Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Meet Your Merchant - Two Swan Inn and Cottages

201-208 Carpenter Street
St. Michaels, MD  21663

Website:  www.twoswaninn.com
Phone:  410-745-2929
Cell:  443-786-0513

Cathy Stinchcomb and Tad du Pont
during the 2014 Christmas in St. Michaels Parade
Who are the owners?   Tad du Pont, Bryon Reilly and Cathy Stinchcomb
How and why you started your business?  All of us have worked in St. Michaels most of our lives.  Tad and Bryon at Higgins Yacht Yard  and Cathy in Retail on Talbot Street until Cathy joined forces at Higgins and Two Swan.  When properties presented themselves we decided to buy, restore and give them a purpose.  Since St. Michaels’ main industry is TOURISM, we decided it was a perfect marriage.  And so it goes…

What do you sell/make/do?  We own the Two Swan Inn & Cottages, Sailshed, Sunset, Robert’s and Cygnet Cottages.  These cottages are short-term Vacation Cottage Rentals.  Each facility is unique.  They are located on Carpenter Street (201-208).  We can house up to 20 guests.  Several of our facilities are located on the harbor front, two short blocks to town center.  They are adjacent to Higgins Yacht Yard (in the event you may be interested in a transient slip).  Guests park their cars and walk everywhere.  ALL of our cottage guests have access to our Two Swan lawn overlooking the harbor front.  Our guests comment they keep returning because they enjoy the quaintness of our cottages as well as the lovely waterfront  lawn.  They find it extremely relaxing.  Our facilities are within walking distance to the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, St. Michaels Museum at St. Mary’s Square, Yachting Tours, Bicycle and Kayak Rentals, Eastern Shore Brewery, Lyon Distillery, Winery, the Nature Trail and fabulous Retail Shoppes and Restaurants.
Scenic views of the St. Michaels harbor await you at the Two Swan Inn and Cottages
Where is your business located and why did you choose your location?   The Two Swan Inn and Cottages is located at 208 Carpenter Street.  Tad purchased the Two Swan several years after he purchased Higgins Yacht Yard.  It was located adjacent to  HYY.  Some years later other properties presented themselves and the partners decided it would be a good idea to expand.  The little cottages were already located on Carpenter Street and simply needed some TLC and a purpose.
Charming cottages within walking distance
of town center and views of the St. Michaels Harbor
What strategy do you use to draw people to your establishment?   Our advertising is done through the SMBA visitor’s guide, our website and  brochures.  Most of our business is word of mouth (and Cathy's).   We feel customer service is a very important part of our strategy.
What is your strategies for growth in the next year?   We will offer better incentives for weekly business.

What is the best thing about running a business here?
Imagine relaxing on your
cottage porch enjoying the waterfront views 
Being in business for yourself is very rewarding, provided you don’t mind working weekends.  In the Tourism Business it’s a must!  We enjoy working  on the waterfront and meeting people (whether it be on the docks or at the Inn or Cottages).  We also enjoy the challenge of maintaining our historic character.  Over the years we have met many people and have made some FABULOUS friends.  Many continue to come back year after year.  I believe that speaks for itself.

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