Rachel and Michael Sherwood had no intention of buying the old house on 801 E. Third St. Although they live outside the city, they have been active in Newberg for more than 20 years. But on an August day in 2017, the couple were driving through Newberg when they encountered an old Victorian house.
"It was lovely," she said. "We said 'Why not?" And we bought it."
Sherwood said she and her husband didn't plan on living in the home, so they had to figure out a plan of what to do with it.
"We thought it would be an opportunity to bring people from outside Newberg in to enjoy the things that are easily accessible," she said.
And thus was born the idea for Victorian Secrets, a four-bedroom, two-bathroom rental home with ample space and common areas. Sherwood said the 1897 home has been updated to have some modern designs, although the original floor plan remains intact.
"It's a historic home in the community," she said, and because of that, the couple wanted to remain respectful to the design.
And the green house with the white picket fence does look the part as a historic member of the community.
"We've tried to do some things that are unique to the home for decorations," Rachel Sherwood said.
For example, the first floor bedroom has more of a traditional design, with a claw foot tub, while the upstairs is more modern with a tiled shower. One bedroom has a chandelier made out of an old bedspring. The kitchen has a fully-functioning gas stove from the 1950s.
"It's got some eclectic design to it," she said.
While initially expecting an April opening, Sherwood said by March 13 they had already booked their first renovation and opened up. Those interested can book online at https://www.victoriansecretsvr.com/. Renovating and refurbishing the old home has been a "hobby business" for the couple, as they both work other jobs full time.
Rates for the Victorian Secret will be competitive for the market for a rental home for those who don't want to stay in a traditional hotel, she said, although they haven't been finalized yet. She added rates will be more expensive on Friday and Saturday nights, that there will be a two-night limit to stay, and that longer rentals will enjoy discounts.
The yard also features a covered patio with a yard, a gas stainless grill with rotisserie feature and two 21-speed touring bicycles with locks and helmets.
The Sherwoods said they think that Victorian Secret will be a great spot to stay for those looking to explore the area. Whether coming for a weekend of golf at Chehalem Glenn Golf Course, visiting local wineries or exploring the George Fox University campus, Rachel Sherwood said there will be a lot of draws, while still being affordable.
"We feel like there's certainly the appeal to people outside the area," she said.
Their website also lists walkability as a draw, as the home is just a few blocks from the downtown area and all its shops, restaurants, wine tasting rooms, art galleries, theaters, museums and more.
The Victorian Secret is also partnering with local businesses not only to promote the vacation spot, but also to help those local businesses. For example, they have a relationship with Black Tie Tours where the Victorian Secret will promote that company's business, and in return Black Tie Tours will support their guests with limousine services.
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