Breaux Bridge bed and breakfast making it big

Friday, August 26, 2011 - 7:59pm

BREAUX BRIDGE, La (NBC33) — A Breaux Bridge bed and breakfast is about to get some national attention. Nestled near Lake Martin, the Maison Madeleine Bed and Breakfast is off the beaten path.

"It's like you leave your car and you walk into a different century," says owner, Madeleine Cenak.

The French-Creole cottage was built in the 1840s. Cenak says it had been abandoned since 1920 when she found it several years ago. It took five years for Cenak and her children to restore the home to it's original form.

"This home feels authentic," she says. "This was our goal, to put it back the same way that it was when it was built, even though it had become quite deteriorated when we found it."

That authentic Cajun feel was what drew prodcucers from Travel Channel show, No Reservations, to her door. "They want to learn about people, and they really want to have their pulse on the way we live and the best way to do that is to be in someone's home."

No Reservations is hosted by famous chef, Anthony Bourdain. He travels the world to find the most unique cuisine. Then, he shares his experiences with his viewers. His adventures recently brought him to Acadiana. Cenak says she's not surprised. "Family's very important. Food's very important. Music is very important."

Cenak says producers were looking for a place to host a big crawfish boil for the show. A guest recommended her bed and breakfast. Producers thought it was perfect.

"I was thrilled and nervous to tell you the truth," she says. Cenak says she was given four-days notice before the crew showed up. They hosted a massive crawfish boil with folks from the community, and plenty of restaurant owners, vying for Anthony Bourdain's time. Cenak says Bourdain spent about four hours at her home, mingling with locals, and digging into about 160 pounds of handpicked crawfish.

"He's just a natural," she says of his on-camera presence. "He's the same on-camera as he is off camera. He was very honest about the life that he has led and the blessing that have come his way, so at the end of the day, I thought he was a pretty cool guy."

Bourdain gave Cenak's bed and breakfast a thumbs up. "He kept saying, 'this is gorgeous.'"

And Cenak gave No Reservations a true taste of Cajun culture. "It just makes me realize how truly special this place is."

Maison Madeleine will be featured Monday on the Travel Channel. You can catch that show at 8pm.

Learn more about No Reservations at

Check out Maison Madeleine at


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