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“Off Target Guest...”
Review of Blanco County Inn

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Blanco County Inn
Ranked #1 of 3 Blanco B&B and Inns
San Marcos, Texas
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Off Target Guest...”
Reviewed 27 October 2013

What can I possibly say about the Blanco County Inn, except that they do the urban the Austin/San Antonio escapist, "Bed and Breakfast" crowd very well. Considering their location, how could anyone possibly fault them for that? It's a predictable, profitable and dependable market upon which they obviously depend... to the exclusion of almost anyone else.

Who am I to throw stones at skillful and insightful entrepreneurs? However, if anyone were to try to delude themselves into believing Blanco, Texas was "out in the hill country" they would be sorely amiss. Blanco is now an "up and coming" ubiquitous suburb of the merging metro Austin/San Antonio urban sprawl developing along IH 35 and US 281. Yet, the Blanco County Inn does what they do... VERY well, if a bit on the pricey side. At least for us serious road hounds like me. The overall impression I got, was they were doing a very good job of impressing a very targeted market segment... into which I do not easily fit.

This is a lovely property. This is an older (I'd say 50's, early 60's) motor-court that has been recently and lovingly refurbished at a standard approaching excellent. (VERY, good, skillful and thoughtful work, guys!) It is very "French Country" and "Nuevo Southwestern." (Because I was with a group, I saw more than one room.) I will say that the outdoor areas are very nice and the absolute jewel of the property. I wonder whether there is an abandoned pool under that monstrous deck? The outdoor areas are marvelous for various groups, wedding and reunions. However, be advised the non-stop commercial traffic along US 281 is close at hand and at times... over powering. This is not Camp Wood... or better yet, Sanderson... or even Orla. This is downtown Blanco, TX... right along US281... urban daytime noise is a fact of life here, plan accordingly.

The rooms were expertly restored and well appointed for their targeted market. They had color coordinated interiors and furnishings that would make Martha Stewart weep. They had crisp, fluffy towels washed and dried without fabric softeners. They had Hersey chocolates, muffins and toiletries. They had 'branded' milled soaps, shampoos and body lotions. (That seems to be a frequently occurring amenity these days. Lotion? What the heck am I supposed to do with body lotion? This sparks my imagination engines into churning... "What sort of person uses such body lotion... and for what?" Personally, I'd be more interested in branded complementary sunscreens.)

My room, at the top of two flights of steps, was the top dog 'apartment flat' on site. It was very neatly done... very cool! Absolutely lovely! There is a cool outdoor deck with adequate high dollar outdoor furniture and umbrellas and a scenic view of the rooftop of the office and a storage shed... along with the noise and traffic along 281. There is a charcoal fired BBQ, an outdoor trash can and outdoor motion sensor activated lights which I found overtly troublesome.

In the evenings, they triggered automatically every single time I stepped out the door for whatever reason. Sometimes, considering the urban sprawl... it is just nice to step out and sit quietly. To look wistfully at what we have left of the night sky. I like being able to see the sky at night... but I also understand litigation driven, building code requirements to light the stairway. Low voltage, downward cast, motion activated lighting on the stairs would have been far better than having the blazing fury of a youthful blue-white sun ignite every single time I stepped out of the doorway. I felt like I was Richard Dryfuss in that danged movie "Close Encounters of the Third Kind!"

Boop, Bee, Boop, Boop, Booooooooohhhhh...

My 'apartment' had a partial kitchen which was very cool and decorated in a style I describe as "Ikea Cosmopolitan." Another member of our crew also had a kitchen. But in my case, mine wasn't a full kitchen. I will pause to note here I found it rather odd there were pots and pans provided in the RTA (Ready To Assemble) cabinets... supposedly for cooking... in a supposed "kitchen" that did not have any sort of access to a cook top what so ever.

Hmmm... what does this mean? Pots and pans in the cabinets... but no cooktop?

But, if you want to toast a complimentary Otis Spunkmeyer muffin to crispy perfection, this place is your huckleberry! It boasts a super, duper, deluxe (did I say, super) toaster oven, that I did not use... even once. There is a full sized regular kitchen coffee maker and the staff is gratuitously liberal with the Folger's packets, making it easy to have a cup or two in house and still fill the 'to go' mug when heading out to ride what is left of our sadly dwindling Texas hill country.

There is a full fridge and an absolutely MARVELOUS breakfast bar with seating for two that provided a scenic view of a completely blank wall... and the only 'real' place to plug in a laptop or a cell phone charger. From there, you cannot see any of the THREE (count 'em... THREE) in suite TV's from! (What's with that?)

Hey owners; because that totally blank kitchen wall is right there in your customer's danged face... daily... get some cool art to hang on that wall. OR, better yet... a bulletin board where you can post images of successful events you have hosted. And maybe coupons and flyers for local businesses and events... concerts... snail walks.. whatever! And add some USB charging stations for devices. Just sayin... for the price! Kindly advice from the much poorer fool... that just stayed there for two nights.

I would say that the only real 'un-over-come-able' flaw of my room was that there was no convenient place to sit, set up and work. If you want to lounge and watch sports on TV, or beauty pageants, or car auctions... if you are looking for a secluded 'love shack," this is your place. But if you are like me... a lowly working stiff on weekend "get-away," having a place to plug in a laptop and handle some late breaking work related pookie... within sight of the main TV... is critical. But then again... I have already disqualified myself from intended target market of the Blanco County Inn.

But they have cool TV's! They have monstrous flats screens in every single room! There were three in my suite alone. One 52 inch and two 32 inch screens in each bedroom. (Did I mention... none of these were visible from the breakfast area which had the ONLY "sit-at" work area and the ONLY really readily accessible wall outlets.) ALL these TV's had inputs, which are really a plus with me. My room had a full digital receiver and a DVD player in place. (I watched the first two disks from season one of Battle Star Galatica. I really liked the "in-situ" disk players, kudos!)

They have adequate WiFi... at times. It drags a bit when all the other guests are sucking up their daily portion of mindless televised sports, pre-packaged programming and NetFlix streaming. For those of us that just want mail, weather... or maybe to upload a bit of data to the G-drive... it is somewhat tedious dealing with the bandwidth draw of the overtly feeding digital masses. Mornings are always better in that respect.

The WiFi is all inclusive and "light and fluffy" in the early AM. They do not charge for multiple devices... I consider this a plus!

If you are a 'love sick' couple on get away... or if you are traveling with small (and very well behaved) children... if you are a weekend urbanite fleeing Houston, Austin, San Antonio or DFW for some temporary, marginal sanity... if you just want to escape the rat race for a weekend...the Blanco County Inn is your blessed sanctuary. A groovy place to stay.

BUT... if you are hard-core, road troll like me; who thinks the Jalepeno corn dogs at a Stripes gas station are literally manna from heaven... and the sound of diesel reefer rigs idling in a truck stop are literally the singing of angels...

Keep heading west till you are at least past Segovia...

Room Tip: Get a regular room... upgrading is irrelevant here!
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Phil M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
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  • Value
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (32)
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English first
Wimberley, Texas
Level 5 Contributor
84 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 October 2013

Headed out to Hill Country to get a better lay of the land prior to making a move to the area. We picked this quaint little inn because of it's central location, great rates and 5 star reviews on TA. The renovated roadside motel is really quite a brilliant concept converting 2 adjoining small rooms into several suites. By the end of our 4 night stay we had put 700 miles on the rental car and our heads were dancing with visions of glorious vistas from New Braunfels to Spring Branch to Fredericksburg to Wimberley and everywhere in between. We couldn't have done it if we didn't get a caffeine jump start and refreshing shower each morning, and a great nights sleep on the comfy bed at the end of each day. And you can't beat being able to pull the car right up to your room - no long walks through a lobby and up the elevator. The rooms are set up to accommodate your every need...the right amount of space to move around and well thought out places to put all the stuff you need on a road trip. The small fridge in the kitchenette was great for holding snacks and beer that went down great while sitting on the sofa watching the flat screen while we unwound from the day. Plenty of outlets to recharge the electronics. And Ralph was very accommodating and made the stay all the better. There are a few good little restaurants right in the area for a quick bite. A great Sunday brunch at the Uptown restaurant down the road. Along with a liquor store and a Lowe's market. I would highly recommend staying here if you are trekking around Hill Country.

Room Tip: We stayed in room 104 and it had a very comfy queen bed, full sofa and small kitchenette with small...
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
Helpful?
Thank Gogirl61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralph J d, Owner at Blanco County Inn, responded to this review, 16 October 2013
Thank you for your kind remarks. We are happy that you enjoyed your stay and it was our pleasure to have you stay with us.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cypress, Texas
1 review
Reviewed 30 September 2013 via mobile

I stay in hotels all over the country including 5 star major hotels and I enjoy staying here the most. Ralph and Deborah very helpful and friendly. Good value. The location is great with good places to eat close by. It is also a great jump off point for anywhere in the central hill country.

Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
Helpful?
Thank Griff D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralph J d, Owner at Blanco County Inn, responded to this review, 2 October 2013
Thank you so very much. It gives us great satisfaction that you enjoyed your stay. We look forward to seeing you again.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Liberty Hill, Texas
2 reviews
Reviewed 26 August 2013

Blanco County Inn is a wonderful place to stay. The owners are very nice and there to help you with what you need. The rooms were very clean and it is all very close to the square. Will definitely stay there again!

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Stacy S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralph J d, Owner at Blanco County Inn, responded to this review, 27 August 2013
Thank you so very much. It was our pleasure to have you stay with us. Come and see us again, we look forward to your return.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Antonio, Texas
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 August 2013

I stayed at this gem of a place for the weekend to see the nearby county fair, and was pleasantly surprised by ... well, everything! Check in/out was easy, the room was spotless, the bed was wonderful, the nights were quiet, and it it's well-appointed kitchen had all the supplies needed to cook a couple light meals. As a person accustomed to staying at significantly more expensive places, I find a lot to love about this quaint little inn. I'll definitely be back.

Room Tip: The inn has several room configurations, each of which is listed on the its website.
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Robert P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ralph J d, Owner at Blanco County Inn, responded to this review, 24 August 2013
Thank you for your review/kind remarks. We are happy that you enjoyed your stay. It was our pleasure to have you stay with us. Come and see us again, we look forward to your return.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Burleson, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
206 reviews
85 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 July 2013

The Blanco County Inn and guest houses are the best bet in Blanco Texas. The owners are very "hands on" and do everything they can to make your stay pleasant. The rooms are very clean, very comfortable and each room has microwave and most have a fridge. They provide in room coffee makers and plenty of coffee. The wireless connection is fast and never any problem. There is an outstanding deck to relax on with a glass of wine under the giant oak trees. All the restaurants are close with easy access.
I will stay at no other place in this area but the Blanco County Inn.

Room Tip: Single level but guest houses are available for groups or families. All the rooms are great. They fa...
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Johnny B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pipe Creek, TX
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 12 July 2013

We've stayed at ALOT of motels across this country, but the Blanco County Inn was our favorite place to stay at EVER!...The price was cheap and the room was set up soo well; it had everything and more than we expected or needed!...The owners are soo friendly and pleasant. We loved the large lawn area, fully landscaped with comfortable seating...The huge deck was awesome to relax on and watch the sunset!...I recommended EVERYONE going to Blanco to stay at Blanco County Inn...You will NOT be disappointed...a Great place at a GREAT price!!!

Room Tip: We always look for a good deal--low price with microwave & refrigerator in our room...The only t...
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Roland G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Blanco County Inn

Property: Blanco County Inn
Address: 902 Main St, Blanco, TX 78606-5236
Region: United States > Texas > Blanco
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Blanco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We let our customers decide whether they want to do nothing, or savor all the things Blanco & the Texas Hill Country have to offer. With that said we are an 80 year old motel, with rooms that have been remodeled over the last few years. All this to give our customers, and future friends, a charming "Hill Country" Experience! Being (we believe the motel was built in1932) we are 80 years old; we are the oldest lodging in Blanco County. Also, we are one of the oldest lodging establishments in the hill country. It was founded by Mary Lester as the Lester Courts when the State & Federal government was developing our state park system and when Route Number 66 was developed. No, not US Route 66, we think it was a state highway before it became US 281. So along with the road and the park here Mrs. Lester built the Lester courts. Wanting to slow down the frenzied pace of corporate life, my wife and I jumped at the chance to live in the hill country, and run a quaint little inn. As our retirement project we have had fun restoring the motel to a quaint "Boutique Motel" and meet people and new friends from all over the world. Ask us about some fresh eggs or soon our "Blanco County Honey!" ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Blanco County Inn Texas

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