1 of 8
2 of 8
3 of 8
4 of 8
5 of 8
6 of 8
7 of 8
8 of 8
This Bed and Breakfast and home with a view allows those adventure lovers or fireside readers to escape their everyday stresses, even if only for a weekend.
“Don’t judge a book by its cover,” co-owner Jane Lown Irving said while the front part of their 9,550 square foot building was being given a cosmetic facelift in June.
Irving takes that mantra quite literally. Each room is themed around a specific aspect of South Texas coastal culture, each with their own collection of books to reflect their theme. Pick your favorite and steep yourself in the playful, antiquated, and sometimes biographically themed rooms.
The Estes Flat loft room takes on a seafishing identity straight out of a Ernest Hemmingway novel. Here you can find various fishing guides and even a valuable collection of Horatio Hornblower reads. Naturally, outside lies a pier, perfect for bay fishing. A commercial shrimp boat is even docked on the property.
The USS Lexington Room reflects the Coastal Bend’s strong Naval ties with its porthole windows, nautical detailing, and the military history and officer handbooks that line its shelf. Before the Irvings converted the building into a bed & bath in 1997, and before the BRAC shut down Naval Station Ingleside, they housed a few young sailors waiting for the barracks to be built on base. “I was pretty much a momma to those young men, cooking and cleaning up their messes,” Jane recalls.
The other rooms honor the cultural contributions of various people in South Texas history. The Karankawa sunroom is named after a tribe of Native Americans who roamed the coast for fish and shellfish until dying out in the 1850s. The room is accented with Native American designs inspired by tribes from all over, with histories of those tribes on the book shelf. It also features a queen-sized bed and pinewood furnishings, perfect for couples who may be retreating for a romantic getaway.
The McGloin Bluff room takes its namesake from Irish Impresario James McGloin, one of the first non-native, non-Hispanic settlers in the Coastal Bend. Ingleside was built on McGloin Bluff, and the room reflects his heritage with various Celtic touches and a collection of Scottish and Irish history books.
Likewise, the Aranzazu Pass room reflects South Texas’ Hispanic heritage with a model Spanish galleon that sits upon the cherry wood furnishings. The design conjures up the image of a sunrise and sunset over Corpus Christi Bay.
Finally, the Our Lady room offers a “spiritual reflection” for any visitor. The room takes its cues from the rich Christian heritage of the area and from Victorian design. It offers a more meditative experience, and the books are themed around spirituality and famous women.
The Irvings offer more than the B&B at Our Place. They also house a meeting room that can hold up to 80 people and hosts town hall meetings and even a book club that meets on the 3rd Thursday of every non-summer month. Outside, they rent out the Heron Hut (currently occupied by an engineer who enjoys windsurfing). Our Place has always served as a multipurpose space ever since the Irvings acquired it in the 80s using it as both their residence and offices for Gary’s electrical contracting business. After retirement just a few years ago and becoming empty nesters, the Irvings can now put all their energy into Our Place. A former teacher, Jane now wears the hat of a hostess, accountant, and sometimes a maid. But no hat fits better than her and her husband’s love for the community and its heritage. You don’t have to leave the Coastal Bend to learn, relax, and play – all at Our Place on the Bay.
1233 Bayshore Drive, Ingleside on the Bay, Texas 78362