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Treat Yourself to a Stay in The Boyer House in Walla Walla, WA

Boyer House - Front

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If you’re traveling to Walla Walla, WA, you’ll want to book yourself a stay in They Boyer House. Trust me. This remodeled 1909 neo-classical home is restored and managed by the Davenport family, the same family that owns and manages the elite Kinhaven Winery, just 5 miles from the vacation home. Known for their dedication to creating an unparalleled luxury experience, the Davenports have poured every ounce of their passion and expertise into Boyer House.

The vacation house is set in the center of Walla Walla, just feet from the campus of Whitman College. This central location makes it easy to explore the old-world charm of Walla Walla or enjoy a warm summer evening of wine and gourmet foods out on the town. 

Outdoor Dining Table - Boyer House
Outdoor Dining Table – Photo by MaryRose Denton

The History of Boyer House

There’s a lot of history in this place. Before it was bought by the Davenports, Boyer house was the home of a prominent Walla Walla banker, businessman, and state legislator by the name of Oliver T. Cornwell.

During our visit to Kinhaven, Lisa Davenport told us that the house was built as a Sears and Roebuck kit, a common house-building method in the early Twentieth Century. After it was raised, the house was augmented with trim and moldings from Whitehorse Crawford, the local miller, and the Cornwell family added their own style to the classic character of the house.

A Change of Management

This history is part of what originally attracted Lisa and Terry Davenport to the home when they saw that it was for sale. At the time, their daughter was attending college in Walla Walla. During their frequent trips to visit her here, the elder Davenports cultivated a fondness for the town and believed it would continue to grow in the coming decades. 

During one weekend visit, they happened upon the “For Sale” sign at 571 Boyer Avenue and took a tour inside. To hear them tell the tale, it was love at first sight. The original woodwork and gorgeous craftsmanship was a credit to the Cornwells. There even remained pocket doors used for family gatherings in decades past, a mark of an older time. 

Living Room - Boyer House
Living Room – Photo by MaryRose Denton

Rebuilding… and Rebuilding Again

For all its beauty, the house was in need of some renovations. Lisa and Terry felt drawn to become its new caretakers, intending to protect the history of the house while restoring it and bringing it up to its original glory in the modern context.

But on a hot day in July, 2015, tragedy struck. Continuing their hard work on the home, the Davenports had started a complete overhaul of the outside of the house, stripping off old paint from the outside wall. Where the painters had been working just hours before, the roofline caught fire due to the baking sunshine, and burned through the whole roof structure by the time it was noticed.

They were able to contain the fire and spare most of the original structure, but the disaster left extensive smoking water damage in its wake. This was more than a setback, and it gave the Davenports pause. After some processing time, they were able to see a small silver lining. This was a chance to remodel.

Over the following year, they took the original trim from Whitehorse Crawford, stripping and staining it for use on Boyer House. They installed new plumbing, hardwood floors, and plastering. They replaced antiquated knob and tube to bring the wiring system up-to-date. And for one final modern flourish, added Wi-Fi and stereo systems.

Dining Room - Boyer House
Dining Room – Photo by MaryRose Denton

The Grand Opening

Finally, in 2016, they opened the big, beautiful, wooden doors of Boyer House to the public with one overarching goal: to share this historic home with the community.

The Davenports are a family that works together and plays together, so when Boyer House was open, Kasey stepped in to take on event scheduling, keeping the venue’s calender well-stocked with wedding parties, graduation celebrations, family reunions, and other gatherings. The house was, after all, designed to exude all the comforts of home, old-world charm, and its characteristic small-town feel. 

Nearly a decade later, the house retains its air of luxurious antiquity, making it easy to make long-lasting memories with your loved ones. If there’s one thing the Davenport family does well, it’s making you feel right at home.

What It’s Like to Stay in Boyer House

If you find yourself in Walla Walla, or even better, at Kinhaven Winery and Vineyard, why not extend your stay and make your bed in Boyer House? To entice you, I’ve included the gallery below so you can see what awaits you when you stay here.

It didn’t take us long to feel the comfortable elegance that permeates Boyer House. The Davenports have decorated each room themselves, achieving a beautiful experience for visitors like us, with a clever juxtaposition of old and new, history and modern. It all blends together into a comfortable, eclectic vibe. 

We walked into the chef’s kitchen first. There, we found a welcome card and a bottle of Kinhaven Red Blend waiting for us. Exploring, we went up the grand staircase, pausing to look in all seven bedrooms before choosing the master bedroom for stay. I took note that so many rooms can accommodate an entire extended family, or even all the bridesmaids in a wedding party.

We unpacked our belongings and then strolled outside to explore the neighborhood. It’s a quaint setting filled with old homes and walking paths that criss-cross the nearby college campus with it’s park-like atmosphere. After our walk, we found a quiet place for dinner in town, and then returned home to Boyer House to lounge in the backyard. It was a beautiful, long summer evening, especially with a cool drink in hand. And we still had days here.

Bathroom - Boyer house
Bathroom – Photo by MaryRose Denton

Enjoying the Neighborhood

With so many rooms, there’s something here for everyone. We found ourselves snuggling under cashmere throws in the fourth floor theatre room, and if we wanted to, we could have played billiards in the basement game room, chess in the front parlor, or found any number of other activities, all provided for guests at the house. 

After a good night’s sleep, we had an active day out and about and as evening approached, we congregated back in the chef’s kitchen to make ourselves a delicious meal. We were amazed at all that’s provided. In the pantry, we found any number of spices, flour, oil, pots and pans, etc. There were even bags of ice in the freezer, ready to keep our evening drinks cool. The Davenports have truly thought of everything!

As the sun set and the first stars began to appear in the sky, we brought our food outside to the lawn to dine at the rustic, wooden table, built expressly for this purpose. 

We ate under the soft glow of string lights above our heads, taking our time in order to savor the setting, to freeze it in our minds like a polaroid.

Boyer House is a place for sharing the good things in life. Comfort, laughter, good food, loved ones, and other joys of life. That is Boyer House.