In May 2016, Susan Hanus purchased Lyndonville's Stepping Stones Inn. Formerly a small-business consultant and freelance news photographer for publications such as the New York Times and Newsweek, Hanus now runs a holistic-spa-meets-bed-and-breakfast there — the Stepping Stones Inn & Serenity Spa. And on January 15, after extensive renovations to the inn's kitchen, she opened an in-house restaurant to the public.
"We're going to start with Sunday brunch," says Hanus, who hired local chef Chayse Jarvis to helm that kitchen. Once they get their feet wet with brunch service, Hanus and Jarvis will open for Saturday night dinners. When summer rolls around, Hanus aims to be running a full-service, café-style restaurant with daily lunch and supper — a casual yet ample eating stop for guests, locals and peckish bikers shredding the nearby Kingdom Trails.
"We're looking to provide the whole experience," Hanus continues. "Massages, hot tubs, a full spa, comfy beds, peace and quiet ... Food goes with that holistic idea of nourishment."
The fare will lean toward the lighter side: a juice bar, smoothies, soups and salads bolstered by seasonal Vermont produce and proteins. A bar stocked with wine and local beer promises to fuel the daily R&R, as well.