I’m a critic. One of my jobs is to critique dining & lodging establishments and recommend to our website visitors the ones that are Southern Arizona’s best. Down By The River Bed & Breakfast is one of the best.
Mike & Angie Hug offer their guests a most unique & pleasant experience. Down By The River was built in 2005. Yet, given its historical Territorial design, it has an architecture that would have been common in Arizona Territory in the mid-19th century.
It was built as a B&B by people who really know B&B’s. It’s not at all like an old house that required extensive modifications for the purpose. When you walk in the front door, this will become immediately obvious.
Our first reaction was, “WOW”. Here is a couple who know, respect, and appreciate Southern Arizona’s unique history & cultural heritage: Native Americans; pioneer ranchers & cowboys, prospectors & miners; Spanish conquistadors & missionaries; and of course, nature.
The furnishings and appointments in each of their four guest rooms reflect this sensibility: Mission Room; Cowboy Room; Prospector Room; and Bird Room. All are clean, comfortable, delightfully decorated, and have their own door to the outside.
All have a refrigerator; three have a microwave; two rooms have a table & chairs for in-room dining, and two rooms have a beehive fireplace. On winter nights, you will appreciate your own fireplace.
WiFi is FREE throughout.
Location, Location, Location
A short walk from the backyard is the San Pedro River, the last free-flowing river in Southern Arizona. So why is Down By The River located here? Birds mainly. Lots of Birds. The San Pedro River Riparian Conservation Area is one of the top birding areas in the world with over 200 species either residing all year or migrating north & south seasonally. Here are forty miles of wilderness protected by the BLM for posterity and supported by Friends of the San Pedro River & the Audubon Society.
Things To See & Do
Moreover, Down By The River’s location serves as a hub for all there is to see & do in Cochise County: Bisbee; Tombstone; Karchner Caverns; winetasting; extraordinary museums, such as the Amerind & the Slaughter Ranch; scenic mountains, such as Cochise Stronghold and Chiricahua National Monument; historic military forts, such as Ft. Bowie & Ft. Huachuca; ghost towns, such as Gleeson & Fairbank; stargazing; bird watching; and so much more. If you stayed here for two weeks and went exploring every day, you’d never run out of interesting places to visit.
The list of things to see & do is extensive and Mike & Angie have a fine section on their website with a map and a lot of suggestions for great day trips from Down By The River.
We at Southern Arizona Guide love Cochise County and also have an extensive section on our website. Check it out.
Patio & BBQ
Outdoors is a fine covered patio, large enough for 4 patio tables for those who want to picnic or BBQ without leaving their home away from home. Both the front and back yards are mostly au naturel, intentionally left in a natural state.
To Have or Have Not
So …what doesn’t Down By The River have? They don’t have a swimming pool. They don’t have a hot tub. They don’t have a golf course. They don’t have a fishing pond. And they don’t have a Ferris Wheel or a Roller Coaster.
However, they do have a telescope with which you can explore outer space on a dark night. They do have a chimenea by which you can relax in the evening around an outdoor fire after a pleasant day exploring Cochise County, one of the most interesting places on Planet Earth.
They do have lots of items of historical interest, plus a large pool table.
They do have a location at which you will feel that the nearest civilization is hundreds of miles away. Yet Benson, with a couple of decent restaurants and a Safeway, is only about 15 minutes up the road. They do have a huge variety of birds.
And, in Angie & Mike, you will have innkeepers who are professional, knowledgeable, helpful, creative, and determined to make your stay enjoyable.
To be honest, we have not stayed overnight at Down By The River so we have not personally experienced breakfast there. Nevertheless, the innkeepers serve a full gourmet breakfast and the guest reviews we have read are most complimentary.
Getting to Down By The River is a bit tricky. We followed Mike & Angie’s directions on their website and had no trouble finding it. But if you rely on your GPS, you are likely to wander for hours in a futile search.
Do we wholeheartedly recommend Down By The River B&B to our friends & family? We do.
Down By The River Bed & Breakfast
2255 Efken Place
PO Box 387
St. David, AZ 85630