Unlike many people I know, I don't watch a lot of movies. I barely own DVDs and I only go to the cinema about twice year.
I much prefer binging television shows on Netflix, but still, there are certain classic flicks that I hold near and dear.
The 1989 film Steel Magnolias is one of them.
It has been nearly three decades since M'Lynn, Shelby, and the rest of the Chinquapin Parish women came into our lives and made us laugh, then ugly cry, yet I still bawl my eyes out every time I watch the movie.
The movie doesn't just star some of my favorite actresses, including Sally Field, Julia Roberts, and Shirley MacLaine, it also taught me some important lessons about life, being a daughter, and motherhood.
The Steel Magnolia House B&B
I recently discovered that the house, which was used as the fictional home of the Eatentons, has been converted into a bed-and-breakfast, and as someone who has watched the movie so many times I can quote most of it, this news had me squealing with joy.
Finally, a chance to sip on sweet tea, and snack on a slice of bleeding armadillo cake (who cares if there's no wedding), while being surrounded by oak trees and blooming magnolias.
Located in the charming town of Natchitoches, Louisiana, the B&B, aptly named Steel Magnolia House, was also home to author Robert Harling, who wrote the original off-Broadway play the movie is based on.
The true story
Harling's play and characters were inspired by a personal experience he lived through: the death of his sister, Susan Robinson.
Robinson was just 33 when she passed away in 1985 after suffering complications from diabetes and a failed kidney transplant - just like Shelby.
On the 25th anniversary of the movie, Robert admitted that he wrote the story as a way to keep Susan alive for her son, also named Robert.
"Susan died in the fall of 1985. Pat, my ex-brother-in-law, he remarried five or six months after her death and the first time I heard my nephew call this other woman ‘mama’ was when I said ‘No – Susan can’t disappear,’" Harling explained.
He added, "I wanted to celebrate my sister, it was a time of tumult and the way it took off, who knew. I never, in a million years, thought it would even get produced when I was writing it."
Now, Susan's memory is more alive than ever as thousands of people visit The Steel Magnolia House every year.
While ownership of the brick house has changed a few times, the interior and exterior has remained the same.
Let's have a look!
Dan Dyess, the owner of the 5,900 square-foot B&B opened its doors back in 2003, but a recent feature in Southern Living magazine has the house back in the news.
Dyess told Today that fans of the movie will be familiar with many aspects of the house, including the front porch, where the famous send-off scene following Shelby and Jackson's reception was filmed.
The original details inside the house, including the wooden flooring, crystal chandeliers, mantels, antique furniture, and even gas-lit fireplaces are still in tact.
You can stay in one of the six suites in the house, all of which have been named after some of the movie's characters, including Shelby, Clairee, Jackson, Ouiser, and Annelle.
The iconic home is also filled with memorabilia from the movie like behind-the-scenes photos and costume sketches, according to Southern Living.
If you haven't booked your trip already, here's a tour of the house before you commit:
The main room
The study was not included in the movie, but it is very much a part of the house.
The Dining Room
The women in the movie spent a lot of time in the kitchen instead of the dining room, so like the study, this room was also left out of the film.
Fans of the movie will recognize the kitchen where M'Lynn confronted Shelby about her pregnancy. Everything from the tiled floor to the giant light fixture above the island has remained the same.
The Family Room
The characters spent a lot of time in this room making it one of the more recognizable areas of the house.
The house actually has six-and-a-half bathrooms, but none have stood out as much as the pink-tiled one. This is the exact bathroom where Shelby was filmed having a soak in the tub.
While everything about The Steel Magnolia House is exciting, the bedrooms, especially the "Shelby" room are the main attractions. Just wait until you see them!
Shelby loved the color pink, even her wedding theme pink-heavy. So to no one's surprise, her bedroom was also decorated in pink.
The Shelby Room
The stripped wallpaper is still covering the walls of the upper level room.
According to Dyess, this is one of the most requested rooms in the house. It almost always booked, so he advises making a reservation at least 60 days in advance.
“Mostly ladies get together and come over here with their daughters,” he said of the B&B’s typical clientele. “You won’t believe the number of women who I have met who have named their daughter Shelby.”
The Jackson Room
You'll notice that most of the original details, including the curtains, the light, and fireplace are still a part of the room. This is the room where Jackson climbed through the window to surprise the bride-to-be.
The backyard is exactly as we've remembered it from the film. The pool is still around and there's a guest house right beside it.
In addition to the nostalgia factor, you will be able to enjoy a full breakfast with your stay, which will set you back $200 per room per night. Prices do go up around the holiday season, so you might want to avoid booking then.
For the full Steel Magnolias experience, you can book a local tour and get a glimpse of Truvy's Beauty Shop and St. Augustine Catholic Church, where Shelby tied the knot.
You can visit The Steel Magnolia House website for more photos of the charming home.