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The Himalayan Lodge

Beginning in 2000, I operated a small bed and breakfast in this house.  I lived at the house and rented the guest room to travelers from all over the world.  I have many fond memories of getting to know so many nice people.  During those years, I managed my tour company, Of Global Interest Adventure Travel, from my home.  Twice a year I would lead trips trekking in the Himalayas to Mt. Everest base camp in Nepal.  Every trip was an amazing adventure.  When home, I welcomed guests and tended to my store, the Himalayan Bazaar in my Garage, where I sold imports I collected during my trips.

My enterprise on the corner of Eighth and Washington Street kept me busy for many years.  I sold my paintings and photographs and was able to share my love for travel, the Himalayas and Nepal.  In 2010 I married the man of my dreams, and in 2011 our son was born!  Today, I spend my time between two houses, the Lodge and our home nearby.  My heart is very much attached to this house.  It is my art studio, my office, my event center, my happy place. The house keeps me busy in many ways.  I continue to love sharing it with others as a vacation rental.

These days I still travel, although less frequently.   Any upcoming trips and adventures can be found here, Of Global Interest Adventure Travel.  The store I formerly had in my garage, The Himalayan Bazaar, has moved to Main Street in Ann Arbor.  Pem Dorjee Sherpa - a two time Mt. Everest climber from Nepal, runs the shop.  Please visit The Himalayan Bazaar at 218 S. Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor.

Everest Base Camp

Everest Base Camp 2018

History of the House

This cozy home was built in the 1870s by David Kay.  He was a stone mason and worked on the Engineering Arch on campus as well as the one-lane railroad bridge in Dexter, MI.  David and his wife, Catherine, raised two girls at this house, Florence and Betty.  In 2002, I met Florence and her son, Ed Cole, as they were passing by her childhood home on one of their visits to Ann Arbor for a family reunion.  They rolled down the window, and Florence said she used to live in this house.

I invited them in, and thus began a wonderful relationship.  They are like a second family.  The following year, they came to visit again, and this time they stayed at my B&B.  They told me many stories about the house, some of which I recorded on video.  They even gave me a large book of old photographs, which you can find at the Lodge.  The photos record many years of the lives of the people who loved this house in its early days.  The book is a real treasure.


 Florence moved from Ann Arbor to Oregon in the 1930s when she was 17.  She celebrated her 100th birthday in 2013 and the following year, at the age of 101, Florence passed away in 2014.  A plaque near the front door now dedicates the house to her.

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Celebration of a House

During the many years that I lived here, I discovered a B&B is a 'celebration of a house'.  Opening my home to strangers who leave as friends and often return has been rewarding.   I welcome you to experience the magic of this little house during your visit.  I have been hosting guests at the Lodge since 2000, nine years before Airbnb started!


Heather O'Neal

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David and Catherine Kay with their horse at their house on 8th St in the 1870s.

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