GALENA, Ill. — What was once a county jail in a historic area of Galena, IL is now a bed and breakfast offering what its website describes as the “ultimate in relaxation, luxury accommodations and location.”
“If you would’ve told me six years ago, ‘you’re gonna buy a jail and live in and convert it,’ I’d say, ‘what?'” innkeeper Matthew Carroll said of the transformation.
Today, the Jail Hill Inn is known for its friendly atmosphere, and TripAdvisor users ranked it the number one bed and breakfast in the U.S., and number two in the world., in the site’s annual Travelers’ Choice Awards.
The brick building served as the county jail for nearly 100 years, but stopped housing inmates in the ’70s. The inn doesn’t shy away from the building’s history, either. Guests can still learn about the jail’s past, and prisoner’s names remain etched in some of the walls. There’s even a “Repeat Offender Program” for return guests.
Depending on the day of the week and the season, rooms range in cost from $295 up to $445 a night, according to the Chicago Tribune. Each room includes more than a toilet and a cot, including luxury amenities like a fireplace, king-size bed with fine linens, daily three-course breakfast and steam shower. There’s even a Tesla charger out front.
Larry Potash takes you inside the Jail Hill Inn to find the Backstory of this unique hotel.