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“Horrible” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Solwood Healing Arts Retreat & Spa

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Solwood Healing Arts Retreat & Spa
1298 Lynn Road, Tofino, British Columbia V0R 2Z0, Canada   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #40 of 47 Tofino B&B and Inns
Victoria
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Horrible”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2009

I've stayed at Solwood 5 times. Each time I stay there it gets worse. The first time I stayed, it was great for a large party of 8, great price. However, the lady that is regularly there is very snarky to customers. The yard area has a lot of garbage around. One time I stayed in the main house for bed and breakfast. The room was ok, breakfast was good but the kitchen is dirty. They have a lot of piled up garbage. The outdoor shower is a great feature, however it's dirty with slugs crawling all over.

The Forest Den cabin has water issues. Sometimes the water doesn't work. The shower water pressure isn't very good. Drainage in the sink is poor. There's no proper stove, just a hot plate that doesn't heat up well since the electrical outlet has issues. The place is very damp and we found a slug in the washroom!

I wouldn't recommend this place. It would be best to stay somewhere else like Crystal Cove, Heart Garden or Long Beach Lodge. I have stayed at many places in Tofino, and this place is the worst. The only great thing is that its close to the beach.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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12 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    2 of 5 stars
  • Service
    1.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    2.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room Tips
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
ZRH
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2008

The other reviews from august '08 say it well. We stayed the first 3 days of august. Don't let the website and price (high) fool you. This is no B&B. And the owner doesn't live there, she lives in Ucluelet 30 miles away.
The 'kids' who run it are just recruits looking for a room and board. We got very lucky in that our hosts happened to speak english and could actually put a breakfast together. They (a different one works everyday) were very honest about their job there and were very surprized they weren't asked if they could speak english and cook when applying for the job from their home country. Germany in our case. But I think we got lucky.
Secondly, we stayed in the cathedral room. No shower. Carpeted bathroom is pretty rough. Towels smelled moldy. Even the fresh ones. The whole room was kind of clean. The pics on the website are probably from 10 years ago. The layout is all correct but the condition is way off.
Those cool little cottages you see on the website are crammed into a normal size frontyard. They don't look so cozy when you're standing outside. I was glad we booked the cathedral room. Except you don't know that there are 2 other TINY rooms they rent out in the house. Closet like things. So, its not just you and your host for breakfast. In our case they had families of 4 in both rooms. We were lucky the families were nice people and equally as disappointed as us. Except I think they only paid $100 for their closets per day. Our cost of $270/night was just wrong.
The good part is it's really just across the street from the beach. Yes you do have to walk down a path and across some driftwood at the beach edge but it's maybe 2-3 min. there. Did I mention you may not have a parking place? Seems everytime we came back we had to park somewhere else. Oh and forget about that Spa, Workshop, Healing arts stuff. The handwritten note to contact Natasha for a massage was it. Natasha is one of the kids there BTW. I sure hope the rest of the B&B's there are really B&B's but this one is NOT.

Stayed August 2008
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Burnaby, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2008

We never actually got to stay in this location.

We called Solwood and booked our stay on Tuesday for our weekend getaway.

In the morning of our departure date, one lady called us and told us they overbooked us! Besides overbooking, they even got the wrong date!

So I guess I should consider myself lucky, cause if they never overbooked us, we would not have a place to stay anyway.

Solwood did find us an alternative accommodation, but at a higher price with no kitchenette at this new location.

  • Liked — I don't know. I never got to stay there.
  • Disliked — The fact that they over booked us while we booked this place three days before.
  • Stayed August 2008, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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BC
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2008

This was our first experience with Tofino and dont get us wrong, Tofino is a very beautiful place. We tried to select an accomodation that would give our family, that has two young girls and a dog a memorable trip. We chose the Forest cottage with the seperate loft. It will be memorable, only not in a good way. We arrived to a note on the door that said this one is yours, and no workers in sight. The cabin smelled really bad and I do understand there is a wood burning fireplace, however it smelled like the place had a campfire in progress. The cleanliness of the entire cabin was not suitable for anybody and I had to clean the bathroom before anyone used it. Which I had to do with no towels. The next day I asked a girl that was drinking wine and painting her nails, if anybody worked here and it was her! I had to ask for towels, and soap. The staff jumped on my request but this stuff should have been done before we got there. The loft is not as good as it looks on the website. The stairs to get up are very steep and the drift wood handrail are not functional so I constantly worried about the kids falling down. The kitchenette is a bar fridge and a hot plate with an electric kettle. You will need the kettle because 2 out of the 3 days that I was there, we had no hot water. The so called spa retreat is a piece of folded cardboard that someone has handwritten "call and ask for Natasha if you want a massage"! Incase you haven't noticed we were very dissapointed in our "retreat". We had the opportunity to see other places while we were in Tofino as we were there for a wedding and friends stayed elsewhere. The price to stay where we did was way overpriced for the value. In some cases it was more than friends that stayed on the beach. The beach access across the road from us was a huge climb over 40 feet of logs. We didn't bother because I didn't want any broken bones on top of this nightmare. We were lucky that we got to spend our time at friends accomodations and the most beautiful wedding I had ever been to. We never did meet the owner who we were waiting for because apparently they show up on Wednesdays. We didn't think it would be useful to talk to the young staff that seem to be just there for free room and board.

  • Liked — Some of the decor.
  • Disliked — The fact that they market this place as a rustic spa get away.
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Norfolk
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2007

I booked this room (The Cathedral room) as I wanted our visit to Tofino to be the high spot of our trip to Vancouver & the island. The room was very expensive but looked something special on the website. In fact it WAS spectacular, but not comfortable. No shower (OK it has got a powertub, but I like a shower). Bed not comfortable. No comfortable seating, although there is acres of space. No chest of drawers.

Worst of all was the service, which is provided by surf dogs in exchange for a bed - in other words non-existant. We felt as if we were intruding on a private party - which we probably were. One morning we had no breakfast as the lad making it had no clue about what to do.

If you are looking for a laid back stay and are about 20, this may be the place for you - but it is not the 5* accomodation which we paid for. Just writing to the owners......

  • Liked — Close to Chesterman beach
  • Disliked — service
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Vancouver, BC
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2007

If you want a flashback to the past, this is the place. A true hippy gem. We stayed in the Solwood cabin for $150/ night as we came during the week. Loved the driftwood/wood decor, and cedar shingles, Cottage style dishes, surrounding trees. The best part were the skylights above the loft bed, and watching the stars. And, it was very quiet at night. Didn't like the resident cat, which was left inside, and was very cute, but left fuzzy black cat hair all over the duvet. It was very nice being so close to the beach, but we got the impression when booking that it was on the beach. We were anticipating the hot stone massage, but when we arrived, nothing was ever mentioned to us about it (but we should have asked). The owners were very nice, but the staff were a bit standoffish. Note: the breakfast is homemade muffins and waffles, don't expect eggs. Tthe neighbouring b& b's were a little overzealous with the leafblower/chainsaw/ around dinner time, so it would have been better to have eaten out. I have been to Tofino several times over 8 years, and I would recommend this to someone surfing/with pets, and as a romantic hippy getaway.

  • Liked — Cottage decor & skylights
  • Disliked — Cat hair and standoffish staff
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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San Francisco
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2006

I stayed here two nights last week (October 2006) and found it to be an interesting experience. This is a great place for some visitors but I don't think it's for everyone. Imagine it as an artist's cottage right across the street from gorgeous Chesterman Beach and you'll get the picture. I stayed in the Forest Den Cottage, which has a loft with a double bed, a separate loft room (no door) with another double bed, and a downstairs sunroom (with a door) with yet another futon couch bed. If you are staying there with a large group and you all get along in close quarters, this would be a perfect place. As a solo traveler, I found it a bit odd to have three beds to choose from, but I just picked the separate loft room and that was fun to stay in. The stairs to the loft are beautifully made from curved wood but very steep, so I wouldn't recommend it for people who might not be steady on their feet. I didn't use the kitchen but if you're wanting to save money (meals in Tofino can be expensive) or you're there to fish and want to cook what you catch, this would be a great place to do it. If you're a surfer or with a group of outdoor enthusiasts who like to rent cabins, these cottages would be perfect. They are literally yards from the beach and the entire street has so many trees, you can barely see the houses. It has a very foresty feel which I loved. I peeked into the other Sala Berry Cottage, which was also very cute. The main house, where the owner and her son live, is gorgeous, but I don't know how private it would feel if I had stayed there as a B&B guest. I think the cottages are better bets for solo travelers. The owner and her son are both very nice, I got a good vibe from them. Overall, this place is a good alternative to the more expensive places to stay in Tofino, but just be aware that it's very stripped down, not like a B&B.

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Additional Information about Solwood Healing Arts Retreat & Spa

Address: 1298 Lynn Road, Tofino, British Columbia V0R 2Z0, Canada
Location: Canada > British Columbia > Vancouver Island > Clayoquot Sound > Tofino
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #40 of 47 B&Bs / Inns in Tofino

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