Both of us are dedicated to offering lodging with lots of personalized touches to make you feel truly comfortable. We’re here to share a hug, pass on a tip on a great restaurant or a fun excursion, and do all we can to see that your stay is memorable.
It will be a joy to welcome you, whether you are a new guest or one of our many returning, longtime guests.
Mary Kerrigan, Owner
My husband Bill and I became owners of BillowHouse in 1994. Bill had retired from United Way in Cleveland, Ohio, I soon retired from Child Care Connection in Akron, and we embarked on an exciting new chapter in our lives.
Ocean Park has always had a special place in my heart. I have been coming to this lovely little town ever since I was a child, when we visited my grandmother Josephine O’Toole, who did the laundry for the Ocean Park Hotel. When she and my grandfather passed away, my first connection to Ocean Park came to an end. However, when I married Bill and our wonderful family started to arrive—nine children and 24 grandchildren—we began coming every summer, and eventually bought a place on Temple Avenue. After my father lost his wife, he decided he would find comfort and solace in Ocean Park, and he truly did. Bill had already retired and I was able to take a leave from my work, so we came here to be with him until he passed.
About three months later, we returned to Ocean Park and, while on our way to walk the beach, we saw a For Sale sign on BillowHouse. After looking at just two rooms, our lives changed and we became the New Hospitality Couple of BillowHouse. Our house in Cleveland sold within a week, our children wondered whether we had gotten light-headed, and my co-workers thought I had lost my mind. But here Bill and I were embarking on something that we were thrilled to be doing together. It was wonderful running BillowHouse with him. In 2006, Bill left this world, but I believe he continues to guide me to do the things that BillowHouse needs, like creating the new turret (with the Ocean Park Suite) to return this landmark building to its original appearance.
I love BillowHouse. I love everyone who stays with us from fall to spring, and those who share the summer with us. And I love this community, where everyone loves ocean, sky, and one another.
Judi Boehm, Chief Facility Operator
It’s always my hope that when you come to BillowHouse, you will feel like you’re coming home, just as I did when I was a guest here many years ago.
I was a teacher in Massachusetts and came to Ocean Park on summer vacations. One day, as I was sitting in the gathering room, I told Mary I would be looking for a summer job and asked if she might be hiring. She left the room for about five minutes; when she returned, she asked me when I could start. And so for the next four years, I worked at BillowHouse as a chambermaid.
In 2005, after a 23-year career in education, I decided to move to Ocean Park fulltime. The first year I was here I worked part time at BillowHouse and also at a small daycare center where I trained staff to be better teachers and employ different ways of setting up classrooms to meet the needs of all the children. When Mary offered me a fulltime position at BillowHouse, I accepted enthusiastically. The greatest gift anyone can be given in life is to find work that provides a sense of fulfillment every day. I am one of those lucky people. I look forward to each morning, to greeting and getting to know our guests, and to helping to keep BillowHouse the very special place it is.
The BillowHouse Credo
We believe we have the very best guests
We believe we learn from our guests
We believe our guests are the BillowHouse family
We believe it is an honor to be part of summer vacations, engagement, weddings, family, life’s passages, sickness and remembrance
We believe the ocean, sunrise and sunsets are great healers
We believe that Ocean Park is a very Special Place
We believe YOU ALL enrich our lives
We believe you know Love the notes you write, the hugs you give
We believe BillowHouse should be “Coming Home” experience
We believe in hard times we are here to help