Meet the Innkeepers
Meet the Innkeepers
Alex and Adrienne Sweeney, a 5th generation Alaskan, purchased the Driftwood Inn and RV Park in 2003; it was originally established as an Inn in 1941 and known for old town Homer Hospitality ~ A Home away from Home.
Visitors to Homer’s Driftwood Inn and RV Park tend to be smitten by the staff’s friendly attitude, the cleanliness of the rooms and the unique location in Old Town Homer near Bishop’s Beach and Kachemak Bay.
At least, that’s what owner Adrienne often hears from her guests.
“Folks love the Old Town feel and friendly atmosphere. We try to be very honest about what we offer and never try to be something we are not. Our guests love that they receive good value without all the glitz,” she said.
From a place to find value lodging or more expensive Lodge rooms, hold a wedding ceremony or line up a fishing charter, the Driftwood offers its share of always-appealing options. But what the business may do best is tell the story of Homer’s old-town hospitality, with roots dating back more than 80 years.
Adrienne’s grandfather attended school in the business’ original building in the late 1920s. The schoolhouse built in 1914 was transformed into a hotel, complete with a dining area, in the 1940s. As ownership changed hands throughout the years, more amenities came along as well. Other small businesses – taxi services, newspapers and cafes – have called the rooms in the Driftwood home.
It’s a living, breathing Homer history lesson.
“I still have folks come in and say ‘I stayed here when I first came to Homer in the 40s, 50s and 60s,” Adrienne said. “and we have worked hard to keep the warm charm of the old days.”
The Sweeney’s took over soon after their first of three daughters was born. Right away, they set up a budget for annual improvements. They upgraded the exterior in the first year and have since followed up with new mattresses, showers, offices, a covered deck, boiler system and upgrades each year. The girls fondly known as the Littlest Innkeepers worked right alongside making beds and folding towels.
“Our repeat guests notice the details and thank us for our investment in their experience,” Adrienne said. "Many, go out of their way to support locally owned small family businesses like ours. The staff make it a policy to go above and beyond. Simple things like booking a charter or a bear viewing experience, running to the store for a basketball, giving night lights and toys to families with babies, to simply slicing an apple for a toddler can really make a difference in a guest’s experience with us.
The Driftwood Inn has always been big supporters of the community with donations to several organizations and individuals in need including Homer Hospice, Pratt Museum, Haven House, Refuge Chapel, Boys & Girls Club, the Chamber of Commerce and local Churches. It's a way of life here, helping your neighbor, lending a hand and stopping to ponder the beauty of where we are blessed to live and raise our family.
"My biggest inspiration has been “my great-grandparents, Homer, Pioneering, entrepreneurs, Lillian Walli and Hugh Watson. I like to remind my children about the great-grandparents they never knew, about honoring their pioneering legacy the best we can….by working hard , helping our neighbor, being good stewards of the community, our natural resources and remembering the lessons they handed down. Lillian Walli & Hugh Watson were known for their big hearts and generous spirits but they also planned ahead, set budgets, and watched their pennies. I’d like our girls to learn those lessons too. That's why they are growing up making beds, cleaning rooms and saving for college or whatever their future may bring."
“We love the quality of life and never get tired of waking up to the beautiful Kachemak Bay sunrises, walking on Bishop’s Beach or having our breath taken away when we come over Homer Hill. Some people think Homer residents take the beauty for granted, the truth is:
We’re so proud of it.”
~ The Sweeney Family