Inn

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American Scenery--the Inn on the Roadside (1872) Roadside-inn-American-scenery.jpeg
American Scenery—the Inn on the Roadside (1872)

Inns are generally establishments or buildings where travelers can seek lodging, and usually, food and drink. Inns are typically located in the country or along a highway; before the advent of motorized transportation they also provided accommodation for horses.

Contents

History

The Tabard Inn, Southwark, London, around 1850 Tabard inn mid19th.jpg
The Tabard Inn, Southwark, London, around 1850
Facade of the Sultanhani caravanserai in Turkey Sultanhani - Fassade.jpg
Facade of the Sultanhani caravanserai in Turkey
Aerial view of Zein-o-din caravanserai near Yazd, Iran, one of a few circular caravanserai. zyn ldyn.JPG
Aerial view of Zein-o-din caravanserai near Yazd, Iran, one of a few circular caravanserai.

Inns in Europe were possibly first established when the Romans built their system of Roman roads two millennia ago. Many inns in Europe are several centuries old. In addition to providing for the needs of travelers, inns traditionally acted as community gathering places.

Historically, inns provided not only food and lodging, but stabling and fodder for the travelers' horses, as well. Famous London examples of inns include The George and The Tabard. However, there is no longer a formal distinction between an inn and several other kinds of establishments: many pubs use the name "inn", either because they are long established and may have been formerly coaching inns, or to summon up a particular kind of image.

Inns were like bed and breakfasts, with a community dining room which was also used for town meetings or rented for wedding parties. The front, facing the road, was ornamental and welcoming for travelers. The back also usually had at least one livery barn for travelers to keep their horses. There were no lobbies as in modern inns; rather, the innkeeper would answer the door for each visitor and judge the people whom he decided to accommodate. Many inns were simply large houses that had extra rooms for renting.

During the 19th century, the inn played a major role in the growing transportation system of England. Industry was on the rise, and people were traveling more in order to keep and maintain business. The English inn was considered an important part of English infrastructure, as it helped maintain a smooth flow of travel throughout the country. [1]

As modes of transport have evolved, tourist lodging has adapted to serve each generation of traveller. A stagecoach made frequent stops at roadside coaching inns for water, food, and horses. A passenger train stopped only at designated stations in the city centre, around which were built grand railway hotels. Motorcar traffic on old-style two-lane highways might have paused at any camp, cabin court, or motel along the way, while freeway traffic was restricted to access from designated off-ramps to side roads which quickly become crowded with hotel chain operators.

The original functions of an inn are now usually split among separate establishments. For example, hotels, lodges and motels might provide the traditional functions of an inn but focus more on lodging customers than on other services; public houses (pubs) are primarily alcohol-serving establishments; and restaurants and taverns serve food and drink. (Hotels often contain restaurants serving full breakfasts and meals, thus providing all of the functions of traditional inns. Economy, limited service properties, however, lack a kitchen and bar, and therefore claim at most an included continental breakfast.)

The lodging aspect of the word inn lives on in some hotel brand names, like Holiday Inn, and the Inns of Court in London were once accommodations for members of the legal profession. Some laws refer to lodging operators as innkeepers.

Forms

Other forms of inns exist throughout the world. Among them are the honjin and ryokan of Japan, caravanserai of Central Asia and the Middle East, and Jiuguan in ancient China.

In Asia Minor, during the periods of rule by the Seljuq and Ottoman Turks, impressive structures functioning as inns (Turkish : han ) were built because inns were considered socially significant. These inns provided accommodations for people and either their vehicles or animals, and served as a resting place to those travelling on foot or by other means.

These inns were built between towns if the distance between municipalities was too far for one day's travel. These structures, called caravansarais, were inns with large courtyards and ample supplies of water for drinking and other uses. They typically contained a café, in addition to supplies of food and fodder. After the caravans traveled a while they would take a break at these caravansarais, and often spend the night to rest the human travellers and their animals.

Usage of the term

The term "inn" historically characterized a rural hotel which provided lodging, food and refreshments, and accommodations for travelers' horses. To capitalize on this nostalgic image many typically lower end and middling modern motor hotel operators seek to distance themselves from similar motels by styling themselves "inns", regardless of services and accommodations provided. Examples are Comfort Inn, Days Inn, Holiday Inn, Knights Inn, and Premier Inn.

The term "inn" is also retained in its historic use in many laws governing motels and hotels, often known as "innkeeper's acts", [2] or refer to hôteliers and motel operators as "innkeepers" in the body of the legislation [3] [4] These laws typically define the innkeepers' liability for valuables entrusted to them by clients and determine whether an innkeeper holds any lien against such goods. In some jurisdictions, an offence named as "defrauding an innkeeper" prohibits fraudulently obtaining "food, lodging, or other accommodation at any hotel, inn, boarding house, or eating house"; [5] in this context, the term is often an anachronism as the majority of modern restaurants are free-standing and not attached to coaching inns or tourist lodging.

See also

Related Research Articles

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A hotel is an establishment that provides paid lodging on a short-term basis. Facilities provided inside a hotel room may range from a modest-quality mattress in a small room to large suites with bigger, higher-quality beds, a dresser, a refrigerator and other kitchen facilities, upholstered chairs, a flat screen television, and en-suite bathrooms. Small, lower-priced hotels may offer only the most basic guest services and facilities. Larger, higher-priced hotels may provide additional guest facilities such as a swimming pool, business centre, childcare, conference and event facilities, tennis or basketball courts, gymnasium, restaurants, day spa, and social function services. Hotel rooms are usually numbered to allow guests to identify their room. Some boutique, high-end hotels have custom decorated rooms. Some hotels offer meals as part of a room and board arrangement. In the United Kingdom, a hotel is required by law to serve food and drinks to all guests within certain stated hours. In Japan, capsule hotels provide a tiny room suitable only for sleeping and shared bathroom facilities.

Motel Hotel catering to motorists

A motel or motor lodge is a hotel designed for motorists and usually having a parking area for motor vehicles. Entering dictionaries after World War II, the word motel, coined as a portmanteau contraction of "motor hotel", originates from the Milestone Mo-Tel of San Luis Obispo, California, which was built in 1925. The term referred initially to a type of hotel consisting of a single building of connected rooms whose doors faced a parking lot and in some circumstances, a common area or a series of small cabins with common parking. Motels are often individually owned, though motel chains do exist.

Pub Establishment that serves alcoholic drinks

A pub is an establishment licensed to serve alcoholic drinks for consumption on the premises. The term public house first appeared in the late 17th century, and was used to differentiate private houses from those which were, quite literally, open to the public as 'alehouses', 'taverns' and 'inns'. By Georgian times it had become common parlance, although taverns, as a distinct establishment, had largely ceased to exist by the beginning of the 19th century. Today, pubs have no strict definition, but CAMRA states a pub has four characteristics:

  1. is open to the public without membership or residency
  2. serves draught beer or cider without requiring food be consumed
  3. has at least one indoor area not laid out for meals
  4. allows drinks to be bought at a bar

Heart of Atlanta Motel, Inc. v. United States, 379 U.S. 241 (1964), was a landmark decision of the US Supreme Court holding that the Commerce Clause gave the U.S. Congress power to force private businesses to abide by Title II of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination in public accommodations.

Lodging Industry and type of residential accommodation

Lodging refers to the renting of a short-term dwelling. People who travel and stay away from home for more than a day need lodging for sleep, rest, food, safety, shelter from cold temperatures or rain, storage of luggage and access to common household functions. Lodging is a form of the sharing economy.

Tavern Place of business where people gather to drink alcoholic beverages and be served food

A tavern is a place of business where people gather to drink alcoholic beverages and be served food, and where travelers would receive lodging. An inn is a tavern that has a license to put up guests as lodgers. The word derives from the Latin taberna whose original meaning was a shed, workshop, stall, or pub.

Bed and breakfast Small lodging establishment

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Resort Self-contained commercial establishment which attempts to provide for most of a vacationers wants

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Holiday Inn British-owned American brand of hotels, and a subsidiary of InterContinental Hotels Group

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Coaching inn Historical inn serving coach travellers

The coaching inn was a vital part of Europe's inland transport infrastructure until the development of the railway, providing a resting point for people and horses. The inn served the needs of travellers, for food, drink, and rest. The attached stables, staffed by hostlers, cared for the horses, including changing a tired team for a fresh one. Coaching inns were used by private travellers in their coaches, the public riding stagecoaches between one town and another, and the mail coach. Just as with roadhouses in other countries, although many survive, and some still offer overnight accommodation, in general coaching inns have lost their original function and now operate as ordinary pubs.

Ramada Large hotel chain run by Wyndham Hotels & Resorts

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The hospitality industry is a broad category of fields within the service industry that includes lodging, food and drink service, event planning, theme parks, and transportation. It includes hotels, restaurants and bars. The role of Hotel Industry stems from a long history and development in the field of hospitality provision.

Baymont Inn & Suites

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Roadhouse (premises) Mixed-use premises typically built on or near a major road

A roadhouse or stopping house (Canada) is a small mixed-use premises typically built on or near a major road in a sparsely populated area or an isolated desert region that services the passing travellers, providing food, drinks, accommodation, fuel and parking spaces to the guests and their vehicles. The premises generally consist of just a single dwelling, permanently occupied by a nuclear family, usually between two and five family members.

Drinking establishment Business

A drinking establishment is a business whose primary function is the serving of alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises. Some establishments may also serve food, or have entertainment, but their main purpose is to serve alcoholic beverages. There are different types of drinking establishment ranging from seedy bars or nightclubs, sometimes termed "dive bars", to 5,000 seat beer halls and elegant places of entertainment for the elite. A public house, informally known as a "pub", is an establishment licensed to serve alcoholic drinks for consumption on the premises in countries and regions of British influence. Although the terms are increasingly used to refer to the same thing, there is a difference between pubs, bars, inns, taverns and lounges where alcohol is served commercially. A tavern or pot-house is, loosely, a place of business where people gather to drink alcoholic beverages and, more than likely, also be served food, though not licensed to put up guests. The word derives from the Latin taberna and the Greek ταβέρνα/taverna.

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<i>Constantine v Imperial Hotels Ltd</i> 1944 English contract law case

Constantine v Imperial Hotels Ltd [1944] KB 693 is an English tort law and contract case, concerning the implied duty of an innkeeper to offer accommodation to a guest unless for just cause.

Hotel and Motel Fire Safety Act of 1990

Hotel and Motel Fire Safety Act of 1990 was established to acknowledge the evolving apprehension of fire safety criteria for the hospitality industry. The United States federal statute was an amendment to the Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974 implementing an adjunct promoting fire and life safety decrees for domiciles providing public accommodations.

References

  1. Chartres, John. The Eighteenth-Century English Inn: A Transient "Golden Age"?. Ashgate. p. 211. ISBN   0-7546-0341-5.
  2. Innkeepers Act, RSA 2000, c I-2, Consolidated Statutes of Alberta; Innkeepers Act, RSNL 1990, c I-7, Consolidated Statutes of Newfoundland and Labrador; Innkeepers Act, RSO 1990, c I.7 Consolidated Statutes of Ontario
  3. Hotel Keepers Act, RSBC 1996, c 206, Consolidated Statutes of British Columbia
  4. Civil Code of Québec, LRQ, c C-1991, Division III: Deposit with an Innkeeper
  5. "§ 43-21-13 - Defrauding innkeeper :: 2010 Georgia Code :: US Codes and Statutes :: US Law :: Justia". Law.justia.com. Retrieved 2014-07-13.

Further reading