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“"Unique" isnt adequate to explain!”

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Olde Squat Inn Bed and Breakfast
Ranked #2 of 3 Marion B&B and Inns
Illinois
1 review
“"Unique" isnt adequate to explain!”
Reviewed 28 March 2010

We heartily encourage & endorse including the Olde Squat Inn in your southern illinois plans! It is unlike any place we have ever stayed. Unique isnt adequate to explain the innovation, preservation, hospitality, location and atmosphere provided by Jim & Katie. Off the beaten path but a short drive to everything the area has to offer. Katie's years working in tourism feild make her an informed & enthusiastic provider of area info & options. Her cooking is generous on taste and she makes food allergy adjustments without comprimising flavor or presentation! when possible, in season & locally grown grace her homestyle table setting including vintage linens, eclectic glassware and flatware. Jim's candid and casual conversational style reveal to the interested listener rich and real glimpses into how the various structures were rescued, perserved and even re-invented! Jim is a marvel of old fashioned ingenuity and hospitality; each building with porches & fireplace: a collection of histories preserved in puzzle-like fashion; log by log & brick by brick incorporating applicances, hot shower and electric to create unique accomidations. all of this plus flowers on the table, singing frogs in the pond and reasonable rate options make staying at the Olde Squat Inn a wise and wonderful decision! Deb & Bruce

  • Stayed March 2010, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank DebBruceIllinois
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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47 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 (8)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
St. Louis, Missouri
1 review
Reviewed 2 March 2010

I wanted a cabin within walking distance of St. Louis, which also allowed pets. This "inn" is exactly what we were looking for! Cozy, rustic, and secluded were all things we wanted, and exactly what we got (we stayed in the Lake Cabin). We were surprised to find the real wood burning stove already going when we arrived (which my dog LOVED), a wrap-around porch with porch swing, and an outdoor fireplace. Older reviews complain about towels and other amenities, but the towels, kitchen utensils, bedsheets, etc. were all fine (not luxury, but not so bad that we needed to bring our own).

Yes, it wasn't super clean, but it was perfect to visit, even in the middle of winter (though we did luck out with a warm weekend). It was great to get some rest and cook a leisurely dinner inside the cabin, and enjoy the fireplace and a bottle of wine while star-gazing on the porch at night. Also, it's not clear from their website, but all cabins are situated next to each other, all of which face a large man-made lake. We only saw Jim's dogs once, and they didn't disturb us at all or come into our cabin.

Jim stopped by a few times, which was nice and not obtrusive at all. We first met him at the main lodge, he took us to the cabin and showed us around, and then encouraged us to "tour" through the other cabins (which were all unoccupied in the winter). He stopped by after our "tour" to answer questions, and again later in the evening to bring over some fruit fresh-baked bread. He stopped by the next morning (around 11am, which again, was welcomed) to see how our night was and if we needed anything. He encouraged us to stay as long as we liked, though we left to drive around Southern Illinois.

I should mention, however, that the bill was about $30 more than what I was expecting, based on the prices listed on the Inn's website and what Jim quoted over the phone. Be clear about price when making a reservation, though the extra $30 was worth it for the experience.

Between the great cabin, the relaxing atmosphere, and the wonderful hospitality of Jim, I'd give the overall experience a A-. Would have been an A if the cabin was a bit cleaner and if breakfast was provided (it's not provided in the wintertime, since there aren't many guests).

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Sh0rtandSweet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
O'Fallon IL
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 November 2009

We read many reviews of the Old Squat Inn before reserving. As with most previews, we took each with a grain of salt. We tend to like those with one star for "too secluded" or "not very kid friendly". I was entertained by one for the Old Squat Inn (a collection of reconstructed log homes from the 1800s) that said "needs updating". Sign us up!

We arrived at night and found our caretaker sitting on the front porch of our cabin with a roaring fire in a porch-side fireplace, just finished being built that day. He had a fire in our inside wood stove too. After some simple instructions on how not to burn the cabin down (we're new to the wood stove thing) and settlement on a time for breakfast, we were left to a breathtaking view of the night sky. It takes a periodic departure from suburban living to re-embrace the universe.

The cabin was simple.... as they were in the 1800s! It did, however have logical upgrades like indoor plumbing and electricity with some less logical, but welcome upgrades like television and a microwave oven. There was an upstairs, but we didn't use it. The kitchen was suitable for a lenghty stay with a full-sized refrigerator, dishes, and utensils.

The first morning we woke to the sun rising over a pond of a couple acres in our "front yard". The view was gorgeous and while we didn't see any wildlife, the tracks were there around the pond. I'm sure wildlife is routinely seen on the grounds. We went to breakfast in the main lodge and enjoyed sausage, eggs, hot coffee, and the typical breakfast fare but with the less typical fresh pumpkin pie. It was all delicious, hot, and plentiful.

Our next night and morning were as pleasant as the first. We were treated like family and lacked nothing... except the stresses of our routines at home. The Old Squat Inn is rustic in most regards. If you're looking for luxury, don't go. Don't wear heels, don't look for room service or ice machines (there was ice in the freezer, though), don't expect turndown service. Otherwise... BRAVO!

We will return to Old Squat Inn for a lengthy stay. We look forward to its rustic charm, uniqueness, and seclusion. We were made to feel welcome and welcomed back. We were connected with simplicity again. Not easy to find these days.

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank ajbeebe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DivasOwners
1 review
Reviewed 7 September 2009

We were looking for a pet friendly b & b for our trip to Southern Illinois. The Olde Squat Inn definitely fit the bill. Our dog was welcomed by the owners, Jim and Katy as well as their three well behaved dogs: Buster, Lady and Earl. The cabin we stayed in was reasonably priced, roomy, comfortable and full of amenities (refrigerator, microwave, tv/vcr, coffee maker with coffee, dishes, silverware, pots and pans, etc. - everything you'd find at home!). The furnishings weren't new or without occasional dust or blemish, but niether are the things at home. They were comfortable, homey and appropriate for a cabin. Breakfast each morning was both tasty and filling and Katy had the morning newspaper waiting while she cooked it. She would give us sightseeing tips and brochures as we ate and she sent food with us when we left. Jim showed us around the property, talking about each authentic log cabin as well as the features of each he had put in. Each cabin had a distinctive look and feel while retaining its history. He also helped us find a good local restaurant for dinner when we arrived. The property was beautiful and showed lots of hard work by Jim and Katy. I would recommend this b & b for anyone looking for a pet friendly, relaxing getaway.

  • Stayed August 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank DivasOwners
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Orange County, California
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 August 2009

I am New York City born and bred, currently living in the hectic lifestyle that is Southern California but my wife's family is from Southern Illinois. We recently went to Illinois and stayed at the Inn. We could not have been any happier! Yes, it is not the Ritz Carlton. Anyone expecting such should go elsewhere. Without a doubt it was the most relaxing 4 nights I have had in many, many years.

I have always been interested in the history of the midwest states such as Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. To sleep in an original 1840 log cabin that was probably built along the Ohio River separating Illinois from Kentucky was a step back in time for us.

Jim was the perfect host. And the dogs helped create the perfect ambiance, whether greeting us when we woke up or barging into our cabin seeking shelter from a thunderstorm. Jim's wife Katy was out of town during our four night visit and Jim stepped up to the plate admirably in her place cooking breakfast in her absence and thoroughly entertaining us.

The effort that Jim has spent transforming these antique original settlers cabins into a habitable 21st century bed and breakfast inn is inspiring. We were lucky enough to be provided with a guided tour by Jim that not only explained the origin of each of the cabins but went into detail explaining the origin and history of each and every addition to the original cabins (railings from an old church, doors from some other historical structure), etc.

Did you know log cabins in the west were constructed of whole round logs while log cabins in the midwest were constructed of hand-squared logs? I didn't know that, but apparently that was the case due to the humidity levels of the regions and the need to square the logs in areas of high humidity.

Jim knows his stuff and has the most perfect job in the world...working at his own pace selflessly transforming and preserving historical treasures and engaging all visitors in endless and fascinating conversation. I myself am stuck in the rut of working 60-80 hour weeks...what I wouldn't give to be Jim for a day.

For those of you interested in fishing...the on-site lake produced bass of impressive size and quantity.

While I admit that I haven't been to Southern Illinois for the past 20+ years, after this pleasant stay I have committed to returning to the Inn every year.

I have traveled the country and traveled the world. The Olde Squat Inn ranks up there as one of my all-time favorite places. We can't wait to go back next year!

John

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank johncdaly55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Illinois
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 May 2009

My husband and I recently stayed at Old Squat Inn and we were very disappointed. The rates are way too high for what you get. Our cabin was supposed to have an upstairs with two twin beds and it was locked and filled with storage. The bathroom did not even have cold water in the sink only hot. The bed was terrible, we didn't get much sleep because it felt like we were laying in filth and could feel the springs. It also was very much nicer looking on the website. Unfortunately we paid one hundred dollars a night to stay in dust, cobwebs and didn't even have all the amenities listed on the web, places need a lot of updating.

  • Stayed May 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
2 Thank jakerbaker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
East Central Illinois
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 September 2008

If you're looking for resort glitz, you probably need to bypass Olde Squat. But, if you're looking for a slow and quiet, relaxed atmosphere with porch swings and walks around the lake, then this is the place. There's just something special about a log cabin that was lived in 150 years ago. The floors might not be perfectly level and maybe the doors don't fit well but who cares?

We found the dogs charming and very mannerly, never begging and never sneaking into our cabin or hanging around under foot. Helping ourselves to fresh garden produce (yes, I do mean pick your own) was a definite plus. All our beds had hand made quilts and comforters made by Katy and her Mom. I would suggest bringing your own skillet, dutch oven and basics like a couple of knives and a can opener. I imagine the reason why they aren't there is they get stolen regularly.

Over all, it was a great four day experience and we will return

  • Liked — Historic preservation, location
  • Disliked — needed more bath towels, which we got
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Prairie_Granny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Olde Squat Inn Bed and Breakfast

Property: Olde Squat Inn Bed and Breakfast
Address: 14160 Libery School Road, Marion, IL 62959-6798
Region: United States > Illinois > Marion
Amenities:
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Marion
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 5

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