Manitou Springs straddles the creek dubbed Fountaine qui Bouille by the French fur trappers who were the first Europeans to explore the Pikes Peak region. Mineral springs flow into the creek, inspiring its original name. The rushing waters of Fountain Creek at the base of Ute pass inspired English immigrant and railroad magnate Dr. William Bell to plat out a new town.
Just east of the downtown area, Dr. Bell carved out "The Briarhurst," his personal estate. Blue Skies Inn Bed and Breakfast is located on the eastern quarter of Dr. Bell's estate, which includes his historic 1873 Carriage House, the oldest standing structure in Manitou Springs. The Gothic Revival architecture of Dr. Bell's Carriage House was the inspiration for the board-and batten exteriors of our three B&B buildings.
Dr. Bell envisioned his settlement as a health resort where visitors could enjoy the healing spring waters that gush from nine sites around Manitou Springs. Manitou was along the route to the "Pikes Peak or Bust!" gold rush. Present-day historic attractions of Manitou Springs include a new history museum as well as other historic structures.