Guide: Where to stay for vacations and staycations

Springfield's growing list of attractions can keep visitors busy for days. But where should they stay?

“I do think when you stay in a house, when you stay in a cabin, it's just much more experiential,” says Chris Schutte, vice president for destination marketing and communications for the Greater Springfield Partnership. These types of stays, he adds, allow visitors the chance to go “walking into someone else's lifestyle.”

Out-of-towners – and locals looking for a change of scenery – can choose from a number of unique bed and breakfasts, inns and other lodgings. Whether the goal is to stay near the action or create a retreat to get away from it all, here are just a few of the options in Springfield and beyond.

1. Emma's Bed & Breakfast
Location: 4200 E. National Road, Springfield

This 1833 home east of Downtown Springfield was purchased and restored by owner Ron Brown with the express intent of turning it into a bed and breakfast – renovations included the addition of three and a half bathrooms so that each room has its own. The house includes four bedrooms, as well as a suite that includes both a bedroom and a living room. A gourmet breakfast is included with each stay.

The whole house, which sits on nine acres, also may be rented, and the site can be used for outdoor events with up to 150 guests.

Source: Emma's Bed & Breakfast

2. Colonial Manor B&B
Location: 3774 Urbana Road, Springfield

Kick back and relax at this bed and breakfast located two miles north of Springfield. Explore the surrounding 11 acres or the house itself, with its dining room, living room, sitting areas and library, filled with books, DVDs, puzzles and games. Or simply rest your feet on one of the porch's rocking chairs or swing. Looking to be more active? Check out one of the lawn games, or borrow a bike and take it to the trails.

Each of the three suites includes a private bath, and guests are treated to a homemade breakfast and 24-hour coffee, hot chocolate and tea bar. The home is also available for events, such as weddings, receptions, parties, showers and reunions.

Source: Colonial Manor B&B

3. Boom's Farm
Location: Springfield

If your idea of a getaway includes collecting fresh eggs and feeding farm animals, Boom's Farm is the spot. This 1,000 square-foot basement apartment can accommodate four guests and is also home to cows, goats, dogs and chickens. Ideal for the nature-lover, the apartment is a 10-minute drive from Buck Creek State Park and even includes space to park your boat. If you want to stay even closer to “home,” cozy up next to the gas fireplace or check out the pond, zip line and rope swing located on the 10 acres of land.

Also included: coffee, tea and hot chocolate.

Source: Airbnb listing

4. Simon Kenton Inn
Location: 4690 Urbana Road, Springfield

A Springfield staple for visitors, locals and special events, the Simon Kenton Inn has a storied history. The Simon Kenton farm is known as the first white settlement in Ohio, but he lost the land in the early 1800s. Today the inn sits on part of the original property and includes not only guest rooms, but a restaurant, pub and a party pavilion that hosts up to 500 guests.

A continental breakfast is served during the week, and a full, hot breakfast is included on weekends.

Source: Simon Kenton Inn

5. Green Plains Cabin
Location: 8606 Selma Road, South Charleston

Take a page out of the history books at this 19th century log cabin, restored using the original timbers. In 1989 the original cabin was dismantled and then carefully rebuilt on a poured concrete basement 100 yards away. Today, the cabin sleeps up to six people and overlooks 66 acres of woods and plains.

Modern amenities include an outdoor hot tub. For something more rustic, try the outdoor shower or bathtub. Guests also have a remodeled full-bath – indoors. Visitors who prefer to be outdoors will have plenty to do: Cross-country skiing and sledding (during winter months), birding and hiking are all available on the farm. And bring your bikes. The cabin is close to the Ohio Rails-to-Trails path.

Source: Green Plains Cabin

6. Houstonia Bed & Breakfast
Location: 25 E. Mound St., South Charleston

Stay in the former home of “the region's great playboy robber baron” – what could be more intriguing? This Prairie-Victorian home was built in 1900 by Foster Houston, an heir with more than $50 million in assets in today's dollars.

Instead of the late-night poker games of years ago, Houstonia (pronounced House-TONE-ee-ah) now offers fresh-baked cookies, gourmet breakfasts, robes, down comforters and more.

Source: Houstonia Bed & Breakfast

7. Island House at Witt
Location: Near Wittenberg University campus

You may not see any palm trees or beaches, but the host of this Airbnb home two blocks from downtown Springfield says that students and alumni named the house generations ago for unknown reasons. The remodeled home was rebuilt with both new and reclaimed materials, giving guests a combination of modern comforts and charm.

The Island House sleeps up to eight guests, and its central location makes it convenient as a base to explore not only Wittenberg, but also a variety of downtown Springfield attractions.

Source: Airbnb listing

8. Wildflower House
Location: Downtown Yellow Springs

Explore Yellow Springs by foot from this Airbnb home. Wildflower House sleeps 10 guests and is also available for events including weddings, showers, retreats and bachelorette parties.

Check out the stores, restaurants or brewery just a walk away. Hike in Glen Helen Nature Preserve. And, make sure to ask about the in-home massages, yoga and IV hydration that Wildflower House offers. Or simply enjoy the patio and backyard.

Source: Airbnb listing

9. Scioto Inn and Suites
205 Scioto St., Urbana

If your plans take you both south (to Springfield and Yellow Springs) and north (to Ohio Caverns), consider Urbana as a home base. Celebrating its 10th anniversary, Scioto Inn and Suites offers both nightly and extended stays in its historical building. Some suites even offer living rooms, kitchenettes and private outdoor porches.

Source: Scioto Inn and Suites

10. 1868 Italianate Casa
Location: Urbana

A short stroll to downtown Urbana, this 1868 home is steps away from boutiques, restaurants, coffee shops and antique stores. Take a look at the vision boards to see the plans for preserving the historical home. The apartment can host up to two guests.

Source: Airbnb listing
Enjoy this story? Sign up for free solutions-based reporting in your inbox each week.

Read more articles by Diane Erwin.

Diane Erwin is a freelance writer and former reporter for the Springfield News-Sun. A graduate of Ohio State University, her articles have appeared in a number of publications in Springfield and Dayton. In addition to her journalism background, she has worked in marketing and written copy for businesses throughout the country. In her spare time, she likes to read, dream about Schuler’s donuts, and travel near and far with her husband and two children.