NEW OWNERS TAKER OVER AT STANG MANOR

April 04, 2002 12:00 am

By Ray Linker

Observer Staff Writer

Ron and Carolyn Jensen have traveled and lived in some interesting places all over the world, they said.

Now they are settling down in their new home in La Grande the historical Stang Manor Inn Bed and Breakfast mansion.

We visited here a couple of times and fell in love with La Grande, the setting, this house, said Carolyn, sitting at a table on the patio of the famous house at Walnut Street and Spring Avenue.

Ron said, We talked about doing something like (owning a B&B) for years, and we finally decided to do it.

Originally from Chehalis, Wash., they came here after living 16 years in Pleasanton, Calif., where Ron worked in computers and Carolyn spent several years as a chef. He is a programmer and systems analyst.

We have lived in Seattle, then in San Antonio for three years, in Tripoli, Libya, for three years. We lived in Brunei on the island of Borneo in Southeast Asia for four years, where I was with Shell Petroleum, Ron said.

In the Bay Area, he worked for New United Motor Manufacturing, a joint venture of Toyota and General Motors. He will be working there through May, then join his wife in La Grande permanently. Now, hes going back and forth while they get settled in.

We had guests three days after we moved in, Carolyn said. The business was pretty well ready to go, but weve still got some personal things packed in boxes.

A graduate of the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, she baked a lot wedding cakes. She hopes to incorporate that into her business here.

We would hope to have some small weddings, too. But we want to do it so that people get here by some type of shuttle and dont have to park here. We want to be very sensitive to our neighbors and not disturb them, she said.

We hope to do a lot of local events, community things. Weve already had a reading that the manor co-sponsored with the Blue Mountain Forum.

They took over ownership on March 4 from Pat and Margie McClure, who owned the inn for 10 years. Now they will be dividing their time between Santa Barbara, Calif., and La Grande.

The 7,600-square-foot Georgian Colonial house (9,000, if you count the finished attic) has four bedrooms for guests, and three are suites with additional rooms. The master suite, for example, has two bedrooms. The fireplace room has two bedrooms and a sitting room. The one called the maids room has a main bedroom, a room with twin beds, a balcony. It has seven doors, including one that leads to back steps that come out in the kitchen.

All the rooms have private baths.

The Jensens will live in the basement. Carolyns parents also occupy a basement bedroom.

The ground floor has the living room, a wonderful sun room, Carolyn said, the kitchen, a large dining room, a breakfast room.

As for her full breakfast, Carolyn mentioned such items as eggs Benedict, buttermilk oak waffles, with sausage, homemade granola bars every day, juice, freshly ground coffee, at least two kinds of homemade bread.

The Jensens expect to get the largest number of guests via their Internet site, www.stangmanor.com

So far, most of our guests have been from the Portland area, and some have been from Boise, Carolyn said. The tourist season hasnt started yet, so most of the guests so far have been business people.

Rates range from $95 to $115, with a 10 percent discount for local residents.