on a four-acre wooded property which runs down to the Grand River.

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Joe, a part-time attorney, greeted us at the driveway and Jeannie, a retired medical librarian, met us at the door. Moving through the heated garage, we passed a large collection of empty beer bottles along the stair ledge. Now, that might have put some people off, but we saw it as confirmation that The Kelby is a fun place to stay.

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The space upstairs is large, and the pine plank cathedral ceiling makes it feel enormous. The floors are hardwood with area rugs and there are five big windows that let in lots of light. I’d say that walking into The Kelby is like coming home, but frankly it’s better. Jeannie offered us fuzzy grippy slippers, there was local honey and fresh flowers on the dining table, and bottled water and apples on the desk.

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You will never be hungry at The Kelby. Jeannie and Joe spoiled us with snacks like German chocolate, Cracker Jacks, bananas, and microwave popcorn. On top the fridge were several boxes of cereal, biscotti  and fresh muffins from a local bakery. Inside, we found a half gallon of milk, a variety of yoghurts, orange juice, English muffins, and a bowl of fresh blueberries. The best discoveries were the pumpkin butter and merlot jam.

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All we saw after that was the big, warm, comfy queen-sized bed at the far end of the suite. We’d been driving all day and immediately crashed into sleep under the down comforter… When we awoke, three hours later, we explored the rest of the cottage. There are two TV sets that we never turned on, being more interested in the books, drawer of board games and the Bose CD player with two shelves of music underneath. In keeping with our commitment to try new things every day, we chose the Classic Icelandic Rock disc. (It was pretty cool!)

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The bathroom is a thing of beauty: extra-long vanity with double sinks, a spacious water closet with actual elbow room, and a shower that is perfect for two with water that gets hot fast and stays hot. Jeannie and Joe provided five-foot long fluffy towels (important when you’re tall!) and His/Hers bathrobes. James decided to use the abundance of floor space to create a “crime scene” out of my pajamas. 

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Overall, we would say that The Kelby is stunningly comfortable. We only had one night, but are already planning to come back one day for a much longer stay.