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“Location, charm, hospitality!”

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Hellman Guest House
Ranked #27 of 32 Galena B&B and Inns
Wisconsin
Level 5 Contributor
90 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“Location, charm, hospitality!”
Reviewed 9 February 2012

My fiance and I stayed at Hellman for an impromptu midweek getaway this Feb. Rita was very welcoming even though we showed up within an hour of calling to make the reservation. We were the only ones staying that night. The pictures online do not do this place justice! The price was great too.

Location: The location is perfect- just a walk down the hill to get downtown and also on a great street surrounded by picturesque houses (several other inns as well). Last time we were in Galena we stayed at Cloran Mansion which was great except for location so this was important for us. The walk up from dinner was pretty steep as others have mentioned but not a problem for us.

Rooms: We stayed in Eleanor's Room after peeking at each room since they were all empty. Picked it because it's the only room with a clawfoot tub, Of note, it's a bit more private than the rest since it's at the end of the hall next to the second stair case- not an issue for us since we were the only ones there but might be a plus when the place is full. Next time we would probably stay in the Master suite- it's the biggest room and has amazing views of downtown Galena. All rooms have electric fireplaces and private bathrooms. TVs are tiny with VHS players (tapes available to borrow) so don't expect high tech. Bed was fairly comfortable. The room wasn't huge but big enough and everything was very clean.

The downstairs is very charming, plenty of room to sit around and play a game, browse through the books about Galena, etc. Everything inside is very well maintained and the outside gardens look like they will be beautiful in the summer as well.

We have stayed in several B&Bs throughout the country and Rita definitely stands out as a great hostess. Very informative, genuine and informal. She sat and chatted with us during breakfast (which was delicious- German pancake, fruit, scones, coffee, juice) and we really felt like guests in her home.

There are many B&Bs to choose from in the area and I will definitely return to Hellman.

Room Tip: Get Eleanor's Room for the clawfoot tub or the Hellman Master Suite for the big room and amazing...
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank digreg06
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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42 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (10)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Middleton, Wisconsin
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 December 2011

We visited Galena for the first time to celebrate our anniversary. Rita was a gracious hostess, the breakfasts were outstanding. We had the suite, which overlooks downtown and the river - just beautiful.

The Hellman House is very convenient to downtown shopping and dining, and the views from the top of the hill are amazing. Being on the hill, though, means that even though it's only 3 blocks to downtown, returning home is a 3 block walk straight uphill.

We highly recommend staying at Hellman House.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JnA53562
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, IL
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 November 2011

As a veteran I support businesses that support us. I got a flyer through my job for a special offer for veterans for Veterans Day. I called Hellman Guest House and spoke with Rita, the hostess and made a reservation. My wife and I are from Chicago but have family in Rockford and Freeport, which is the next major town to Galena. Unless you are familiar with the area, I do not recommend making this drive after sunset. The roads are hilly, curvy and the speed limit dips quickly when approaching several small towns along the way.
We arrived and could see that it was a place out of time. When we entered we felt like we had been transported into a simpler era. Rita had an old fashioned Christmas tree up, with mostly hand made ornaments. The wooden chairs and tables looked to be antiques. This was a place that my grandmother may have felt familiar growing up in.
The room was small and quaint, decorated with children's nightshirts and a sink in the room. A bit of a tight fit for myself, my wife and 2yr old junior. We couldn't get an overnight sitter so we had to bring him. But Rita didn't mind at all.
Breakfast was amazing, a German pancake with powdered sugar. Fresh OJ and coffee. My family were the only guests but we didn't mind. Since we had never stayed at a B&B it gave us a chance to learn a lot more about them and about out hostess. Our son really warmed up to her. We spent the rest of the day out but looked forward to getting back. We ordered a pizza for the night and turned in as other guests were arriving.
The next morning was just as amazing, apple-caramel muffins, banana nut bread french toast, bacon, cantaloupe and grapes. My son insisted that Rita help feed him, which is a first for anyone other than family. We met the two other couples who had checked in and spent the rest of breakfast swapping stories and talking. Turns out that the guys were both veterans.
Our experience with Hellman Guest House and Rita was top notch. I've traveled all over these united states and stayed in many motels and hotels, all of which now seem so cold and impersonal compared to our experience with this B&B. I wish we had only done it sooner.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Pauline Room. Although nice, I believe it to be the smallest room.
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Suuave
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level 4 Contributor
19 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 August 2011

This was our first trip to Galena and we loved it. The Hellman Guest House was lovely. Rita was a very nice hostess. She was very knowledgeable about the area and gave us good advice about restaurants and museums. Our first breakfast was an amazing banana nut bread french toast. She served it with lots of fresh fruit. And homemade scones--delicious. We stayed in the master suite and it was very nice. Neat little private balcony with a great view. (I imagine it would be absolutely gorgeous in the Fall) We probably could have walked down to Main Street but we chose to drive because I was concerned about the walk back up the hill. :)

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank rah1075
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dubuque, Iowa
1 review
Reviewed 13 July 2009

We had heard about Hellman House through the bridal shop in Dubuque Cheryl Ann's. We were looking for a place to have a quiet wedding. The gardens feature a waterfall and other great water fountains as well as excellent flowers and wildlife. Rita was super. She made sure we had everything we asked for, as well as some unexpected treats. The weather was perfect, and she made sure that there were no distractions while we prepared. She had beverages on ice, and even made a sandwich for one of our guests who was pregnant and felt a little hungry. After our ceremony she had some really awesome snacks set up in the dining room and champagne on ice. People could also hang outside on the porch that simply has one of the best views ever. We then went downtown to a restaurant called One Eleven Main, and had an awesome meal. Rita had recommended this as well. We then returned to the Hellman House. I went upstairs to change and much to my amazement they had already taken the photos they had been taking throughout the day to a local developer, and had the pictures mounted in an album, along with a card and video of the ceremony laying on the bed. What a thoughtful gesture.
We then had a delightful time on the porch talking with a few of our guests as well as other people staying there that night. The next morning was a great breakfast and more conversation. All in all a tremendous experience and we plan on returning again in the future! Thanks Rita!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Spudo769
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cedar Rapids
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 11 December 2007

My husband and I went to Galena to find a bed and breakfast to not only stay in but get married in. We toured several homes in Galena prior to our stay and the Hellman house was the first stop and the one we chose. The house is spotless, the food was delicious and Rita is a gracious innkeeper! She arranged a minister, baked us a wedding cake, took pictures, helped the bride get ready and to top it all off, made us a keepsake album and personalized champagne glasses to take home and many other added touches. We did not expect any of this. She went above and beyond what we ever dreamed of and helped make our special stay the best bed and breakfast experience we have ever had and our wedding day perfect! We are scheduled to return for our 1 year anniversary again. The Hellman House is a MUST STAY in Galena.
Steve and Donna Wieditz

  • Liked — EVERYTHING
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed December 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank galenanewlyweds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elmwood Park, IL
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 April 2007

What a wonderful night’s stay we had at Hellman Guest House - and though our stay was a serendipitous accident (we had booked a four day honeymoon stay in the Abbey's High Street bed and breakfast across the street, but no one was home to let us in), it was remarkably enjoyable. We are very thankful we stayed here, because it
was our first time in a bed and breakfast, and our experience at Abbey's later that week turned into a nightmare (See our August 2006 review of Abbey's High Street for more). We therefore had a very good
first impression of what staying in a b and b could be like, and why
so many people choose to do so.

The owner and hostess Rita Wadman greeted us at the door, and showed us a room that was truly lovely, large, and had a wonderful view of the beautiful hills of the Galena countryside out its windows. The bathroom in this room had a large shower, ample space elsewhere, and a balcony window with another spectacular view outdoors.

We took a tour of the house after we had made ourselves comfortable, and took a peek in the other three lovely upstairs bedrooms, which had no guests staying in them at the time, as it was a Sunday night. What really caught my eye throughout the house are the lovely period details that set this 19th century mansion apart from some of its more modernized neighbors.

After a very restful night of sleep, Rita was our engaging hostess at breakfast. We thoroughly enjoyed our conversation with her as we ate the delicious, and healthy breakfast of crepes, fresh sliced fruit, juice, and coffee she had so carefully prepared, and tastefully served - complete with crystal, fine china, and candlelight. Rita was also very helpful, and obliging when we asked her for directions before we left.

Still later, Rita was generous with her assistance when our stay at Abbey's during the rest of the week turned horribly sour. Our conversation with her on the spacious, and charmingly furnished veranda was really peaceful, and the view was truly beautiful all around the house, especially since Rita had done much to brighten up the surrounding garden.

All in all, our one night stay at this bed and breakfast was wonderful, and my husband and I will be sure to stay there whenever we are in the Galena area for a visit.

  • Liked — Our hostess Rita, and the lovely home she so graciously allowed us to stay in
  • Disliked — no internet access
  • Stayed July 2006, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank helenacan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hellman Guest House

Property: Hellman Guest House
Address: 318 Hill St, Galena, IL 61036-1836
Region: United States > Illinois > Galena
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
Ranked #27 of 32 B&Bs / Inns in Galena
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 3

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