Visitors to Moab now have a new healthy, homey option for overnight stays.
After months of work cleaning, restoring and improving their property, Ken and Erin Ezpeleta opened up the Ezpeleta’s Bed and Breakfast in April.
In addition to providing comfortable accommodations, Ezpeleta’s offers guests homemade breakfasts concocted from local, organic ingredients, said Erin Ezpeleta.
“The whole concept of farm-to-table is a movement that I have been seeing in a lot of other communities, but I haven’t seen any other B and Bs doing that,” she said.
For Ken and Erin the opening of Ezpeleta’s Bed and Breakfast represents the end of many years of dreaming, working and searching.
The couple first met in Arizona, then moved to the northwest to matriculate at the University of Oregon. Ken studied environmental studies while Erin studied international studies, with a focus on environmental issues.
“As we met and started to hang out it was always something we talked about,” Erin Ezpeleta said. “Dreaming about a little eco-resort that we would make one day together.”
After graduating the pair moved to Seattle and set about gaining the skills that they would need to build their dream resort. Ken Ezpeleta, who had experience working in fine construction, continued in that vein. Erin Ezpeleta started work in realty, with the goal of learning to understand real estate markets.
“We saw it as more education to make sure we were ready to jump in,” Ken Ezpeleta said.
Then came the jump.
Erin and Ken Ezpeleta set off to the southwest in a little Toyota truck with a camper trailer and began searching for the ideal location to turn their dream into a reality.
“We toured the southwest part of Colorado first then ended up choosing Moab as our spot,” said Ken. “We just are in love with Moab.”
Ken Ezpeleta had been coming for eight years to mountain bike and Jeep, but it was Erin Ezpeleta’s first time coming to the area. Moab quickly won her over and the pair got jobs as they began the search for the ideal property.
“When we got here we drove every neighborhood, looked at every house on the market,” she said.
It took a while before they found what they were looking for, but when Erin pulled into Bill Chapman’s old home – the first home built in Spanish Valley- she knew it was the place.
Everything with the sale seemed to effortlessly fall into place. The owner even agreed to take the couple’s property in Seattle as part of the trade.
“At some point you are like, the universe is obviously putting this in front of me,” she said.
Fixing up the property was no small task. The yard was the first thing the Ezpeletas focused on.
“We started with a big trash dumpster and we filled that thing multiple times,” Ken Ezpeleta laughed. “We did a tremendous amount of landscape work.”
The inside of the house came last winter. Erin and Ken Ezpeleta enlisted the help of four friends in overhauling the upstairs; ripping out old dry wall and repainting. All this while the couple was working full-time jobs.
But they made it through and had the house ready for their first guests.
“Everyone who has come through has loved it,” Erin Ezpeleta said.
A big part of what guests have enjoyed about the bed and breakfast, the couple believes, is the food, much of which comes from the Youth Garden Project.
“We are really excited to be working with them. She approached us a while ago to sign up for some CSA (community supported agriculture) shares,” said Erin Trim, the associate director of the Youth Garden Project. “It’s a huge support for our organization because all of those proceeds go towards community programs here at the garden. She’s just been great to work with.”
A usual breakfast at the Ezpeleta’s consists of eggs or omelets – freshly laid by the Ezpeleta’s 30-odd chickens- quinoa cereal with coconut milk, and of course the fully stocked smoothie bar. They are also able to accommodate nearly any dietary restriction.
“We go all out,” Erin Ezpeleta said.
Yoga hikes are also offered. These morning sojourns take guests up into the red rocks behind the property for a yoga session before breakfast.
“There’s nothing like sitting and doing yoga or meditating with the red rocks all around you and the energy that that brings,” said Megan de Matteo, who has led several of the yoga hikes.
In the future the Ezpeletas want to continue working to expand the house, the garden, and the experience that they offer to their guests. One big push the couple would like to see is the incorporation of more education on sustainability into their guest’s stays.
“We want to have certifications so people come for two weeks and walk away with a tangible set of skills,” Erin Ezpeleta said.
“(We want) to have people come here from the city and have a paradigm shift,” Ken Ezpeleta said.