Dream Comes True at Richwood on the River B&B

by Pat Moynahan on March 6, 2017

RichwoodFlorence, Ky. – Colleen Sutton’s love story reads like a business plan.

In fact, it was a savvy business plan that made her lifetime dream come true for the wedding planner turned owner of Richwood on the River B&B in Milton.

“This is a love story of a mother and wife who really loves her job,” said Sutton, a business woman who didn’t want her passion for making wedding dreams come true to adversely affect her husband and daughter.

Sutton shared her love story with members of the Florence Rotary Club at a “valentine special” luncheon on Monday, February 13. An event planner for more than 25 years, she said she started looking a few years ago for “a beautiful home to live in and work in without leaving home.” She wrote a business plan to put everything she had in mind in focus.

What she had in mind was a place like Richwood Plantation, a 170-acre spread with a historic mansion and a view of the Ohio River just across the river from Madison, Ind., in Trimble County. She’d arranged a couple of weddings there and found the mansion and view to be the kind of setting for which dreams are made.

She’d even show her mother the place when Sutton was planning a wedding there. As they left, her mother whispered, “You’ll own this place someday,” Sutton said.

Then came a call one day from the innkeeper who said the property went on the market three days earlier. The price was steep. Sutton didn’t have the money for it, but she did have a business plan. So, she set up a meeting with the property owner in Louisville.

“I think my husband thought I was in over my head,” Sutton said.

The owner grilled her for more than an hour, then asked what he could do to make it happen.

“He told me it was the best business plan he had ever seen,” she said.

The mansion was built around 1803, according to Sutton. The massive front with the tall white pillars was built by a man from Scotland. The property has been used for everything from a distillery to a horse riding academy for girls to a bed and breakfast before Sutton bought in in 2015.

Richwood on the River now is a full-service B&B from Sundays through Thursdays with five rooms in the mansion, 6 cottages and four apartments. Social events take center stage from Friday through Sunday, with the emphasis on wedding parties – rehearsal dinner, wedding ceremony and reception all on the grounds.

The wedding calendar is booked for 2017. Sutton’s husband now works out of the home, too.

“I get to do what I like and live my dream,” Sutton said. “I get to help other people create their dreams, too”