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“Great Rustic Charm...So So Management.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The Captain Whidbey Inn

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The Captain Whidbey Inn
2072 West Captain Whidbey Inn Road, Coupeville, Whidbey Island, WA 98239   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 2 hotels in Coupeville
Seattle
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Great Rustic Charm...So So Management.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2012

We stayed at the Inn this past weekend for 2 nights. It is such a lovely old building with true old world American rustic charm. I was in love with it from the moment we drove up. The lobby just called to me to come back in the winter and sit in front of that gorgeous fire place with a warm coffee nudge. We had 2 rooms in the Inn itself. #3 and #6. They are miniscule rooms with shared bath facilities. Small though they are, they are charming. They had a queen bed with feather topper, sweet quilts, antique dresser w/mirror, a chair, bedside table and sink. There are large, original windows lining the wall with views over the water which are lovely. One window opens to let in fresh air...as there is no a/c. However, many people don't have a/c in the Pacific Northwest...'cause we don't usually need it. On a really warm day, though, they might be a bit stuffy. The upstairs common areas have shelves lined with all sorts of books, old encyclopedias, etc... A couple of comfy chairs are near the only TV in the place...and again, there's that rustic charm throughout. The shared bathrooms, one for men and one for women, have 2 toilet stalls (with nice loud fans), a large vanity with 2 sinks, and a shower room for 1 behind a nice heavy curtain. We never ran out of hot water and never had to wait for the shower...even though the inn was full. I will mention that a couple of guests could be more polite in their use of shared facilities...by tossing their used toiletries from the shower...and picking up their used towels. One woman even left a used band aid on the shower rack! Seriously?! Who does that?!
There were a few negatives about the Inn...and I can believe the negative comments I've read from other Tripadvisor commenters. I'm not the pickiest of reviewers personally, so most of these negatives simply went noticed by me...but weren't enough to make me complain to management...or not go back again.
The person working the front desk upon arrival and in the evenings was quite nice...but she seemed very uncomfortable in her role. It didn't seem like she was simply new to the job...she appeared socially uncomfortable and it manifested itself in making her seem to strain at every question we asked or decision she had to make. There was just this odd hesitancy to every interaction. Also, although she may have had nothing to do with this, there was the same hesitancy about seating for the bar or for dinner. I've noticed other reviewers mentioning the lack of bar tender...and difficulty getting dinner reservations in a nearly empty restaurant. It seems odd that you can't just walk into the bar and find a seat yourself...rather than being asked to wait 10 minutes then haltingly escorted back while they find a seat...again, in a not so crowded area. There were only two waitresses and no bar tender. The waitresses did a good job, but service in the bar was quite lengthy for even the bare minimum. When I went back up front later to ask about dinner in the dining room...again...the same hesitancy and mention of the dining room being "backed up"...when there were only 1 or 2 tables in use. We did get in...and the service there was much quicker...although by the same waitress as out on the bar deck. The food was quite good and portions were fine. We would eat there again.
I'm just wondering why, if there are numerous comments from visitors about the same thing...basically lack of staff in the food service areas...the management hasn't addressed it? Is business so bad they can't afford a bar tender? It's a great little bar area and could probably support the staff.
I'm being a bit long winded...but want to end on a positive note. I will return to the Captain Whidbey Inn for a few reasons. I love the setting. The views of the water and the relaxing atmosphere are so worth it. I can't say enough about the charm and great rustic feel of the place! And our room was only $115/night. I think that's a deal for what you get. We were definitely able to chill out and enjoy ourselves. I will simply return with my expectations of management well in check...and focus on enjoying the surroundings.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (44)
Date | Rating
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English first
Bremerton, Washington, United States
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2012

This was our first trip to Whidbey Island as a couple. I had visited the island several times as a kid but we always were camping, so we gave the Inn a try. The exterior and grounds are very welcoming, relaxing, and charming. The lower part of the lodge was the same, very unique and welcoming, and the gal who checked us in was great. The building is old but clean, and it has its quirks such as the narrow stairways. Upstairs has a sitting area and large corridor leading to the rooms. The room itself was small, but I would imagine that was the standard for the time. The Inn rooms do share common bathrooms but they were clean and well kept. It just was a change for us, as this wouldnt normally be our preference but it worked. It was considerably cheaper for an Inn room rather the cabins or lagoon rooms that have there own bathrooms. Though small and lacking the modern convienences such as A/C, TV, etc, it was a place to sleep and a experience of its own. We didnt eat at the Inn, choosing to eat in Oak Harbor at various places but the dining areas seemed to have steady traffic both evenings we were there. Overall it was not a bad experience as some have reviewed, just a change from the norm for us. If rustic and simple is your preference is you, this is your place. We may be back and will spring for the lagoon room or a cabin the next time for more space and our own bathroom.

Room Tip: Inn rooms share common bathrooms and are limited on space. Bring a fan in the dead of summer as th...
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 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.
seattle, wa
Top Contributor
93 reviews 93 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2012

We came on a Friday night, the Inn itself is very picturesque sitting on the water. Built in 1907, it has the rustic charm we love about the Pacific Northwest. It actually felt more like a camp than an Inn... that kind of rustic. Adirondack chairs are in several places overlooking the water and the various garden and lawn areas, the grounds are pretty and kept up.

There are small Inn rooms with shared baths, lagoon rooms in newer buildings across the way and cottages overlooking the water.

My summary would be: this is a place that would like to be something more, but just misses the mark. It has some of the same atmosphere as the Lake Quinault Lodge, but not the strong infrastructure. There are small details that are missed in several places that in the course of a stay can add up to a less than spectacular visit.

We had reservations for a lagoon room, $175 which we felt was very overpriced, even with breakfast.

The first door key didn't work, apparently they had changed some locks.
The room, as mentioned in other reviews, had limited furnishings...it wasn't cozy, rustic,-yes.
There was an upholstered chair, sitting by itself, no lamp and no table, so in our minds, of no use.
(Which is tough when one person wakes up before the other, it would have been great to have a cozy chair to read in while still in pajamas, what a loss!)

The lagoon view outside the deck was completely blocked by a large white wedding tent.
The curtains were so sheer that we had to hang a towel on them to block the the deck light next door that was blazing into our room.
Bathroom was tiny but updated, however the old style orange heating lamp in the bathroom made us think of french fries under the lamp at a fast food place.

Dinner... they just didn't have the staff to support dinner for a place of this size.
There is a choice of a dining room, the "tavern" which is just an adjoining rustic room with a small bar and the outside deck overlooking the water.
We opted for the deck. After 15 minutes and not even seeing a menu, and realizing everyone around us was waiting, we opted to leave and have dinner Oak Harbor.

Breakfast was continental, and actually had a very nice selection of yogurts, breads, fruits and cereals. But here is the funny part again, they had hard boiled eggs, but not a single salt shaker anywhere. I actually checked every single table in the restaurant, the "tavern" etc. They ran out of cream for coffee too.

We were sad to have this experience, the reputation this place has led us to believe it would be a real treat and a wonderful place to share with others. Not so... for $175 a night, it would be better to look into a B&B in nearby Coupeville. That's what we will do next time.

Room Tip: Second story rooms have better views and you don't hear the people below you.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Seattle, Washington
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2012

After several phone calls between us and the hotel we finally had two cottages reserved to celebrate my friend's birthday. Several days later we received a call from another reservation specialist who asked whether we were still intending to reserve a room - they did not show it in their computer! Finally, that was taken care of. We noted to him (as we had the first person) that we would be arriving by boat and wanted to make sure that we would have dock space. Not a problem. Dinner reservations, please. Well, that's where it got interesting. It seems the restaurant is closed on Tuesday evenings. But, the man assured us - there are plenty of places just a short drive away in Coupeville. Did I mention we were arriving by boat? Did the hotel have a van or car service? No. Were taxis very available? (This is a VERY small town on an island near Seattle). No, not really. Well, what to do about DINNER. I decided to bring dinner with because we paid extra for the cottage with a kitchen unit. We would have a deck (lovely, we were told) a bbq and a limited, but very efficient kitchen.

Long story short....we arrived and checked in. The cottages are, ahem....rustic, to say the least. Clean, but I felt like they had been furnished at Goodwill. Vintage, but without charm. The deck and deck furniture covered in leaves like it had not been attended to in quite some time. The cottage kitchen - not at all possible to serve a meal (even a fully prepared one) from it. So, it's a lovely day in late July on Puget Sound and we have a birthday to celebrate with food to be eaten but no way to eat it. What to do? We went to the main lodge and explained our dilemma to the receptionist. "Go to the tavern (which is closed), I will bring what you need." She promptly arrived with utensils and serving pieces and plates and water. And we proceeded to have one of the best birthday parties in years. Four of us in a closed restaurant with wonderful food and drink and no one bothering us for orders or refills or tips! We laughed at the absurdity and the uniqueness of the situation and were glad we were there to do that.

So, it's difficult to be too hard on them when we made the best of a situation (with help from the staff) but the reality is - we won't go back. We paid over $200/night for a kitchen unit that we couldn't use in a hotel that had no restaurant and stayed in a unit that felt a little like a time warp.
Other people's comments regarding the breakfast were true. Comments about the overall condition of the hotel, the amenities - all true. How nice the staff is - true. So - travelers, be advised.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Billings, Montana
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2012

We stayed here one night while on a spur of the moment vacation. Having not planned in advance, the lodging options were limited. We paid 110 plus tax for one night, in the original lodge, with a shared bath. Bath is shared between about 8 rooms but each room does have its own sink and mirror. The rooms were very small but charming and furnished with antiques. Bed was very comfy and bedding was very nice (and I am picky about bedding). There were several rooms larger than ours if a person needed more space. The sound view from the room was gorgeous. The grounds are beautiful and the waterfront multi-leveled deck available to the guests is fabulous. The staff was very friendly and helpful. The breakfast was minimal but sufficient for a continental meal. A microwave for the oatmeal would be nice. I felt it was reasonably priced for the island. Would stay again as the setting is gorgeous and it was a great break from generic chain hotels.

Room Tip: Ask for a water view room. Give yourself time to linger with evening wine or morning coffee on the w...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Kirkland, Washington
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2012

My husband and I stayed in one of the cabins (#32) on June 23rd. This is an old place, with few electrical outlets and old stiff furniture to relax in - not very relaxing. The cabin felt dirty and old. The bed sucked is all I'll say. The website sold this room with a hottub - the hottub is not working and has not worked for years according to the front desk. Very disappointing since we paid the full price. The "free breakfast" they serve is a joke - it's served between 8-10 and we got there at 9:00 and the offerings were stale muffins and hard bagels and english muffins. Another fruit tray was brought in while I was making toast and the existing folks eating in the dining room got up and took all the fruit and no refill followed. Same with the coffee - it was gone and a fresh pot never showed up. We had planned to stay an extra night prior to our arrival, but after our one night stay, there was no way we would stay another night. Wonderful views, nice staff but not a place I would go back and spend the night at.

Room Tip: I heard cabin 31 is the nicest of the 4 cabins.
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle
Top Contributor
96 reviews 96 reviews
35 hotel reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
78 helpful votes 78 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2012

After visiting the tulip fields in the Skagit Valley, my wife and I checked in to a Lagoon room for one very rainy night. The lady at the reception desk (literally), in the single common room available to all guests, was pleasant as she quickly checked us in and give us key to our room. The room had a comfortable bed (the only positive feature we could identify), two bedside lamps, a rustic dresser with a phone sitting on a small table next to it, an amoir, and one high back uphostered chair. The curtains covering the large window (aluminum framed single pane glass) were almost sheer as we could see through them during daylight so we assumed someone outside of the unit would be able to see into our room at night when the curtains were drawn. Since it was raining, using the outside deck was not possible as the table and four chairs were wet and it was cold so there was no point. Since there is no TV, my wife sat on the bed to read her Kindle and I sat in the highback chair after I moved the small table over so I could set up my laptop. I had to take the other bedside lamp and place it on the small table so I could have light to be able to see my notes and complete write-ups. I don't understand why they would have a single chair in the room without having a floor lamp or wall lamp by it so one could sit in the chair and be able to read.The lighting is poor at best. This arrangement was set up after we had gone over to the main building and set ourselves up in their common room where the lighting was somewhat better. Electric baseboard heat kept the temperature in the room comfortable but it made cracking noises whenever it was on, making sound sleep difficult. The only updated feature in the room was the single fiberglass shower/tub unit in the very small room housing it and a knee knocker toilet (the door swung a few inches from the toilet).
I suppose if the weather was warmer and sunny, sitting on the outside deck during the day/evening would have been pleasant but not on a cold rainy day. Would we return to this spot? Not likely as there are many other lodgings on the island in Langley which offer better accomodations and amenities for equal or lower prices. IMHO, the Capt. Whidbey appears to survive on an outdated reputation.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about The Captain Whidbey Inn

Address: 2072 West Captain Whidbey Inn Road, Coupeville, Whidbey Island, WA 98239
Location: United States > Washington > Whidbey Island > Coupeville
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 hotels in Coupeville
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Captain Whidbey Inn is an enchanting log inn that was hand-built in 1907. Located on the shores of Penn Cove inside the Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve, the inn is superbly located for outdoor enthusiasts and those seeking the charm of a historic Northwest town by the sea. Activities popular with guests include hiking, kayaking, cycling, antiquing, horseback riding, fishing, wine-tasting, and beachcombing. With both rustic and modern accommodations, the Captain Whidbey Inn offers three types of lodging: quaint log-walled rooms in the inn itself, romantic private waterfront cabins, and the more modern Lagoon rooms. Overnight stay includes water views from all areas on the property, access to our restaurant, free continental breakfast, free parking and free WiFi access as well as hot tubs and fireplaces in certain units. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Captain Whidbey Hotel Coupeville
Captain Whidbey Inn
The Captain Whidbey Inn Whidbey Island/Coupeville, WA

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