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Sally Watkinson and Doug Posey saw themselves buying a part-time shotgun shack with some land in the country.

A simple weekend retreat from the city fit for an escape with their two large dogs. Specially fond of their trips to Storm King and Dia: Beacon, the Hudson Valley had been calling to them for quite some time. But when Doug saw the sale listing for Audrey’s Farmhouse, a pet-friendly bed and breakfast in the hamlet of Wallkill, he suggested they book a stay with the dogs to see what it was all about. “It was just so peaceful,” sighs Sally, remembering their quiet weekend in the farmhouse suite, a former chicken coop they later found out. “And the house, the house was gorgeous,” emphasizes Doug. “It had all these quirky, amazing things about it, but it also had an aura and that aura hasn’t changed.” 

Sally and Doug bought the 1740 Dutch farmhouse and its detached studio cottage from longtime owners Audrey and Don Leff, a sweet couple whose convivial hospitality for people and dogs alike helped them gain notoriety for being one of the most pet-friendly bed and breakfasts in the country. They quickly took over operation of Audrey’s Farmhouse, but also began stripping back on some of the decor to try to make the place feel more like their own. “We wanted to let people know who we are and also expose the beauty of the house a bit more,” says Sally. When they weren’t hosting guests, the pair worked tirelessly at repainting and outfitting five guest rooms, two living rooms, and one perfect little kitchen with a handpicked mix of antique and mid-century modern furnishings. Today, the house is decorated with the couple’s contemporary touches, but not overly so; structurally, nothing has been changed.

Words by Sylvie Morgan Brown for

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