A former bed and breakfast on Sherman’s east side is preparing to reopen.


The Sherman Planning & Zoning Commission recently approved a site plan and specific use permit for the two-story house at 506 North Grand Avenue to resume operations as a bed and breakfast. The property was recently purchased and the new owner said reopening it for business would be the best way to continue the preservation of the five bedroom, three bathroom home built around 1900.


“I purchased this property a couple months ago — it’s a property I personally consider to be a historical gem,” owner Elliott Smith said. “I have to commend the previous owners who have kept up this house. It has a lot of the original wood, a lot of ornate aspects to the house, including stained glass windows.”


Smith said the previous owner had operated the home as a bed and breakfast until, he believes, 2010.


“Even after I purchased the property, she encouraged me to ‘please, please do this,’” Smith said. “After thinking about it and knowing that a house of this kind would require certain amounts of maintenance throughout its existence, I think that it’s in its best interest to generate the means to continue doing that while also making it available to the public to stay and appreciate.”


All of the home’s upstairs bedrooms and bathrooms will be used for the bed and breakfast business, as well as the building’s front parlors. The fifth bedroom, which is downstairs, as well as the back parlor will be used as Smith’s personal residential space and to cook meals. Smith said he believes the additional lodging opportunity, particularly as it is near Austin College, will complement the city and the school.


The commissions unanimously approved Smith’s requests, though several commission members had questions about the plans he provided for the bed and breakfast, particularly his intention to add parking spaces.


“Today, if we grant approval, we’re just granting approval to have a bed and breakfast specifically,” commission Chairman Clay Mahone said. “If there’s any other issues as far as new paving for parking, that would be new requests.”


Smith is planning to add five additional parking spaces around the house and said he understood he’d have to get permission for the addition of the asphalt, though Director of Development Services Scott Shadden said that request wouldn’t have to go back before the commission.