These criteria are probably specific just to my personal preferences, but the following is my list of what makes for a great B&B stay. Some of the items on this list stemmed from areas that we found inadequate or deficient in our various accommodations:
a. Sufficient strength and speed anywhere within our room and in all common areas.
b. Password prominently provided so that we don't have to chase down the proprietor for it
c. Network can be accessed on Apple devices. I was told at one establishment that they did have WIFI but it occasionally didn't work for Apple products!?!
2. Power Outlets
a. Availability of unoccupied, easily accessible power outlets to plug in our various devices and chargers. Often, all the outlets are used up by table lamps or are hidden behind beds and dressers.
b. Convenient location of these power outlets, preferably with a power bar to provide more outlets and extend their reach to where I wanted to be in the room
c. Bonus points for providing international adapter plugs and Apple device adapters/cables
a. Sufficient water pressure and hot water from the shower
b. Bonus points if there is also a bathtub since I love baths
c. Size and plushness of towels–Bath towels should be at least large enough to wrap around my body, and face cloths should be provided
d. An area or ledge by the bathroom sink to put my toiletries and in the shower to place the soap and shampoo so that I don't have to reach for them on the floor
e. A shower large enough to turn around in (this one was more for Rich :)
f. Separate switches for the light versus the fan so that the fan doesn't automatically come on when you turn on the lights; Alternately, provide a night light to ease trips to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
a. Firmness of the bed & pillows
b. Size of the bed should be large enough to comfortably fit two people, or the availability of two separate beds
c. Get rid of all the annoying little decorative pillows that we just have to toss on the floor in order to sleep
a. Brightness of overhead lighting and lamps should be sufficient for reading at night
b. Availability of a kettle, tea/coffee/milk/sugar (and spoons!) right in the room, as opposed to having to go down to the dining room to ask for this
c. A desk and chair to sit at would be a nice to have, but not mandatory since we could just lie on the bed
a. Quality and taste of the meal
b. Variety of the meal–After being offered the "Full Irish Breakfast" (eggs, various types of sausage, bacon, beans, tomato and occasionally mushrooms) day after day, we were delighted the one day when our host gave us the option of blueberry and raspberry crepes and homemade scones
c. Extras like fruit, cereal, yogurt to complement the hot meal
7. Free on-site parking
The various B&Bs that we stayed at varied in their success at fulfilling wish list. None of them hit every point, but a couple came really close, while a few others were severely lacking. I was particularly annoyed by the one place that inundated us with nagging notices such as "No hot foods in the room" and "Turn off the Lights when not in use", making the place feel really unwelcoming. In the end, all the B&Bs served their purpose of providing us with a place to sleep and a meal in the morning to start off our day. Being constantly on the road made me homesick for our temporary home in Dublin and even more so for our permanent one in Toronto, but it was a small price to pay for all the wonderful places that we visited on this trek.