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We would like to take some time to share with you how we became the innkeepers of Romantic RiverSong, a Colorado country inn, located in Estes Park, nestled in the Rocky Mountains.

 

Gary and Sue Mansfield started their Rocky Mountain lodge over 22 years ago. Gary, then a real estate trade broker, traded their home in Englewood, CO for the inn property. Spending almost all of their remaining funds on an extra bathroom so not all the rooms would have shared baths, they opened their doors just 45 days after they moved onto the property. Sue held down the kitchen doing all the cooking, laundry, and reservations. "Our early success," says Gary, "came as a result of Sue’s experience as a wholesale tour operator. She knew how to formulate policy and was terrific on the phone. We were selling a dream, our dream, on the phone."

 

Six months after we opened our doors, we were visited by Norman Simpson - the Founding Father of Country Inns and Backroads.  He was responsible for the early recognition of small country inns in America. Norman, who usually waited at least two years to select an inn for his association, decided to take a chance on this determined couple from the city.  When Norman paid our lodge a surprise visit that early Spring day, Sue just recovering from the flu, gathered her strength and prepared a delicious lunch with yummy split pea soup while Norman Simpson walked the ground of RiverSong, and wrote... click here for story

The membership in this coveted association, today known as Select Registry, inspired Gary and Sue to create an unusually high standard of inn performance that they have maintained and surpassed as the years went by. Gary and Sue, who have been in the innkeeping business since 1986, are now the "old hands" among Colorado innkeepers. They also co-founded the state association now known as the Distinctive Inns of Colorado. The Mansfields have been past directors of the national association of Professional Association of Innkeepers International and have conducted workshops on how to open and operate successful B&B inns.

From this wealth of experience, Sue enjoys mentoring new innkeepers in their struggle to succeed via the Internet. Together, they offer consultation to couples seeking to follow their dream of innkeeping.

Gary, an incurable romantic, delights in marrying couples that come to the inn to elope; and, of course, winter or spring is a good excuse for a snowshoe wedding!

Traveling is an important part of the Mansfields own renewal; so you may not see them when you arrive for your stay at the inn. But as Sue recalls a guest comment in the past, "We didn’t get to meet Gary and Sue. They were away on their own vacation. But we got to know them through their wonderful staff. Good job, RiverSong!"