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“Oceanside retreat. . .” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Ocean House

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The Ocean House
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1 Bluff Avenue, Watch Hill, Westerly, RI 02891   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Watch Hill
Westport, CT
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Oceanside retreat. . .”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2013

We stayed for a weekend celebration of our family patriarch's 80th birthday. Accommodations were stellar with amazing ocean views and ample deck space in each room. Each of the many dining experiences was wonderful. Don't miss the Friday night Clam Bake/Lobster dinner on the beach when offered and the Sunday brunch was divine! The only drawback we experienced was the distance from the hotel too the beach. The very long, windy decline was too difficult for our "Birthday Boy", but the attentive staff was at the ready with their golf cart as needed.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 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.
Daniel H, General Manager at The Ocean House, responded to this review, September 20, 2013
We are so pleased to have welcomed you and your family during your birthday celebrations. Thank you for taking the time to share your kind words and we hope to have the opportunity to host you and your family again soon.
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438 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (119)
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English first
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2013

The staff are not only well trained but also friendly and welcoming. We ate at the bar a couple of times during our stay and very much enjoyed the ambience. Sadly, the food, while expensive, didn't quite measure up- half chicken was relatively tasteless and the skin didn't have that delightful crispness which is one of the major reasons to order roast chicken. Swordfish was so-so and Veal Milanese was definitely overcooked. Not awful- but definitely not a 'foodie' experience.
Our room - a junior suite- was very spacious and the bathroom was well appointed. There isn't anything particularly cozy, characterful or romantic about the rooms- this is not a Wauwinet (Nantucket) or Charlotte Inn (Edgartown) and, to be fair, Ocean House doesn't seem to be aiming for that. This is a Resort Hotel. A Resort Hotel has facilities and Ocean House charges a daily Resort Fee. Not a problem at the height of the season when someone is running back and forth bringing drinks to the beach or the swimming pool or when the highly advertised croquet lawn is in its verdant glory. I start to feel more resentful about the fee out of season when the croquet lawn is burnt out and unusable and the beachside/poolside service isn't required. The fee does however cover gratuities for housekeeping and the valet- though not for bar and restaurant staff where tipping is discretionary and for the spa where 20% is automatically added to your bill. Here's a major gripe. For a 20% gratuity I expected more- a really great, snooze inducing massage. What I got was merely competent- like I might have hot at the neighborhood salon. I would have tipped 15% for this standard....but when I made this comment at checkout, I was thanked for my input with a promise to pass it on to management. Hey Management! Gratuities are meant to be discretionary- based on the level of service! I suggest they revisit the whole concept of resort fees and fixed gratuities- at least out of season.
All in all- a very nice property in a beautiful location but don't go for the food or the spa and check before packing your croquet whites!

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel H, General Manager at The Ocean House, responded to this review, September 20, 2013
Thank you so much for taking the time to give us your feedback. We are very happy you were so pleased with the service of our superior staff, which we very much feel is our best asset. That said, I do strongly value your feedback (rest assured, all input is indeed passed along to me). While the resort fee and non-tipping policy is designed to prevent guests from having to carry money and also rewards our behind-the-scenes staff (such as kitchen workers and gardeners) and is typically a very well-received practice by guests, I will definitely take all of your responses and suggestions into consideration as we are a constantly-evolving property, always looking for ways to improve ourselves and the experiences of our guests.
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Hoboken, New Jersey
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2013

My wife and I stayed here in August 2013 and were impressed at the level of service in the hotel, the rooms, the spa and the property overall. Our room had a spectacular view of the ocean, with comfortable large beds, a great bathroom and a small bar area. We enjoyed getting massages at the spa, which had to have one of the largest treatment rooms I have ever seen (full hot tub and shower in the room). Seasons restaurant served an excellent brunch, and the accompanying bar has an excellent wine selection. I was a little disappointed at the small pool (it is basically a two-lane lap pool only) but then again the beach area was much more expansive. We had a clam bake on the beach that was a lot of fun. We would definitely return.

Room Tip: Upper floors facing the Ocean avoid the noise of the pool deck.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel H, General Manager at The Ocean House, responded to this review, September 20, 2013
It’s wonderful to hear that you had the ability to take advantage of so much of what we have to offer while you stayed with us! Thank you for all the kind words and I do hope to have the opportunity to welcome you back in the near future.
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Kingston, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
76 reviews 76 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2013

Just a wonderful, wonderful place. If I could live there, I would. My daughters and I just spent another few days at the Ocean House. The staff there could not be more accommodating. We have been there several times and they always seem to know us by name. You are warmly greeted by the valet and then again at the front desk. We arrived very early in the day to take advantage of the area and the beach. We knew our room would not be ready but we had full use of the facilities and enjoyed the beach for the afternoon and then the steam room in the spa once a chilly wind started blowing in off the water. By then our well appointed and luxurious room was ready and we were escorted to it with a glass of sparkling wine in hand and a complimentary bottle of wine in our room. We dined in the Winter Garden the first night and had a delicious dinner. I had salmon and my daughter had the swordfish. Both dishes were well prepared and beautifully presented. The next morning we were rudely awakened by the fire alarm. There was a small fire in a receptacle out on the back deck area. Staff was excellent about ensuring guest safety and after a short stay in front of the hotel while the fire department did its thing we were let back in and welcomed with orange juice and sparkling wine. A little too early for me at 8 am but a nice touch. We then had breakfast in Season's Restaurant which was delicious. We both had the crab benedict, two poached eggs on top of outstanding crab cakes. I did miss the lobster omelet this year which was no longer on the menu. Our server told us they do get a lot of requests for it so hopefully they will bring it back. After breakfast we opted for a bike ride and took a ride over to the Weekapaug Inn, their sister property on the RI coast. It's a very scenic route along the ocean and great exercise to work off that delicious breakfast. In the afternoon my other daughter arrived to stay with us for the night and we had a great afternoon on the beach. Speaking of the beach, I have to mention Sam who was a lifeguard for many many many years at the old Ocean House and now manages beach services; he warmly greeted us like returning family. Dinner that night at Seasons was not a disappointment. It's their iconic restaurant and has an ever changing menu of local foods from land and sea. The ingredients are incredibly fresh and beautifully prepared and presented. It is pricey--as is everything at the Ocean House--but definitely a treat worth experiencing for a special occasion. We checked out on Saturday but again were able to use the facilities for the day and had a wonderful time on the beach before getting something to eat out on the verandah for the drive home. The Ocean House has been open now for three years and while there are still a few kinks overall the place is spectacular, service is excellent and we are planning our next mother/daughter getaway to enjoy all that the Ocean House has to offer. This is a very romantic facility and great for winter getaways as well. If you go, be sure to bring your checkbook as luxury this good comes at a price but it is well worth it.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Connecticut
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2013 via mobile

Wow! Just returned home after a fabulous three night stay at The Ocean House in Watch Hill, RI. The service was universally warm, genuine, and helpful. Our suite was over the top wonderful, with a huge terrace and a great beach view. The spa treatments were as advertised highly relaxing and effective. From room service to the Seasons restaurant, the food was delicious and served with a friendly smile. Our waiter, Jared, is without a doubt the ultimate waiter - sharing the ingredients in every item on our plates. In spite of cloudy weather, we enjoyed the pristine beach which offers miles to walk off the too good to refuse food. We will return.

Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Boston
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013

My wife and I were married at the Ocean House in July. We could not have picked a more stunning location for our reception and were thrilled with both the experience and the event planning staff (Toni Scotto in particular). The wedding went well, was beautifully set up and the food was excellent. Each of our guests complimented the Ocean House for both its aesthetics and its hospitality. If we could do it again at the Ocean House, we would (though would need to start saving stat).

Given that we were getting married at the Ocean House, we decided to stay on property for three nights. Many of our guests (including family members) stayed on site as well, so it felt very homey during our wedding weekend. We had planned to use our room (a Terrace Suite) for my wife and her bridesmaids to get ready in prior to the wedding and specifically requested a Terrace Suite with an unabated view of the Atlantic (with the requests being made routinely starting 6 months or so before the wedding). Unfortunately, our Terrace Suite room category was not available for the first night of our stay so we were put in a Deluxe King Room. Given that we had to switch room categories after our first night, we were told to check out of our initial room (at check out time of 11am) and would be able to check into our new room at 4pm the check in time.

The 5 hour gap without a room was terrible given that our guests had started to arrive and we needed to prepare for our rehearsal dinner (also booked at the Ocean House) without access to any room. We simply had to wait in the lobby for our new room to be cleaned and readied and were unequivocally told that we could not have a late "check out" from our original room since new guests were arriving (housekeeping needed 5 hours to clean the room?). I thought to myself that the long gap was simply to prepare the room that we had been requesting for the last six months, so was patient with the process even despite the lack of communication or empathy from the front desk.

When our new room was finally ready, we were escorted to a Terrace Suite directly above one of the restaurants which looked directly onto the croquet field and the neighboring houses as opposed to out over the water (which could be seen by leaning onto the balcony and looking over other rooms). After 6 months of requesting a particular room that surprisingly fell on deaf ears, we were standing in a subpar room for any night not to mention that it was our wedding weekend. The Deluxe King we were in the previous night was far superior from a view perspective though lacked the outdoor space. It seemed absurd that, as the bride and groom, paying for two private events on property, we did not carry any weight in requesting a specific room well in advance and we were put in what was close to the worst, if not the worst, room in our room category at the Ocean House. The staffmember showing us our room was unapologetic and pretentious and completely ignored our complaints. It was majorly disappointing even if there were no other room options available at that point. With weddings come a fair amount of stress and while Toni and the rest of the event planning team were working hard to make our stay enjoyable and our event memorable (utilizing creative solutions to every problem), the front desk of the hotel was tripping over itself and souring the experience. As an aside, in the middle of our honeymoon, we realized the Ocean House had charged over $7k to my credit card for another guest's room without any notice. I find that ridiculous for any property.

I am torn about this review since we did have such a fantastic time and the wedding was perfect (thank you Toni et. al), but I probably would not pay the exorbinant prices to stay at the Ocean House if we had not been married there. Money is more well spent at the other Relais Chateaux properties sprinkled throughout the world that have a higher level of service. We may go back for an anniversary or two but will certainly not waste our breath on requesting anything special of the front desk (e.g., a certain room) prior to our stay and will be ready for the lack of empathy and creativity from those at the front of the house.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 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
    • 4 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.
Warwick, Rhode Island
1 review
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2013

Was given a $100 gift certificate and went there on Saturday afternoon with my wife for an anniversary lunch. We were greeted by a half dozen valet parking attendants, non of whom opened the car door for my wife... neither as we arrived nor as we departed. They do not accept gratuities to park ..sort of explains why they do not bother opening car doors.

On the outside dining verranda we were greeted by a hostess who qualified us as not being a "member" nor a guest staying at the Ocean House. So we were seated on an off-to-the-side couch with a dining table level with our chins. Upon complaint, we were re-seated at a proper dining table.

Mid dinner, the hostess aproched us and told my wife to place her $1200 pocket book on the ground because "the chair it was resting on was needed elsewhere!"

Our waitress was foreign which was refreshing, while the local employees were rude.

The meal was pricey and tasty, and the premises were lovely. All Ocean House lacks is "class!"

Room Tip: We came for lunch on the occasion of our wedding anniversary. Cannot comment on accomodations
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 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.
Daniel H, General Manager at The Ocean House, responded to this review, August 30, 2013
I am sorry your experience was less than it should have been. I agree with many of your points and have already addressed them with the valet team and the staff on the Verandah. Our valets are purposely told not to accept gratuities as we feel that this is a gracious way to treat our guests. Thank you for bringing these issues to our attention.

Regards,
Daniel A. Hostettler
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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 The Ocean House

Address: 1 Bluff Avenue, Watch Hill, Westerly, RI 02891
Location: United States > Rhode Island > South County > Westerly > Watch Hill
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Watch Hill
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Ocean House 5*
Number of rooms: 49
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
The Ocean House Hotel Watch Hill

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