Hi! I’m Veronica, your Innkeeper, though I haven’t always been one. The dream began in 1995, when I drove across the US in my pickup truck. I was about to begin my last year of college at The Cooper Union in New York City, and was doing research for my thesis project. Headed toward the Badlands of South Dakota, I stopped for the night in a small bed and breakfast in Minnesota. It was an old farmhouse, and there were only a few rooms. The guests shared a second-floor bathroom.
Though the next morning’s breakfast was delicious and exquisitely plated, the innkeeper apologized that the meal wasn’t presented as well as it normally would be due to an accident with a knitting needle that left one of her hands useless. “How could it look any better?” I thought. This stay would be the impetus for my career to come!
I soon graduated with a BARCH from The Cooper Union, was recruited by a regional architecture and engineering firm, completed numerous award-winning projects in the emergency services and education markets, became one of five female partners in the firm, and managed a regional office for the firm. I still hold my architectural license in New York.
During this time, I married the love of my life, bought and restored a historic home in Huntington, New York, and adopted two children from Russia, Margarita and Egor. As much as I loved being an architect and designer, I always held the dream of being an innkeeper in the back of my mind.
I’m one of seven children, and always loved hosting holiday dinners and soirees for friends. My dream remained a secret, but friends and family noted that I’d make a fine innkeeper on several occasions.
Life happened, and sadly in 2019, my husband and I separated, then ultimately divorced. My secret dream continued to push itself forward. I began to research bed and breakfast ownership, and even attended seminars on the topic.
I thought that perhaps, once my son, Egor, graduated from high school, I would pursue this dream. He and I discussed the possibility, and I asked if he would consider leaving New York. Egor loves to surf, so I assured him that if we were to move, I would get him as close to the ocean as possible. Then, the search began. I scoured the entire East Coast, looking for the perfect location. When I first arrived at the Williams House, I knew it was the one. It’s a spectacular example of early Victorian architecture, with luscious gardens, courtyards, and enough projects to keep my architectural mind engaged, too. It was ideally situated in the historic city of Fernandina Beach, with excellent restaurants, shops, outdoor activities and close enough to the ocean for Egor to surf. I knew the Williams House was the B&B for us, and made the dream a reality in December of 2020. Egor has since graduated from high school, and is currently working locally, and helping me at the inn.
Managing the inn brings me great joy, and I understand The Williams House’s importance in the community. I am thoughtfully restoring the property and always have a project in the works! I love to cook, try new recipes on my guests and to make each guest experience memorable.