Tuesday, December 17, 2013



So much to do and not enough time in the day. This time of the year we add seasonal decorating and shopping  to our all ready busy schedules.  And there are friends and family to socialize with too.

There are so many options in Louisville. Here are a few of our favorites.

people sitting at tables in nulu area of louisville with a building on the left
Tis the season to shop till you drop. 
Try Louisvilles many small local boutiques in the St. Matthews Vogue Shopping Center or the Nulu West Market Street area. (www.nulueastmarket.com)

Or you can always check out the shopping malls. The two best malls, the Mall St. Matthews and Oxmoor Mall are just a mile away from the inn. They offer a great mix of stores and top restaurants. If you want to take a little break from the shopping, a new Cinemark movie center complex has just opened in the Mall St. Matthews.

Tis the season for family outings.
Tours of historic homes are a traditional favorite with many local families and visitors.
Locust Grove, Farmington and Whitehall are open for tours daily and decorated for the season as they would have been in 1790 and 1820.  Volunteer docents dress in period costumes and portray the lives of  famous early Kentuckians.

Or try something different and begin a new tradition.
louisville underground caver with christmast lights
Louisville's Mega Cavern features six underground zip lines, including a fun filled dual racing zip, and two awesome challenge bridges. The new Mega Quest is an aerial adventure course using ropes and a variety of obstacles...definitely a workout. ( www.louisvillemegacavern.com )

Tis the season to take a break from the hustle and bustle.
a tea pot and tea cup and saucer set on a bench in front of the fireplace and a plate with tea sandwiches and cookies on a table next to a chair nearby
Turn on some Christmas music, pick up a good book and settle in by a fireplace for a breather from all the activities of the season.  Fix a bourbon hot toddy or a warm pot of tea and settle in for some peace and quiet. If you are taking that break at our inn we can arrange a great tea in your room for you.
a horse and carriage and driver waving in downtown louisville with a building in the background

Or take a walk along the river walk downtown and a romantic carriage ride along the downtown streets near the river.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013



A new event showcasing Louisville's Iroquois Park and over 5,000 professionally carved pumpkins will be open this year from October 10 through November 2.  The illuminated
jack-o-lanterns will line a trail over 5 football fields long.

a group of carved jack o lanterns with faces and one with the face of harry potter at the jack o lantern spectacularThey will be grouped in themed scenes and also feature some Louisville favorites including Uof L, Slugger Bats, Uof K and the Derby.
And don't worry...since pumpkins do not last forever, the display completely changes every 7 days.

hundreds of orange pumpkins carved and lit up in the park for the jack o lantern spectacular

Gates open at 7pm nightly rain or shine
Sunday through Thursday:
7pm to midnight
Friday and Saturday:
7pm to 1am

Tickets may be purchased at the Iroquois Amphitheater daily
To call : 502-363-7766

Or you can go online to their web site at www.jackolanternlouisville.com

Thursday, September 26, 2013


the concrete walkway up to the big four bridgemany people walking and some on bicycles going across the big four bridge
Once the Big Four Bridge was a bridge used by railroad companies. It sat in the midst of an area only a mile from the city center in an industrial area on the riverfront. Now the bridge has a new life as the latest jewel in the Waterfront Park.

In fact it is turning out to be the most popular spot in the park. People of all ages stroll across the span. The view of the city and the Ohio river is spectacular. There are no cars to worry about ...just people strolling with kids, joggers, cyclists, even jugglers and sometimes string quartets serenading everyone. You can see the Belle of Louisville steamboat and hear the calliope playing.

Soon the Indiana side will open their walkway and people will be able to access the bridge from both sides of the river.  A beautiful, peaceful, and  free way to spend the day!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013



The 4th annual Bellarmine University Designer Show House is being held this week at the Anchorage at 804 Evergreen Road in Anchorage. The Gothic Revival house was built in 1868 by James Goslee, a former riverboat captain. The beautiful 7000 square foot house features rooms decorated by 30 of Louisville's best designers. Elegant furniture and accessories and hand painted murals enhance the many rooms of this unusual house.

a pen and ink drawing of the gothic revival house on the bellarimine showhouse tour with trees and a walkway up to the brick house
The house sits on 19 acres in the heart of Anchorage which is just a few miles from the Inn at Woodhaven. Kentucky does not have many examples of the Gothic Revival architecture. It was very popular in the mid to late 1800.
There is a boutique open and a cafe where visitors can shop a bit and enjoy the grounds.
Hours for the tour are: Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm and Thursday from 10:00 am to 7:00pm
Tickets are $15
For more information you can check

Saturday, August 17, 2013


a tour guide pouring a sample of bourbon for some guests at buffalo trace distillerySpirits at the Buffalo Trace Distillery

Apparently there are more spirits than those aging in the warehouses at Buffalo Trace.  The Distillery has been rumored to be haunted by Col. Blanton for years. The Stoney Point Mansion where he died in 1859 is the site of his appearances.

I just had a group of guests enjoying visiting many of the Bourbon Trail distilleries and sampling as they went. They had a great time on the Ghost Tour although Col. Blanton did not appear for them!
a view of many barrels of bourbon lined up on racks in the distilleryBuffalo Trace was investigated by television's number one paranormal reality series, "Ghost Hunters" last year.  The show's two lead investigators, Jason and Grant, said Buffalo Trace was one of the few sites they had been to where all the investigators on the team had a paranormal experience. The show's producers came to Buffalo Trace asking to film there, due to viewer requests.

Visitors can now have their own experience on the Ghost Tour at the distillery. The tour will take guests to the rarely seen Stoney Point Mansion as well as several other sites that were shown on the "Ghost Hunters" episode. The tour lasts about an hour and concludes with a sample of Buffalo Trace Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey, the distillery's flagship brand, along with one other award winning product made at the distillery.  Other themed tours are available as well.
a spooky view of the distillery buildings a night with lights showing through fog
The tours are offered Thursday through Saturday evenings at 7 p.m.
There is no charge for the tour but be sure to make a reservation by calling 1-800-654-8471 or emailing giftshop@buffalotrace.com or www.buffalowtrace.com

Thursday, June 13, 2013


Perfect Time to Visit Kentucky
two mares grazing in a green field in kentucky with white fences and white barns on rolling hills in the background
Anytime is a good time to visit Kentucky and tour the horse farms but this time of the year is the best.
The weather is great and now the young fouls are out in the fields with their moms and it is enchanting to watch them run about.

Many of the farms have guided tours.  You decide which farms you wish to see and arrange for a reservation before you arrive in town. Also their are many special companies that will arrange for you to visit the farms you pick and even drive you in vans. One group of my guests recently toured using Unbridled Horse Tours and they were extremely pleased with the guide and highly recommended them. You can check out more information on their website at www.unbridledhorsetours.com or email them at MBMartin326@aol.com   Phone: 859-333-8940

The horse farms a amazing! The barns are so luxurious with rubber floors and polished wood stalls. Some even have swimming pools for horses and blankets that massage the horse. The central Kentucky countryside is beautiful with rolling meadows, lined with incredible fencing and landscaped around the perimeter. Many scenic drives lead you to these farms or Bourbon Distilleries.
So you could combine your visit to a few horse farms, take a break to eat and tour a distillery and leisurely wind your way around the gorgeous countryside.

front photo of wallace station restaurant with white wood and red door and a green bench out front
One place to stop and have a bite to eat is Wallace Station. It is located along Old Frankfort Pike which is one of those scenic byways. It's in the heart of the Kentucky Bluegrass horse country and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  It originally was a grocery store and post office, but now is a great little wayside restaurant serving up delicious food in a quaint setting. Take a look at more information and the menu at www.wallacestation.com or call them at 859-846-5161.
Good news: they are open 7 days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013



a mans hand holding a dogwood white blosom
If it is spring in Kentucky then we are all out in our yards planting, pruning and getting ready for the big show...DERBY of course. Frost could still happen until the second weekend in May but no matter, everyone will have the annuals out by the first Saturday in May.

Two of my favorite places to go for new plants and garden plants and  fun decorations are:
Wallitches Nursery on Hikes Lane in Louisville and Hidden Hill Nursery and Sculpture Garden in Utica Indiana. Both are great places for information and inspiration.  Hidden Hill Nursery's owner Bob Hill welcomes tour groups and is available to lead tours of the enchanting gardens "dispensing great garden wisdom and rambling garden nonsense in mostly equal parts"
I just found the most beautiful poppy at Hidden Hill. I have been trying to grow these for 40 years! I once had a small grouping that were just getting going when my gardener pulled them up thinking they were weeds!
For hours and more information go to www.hiddenhillnursery.com and www.wallitchesnursery.com

And this weekend is the kick off of the DERBY FESTIVALThunder Over Louisville, one of the biggest fireworks displays in the country is the Saturday on the riverfront in Louisville. The weather is going to be nice so it is best to arrive early to get a good spot. There is plenty of entertainment and food available or you can bring your own picnic.

There is an event each day right up to the DERBY. The  Balloon Festival, Derby Parade and The Great Steamboat Race are three of my favorites. To check out all of the events and find times and locations go to www.KDF.org

Tuesday, February 5, 2013


Bourbon Popularity is Booming

a tour guide pouring bourbon samples into glasses on a wood counter for three guests to sample at buffalo trace distillery
Baffalo Trace Bourbon Distillery - Great guide named Freddie
Kentuckians have long loved our Bourbon. Now is seems that the rest of the world is loving it too.
The boom in popularity and sales have allowed the industry to expand and add distilleries to meet the demand for our signature spirit. And more and more visitors from around the world are interested in touring distilleries around the state to learn about the history and tradition of bourbon making.

Tours of distilleries are a fun way to learn the bourbon making process, sample some bourbon, try some bourbon balls and take home some bourbon souvenirs. Just about every distillery has a great tour and they are all very unique. Many have historic buildings and warehouses  that date to the 1800's. Inspired by the California wine country tours and Scottish whiskey trails Kentucky began the Kentucky Bourbon Trail in 1999, which has been hugely successful.

The popularity of single batch bourbons and small-batch bourbons is one of the reasons for the rise in bourbon sales. And there is a  new appreciation for all the old cocktails such as the Manhattan and of course the Mint Julep.  Local and national chefs put bourbon in the spot light in their restaurants and  TV shows. Home cooks can find cookbooks devoted to using bourbon in many fabulous dishes.

In Louisville we have The Urban Bourbon Trail where participation restaurants offer a huge selection of different bourbons. And a very exciting new distillery and museum will open in downtown Louisville in the historic Whiskey Row. The new attraction is being built by Heaven Hill Distilleries and will celebrate the legacy of Even Williams, Kentucky's first distiller and namesake of Heaven Hill's flagship bourbon brand.

And did you know? Bourbon is a redish brown because of the aging in charred oak barrels. It starts out white and ages with the charred oak giving it the distintive flavor and color.
I always thought Bourbon could only be make in Kentucky...not so, it can be made anywhere in the U.S. However, 95% is made in Kentucky.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


Gallery Hopping this Winter

body worlds logo with a women streched out in a work out position
When it is cold and dreary outside it is the perfect time to visit area galleries. Colorful works depicting river views, country roads and cityscapes bring the outside in during these months when it is not great to be outdoors.  And our museums offer interesting exhibits on  history, fashion and science.
Here are a few to consider:

'Artists of the Wonderland Way' Presented by the Carnegie Center for Art and History
Features works by a group of area artists that formed in 1906 to give artists a place to congregate and talk about materials, techniques and places to paint. They called themselves the artists of the wonderland way art club and created their works just before World War I and until the late 1930's .Many of the works in the exhibit show scenes of the river and roads and landscapes between southern Indiana and Cincinnati.
Opening: Friday January 25 reception from 6 - 8 pm
through April 6
At the Carnegie Center for Art and History
201 E. Spring St
New Albany, In

'Body Worlds Vital' Showing at the Kenucky Science Center
Vital presents a special collection of real human bodies designed to show visitors the essentials of human health and wellness.
Now through May 19
Kentucky Science Center
727 W. Main St
Louisville, Ky