Occasionally, it’s enlightening to learn more about a place in one of the coastal towns that you may have passed a million times but never stopped. Also astounding is the seemingly six degrees of separation among residents of the towns.
There was a good reason to stop at the Ocean Glass Inn the Friday afternoon of Jazz Fest. Inn owners Jadine Pilotte and Jeremy Kreer were hosting an act called Warick and Quall in the property’s parking lot. The talented saxophone player and keyboard player duo was making toe-tapping music under a pop-up tent as cars whizzed by on Rehoboth Ave near Church Street.
The Pilotti and Kreer (wife and husband) have been supporting Jazz Fest since 2019 primarily due to their passion for music. Pilotti says that it is important for them to support music programs in local high schools. “Music education is essential to us,” she said. They got to know Eddie Sherman and Peggy Raley, founders of True Blue Jazz and that started the tie-in with the festival. Sponsors help support the Youth Jazz Educational Initiative. Sherman is in the popular band called The Funsters and Raley runs Nassau Vineyards.
One may seldom learn who the movers and shakers are behind the scenes at beach town establishments, but Pilotte and Kreer have put an extraordinary amount of personal energy to making Ocean Glass Inn seem like a home away from home. They bought the somewhat run-down motel after Jeremy sold his successful pest control business in Pennsylvania and they both had time to decompress from corporate jobs and travel. They could not find a house they liked so they bought the motel instead. It included an owner’s suite.
More like a horizontal Bed and Breakfast, the structure and interiors were completely overhauled with Pilotti heading up the creative decorating team that perseverated over every detail including drawer doorknobs. Shades of ocean (or Sea) glass permeate each room and suite, spilling over into the reception, breakfast/cocktail areas and a rather large open kitchen.
Whether it is Halloween, Christmas or other special times of the year, the Inn is decked out in style. “I love holidays and will decorate for every holiday that I can,” says Pilotti.
She and Kreer provide a homey, comfortable and welcoming atmosphere for guests. The reception area display sets the tone with a decorative placard that reads “Enjoy Every Moment.” The Inn attracts its share of seniors and especially those who want to visit friends and family members but do not necessarily want to physically stay with them A booking at the Inn provides some privacy and independence while still accommodating a quality visit. Also, some beach residents lack the space for guests so a place like the Inn can fill a void.
Thanksgiving is an example. “Families can put up other family members at the Inn”, says Pilotti. . Guests also include those who are moving into the area and need temporary lodging or new homeowners waiting for an inspection.
The daily 8:30 am to 10 am complimentary breakfast and complimentary 4 to 5 pm happy hour serve a purpose too. “Our guests get to know each other, our employees and us,” according to Pilotti. “Frie
nds have been made between guests when they are going out for dinner or find out that they live not far from each other at home.”
Clearly, the “personal touch” is a priority for Pilotti. The approach is a little more practical for Kreer.
“One thing I can guarantee is that guests will not find any bugs or other pests in their room,” he says with a wink.
By Mary Jo Tarallo, Guest Journalist
Mary Jo Tarallo spent much of her career in public relations with various non-profits and spent 40 years involved with the ski industry as a journalist, public relations director for a national trade association and as executive director of the Learn to Ski and Snowboard initiative. Prior to her ski industry involvement she worked for the Maryland International Center in Baltimore and United Way of Central Maryland. She won a Gold Award for TV programming for a United Way simulcast that starred Oprah Winfrey. She has been cited for her work by numerous organizations. Mary Jo grew up in Baltimore, attended the University of Maryland and Towson University, lived in Washington, DC for 21 years and has been a full time resident of Rehoboth Beach and Milton since May 2019.