Old homes, big porches and beautiful gardens. Laura Brewer found a combination of these in her 1890 home on Main Street in Clover.
For the past nine years, Brewer, 55, lived in the historic home at 221 N. Main St. while she worked to renovate it and cultivate the 2.5-acre yard and garden.
She recently hosted an open house and garden tour with the Clover Chamber of Commerce for her new bed and breakfast and wedding/event venue called Magnolia House and Gardens.
Brewer is a retired urban forestry supervisor and assistant arborist for the city of Charlotte, where she lived for 28 years. She got the idea more than a decade ago for a wedding and event venue in the Charlotte region.
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“I just wanted to have a place where I could rent out the yard and you could also have a reception if it’s not a really big wedding,” she said.
Brewer knew she didn’t want to be in Mecklenburg County. She spent about two years searching in counties around the Charlotte area before she bought the home in Clover.
The 3,200-square-foot home, known as the Sifford home, had been a rental property for seven years when Brewer bought it. The house was “run down and unloved,” she said, but it was structurally sound.
“It’s got a lot of character,” she said of the home, which boasts a large screened porch at the front of the house, original wood floors and wood staircase, 10-foot ceilings and a sprawling yard. “And its a great location.”
Her initial idea for a wedding and special events venue with a garden and reception space evolved to include a bed and breakfast when people visited the home.
“Everyone who came here said, you’ve got to make this a bed and breakfast,” said Brewer. And so she did.
The bed and breakfast area includes four second-floor bedrooms and two baths. Brewer calls it a rustic bed and breakfast because none of the bedrooms have a private bath.
Brewer recently retired from her job in Charlotte and has been working to renovate the home. The improvements include new windows and light fixtures, a new roof and air conditioning unit, tearing up carpet that covered the original wood floors, painting, a kitchen and bathroom renovation and new porch areas at the rear of the house.
Brewer, who has a degree in ornamental horticulture and landscape design from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, also has been working on plantings in the yard. The yard includes some unique features, such as a fish pond that dates to 1931.
Brewer said she has started to get some inquiries about renting the home for special events. She said event rates will vary, depending on the customer’s needs and the length of an event. Bed and breakfast rates are $90 a night, she said.
Jennifer Becknell: 803-329-4077
Magnolia House and Gardens, a bed and breakfast and special events venue, is at 221 N. Main St., downtown Clover. For details, call Laura Brewer at 704-608-5681.