Bike Friendly Business Spotlight: Oak and Ivy Bed and Breakfast

For both experienced and novice cyclists making their way across the Erie Canalway Trail, identifying the right accommodations on your trip is an important factor to consider—  after all, getting in a good night’s sleep and a well-balanced breakfast could mean the difference between biking for 6 miles or 60 miles the following day.

For Cycle the Erie Canal riders on day 5 of the tour, or solo riders passing through, make sure you plan ahead for your stay in Rome, NY. If you’re not going to set up camp, we highly recommend that you spend the night at one of our Bike Friendly New York certified businesses, the Oak & Ivy Bed & Breakfast. Frederick Rice, the owner of Oak & Ivy B&B, would be thrilled to have you as a guest in his 1871 Victorian English-style bed and breakfast. Your stay in Rome will certainly be one to remember because, as one guest said, the Oak & Ivy is “straight out of Downton Abbey.”

Located less than half a mile from the Erie Canalway Trail, Oak & Ivy is nestled on the corner of N. George St. and W. Bloomfield Street in the heart of Rome, NY. To locate the Oak & Ivy B&B, keep an eye out for the lush foliage peeking up and around a white picket fence, or take in the smell of fresh scones (baked by the owner himself) permeating the air.

Purchased in 2008 after much deliberation and some friendly persuasion, the property needed some T.L.C. Luckily, Frederick has a background in interior design, hospitality, and horticulture, putting his skillset to great use. Having previously lived in England and later Massachusetts, Frederick’s decision to relocate to Central New York meant leaving the ocean behind, and embracing the “leatherstocking region.”

From the architecture of the house, to the antique furnishings and perennial gardens (Hellebores, Fritillaria Imperiali, Primula Veris, oh my), the Oak & Ivy really does offer a “distinctive English atmosphere quite unique in Central New York.” The owner is not only an intelligent, gracious host, but he is an incredible story-teller because he has a way with words. Settle in on your first day to enjoy high tea and, if you’re interested, ask Frederick more about the history of the property, Broadway, antique dealing, or his rescue cats, Emmeline, Hazel, and Rupert.

The Oak & Ivy has had its fair share of riders roll through its doors. Frederick said, “there’s not a single cyclist that I didn’t like,” and based on the stories, I know why! It’s not every day that you meet a descendant of Teddy Roosevelt doing a bike tour across the Erie Canalway Trail (that was delighted to learn about a Teddy Roosevelt inspired restaurant named Teddy’s), a couple from Florida who passed through Rome in style on custom made recumbent bikes, or a regular rider who kindly gifted a set of fine china on her most recent trip. I imagine every Oak & Ivy guest can attest to the enduring character of the B&B, as well as their host, Frederick. Make your way over to the Oak & Ivy and share your story; enjoy the “hot showers, cold drinks, and afternoon tea that will await you after a long day on the trail.”

As a cyclist, you can enjoy the following services as a guest of Oak & Ivy:

  • One-night stays
  • Secured bike storage area and/or bike storage in rooms
  • Knowledge of local cycling routes, local bike shops, bike rentals, tour operators, and tourist information centers.              
  • Local cycling maps displayed or access to computer with local/regional interactive cycling resources bookmarked.
  • Bicycle cleaning station.
  • Public charging station for phones, tablets, etc.
  • Fully cooked breakfast included with accommodation                    

The opening of the recreation season is upon us, and luckily, the Oak & Ivy is open for business. Please contact the Oak & Ivy for reservations by visiting

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