Resort amenities are at par with other Raintree properties we've stayed at.
Except for ventilation.
A relative who's a Washington resident has indicated to me that this is common in Washington. However, I still don't understand why.
We made a reservation at this property June 23-29, 2013. This is our second day. Weather forecast called for high % of precipitation 5 out of the 7 days we'll be here.
While summers in northern Washington can often be cool, an air conditioning is still a must for a property of this level/type. If there's no AC, a decent ceiling fan would be acceptable. Neither was present.
When we walked in the first night, there were two box fans in the bedroom closet. My initial impression was they were probably there as supplemental cooling equipment... in addition to the in-room air conditioning system. It was a warm night so I looked for the temperature control for AC. Found 2 on the wall: one was the fireplace control and another the thermostat -- for heating only. When I inquired with the front-desk, I was told there really was no A/C. For calling, we should open the windows and turn on the box fans provided. The box fans are those you'd find at the local store chain that sells for about $10 -- No frills. Just a 5" thick hollow box with grates on both side and blades inside. No timer control, no stand, no oscillation. We have to put it on a table top if we want air while sleeping. I can understand opening the window as we're as close to nature as we can get. Problem is it also rains.. so water can also get in when when open the window.
Good thing about this is you can always file a complaint management or Raintree customer service. I told them no mention was made during the reservation that there was NO AC in the unit. They took care of me by giving me all my points back and charging me just 14,000 points for a 4 night stay (vs 7142 points per night for 7 nites on our original reservation for a 1BR unit). The 4-night stay is perfect substitute to our original 7 nights because it rains most of the time during our stay here. And clamming is not advisable because of the red tide advisory.
Like I said earlier, there are no issues with amenities other than ventilation.
The unit came with fairly new kitchen utensils/equipment. Cooking vent comes from the over-the-stove microwave oven. Not advisable when frying (what my kids like to eat). BBQ grills are also available onsite but not in the unit. Kitchen appliances are Frigidaire brand -- this is a lower end brand but they are all functional. Stove is standalone with 4 burner smooth cooktop. Pots and pans are stainless steel -- decent but not the heavy, durable quality.
Laundry area is the usual apartment type (stacked dryer/washer). Washer is the front-load type. Clothes came out clean. We didn't use the dryer all that much.
A 40-inch Samsung thin tv (not sure if it's plasma or lcd) sits on top of the fireplace. Another smaller tv is in the bedroom.
I give it high marks for service as they are always available when needed.
All in all, this is an almost perfect property.. Almost because of the missing AC.
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- Also Known As:
- Sandcastle At Birch Bay Hotel Blaine
- Sandcastle Birch Bay
- Sandcastle At Birch Bay Blaine