Meet Jon and Katia, your hosts at The St Ives Guesthouse in Dunoon
Hello and welcome to our first blog post!
For those who haven't met us - we are Jon and Katia and we are your hosts at The St Ives Guesthouse in the heart of Dunoon in beautiful Scotland!
When our guests hear Jon's London twang and Katia's Russian accent, they are always curious to know who we are and how we ended up in Dunoon.
So here is our story (we'll try to keep it short!):
We met on the internet (!) in 2006. Jon was serving in the Police in London and Katia lived with her family in Kyrgyzstan in Central Asia.
She came back 'home' earlier that year after having lived in London for almost nine years since she was 15.
I grew up in London and missed the city and its beautiful people too much after moving back to Kyrgyzstan. Jon was the first person I spoke to online. It was meant to be!'
Six months later, we were married in the cold and snowy Kyrgyz winter and returned to London to start a new life as a married couple.
Fast forward eleven years and three beautiful children, life in London had become somewhat hectic and chaotic. Long hours in the City, stressful commute home and lack of family time had started to take their toll on our family. Something had to change!
'It was then during my maternity leave with our youngest son Charlie when I started to search for B&B businesses for sale online - the inspiration came from watching too many reality TV shows while nursing Master Charlie on the sofa!
I knew Jon and I loved looking after people especially when hosting family celebrations at our home or having visitors come and stay. We both had travelled a bit and stayed at many hotels and B&Bs all over the world. I remember thinking 'Ooh I love what they've done here or 'Ouch, I would have done this differently!'
St Ives hotel caught our attention instantly. We'd never visited the West part of Scotland before so we did some research on the area and discovered that Argyll and Cowal Pennisula in particular were the most beautiful spots on planet Earth!
We came to view the hotel in February 2017 and fell in love with it right away. A beautiful Victorian building dating back to 1840 - just imagine how many life stories and secrets it has seen! We made an offer a couple of weeks later and the rest was history as they say!
Our next posts will be about St Ives's rich history and heritage and our first days here in Dunoon as hotel owners and the (zillion) challenges we were facing.
Bye for now! Jon and Katia x