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    Walk into the newly constructed Chateau Bourbon in Norton Commons and bourbon hits you right in the nose. The living room features a mantel made from Maker’s 46 barrel staves and enlarged photos of Kentucky’s favorite libation. Even the picture frames are made from staves. There’s a bourbon bar for evening sips and what seems like every kind of bourbon literature possible at arm’s reach. Even the powder room is soaked with whiskey accents, including a Peerless barrel-head light fixture and barrel sink complete with a Maker’s Mark soap pump. “I even made sure I found soap that was the color of bourbon,” co-owner Missy Hillock says. 

     

     

    “We just saw Norton Commons blowing up and bourbon getting bigger in the state. I felt like it was a good time to do it,” says Hillock, who was inspired by stays in B&Bs internationally. After working with an architect on floor planning and closing on the property along the main drag of Meeting Street, Chateau Bourbon began aging after Hillock and husband John opened their doors back in December.

     

     

    The four suites are an equal mix of French chateau and Kentucky bourbon. “I consider myself a French Kentuckian,” Hillock says. In the first-floor Reserve Suite, a French-inspired velvet headboard is pinned against birdcage-patterned wallpaper. A soaking tub rests on black-and-white tile. There’s access to a European-style courtyard with — you guessed it — a bourbon-barrel fire pit. Up the main staircase, the Angel Share has a trendy couch, coat-of-arms-style wallpaper and a private outdoor area for sipping bourbon and smoking cigars. “I tried to do all the things I like when I travel,” Hillock says. “I like to be able to sit outside and not necessarily sit right next to someone.” The Stillhouse has a four-post bed and an open-air sleeping porch. In the Single Barrel Suite, forest-green wreaths accent a huge barrel-stave headboard. 

     

    Hillock makes breakfast and in the evenings hosts a happy hour with bourbon cocktails and desserts. “We want to talk about our neighborhood and bourbon,” she says. “And get to know people.”

    This article first appeared in the Derby 2016 issue of Louisville Magazine. To subscribe to Louisville Magazine, click here!

    Images: Mickie Winters

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    Loretta Lynn is the best country music singer of all time and if you don't like pickled foods, you can leave.

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