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“Not for us” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Lantern Bay Resort

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Lantern Bay Resort
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1336 South Morrison Lake Road, Gravenhurst, Ontario P0E 1G0, Canada   |  
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1 review
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Not for us”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

I purchased a 2 night stay through deal find and we went up fathers day weekend with our 2 kids. They have park model homes which are nice but your fire pit is a few steps away from your neighbor, we were supposed to have a 2 bedroom for a larger living area and supposed to be across from the playground which we had neither. The playground had cups with booze and wine lying around and the boat that you rent for $110 had no gas nor could they find anyone to meet us down there with the safety kit before we left. If you leave early before tge office is open there is supposed to be a drop box for the keys so you dont get charged but that seemed to be non existing.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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14 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    3 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3 of 5 stars
  • Value
    2.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2014

See that picture they use for their ad? This is the cottage we actually stayed in BUT we had to book it privately with the owner! We found their add on Kijiji and their prices are amazing! The owners are really nice and friendly and their cottage is kept super clean and tidy. We had our own private docks, deck, fire pit and motored canoe to use. In addition, they have a hard top gazebo for super hot sunny days as well! It was very quiet and private at the end of the road (really at the edge of there resort). There was only one home to the right and to the left was beautiful landscaped greens and flowers. To be honest, we walked all over the resort and this is the best site on the resort. We've decided to book with them this summer as well!
I can see why some people posted such low reviews for this resort, mostly about their actual cottage not the resort (they expected water front and did not get what they were expecting). The resort itself has two great pools for guests, good amenities (new and clean) and the girls at the kids club were super sweet and helpful with our little ones. Each cottage or if you prefer, modular home, is privately owned so it really depends on which cottage you get slotted for if you book through the resort. My advice is to definitely book with owners themselves to ensure you are getting what you are paying for!

Room Tip: Book directly with the cottage owner to ensure you are getting what you are paying for! They advert...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2014 via mobile

I should have written this earlier, I tried to let it go but it still bothers me a lot.
I too purchased a dealfind as a year ago we were considering purchasing at a "cottage resort" and was excited to have the opportunity to check out lantern bay although they have the highest maintenance fees.
We headed up north on Canada day for what was to be a 2 night trip with our 2 children. Upon arrival we were shown to our "cottage" which had a panel missing at the side and was atop a dirt hill. It was fairly private because it had trees beside the deck and you could see down to the water. We unpacked the truck, filled the fridge then I thought I would explore a little, only to walk into a sticky bug trap as a walked out onto the deck with a live dragonfly stuck to it ugh! The BBQ was old and beaten up and tools were non existent for it. There were dollar store tongs that were in 2 pieces for use tho. I then discovered the "firepit'" of should I say cinder block redneck disaster that had a broken bottle in it and outside of it. Wonderful for small children... I think not ! One of the 2 plastic muskoka chairs was broken tossed to the side in the woods.
There was no cell reception at all, how on earth are you supposed to make an emergency call if needed ?! I have a daughter with epilepsy. No cable or wifi available either. So ur pretty much cut off and the weather was rainy. The staff that I saw were teenagers buzzing around on golf carts courteous enough but not the impression that was good enough to purchase and pay $6k plus in maintenance which by this point we had been turned off. My husband wanted to Leave right away but we knew we had to put in at least one night. There was no ladder on the bunk beds. I couldn't get the sheet on properly and it was tough for my 6 year old up get up. The beds were lumpy I could feel every spring. I took my daughter to the "beach" aka sandbox. Pretty small for the size of the resort. The pool was under construction. I think we were in bed by 9 pm. No Canada day celebrations of any kind as they had been done on June 30th ?! A restless uncomfortable night was had by all. Including our 11 lb dog that it cost $75 more to have come With us!!! Rip off ! There were 2 paddle boats for the whole resort. We didn't even try. We drove to gravenhurst to escape the next morning as there was nothing to do at the resort and upon our return Packed up and left after 1 night. So all in all we spent over $400 for a night plus time and gas and a whole lot of packing for an unpleasant trip to muskoka and can safely say that my husband and me at this point were turned off "cottage ownership" at any Ventura resort. I told the girl at the desk And she gave me an email address which turned out to be wrong. I have photos that I took if the property as I was just shocked at the state of the exterior with the broken glass and chair.

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 15, 2013

To respond to some comments: yes, the location is difficult to get to and return if you're from the south- Toronto-Barrie-due to the lack of highway offramps making the drive long and very, very winding. Its much easier north to Gravenhurst and back. The cottages are modular trailer homes "Northlander" model "Escape"- if you want the layout look it up. Yes they are technically trailers because they have a permanent axel, but they're up on blocks with skirting. Yes, some are very close to each other. Yes, some are right on the water, others only see a sliver of the lake. All of this info is online for anyone with Google maps and a few net searches to discover. The trailers are owned by individuals (think condo and condo rental, not cottage ownership- they don't own the land) who then decide to rent them through the park property management for income. Some decide to forego the property management rental fees and rent themselves- see Kiiji. If an owner rents out themselves they pay a fee for the cleaning and key handling, but not a percentage of rental. They vet their own renters. Not all owners rent out, its their discretion, which is probably why the el primo locations and the double wides don't rent. Owners gripe that the resort rental "specials" are not covering their costs. The heat/cooking is propane, there is hydro for lights and a/c, and the sewage is septic. There is no cable. Satellite is up to the individual owner, who probably won't have it if they're renting it out. Don't be fooled by TV& DVD in the advert. The BBQ sold with the trailer is small and at this point most are really beat up, unless the rental owner has decided to replace it. Cellular reception is poor to non-existant. Free WiFi is only available at the front office unless someone lets you on their hotspot. The docks are public so expect traffic. There is one small sandy beach in the middle of the resort. One section of the resort is only accessible over a small concrete bridge with no guardrails. There are 2 swimming pools, tennis etc. The developer is putting a whole back end into this resort (with current minimum access) that has no lake view and overlooks a small creek. Rumor has it that the cost of maintenance is really going up. If so there may be more rentals and more resales. The girls (students) who clean work very hard, and are very courteous. Some of the boys (very young students) are lippy, poor mannered, and wrecklessly drive the golf carts (must be a boy's first toy thing). Second stay,front desk management is overwhelmed, poor pr skills, and stubborn with employees. Keys go every which way and confusion reigns. First stay the front desk ladies were great. Information is poorly passed through e-mails with owners. The good, bad and ugly.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2013

This year was our second time visiting a “Resort Cottages” destination. Last year we stayed at Woodland Estate in Campbellford and had a great time. This year we decided to switch it up and book time at Lantern Bay (had heard Muskoka is beautiful). As a second-time-around customer, it surpassed our expectations which is why I am a little surprised to see the negative comments posted here.

We didn't book the vacation believing we were staying at a high-class cottage with ultra private accommodations. Choosing to book a 4 night stay at a Lantern Bay “resort cottage” saved us some serious cash, since in the past we’ve spent a ton renting a chalet, and we never actually spent any time in the cottage anyway, we thought we would give this a shot (twice now).

Was it perfect? No. Could they improve on some things? Yes. But overall, the cottage was cramped, it was a ton of work to get all packed up and drive the three hours to Lantern Bay, but you know what? Our 5 year old, to this day, still talks about fishing at the cottage. He keeps asking when we’re going back. He had a blast, and so did his mom and I. Some things not talked about here are the ton of things they do offer. Things we took advantage of, like fishing, the view was amazing, and Gravenhurst has a ton to offer and is only 20 mins away. I suggest people find out what they are signing up for before they buy a great deal, then post about how their stay wasn’t up to their expectations. If it’s too good to be true, it probably is. Show me another place to get a week stay (a motel perhaps) for the same price, and I’ll be sure to retract this review and head there next year.

In any event, take a look at what you're getting. It's a low price, fun for the family, and probably not the most luxurious accommodations - but that's pretty much what we signed up for.

Room Tip: We scored a fantastic location. There are some not so great spots, but they are also less expensive...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oakville
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2013

We were aware when we booked a weekend stay in September, that this was a mobile home resort, so the size of the "cottage" was no surprise. The grounds however, were a different thing. The Waterfront Cottage was overlooking the marina with a well traveled path directly in front affording no privacy and making it somewhat uncomfortable to relax on the deck. The weather was terrible so we headed into town, which is not as close as advertised. It would be helpful if the "resort" stocked some local tourism literature and maps, especially since the internet connection was down and we were unable to retrieve information online. The DVD player was not working and was promptly replaced, thank you Christian.
Overall, the trailer had a slightly neglected air about it, ripped screen door, dirty mats and shabby tablecloth, and frankly was not as clean as I had hoped. This is not really a resort and perhaps if it was not advertised as such, the expectations would not be as high.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2013

Just before the end of the summer visited Lantern Bay Resort for four nights. The best advice I can give to anyone considering Lantern Bay as a vacation spot is simple: don’t! Save the aggravation and disappointment. From the moment we arrived after driving 2 hours from Toronto we were told that our assigned and advertised “lakefront cottage” was in fact hundreds of feet from the lake and that there was nothing staff could do to get a cottage that met the description on Dealfind--It’s a matter of availability, simply take it or leave it (at the time the Dealfind and the Lantern Bay website did NOT read "subject to availability--nonetheless; we booked over a month in advanced and were told there was plenty of availability at the time). I was promised to be "on the water" and that there was a lot of availability for my date. On Dealfind, the cottage was described as a lakefront cottage. The last time I checked, lakefront means on the water, or in front of a lake, or only a few feet from shore. Ventura (the corporate owner of Lantern Bay Resort) have their own set definitions. The staff corrected my Lakefront definition and explained to me that “lakefront” means you can “see part of the lake from your assigned cottage”. Yes you read that right.
Private is another definition Lantern Bay Resort staff had to redefine with me. The Ventura definition of “private” is still something I’m trying to figure out. Nothing at Lantern Bay is private. Even your own cottage is not private. I had to tape bags over the large window on entrance door of the cottage so neighbouring cottagers and people walking by wouldn’t see me walking to and from the shower and the bedroom. Yes we told the staff. No; they did nothing.
Cottages are packed together only a few feet apart. The spectacular views mentioned in the advertising are of the other nearby cottages on the resort. “Spacious cottage” .... For real? The Cottages are in fact cramped mobile homes. The bathrooms are dangerously cramped. I laughed when I saw the shower/tub. I never knew they made shower tubs that small. Hot water was consistently brief. The kids bunks are not designed for people taller than 5”8. The rooms are tiny.
Nature trails? I think they’re referring to the few short pathways between cottages not accessible by cars. The nearest nature trails to hike are a 30 minute drive away.
Gravenhurst is not a 15 minute drive from Lantern Bay Resort as described in Dealfind. It’s a 25 minute drive on very windy single lane roads. I don’t recommend driving these roads at night. Don’t be surprised if an oncoming vehicle strays in your lane on a turn. It happened to me numerous times. There’s very little room for error.
Accountability is the worst part of the entire experience. Refunds are being demanded. I did not get what I paid for. I did not get what Dealfind advertised I would get. I was misled, yet Dealfind says they can’t help me and telling me to contact Lantern Bay. Lantern Bay says they can’t help me and to contact “head office”. Ventura is telling me to take it up with Dealfind.
Avoid the situation I am in. Save the aggravation and stay far away from the Lantern Bay trailer park resort. The only way that I would say it would be nice is if you are EXPECTING it to not be private, if you want a budget vacation with the family...but not a resort for privacy.

Most of the staff was friendly, but no one took responsibility for this mishap.

Room Tip: No good rooms, they are all small. If you book waterfront with head office, ask for a private cottag...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kristen A, Manager at Lantern Bay Resort, responded to this review, October 2, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to review our resort. Feedback from our guests is crucial to the improvement of our business. I am very sorry that your expectations of our cottages and resort were not met.

We strive to thoroughly and accurately represent our Resort Cottages on our website, over the phone and in our email correspondence with our guests. We have detailed information on each cottage location as well as floorplans, interior pictures and pictures depicting cottages with close neighbours. When we advertise with companies like DealFind, our promotions are always based on a Waterfront location but subject to availability. Of course Waterfront locations are the most popular and book up very fast, leaving us to book our Standard or Standard Premium locations.

Our intention is never to hide the actual cottage location from our guests and advise when a Waterfront location is not available. In addition, our email confirmations always state the cottage location on them. I do sincerely apologize that you were not given clear information in regards to your cottage location at the time of reservation.

We do not advertise nature trails on our website as we do not have designated nature trails throughout our resort. There is plenty of gorgeous Muskoka scenery to be explored in the resort and the surrounding area.

My name is Kristen, and I am the Reservations Manager for Ventura Resorts. Please feel free to contact me directly to discuss this situation and how we can improve in the future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Lantern Bay Resort

Address: 1336 South Morrison Lake Road, Gravenhurst, Ontario P0E 1G0, Canada
Phone Number:
Location: Canada > Ontario > Muskoka District > Gravenhurst
Amenities:
Beach Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Specialty Lodging in Gravenhurst
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lantern Bay Resort is located on the Severn River, just north of Sparrow Lake in the Muskokas. We are 10 minutes south of Gravenhurst and just an hour and a half from the GTA. Families can enjoy great fishing, boat rentals, playground and kid’s activities. Resort Cottages accommodate up to 6 people comfortably and offer a wide range of stunning Muskoka scenery! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Lantern Bay Resort Gravenhurst, Muskoka District

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