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“Beautiful Location” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Rosario Resort and Spa

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Rosario Resort and Spa
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   1400 Rosario Road, Eastsound, Orcas Island, WA 98245   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Eastsound
Bakersfield, CA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Beautiful Location”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2010

Amazing location with historic charm. We stayed in an ocean front king room. Beautiful view. Room could use some updating but clean and comfortable. A portion of the rooms are closed at this time so the hotel is very quiet. Evening piano/organ concert with slide show is interesting an entertaining.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RosarioResort, General Manager at Rosario Resort and Spa, responded to this review, July 13, 2010
Thank you for commenting on your visit. The waterfront rooms have truly spectacular views over the water. We do strive to offer clean and comfortable accommodations, and will continue to update them. I am also glad you enjoyed my performance!

Christopher Peacock
General Manager
Rosario Resort
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272 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (93)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Dover, Delaware
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2010

My wife and I, and our 23 year old daughter just returned from Orcas Island and the Rosario Resort. I must say that I'm a bit confused by the recent reviews here. I must not have stayed in the same place.
First off, I'll say that the area is simply gorgeous. Beautiful views abound, and the people on Orcas Island proved to be among the friendliest I've ever had the pleasure of meeting. That said, I can only say that if the Rosario Resort wasn't the only true resort on the island, it would certainly be in trouble. The area is very laid-back, and simple. The Rosario Resort stands out from its surroundings for sure. The place "looks" very nice. Unfortunately, after staying there, it's VERY easy to see that the resort is not quite what it appears to be. The place is mostly inoperable. By this, I mean that most of what you see is actually not open for business yet. The large dining room is not used. Instead, there are only a few tables in what appears to be little more than a wide hallway that make up the dining room.
We arrived via Kenmore Air float-plane. The people at Kenmore Air are great, and this is the ONLY way I would travel to Orcas Island, fast and comfortable. Plus, it gives you a great sky view of the San Juan Islands. When making my original reservations with the resort, I asked for advice on the best way to get to the resort and was told the float-plane was the way to go. They were absolutely correct. A few days before we were scheduled to arrive, I called just to make sure the reservation was still good, and ask about the possibility of shipping extra luggage via UPS. I was told that was actually quite common, and then I was told that it's a good thing I had called and told them I was arriving via float-plane, not that anyone asked prior, or let me know that I should tell them how I was arriving. Anyway, the day we arrived, the plane let us off at the dock located at the edge of the resort property. No one was there to greet us, and there were no signs that indicated where we needed to go for check-in. We wandered up the hill toward the mansion. We stopped a woman and asked her where to check-in. It was actually a pretty healthy walk up a long hill. Older guests with luggage would have a difficult time with the walk. Once we got to the main entrance, there was no sign of a bellman or anyone else who might greet guests and handle luggage. I left my wife and daughter in the driveway with the luggage while I went into the mansion to check in. I was greeted at the front desk by a friendly woman who checked us in. When I mentioned that it was kind of tough figuring out where to go after the plane dropped us off, she told me that I should have called ahead to let them know we were coming by plane. I told her that I had called and then she saw the reservation on her computer that I had indeed called. She apologized for the confusion. We were given our room keys and map and off we went to find our room. Not a bad walk but again, no offer to handle the luggage.
The room had plenty of room with a partial water view. We were told that the resort was sold-out and we weren’t able to get the full water view room we requested when we originally made our reservation. I figured out rather quickly why they were "sold-out". While walking around, I noticed that the building we were in was the ONLY building with usable rooms. The other two buildings (both nicer and closer to the mansion) were still being renovated. They had been painted on the front facing side of the buildings and looked real nice but if you walked around them, you found the back sides were unpainted and the rooms were empty and in various stages of repair.
After we settled in we wandered around to check the resort out. Went to the mansion and looked around. Very pretty place for sure, nice manicured lawns and a heated pool. I went back to the front desk and asked how to make reservations for dinner and the woman told me to go to the house phone and call the number for the dining room. I did so and as I dialed, I heard the phone at the other end of the hallway ring. I was calling a phone no more than 50ft away! The lady at the front desk couldn't have told me to walk down the hall instead? We walked down the hall and talked with a young woman about making dinner reservations. She told us that the restaurant was booked for that night so we made reservations for the other nights we were staying to make sure we had a place to eat. While making our reservations, we found the restaurant only serves dinner. They are not open for breakfast even though the directory in the room said breakfast and dinner. So what do guests do for breakfast and lunch? Well, unless you take a bus, taxi or drive your own car to someplace in the next town, you have but one choice. There is a small cafe located at the marina adjacent to the resort. Many might think that this is simply another resort-owned restaurant but, actually the marina and cafe are NOT part of the resort. It just "appears" to be. The cafe has both good food and good service, so for the most part, it all works. The problem is this will NOT be a very good setup when and if the resort actually opens up the rest of their rooms. Hopefully by then they will be serving breakfast and lunch up at the mansion
During our stay, we had other "interesting" experiences that only enforced my belief that this resort is just getting started, and is dealing with some serious growing pains. Or should I call it a steep learning curve?
A sign in the room says towels left on the floor will be replaced, ones left on the racks/towel bars will not (everybody wants to be "green" right?). Not once did house-keeping get that right. On the first day they took the towels on the racks even when we left them hanging as instructed. Then on the second day they took all the towels but neglected to replace them. On our 3rd day we had run out of toilet paper and had to use tissues.
Getting information via the house phone was also a challenge. Seems that most of the numbers they list in their resort guide do not actually connect to anyone. Housekeeping? Nope. Car rental? Nope. We finally called up to the front desk and asked about renting a car which was listed as a service provided by the resort and were told they know nothing about rental cars. We told the woman there was an extension listed for car rentals and she responded with we must have had an old guide book. We said the guide also said breakfast was served in the dining room. Again, we must have had an old guide in our room. Maybe someone should look through the rooms and update the guide books so they reflect what the current owner does provide and not depend on the previous owners provisions.
Note about car rentals: There's only one and they are great! Call Amy at Orcas Island Shuttle. They will drop a car at the resort for you (or anywhere on the island), and you can leave it there when you're done with it. VERY convenient!
Our only other issue was with the dining room. While the young ladies serving there could not have been any nicer, there was a young man who appeared to be a manager of some sort whose demeanor was anything but relaxing. It was apparent that the resort is new and everyone was still learning but this “manager” made our first visit to the lounge very uncomfortable. He was very gruff with the girl tending bar to the point that he took a drink she was making out of her hands and poured it out and instructed to her loud enough so that we could hear from across the room how to make the drink properly. I’m sure it was as uncomfortable for her as it was for us to watch. He also seemed to really have a problem with our 23 year old daughter being in the lounge with us. On our first visit he walked by staring at her making her very uncomfortable being there. She is young looking for her age but the girl tending bar asked for her ID as she should before serving her. He walked by several times staring at our daughter and questioned the girl tending bar as well as the other waitress about her. We could clearly hear the girl at the bar saying that she did check her ID. He continued to look at our daughter every time he walked by her until we left the lounge. On our last day there we sat in the lounge and had drinks before catching our plane back to Seattle. He again focused his attention on our daughter and after we were there for the better part of an hour came over to us and in quite a rude and confrontational manner said he needed to see her ID. He was not at all polite or apologetic for his approach to her. I think he is the one who needs a lesson in customer service.
Would we go back to the Rosario Resort again, probably not in the foreseeable future. They are obviously going through a great deal of growing pains, and would like to make some suggestions for a better experience for future visitors.

1. Some signage down by the dock area directing guests where to go would be great.
2. Perhaps some seating on or near the dock for guests waiting for the plane.
3. Bellmen to help guests with luggage.
4. Train the front desk people. They were by far the least helpful.
5. Increase dining capacity.
6. Simplify the menu at the Quilted Pig. The menu is far too ostentatious for the kind of crowd likely to stay there. The lounge had a nice easy menu that worked well for an afternoon snack. The dinner menu was nice but didn’t appeal to all appetites.
7. Updated guest information booklet provided in rooms.
8. More outdoor seating besides the pool area. There are some beautiful vantage points on the property and it would be nice to be able to sit down and enjoy the view or to read a book.
9. Setup some sort of WiFi. (there's little or no cell phone or internet).

  • Stayed July 2010
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RosarioResort, General Manager at Rosario Resort and Spa, responded to this review, July 13, 2010
Thank you for taking the time to write such a detailed review. There is a great deal we can learn from this review to improve our customer service for future visitors. We are constantly reviewing the services and amenities offered to our guests and the value of those services.

I believe this to be a fair review of this guest’s experience at Rosario, but feel that an explanation is in order for the benefit of our future guests. Rosario offers only 22 guest rooms, many of which are the most affordable on Orcas Island and include the most amenities on the island. As the majority of our guests arrive by private car and park near our accommodations, hiring bellmen and transportation services for floatplane arrivals would definitely force us to increase our room rates. It would be a wonderful amenity and we will continue to evaluate the need for this service in relationship to the rates charged in the future. I do agree the resort could use better signage from the dock and we are currently in the process of designing wayfinding signs for the property.

It was very unfortunate that this guest indeed had an old guest directory in their room, which provided inaccurate information that became the source for some of the criticism in this review. I became aware of this on the day of their departure when the front desk told me these guests had old information in their room. In fact, that same day I received a guest directory in the mail that had been accidently taken by the previous guest. One of our staff had grabbed another directory from a remote storage area without looking at its contents. We have since destroyed all outdated information, and sincerely apologize for the incorrect information was in their guest room.

The Chef/Owner of The Quilted Pig Restaurant was aware of this reviewer’s experience in the lounge and the manager in question no longer has management responsibilities. It is unfortunate that this episode affected what should have been a relaxing evening.

As far as making dinner reservations, the host stand is staffed when the restaurant opens in the evening. During the day, the culinary team takes reservations remotely in the kitchen, which is why our front desk directs guests to the house phone in the lobby. It indeed rings not far from where the guest is calling, but that location is not where the phone is answered most of the day. It is unfortunate that this guest experienced our front desk staff as “unhelpful,” as I hear compliments about them all day long.

A few facts I must correct in this review: We operate the marina, but our food and beverage outlets are leased, both the Cascade Bay Grill and The Quilted Pig Restaurant, a common practice in many hotels. The large dining room is the only area in the mansion that is “inoperable,” as we have chosen the intimate setting of the mansion veranda to offer dining, where every table has an incredible view. We do offer WiFi in our guest rooms, marina and lobby; however, cell service is very limited on the island.

We will take this review and learn from it in regards to improving customer service, while at the same time continue to review the amenities and pricing offered to balance value and experience.

Christopher Peacock
General Manager
Rosario Resort
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Los Angeles
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2010

I was initially underwhelmed, as the property seems a bit dated (for example, it sports a large number of somewhat tacky outdoor lamps with hanging petunia baskets). And our room, the very expensive roundhouse, had a musty odor like carpet cleaner. But I was won over by the astonishing view. And we were extremely happy with the excellent food at The Moran Room. If you eat in the Moran Room you can order from the bar menu and/or the "fine dining" menu from the adjacent Quilted Pig. We pieced together a delicious meal using both menus, while enjoying the gorgeous view. The service is terrific too.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RosarioResort, General Manager at Rosario Resort and Spa, responded to this review, July 13, 2010
I am happy that your initial reaction was changed during your visit. The street lamps are original turn-of-the century fixtures and the Roundhouse is also an original structure of the estate. It is great to hear you enjoyed Chef Madden’s cuisine!

Christopher Peacock
General Manager
Rosario Resort & Spa
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Monroe, Washington
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2010

We just returned from Rosairo via pleasure craft . The friendly dock attendant was a fresh new look for the resort . It was a pleasure to have someon waiting at the dock to catch our lines and give us the low down on all the services the resort has to offer . The mansion and all the pools are the reson we come . All the pools three total looked freshly painted and were a fun to swim in. Eating at the resort is easy and simple with quality to boot. With a small restraunt on the dock and fine dinning in the mansion you wont go hungry. The bar in the mansion also serves a great menu not to be missed . Would I come back YES ! Bring your boat here its alot of fun .

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RosarioResort, General Manager at Rosario Resort and Spa, responded to this review, July 13, 2010
Thank you for your nice comments. It is great to get feedback from our marina guests, many whom have made Rosario an annual destination for years.

Christopher Peacock
General Manager
Rosario Resort & Spa
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seattle, wa
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2010

My husband surprised me and took me here for our one year wedding anniversary. The Main building is beautiful although some of it feels sad and abandoned because of the large unused open spaces. The accommodations are in somewhat outdated buildings to the side of the main Mansion and while they don't look great on the outside, the room itself was lovely and the bed was nice. I wish the walls were thicker, as we were nightly privy to what the other guests above us and next to us were up to. The restaurant had just reopened and was overall very yummy food and the service was great but some of the dishes were a tad overpriced for what was presented. All in all we would go back, the staff were friendly and the view from our room was perfect and relaxing.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RosarioResort, General Manager at Rosario Resort and Spa, responded to this review, July 13, 2010
Thank you for spending your anniversary at Rosario and taking time to comment on your visit! Our location is indeed amazing and the views spectacular. Our guest accommodations were built in the 60’s, so the architecture is dated, but I am glad you let our future guests know that the rooms are lovely. Due to the building’s wood construction, there is a bit of sound transmission, but most guests are here to experience the peace and quiet of Orcas Island, and often comment on how quiet it is! The large unused space in the mansion is our former dining room. The more intimate mansion veranda is now used since we have fewer accommodations. The restaurant has gotten excellent comments and the nature of additional time and energy spent producing fresh, local ingredients on an island do tend to make dishes a bit more expensive. We do hope to see you back!

Christopher Peacock
General Manager
Rosario Resort & Spa
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Whidbey Island
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 4, 2010

My husband & I were looking to share a romantic & special get-away to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary. We found it at Rosario Resort! From the moment we arrived, the staff made us feel happy to be there. Our well appointed room overlooked the bay & we could watch floatplanes and leisure boats come into the dock.

The misty weather was no deterant for daytripping to the entire island...Moran State Park, Olgas for breakfast, Eastsound for shopping and walking (& good food), etc.

Don't miss out on Rosario Spa for an expert staff (we had massages & facials) & wonderful treatments. This luxury is something we enjoy whenever we travel. The treatments here are sublime!

Do take advantage of the upstairs museum! The mere architectural details of the resort are enough to engage all of the senses...combined with vintage photos and artifacts, you get a flavor of the historical value of Rosario. Indeed, a treasure of a place. Stroll, sit, read...take advantage of the paths & people who have come here before.

How lucky the new owners must be with such a wonderful, warm and genuinely sincere staff assembled. Some of them have a great personal history with Rosario to share with guests. You may be as engaged as you like or as sequestered as you like. We will continue to savor our special & memorable time at Rosario. A great start to the next 20 years of marriage! We will return.

Linda Luka & Larry Calbert
Whidbey Island, WA

  • Stayed May 2010, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RosarioResort, General Manager at Rosario Resort and Spa, responded to this review, June 6, 2010
Wow! What a nice review. It captures the heart and soul of what we hope all our guests experience – a romantic, relaxing getaway in an amazing location.

What is most special to me are your comments about our staff… they are all talented and wonderful people who truly love to share the magic of Rosario and Orcas Island with our guests.

Thanks so much for taking the time to let us, and others, know about your experience! We look forward to your return.

Happy Anniversary!

Christopher Peacock
General Manager
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Centralia, WA
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2010

My wife and I wanted a mid-winter get-a-way. A colleague recommended Rosario Resort on Orcas Island. I looked it up on line and was able to reserve my room immediately. We arrived on the WA State ferry, which gave our get-a-way unique sense of an adventurous destination. When we arrived at the resort we were greeted with great hospitality and generosity, which continued throughout our entire stay. Our room was overlooking the waters and other surrounding islands. On the bed was a CD of local pianist and resort general manager, Christopher Peacock, and rose (NICE TOUCH). Everything was clean and comfortable. Do they have TV, yes...not great reception, but why would anyone go there to watch TV?? Its romantic, its peaceful; this is a place you go to be someplace and do things not offered during a normal day or stay. The rates were fantastic...my wife and I have 5 children and I am the only one working...WE could afford this taste of luxury.

Added bonus, the resort is also a museum!

The General Manager, Christopher Peacock, is a quality man, friendly and approachable to guests and staff.

Hope *you* have the opportunity to enjoy this retreat!

The Mettler's

  • Stayed February 2010, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RosarioResort, General Manager at Rosario Resort and Spa, responded to this review, March 28, 2010
Thank you so much for your nice review! This means a great deal to us as it is the first accommodation review since reopening under our new ownership. Although I am appreciative of being singled out, real credit goes to our wonderful staff, as Rosario is truly team effort.

Like you, most people have little time or desire to watch TV when they are surrounded by so much beauty; however, we are about to transition our television to satellite as the cable service on Orcas Island is unacceptable.

Thanks again and we look forward to your return!

Christopher Peacock
General Manager
Rosario Resort & Spa
Rosario Resort & Spa
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Additional Information about Rosario Resort and Spa

Address: 1400 Rosario Road, Eastsound, Orcas Island, WA 98245
Location: United States > Washington > San Juan Islands > Orcas Island > Eastsound
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 5 Hotels in Eastsound
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Rosario Resort and Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 67
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A lovely property located on Orcas Island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Rosario Hotel Eastsound
Rosario Island
Rosario Resort Eastsound
Rosario Resort Orcas Island
Rosario Resort And Spa Orcas Island/Eastsound, WA

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