‘Sister Wives’: How First Wife Meri Achieved Her Dream of Opening a Bed and Breakfast
As fans have seen on TLC’s Sister Wives, polygamist Kody Brown and his four wives — Meri, Janelle, Christine, and Robyn — have 18 children among them. With so many mouths to feed, each wife has dabbled in money-making ventures from real estate to jewelry design. In the latest undertaking, one sister wife has followed her dream of opening a quaint bed and breakfast.
Here we’ll look at why Meri chose a particular southern Utah home for her B&B, how Kody and the other sister wives reacted to the idea (page 2), how the town reacted (page 8), and how guests have described their stay at the inn (page 8).
Why a B&B
The quaint, 1870 home is located in Parowan, Utah, three hours away from the Brown family’s home of Las Vegas. The yellow frame home with white trim was built by Meri’s great-great grandparents and occupied by four generations. It was eventually sold in the 1980s. Meri and the family purchased the home back in 2017.
“It has been a long-time dream of mine to get the home back into the family, and after a lot of work, when I say a lot, I mean a lot, it is back in my family where it belongs! I am beyond blessed [and] excited!” she wrote on Instagram.
Next: They were wary about going back to Utah.
How Kody and the sister wives reacted
Meri’s storyline for Season 12 of the TLC reality series focused on her trying to warm the family up to the idea. While Kody and Janelle were lukewarm about the prospect, Christine was very supportive from the get-go.
Janelle’s concern was the location of the home. The family fled Utah in 2011 to escape legal consequences of them breaking polygamy laws. “I have some big concerns about a polygamous woman or even a family setting up a business in this … conservative town,” Janelle said.
Next: What the inn has to offer
The family purchased the home
Meri successfully got the family on board, and they purchased the home. Word was Meri’s mom sold her house in Lehi, Utah, in order to move into the inn and that mother and daughter would run the business together.
The B&B features four rooms for rent, each with a private bathroom. A continental breakfast is provided. Area attractions listed include antique shopping, skiing, outlet stores, rodeos, and national/state parks.
Next: Named for an ancestor
How Meri picked the name
Meri’s great-grandmother Lizzie grew up in the home, which is why Meri decided to name the B&B Lizzie’s Heritage Inn. The house was built by Meri’s ancestors Charles and Sarah Adams, who were among the first white settlers in southern Utah.
“I am so excited and beyond blessed to have had the chance to bring this home back into the family where it belongs,” Meri wrote on the inn’s website. “I have had so much fun redecorating it with my great-grandmother’s things, items that she made and created and can now be on display in her old home. I hope all our guests can feel the welcome that she, herself, would have given them!”
Next: A ribbon-cutting attended by three generations
Grand opening celebrated
Three generations of Meri’s family attended the inn’s ribbon-cutting ceremony in December 2017. Kody Brown and then-mayor Donald Landes were also present.
“I am beyond excited to announce the opening of Lizzie’s Heritage Inn!” Meri captioned a photo on Instagram of the event. “We had the official grand opening and ribbon cutting on Dec 13.”
Next: How the town has reacted
The town’s reaction
Former Parowan Mayor Landes talked of the town’s need for lodging, with visitors going to and from Brian Head Resort. The nearby ski resort is located around 20 minutes south of Meri’s inn.
Landes was not aware of any problems associated with the owners being polygamists, he said. “They seem to be nice people. We’re happy to have anyone who wants to open a business here.”
Next: What Kody has added to the inn
How Kody has supported Meri’s venture
Meri is the first of the four wives of Kody Brown. The family’s 18 kids range from babies to married with children of their own. Kody showed his support for Meri’s new venture by giving her the gift of furniture for the inn.
“Kody got me a couple of these awesome antique chairs for Lizzie’s Heritage Inn for Christmas,” Meri captioned an Instagram photo. “I brought them up this weekend and they look amazing!”
Next: We hear from guests who have stayed there
What reviewers have said
Reviewers who stayed at the B&B have said they enjoyed tours of the home — and home-baked cookies — given by the owners. “What a delightful stay we had!” one wrote. “Such hospitality, friendliness, and comfortable furnishings. Not to mention delicious food.”
Rooms at the inn range from $125-$155 per night.
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