Cornerstone Bed & Breakfast is a Victorian gem tucked into a tree-lined street on the Drexel campus. Built in the 1870s on what used to be sprawling farmland and is now in the heart of University City within walking distance of the University of Pennsylvania, 30th Street Station, the Philadelphia Zoo, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Barnes and many other attractions and restaurants.
From Historic Home to Luxury Lodging
The dwelling was originally built in 1870 to be the home of Mary Sellers Bancroft, the widow of a well-to-do local manufacturer, Edward Stephen Parrish. She is the niece of famed Revolution-era portrait painter Charles Wilson Peale and the grandmother of Maxfield Parrish, a celebrated American painter who spent time at the house and used one of the bedrooms as a studio.
Over the years, the house changed hands many times, but much of its original charm has been retained, including ornate stained glass windows, original hardwood floors and elegant carpentry. When it was converted into a 6-room inn, modern amenities were added to the rooms, such as flat screen TVs, jetted tubs and Keurig coffeemakers. All of the guest rooms have a private bath. In addition, guests enjoy 24-hour complimentary snacks, tea and coffee, cookies in every room and a world-class breakfast every morning. And, for a limited time, guests who book direct will get a complimentary bottle of wine to enjoy in their room or on the porch.
Award Winning Hospitality
The elegant inn is one of only 300 bed & breakfasts, inns and boutique hotels in North America and Europe to be awarded membership in the Select Registry, also known as Distinct Inns of North America. Select Registry properties are known for delivering a high level of personalized service. The inn had to complete a 560-point comprehensive evaluation to obtain the coveted credential and is the only property in Philadelphia on the registry.
Dedication to the Details
That same meticulous attention to detail goes into the inn’s response to Covid-19. The inn is fully cleaned and sanitized multiple times a day and a hospital-grade ULV fogger machine with botanical disinfectant is used throughout the inn. Every guest room has a bottle of hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes and a hepa air filtration machine that is proven to clean the air and capture airborne pathogens. The employees wear masks and gloves and faceless check-in is available. Temperature checks and sanitation stations are part of the new standard operating procedure. All rooms and all linen are “rested” for 24 hours between guests. Breakfast can be served in the guest rooms or eaten on the picturesque front porch at a specific time to limit social contact. The porch is an idyllic spot to read a book, have a private conversation or eat a romantic candlelight dinner after grabbing take out from a nearby restaurant, such as Louie Louie, a French inspired American bistro that is open and within walking distance of the inn. Top off the evening with a stroll down the street to The Treat Box for cupcakes or an over-the-top milkshake.
All that attention to detail comes from Eric and Jill Pfaff-Moody, who took over the inn just over a year ago, becoming the youngest inn owners in Pennsylvania and perhaps the country. Despite being younger than others in their chosen profession, Eric has 15 years experience in restaurants and hospitality. Jill, a native Philadelphian, shares a passion for hospitality and has been known to sing while preparing the full gourmet breakfast with her husband. In fact, for the holidays she directs a children’s choir that sings carols in three part harmony while dressed in adorable Victorian costumes. This sweet holiday observance takes place on the inn’s front porch where guests and neighbors can enjoy it.
Cornerstone Bed & Breakfast was recently awarded a TripAdvisor Traveler’s Choice Award, which puts it among the top 10% of lodging properties worldwide. And that’s certainly something to sing about!