ADAMS -- The Travel Channel recently deemed a town bed and breakfast one of the best in the region, praising its "comfort and style" and "ultra-green" setup that keeps "carbon impact near zero" in a website write-up.
Pleasant Street's Topia Inn earned the honors, slotted number two out of 10 on the Travel Channel's list of Top 10 New England Bed and Breakfasts. Co-owner Caryn Heilman shared a little of how they got to the top in an interview with the Transcript this week.
She said building the inn into what it is today has been a constant process, starting on July 7, 2007, when it opened at its 10 Pleasant St. location.
"As we went, we did research at every juncture," Heilman said. " ... It's obvious that everything's been done consciously, and we think it gives guests a personal relationship with the place and the experience. ... Everything is sensually pleasing from the beginning."
Guests travel up a recycled plastic walkway to the solar-panel bedecked building, entering a colorful room with textured walls and a carpet of New Zealand wool.
Each of eight available rooms were decorated by artists and feature aroma-therapy showers and beds with no fire retardents in the mattress or pesticides in the sheets.
"A lot of times, people will walk in and immediately take a deep breath, pleased that everything is so fresh and smells so good," Heilman said. "People with allergies can breath and that's surprising to them."
Guests' mornings begin with a fresh-baked, organic breakfast, often served "late, because most people sleep so well here," and could continue with one of a number of massages and therapies offered.
The building has received a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification for its various green features. In addition to the solar panels, the building is powered by 100 percent vegetable oil.
"It was part of the whole Topia project and we just thought it was so fitting in a place as beautiful as the Berkshires," Heilman said.
In the future, Heilman said, the inn looks to expand its offerings to include writers workshops, steam oven and organic cooking lessons, solar-heated hot water and additional massage therapies.
Heilman co-owns the inn with Nana Simopoulos, a musician and singer.
To reach Phil Demers, email