Find a Charming Escape Close to Home

The good old-fashioned bed-and-breakfast offers an intimate lodging experience where you can find charming accommodations and a true retreat from the ordinary. These are one-of-a-kind inns where every room and every stay is special, in part because they come with so many extras, from homemade breakfasts to luxurious rooms.

Oscar Swan Inn, located in Geneva, is no exception.

Chicago banker Oscar Swan built the mansion that would become this cozy B&B in 1902 and sold it to businessman Frank W. Harding Jr. in the late 1940s. Remnants of the Swans and the Hardings can be found throughout the mansion and its seven rooms. While the rooms feature rustic paneling, European-painted furniture and floral chandeliers, they also come equipped with modern amenities like televisions and heating.

In 1986, Nina and the late Hans Heymann stumbled upon the property and opened it to the public in 1988. Its location just outside downtown Geneva provides a laid-back escape, Nina says.

“Coming here is a little like going to grandmother’s house or going home to the countryside in the good ole days,” she says.

The inn’s 8 semi-wooded acres offer a picturesque backdrop for weddings and events. The banquet hall, a large barn known as The Gathering, provides a rustic charm that complements the ambiance.

Guests are offered a full breakfast with options ranging from bacon and sausage to eggs. The communal breakfast setting provides an opportunity for guests to share stories and make new friends.

Nina doesn’t offer set packages, but she does tailor each guest’s experience. Oscar Swan hosts a variety of events for the public, including art classes and brunches. With every visit, Nina seeks to provide a charm that’s become rare in today’s fast-paced world.

“Maybe I’m too homespun, but that’s what I think is needed today. The world has gotten too commercialized,” Nina says. “I think people are starved for some good old-fashioned humanness, which is kind of lost out there, but you can find it here at Oscar Swan.”

Oscar Swan Inn is located at 1800 W. State St. in Geneva, (630) 232-0173.