Solving a #1 Problem

Guest Blogger, Jodi

I’m a very practical person, all about efficiency and function, spending many 2AMs solving, not the world’s problems, but ones here around the inn. A less-than-wonderful problem we’ve had is accommodating one hundred plus people’s bodily needs during weddings – way out on the far lawn, by the pine chapel, when tents are pitched and the party’s happening. After folks have been celebrating in the summer sun with toasts and cheers… This is a problem.

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As Dean’s been booking weddings the last couple of years, he’s had several prospective pairs who were repulsed by having their guests use big blue port-o-johns. And we couldn’t blame them. A few opted into renting the air conditioned, flushing port-o-trailers. Unfortunately, we had several who choose other venues primarily on that situation. This was a problem.

 I saw these problems as a design challenge. I rolled this around in my head for probably 18 months. I sketched several ideas. There were late night considerations of composting toilets, combusting toilets, chemical toilets, marine toilets. Dean and I discussed, researched, pintrested, made phone calls to local government agencies. Then we came up with the solution – with inspiration from local mobile bar wedding business colleagues, Short and Stout – a washroom from a vintage horse trailer. We agreed the concept was perfect for Orchard House – and you know I’m all about experiential design to enhance a brand. It’s my day job, my passion.

Now I began designing, planning the construction timing, budget, and supplies…and then building it! With Dean’s assistance, starting in February, it took about 90 days from start to finish, working only on good weather days when Dean did not have guests staying in the inn. I have to admit things went very smoothly. We finished right on time, the week before the first wedding this spring.

It sounds silly but I hope “The Loo” brings something above and beyond to the wedding parties here at Orchard House. It’s how Dean and I strive to do things – give that little bit extra – so our guests can relax more, enjoy more, be more comfortable.