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“To each his own” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Sanderling Resort

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Sanderling Resort
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   1461 Duck Road, Duck, NC 27949   |  
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Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Duck
North Carolina
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
93 helpful votes 93 helpful votes
“To each his own”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2013

We celebrated our 30th anniversary last weekend and were last at the Sanderling for our 15th anniversary. We loved the updates. Don't try to check in early. They will keep you waiting until 4 pm so bring a bathing suit and change in the bathroom then use the facilities.

The South Building is near the adult pool so is ostensibly quieter. However, the room was dark and small and we could hear our neighbors on their balcony very clearly. We called to express our disappointment and they showed us a room in the Beach House (the main building where you check in). It was twice the size of the other room and while it looked out over the snack bar we were happy to take it.SInce the snack bar closes at 9 pm, we didn't have any issue with noise. And they either worked out the firepit curfew or we had mellower guests because even with our door open it's wasn't loud. It was so nice leaving the balcony door open and listening to the ocean at night..

But you don't need to pay for an ocean view since you barely see the ocean over the dunes. You.can enjoy the resort with a view of the parking lot since there are so many public areas to enjoy the other views.

We loved Kimball's Kitchen for dinner and the Lifehouse Station No. 5 for breakfast after a walk on the beach. If you want to have a quick and inexpensive breakfast, take advantage of the free coffee on the second floor and buy a muffin or pastry from the espresso bar in the Beach House.

If you're trying to beat the beach traffic off the island on Saturday or Sunday, leave at 6:30 am or at 3 pm. Between 8 am and 2 pm it will be bumper to bumper.

Don't worry about bringing blankets, umbrellas, chairs, beach towels, or hair dryer. These are all provided. And you don't have to save chairs, they have plenty.

Room Tip: Larger rooms are in the Beach House. Family-friendly rooms close to the main pool are in the North w...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wendycoulsonmurray, Director of Sales at Sanderling Resort, responded to this review, July 2, 2013
Thank you for your review. We are glad the second room worked out better for you. Definitely some earlier firepit comments were very specific to one incident but we have imposed a 10pm curfew. What you experienced is very typical. Your recommendation about the traffic on a Saturday in the summer is a great tip to the traveler. Thank you for being our guest and hope you will visit again in the future. Happy Anniversary!
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (152)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
VA
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2013 via mobile

After years of coming to the Sanderling under previous ownership, I was excited to see the renovations by the new owners. The inn looks fantastic! Tons of natural light, beautiful decorating with clean, minimalist lines without being overly contemporary. We stayed in a poolside suite and the room was terrific. Comfortable sitting area, spacious room and huge bathroom! The fire pit and pools were a great addition, as well as the decks perched upon the dunes. I love the orange accent color used on everything from the towels and umbrellas to the bikes and uniforms. The grounds looked beautifully landscaped as well.

Service was for the most part excellent, we had a few housekeeping calls and they were responded to immediately with a pleasing smile. Check in was much the same. The only spotty service received was at the adult pool, where we had to go to the inn to get someone to give us cushions and towel covers. However, the weather was hit and miss showers that date, so that could have caused the service to be a bit lacking.

After such a great girls weekend, I am heading back down next week for a family trip in one of the houses. I am thrilled to see the family friendly activities they have available. We will do the sandcastle building on the beach and the kitty hawk kite demonstration with our little one. I'm also looking forward to yoga on the beach! I will check out the spa services and try out Kimball's Kitchen.

Great job renovating a jem of a property in Duck! But please don't price out the customers that have been coming for years ($5 for a small bottle of water poolside is a bit ridiculous... It should be complimentary, like the awesome coffee and newspaper).

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wendycoulsonmurray, Director of Sales at Sanderling Resort, responded to this review, June 16, 2013
We are glad you enjoyed your getaway and look forward to welcoming you back with your family. Emilie will enjoy building sandcastles and consider the Candy & Corks and Trampoline photo session as well. It's great to read you were able to take advantage of so many of the great offerings and amenities the Sanderling now has to offer. See you soon.
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Montpelier, Virginia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2013

We spent 3 perfect nights at the Sanderling.The service was great.Fresh coffee and daily paper are a great treat for us older folks.The adult pool and hot tub are also very nice.
We will be coming back.
B.G.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wendycoulsonmurray, Director of Sales at Sanderling Resort, responded to this review, June 16, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with others. We are glad you enjoyed the new amenities and appreciate some of the things we did not change. We look forward to your return visits.
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Westport, Connecticut
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2013

The wife and I managed to sneak away to the Sanderling minus the kids. We arrived to a completely refreshed entrance, lobby and sitting area with views of the dunes, gorgeous pool and the fire pit. Immediately felt we were at the beach on vacation. The staff were all friendly and helpful. Our room was excellent for the price with views of the bay and ocean. We ate at all three dining areas and enjoyed the food. The upscale restaurant was excellent. In the mornings the staff would set up chairs and umbrella for us on the beach, bring us food and drink and that made the day even more relaxing. My wife enjoyed the spa while I managed to get a few kite boarding sessions in across the street in the bay. They offer through Kitty Hawk kites full service kite boarding with gear, instruction and boats. Was wonderful not to have to drive anywhere to get out riding. We rented bikes one day and road to town for lunch, drinks, fresh donuts and shopping. After a long day of kiting, beaching or bike riding we alway managed to get a soak in one of the outdoor Jacuzzis. Both pools are heated and that made evening dips very pleasant. This destination is on my list for another visit soon.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wendycoulsonmurray, Director of Sales at Sanderling Resort, responded to this review, June 16, 2013
We are glad to read what a great getaway you had. Thank you for sharing with others. We are pleased to have Kitty Hawk Kites here on property for kiteboarding, surfing, kayaking and standup paddle boarding. You can rent the boards, take instruction or go on a tour. We look forward to your return very soon.
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Indiana
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 3, 2013

This is going to be a long review because I want you all to know the details and judge for yourself before you decide whether to stay here. I've traveled around the world and stayed at many different resorts. I have never thought to ask whether there were "quiet hours" before I made a reservation, but that will be my first question from now on. We stayed for three nights. The first night, we opened the windows and could hear the waves--my favorite part of sleeping by the ocean. BUT there was a fire pit just outside our deck (we were in a premium king room, by the way). When the fire pit was not extinguished at 10pm, when I wanted to go to sleep, I waited until 10:30 and called the front desk. (The problem is that folks congregate there and talk and talk--having a good time--great, but I need to get some sleep). When I called the front desk to ask what time the fire pit would be shut down, the nice woman said "10:00?" I said, well it's 10:30 and then she said "11:00?" And I said, "well, I'm trying to go to sleep now, can you get it turned off?" And she replied in the affirmative. Fast-forward to 11:15 and it's still on, AND I did not get a call back to explain. So I called a second time--and was told okay, we will turn it off. Fast forward to midnight--after the fire pit was extinguished, two people remained sitting there talking, and I could hear the woman's voice through my ear plugs (so much for the sound of the waves). So I walked out to the front desk to see whether they could do something about that. To be clear, the staff were extremely friendly, but no one seemed to have any idea how to keep the grounds quiet -- and it was midnight. The next morning, I spoke to a manager and she assured me that the fire pit would be shut down at 11pm that night, which it was. However, a group of young folks (I'm 44) had arrived and they decided to blast their music on the deck on top of the sand dune just outside our window and they were dancing and literally yelling "woooo" until well past 12:30 am. I was truly astonished. I didn't know the Sanderling permitted outdoor parties on the grounds at all hours--no one did anything to stop them, and I mean the music was blaring. We closed up our windows and I put my ear plugs in and slept. Then on our final night--the fire pit was running until 12:15 am--something about a fire alarm going off somewhere in the hotel and they forgot to turn off the fire pit. So, just to be clear, the manager told me that there were no quiet hours, whatsoever. Apparently anything goes. While we had a phenomenal time during the day at the resort--stand up surfing (Melissa was great at the rental shop), walking the gorgeous beach, enjoying the new pools--the nights were crazy, and I was lucky to get 6 hours of sleep (can't sleep late because the sun rises at 5:46am and there are no blackout curtains--the sun lights up the room). I enjoy getting up early, but if I can't get to sleep early, too, it's no good. The bottom line: if you like to stay up late and party, you will love the Sanderling--the staff was top-notch and the place is beautiful. If you like to get lots of sleep on vacation and like to hear the waves while you sleep, stay someplace else. I get it that the Outer Banks has a party culture, but I never imagined a place like I thought the Sanderling was would tolerate such noise until past midnight three nights in a row. I was stunned when we checked out and nothing was comped. I've never had to talk to a manager at a place where we paid more than $400 per night. This was truly unprecedented and I was extremely disappointed that they didn't compensate us for our lost sleep. I would hope that the new owners would institute quiet hours. That would solve the problem. And really the fire pit should be shut off at 10pm--it's right outside the rooms. And music, other than that played by the hotel, should be banned. One more note--the food was delicious!

Room Tip: I would advise staying on the side of the hotel facing the road because there are two fire pits in t...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wendycoulsonmurray, Director of Sales at Sanderling Resort, responded to this review, June 4, 2013
Thank you for your review. Unfortunately a very fair assessment of this weekend which was unprecidented for us as well. We have always had a 10pm curfew specific to music. The firepit hours which are new this year (only a month into it) are being evaluated to ensure that guests are not inconvenienced. In this particular instance as we reacted they moved to the beach which is public and despite attempts we lost the ability to enforce it. Please know we took the appropriate actions needed at that point. We are sorry that your experience was negatively impacted. We appreciate your kind words on those aspects of your trip that were more memorable. Please know that quiet enjoyment is important to us and we know it is to our guests as well. It is our hope you will return for a good night's rest.
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2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2013 via mobile

We just left from eating lunch at the outdoor restaurant at the Sanderling Resort called the Sandbar. We were disappointed in the quality of the food. We both had the Fish Tacos and they were very bland and for what we got, very pricey...$13. We were excited to see they had Pacifico on tap (makes us think of Mexico) but they charged $6 for a glass which seems a little high but not a deal breaker. We were also told it was on the beach which is why we drove there. Yes, it's on the beach but you can't see the beach...only the pool. The Resort looked nice but they need to make some changes on the food.

Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wendycoulsonmurray, Director of Sales at Sanderling Resort, responded to this review, June 3, 2013
Thank you for visiting Sanderling and dining at the Sandbar while on the Outer Banks. We are sorry that the experience did not meet your expecations. We have passed along your feedback to continue to help us improve. We do hope you will stop again while in the area
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Greensboro, NC
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

We were fortunate enough to be able to sneak away for quick stay in Duck, NC recently. We have friends that live there but we wanted to spend one night on our own and so we decided to stay at The Sanderling. Neither of us had been there before but my wife used the spa previously.

I hate that I didn't get the names of everyone who made our stay comfortable and enjoyable ranging from the reservations agent to the front desk staff - next time I will.

Anyway, from the moment we arrived we were always greeted with a smile like a returning family member. The reservations agent was not able to get us an ocean front room but she did a great job getting us a room on the corner of the building that had a great view of the ocean.

It's clear that the facilites have recently gone through a face lift. I cannot attest to what the property looked like before the renovations but it's very pretty now! The covered boardwalk to the front porch complete with rocking chairs leads you into an open an airy lobby. The front desk doesn't consume the space like some resorts which is nice. You get the sense that this is really more like a lobby of a B&B with comfortable seating and not an over-the-top decor.

I'm not sure if there's an elevator or not but the front desk staff helped us carry our bags up to the second floor where our room was located and the whole time engaged in conversation with us. Discussing where we were from, what our plans were, etc. It didn't feel forced either - like it was something they were trained to do. It really felt genuine and like they really cared.

It appears that the rooms were also renovated without being TOO renovated. The bathroom was huge with nice fixtures. The bed was very comfortable with a large sitting area complete with couch and chair and wrap around windows. It's nice to see that some of the historical charm of the resort was left alone while some of the other fixtures were upgraded. We opened the windows to our room and even though we weren't ocean front, we were still able to fall asleep to the sounds of the ocean waves hitting the beach. There's nothing like the sounds and the smells of the beach to put your soul at ease and The Sanderling will deliver this in droves!

As I said before, we had never been there before but the new pools and hot tub looked awesome! We wish we had brought our bathing suits and we would have taken a dip in the hot tub (temps were too cold to swim).

We awoke to the same sounds that lulled us to sleep and decided to have breakfast in the restaurant, The Lifesaving Station. The dining room had huge doors that allowed tons of natural sunlight in and in keeping with the feel of a quaint B&B, we really loved the decor and layout of the dining room. The breakfast menu had a great selection of just about anything you may want. We opted for the old stand by bacon and eggs and were not disappointed. When we go back, I'm sure we'll sample other menu items.

After a filling breakfast we decided to try give the spa a shot. After a quick stop at the front desk, we had an appointment at the spa for later in the AM. This worked perfectly to allow us to take a nice leisurely walk along the beach. Because it was still early in the season, it was still chilly but anyone who has visited the NC Outer Banks can attest, it's really a very peaceful and beautiful beach.

In keeping with the rest of our experience at The Sanderling, the spa was not a disappointment either. The front desk staff at the spa greeted us with a smile and masseuse's were professional and really took the time to understand the areas we needed to have focused on.

As much as we love our friends that live there and are happy to stay with them, we will definitely return to The Sanderling very soon and spend a few days so we can really enjoy all the "new" Sanderling has to offer.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wendycoulsonmurray, Director of Sales at Sanderling Resort, responded to this review, June 3, 2013
Thank you for "sneaking" away for the night to stay with us. So glad you enjoyed your visit. Hope you can join us again (don't forget those bathing suits) for a longer period of time. Thank you for sharing your experience.
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Additional Information about Sanderling Resort

Address: 1461 Duck Road, Duck, NC 27949
Phone Number:
Location: United States > North Carolina > North Carolina Coast > Outer Banks > Duck
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Duck
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Sanderling Resort 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Along with the Left Bank restaurant, the property is now AAA 4 Diamond. In April 2011, a soft goods renovation was completed for all the guest rooms including carpet, paint and all new bedding including mattresses. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sanderling Hotel Duck
Sanderling Resort Duck, NC - Outer Banks
The Sanderling

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