We had the good fortune of connecting with Abbie Stout and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Abbie, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
Work life balance is a funny thing for a business owner. It seems that work and life becomes integrated. I work so that I can enjoy life. I am an entrepreneur because of the lifestyle. I enjoy having the flexible schedule and getting my work done when I am alined. If I feel alined with creativeness today, I may work on marketing. Tomorrow, accounting and so on. The balance is key!
What should our readers know about your business?
Where to start? It has been an adventure to say the least. This all started when I moved to Costa Rica in 2010, searching for a property to start my eco-friendly B&B/ Hostel. I had just graduated from Fort Lewis College and was ready for a change of scenery. I was let go form my cocktail waitressing job at a historical Hotel in Durango. I told myself that I didn’t want to work for anybody again.
Long story, short, I opened Luz en el Cielo Eco-B&B/ Hostel in 2010. This was my first business adventure. Seeing that legalities in Costa Rica weren’t as tight as they are here, I was able to learn business in a way that I had never imagined. I was able to learn all of skills it takes to run a small business in a hands on setting. What a gift.
In 2017 I was given an opportunity to purchase a turn-key Boutique Inn business in Fort Collins. The Edwards House. I wasn’t thrilled at first to take over a “turn-key” business as most of the fun is in the start up processes. It took one tour of the house, I for me to change my mind. It was perfect in every way.
My businesses are a balance between two very different worlds. One is open jungle where you wake to howler monkeys, and the other is a pristine modern victorian luxury just steps form Old Town Fort Collins. When I learn something from one, I can apply it to the other.
We have greatly expanded our conference, event and wedding offering at the Edwards House. We have a beautiful small venue. A perfect place for locals and travelers to get together with friends and family in celebration of their most special occasions. We have also focused on sustainability and supporting local. Most of our guest amenities are sourced from local vendors. We carry pride in supporting our beautiful community of small businesses.
The Covid scare was hard on the hospitality industry. The silver lining in all of it was the time I had to start my passion project, Cedar & Sage Mercantile, a sustainable home goods store. Cedar & Sage is currently located in the basement of the Edwards House. We see a lot of interest in our community to open a proper store front. We hope to open doors no later than Q2 of 2022! For now, we are online at cedarsagemercantile.com. We offer “back porch pick-up” and local delivery for a small charge.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
There is so much to do here, I don’t even know where to start.
We would stay at the Edwards House, of course!
Hike Lory state park and around Horsetooth, use one of our complimentary bikes to cruise the Poudre River Trail, catch some live music at one of the breweries…
We love to dine at the Regional! Great atmosphere, food and vibes! Drinks at Social are a must, and lunch at Uno Mas, the best guacamole in town!
Walk through Old Town to see the sights… maybe swing by the exchange for ice cream from the Churn or a cold beer from the Crooked Stave.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My entire support system… My family, friends and especially those who didn’t believe in me! Those were the ones that motivated me to prove I could be successful!
Facebook: Edwards House Inn
Other: pinterest – Edwards House
Derek Mogensen with Photo Conscious