AABBI Timeline & History


  • In January, the first meeting of the Arizona Association of Bed & Breakfast Inns was held with just twelve inns. Four months later Joanne Bell came to Phoenix to give organizational direction to the fledgling group.


  • AABBI was incorporated for the first time with the Statutory agent being Steven P. Johnson of Tucson.
  • The Arizona Trade Name of “Arizona Association of Bed & Breakfast Inns” was established and filed with the State of Arizona.
  • The first official By-laws and Standards were written by which the organization would be guided.
  • The first AABBI brochure was published to promote its member inns.


  • AABBI's incorporation status was lost because required papers had inadvertently not been filed with the Arizona Corporation Commission since 1991. No application for reinstatement was made to the Commission.


  • AABBI embarked on its first lobbying effort, appealing for the following items of state legislation:
  • Require B & Bs, Country Inns, and Homestays to collect applicable taxes from guests for lodging;
  • Property taxes and personal property taxes be determined only for the items purchased for use of guest and/or the percentage of uses of those items for guests
  • AABBI's membership grows to 30 inns across Arizona.
  • Membership standards were revised and adopted by the members at that year's annual meeting.


  • AABBI applied for a grant from the Arizona Office of Tourism for $7,107.50. $5,400 was ultimately received. The grant funds were used to create display ads in Country Inns Magazine and Sunset Magazine to promote member B & Bs in the state of Arizona. Additional grant funding was used to design and produce a Rack Member Directory and to hire a freelance travel writer to write a travel feature on five-to-six selected B & B inns along with two press releases. These press releases went to 120 newspapers and each were addressed to the Travel Editor by name. Gary Vallen Hospitality Consultants of Flagstaff was hired to conduct a baseline study of the B & B industry in Arizona. Results from the study were to be used to tie to suggestions of itinerary based promotional linkages for national publicity as outlined in the Strategy-Based Research Plan for the Arizona Tourism Industry in cooperation with AOT.
  • Two membership meetings a year were established for the first time.


  • Vendors were first invited to join member innkeepers at AABBI's Annual Meeting.
  • A cookbook representing 21 AABBI member inns was published-the first of its kind in Arizona.


  • A Guest Survey was designed and implemented by Gary Vallen Hospitality Consultants of Flagstaff.
  • AABBI membership standards were again revised and adopted by the membership at that year's Annual Meeting.
  • By-laws were revised and adopted by the members, also at the Annual Meeting.
  • AABBI membership continues to grow-now up to 50 inns.


  • AABBI's first first color Membership Directory was published.
  • The first AABBI Newsletter was published by Twila Coffey and was distributed by mail.


  • Karl Sampson, a well-known travel writer, was hired to write 20 travel itineraries for the AABBI website. AABBI was given permission to use this narrative in written form for other purposes as it saw fit.
  • AABBI was reincorporated as a non-profit organization using the law firm of Jeffrey W. Sparks of Prescott. The Statutory Agent was Mike Coffey of Prescott.
  • The first AABBI website was developed by Blizzard Internet Marketing.
  • The first electronic AABBI Newsletter was sent with Jean Pace as Editor.


  • A committee was formed to revise membership standards which were adopted by the membership at the Annual Meeting.
  • Meetings were reduced from two per year to one per year.


  • AABBI membership continued to increase-now up to 57 inns.
  • The AABBI Educational Scholarship Fund was established at the Northern Arizona University Hotel Restaurant Management School in Flagstaff to honor AABBI innkeepers who had died.


  • AABBI membership reaches the 60 inn mark for the first time.
  • AABBI's website was rebuilt and re-designed and hosting changed to InsideOut Marketing. An e-mail broadcast tool was included in this update, making for an instant and easy way for the organization to communicate with its members.
  • A revision of Standards & Bylaws was approved and implemented.


  • The AABBI Board of Directors votes to enlarge its board capacity to up to nine seats, including two at-large seats.


  • At the Annual Meeting, the AABBI Board and Members vote to change from a two-year to a three-year cycle for the inspection of member inns.
  • Following a national trend of sales and closures of bed and breakfast properties, AABBI membership dips to 47 inns


  • In an unprecedented decision in AABBI's history, the Board of Directors elects in early January to contract with the organization's first paid Association Coordinator. Karen McClurg of Phoenix had previously worked for the Arizona Office of Tourism's Tourism Education and Development Division.
  • Under Karen McClurg's expertise and direction, AABBI applies in the spring for it's second AOT grant-intended for the purpose of a significant expansion and re-design of its website and database capabilities.
  • At its annual Conference and Trade Show, AABBI members vote to create a formal partnership with the Arizona Hotel and Lodging Association. Inns who are members of AABBI also became members of AzHLA beginning in January 2009. The two organizations will work closely with one another on issues related to the promotion of tourism and hospitality. Richard Svendsen of Starlight Pines Bed and Breakfast (Flagstaff) was elected as AABBI's first representative to the AzHLA Board of Directors.
  • AABBI membership increases to 50 inns as its new internet site launches in late January. AABBI begins designing its new promotional rack card, also funded generously by the Arizona Office of Tourism, which will be distributed to nearly 70 state and local visitor centers across Arizona over the spring and summer.


  • AABBI launches, on January 20, it's newest edition of Arizona-Bed-Breakfast.com, complemented with 90,000 two-sided, full-color promotional rack cards distributed to visitor centers, chambers of commerce and tourist sites across Arizona. 100% of the rack card design and production costs were paid through an Arizona Office of Tourism grant. 50% of our new website design and production costs were also paid through an AOT grant.


  • AABBI Board undertakes a major re-write and revision of the Association ByLaws and Standards which are approved by the membership at their Annual meeting.  For the first time in AABBI's history, Associate Members are able to be elected to the Board.


  •  In December 2011 AABBI introduces a Gift Certificate Program as an added benefit for Members and one in which certificates are sold and redeemed at face value with no additional fees or charges.


  • AABBI's Conference and Trade Show held at El Rancho Merlita, Tucson in late November yields a small profit for the first time.


  • AABBI and buuteeq, inc. (a Seattle based digital marketing company specializing in the lodging industry) enter into a ground-breaking partnership agreement which amongst other things yields a new state of the art website for the Association as well as a host of marketing and educational opportunities for its members.  The new website goes live in December 2013.

This information was mostly compiled by AABBI member Rosemary Brown using the minutes of past meetings, archived documents of AABBI, and several members who helped with setting up the initial organization. If there are potential errors that can be corroborated with documentation, please notify Rosemary. If you think some essential information has been left out, also let her know. We want for the long and colorful history of AABBI to be as accurate and complete as possible.