We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“overpriced and under maintained” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Westwind Inn on the Lake

Save Saved
You added Westwind Inn on the Lake to your Saves list
Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Westwind Inn on the Lake
Box 91, Hwy. #36, Buckhorn, Ontario K0L 1J0 , Canada   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Buckhorn
Toronto, Canada
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“overpriced and under maintained”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2012

Overpriced and under maintained

I went there for Canada Day and the experience was not great!
1. On my arrival they want to charge $75.00 extra for having our 1 year old daughter in the room.
2. We could not have dinner at the inn because their rules are not to have babies in the diner. I had to drive in the city and buy some food for the night.
3. The TV in the room was so old that it did not have a remote control (not that the remote was missing, it was not made with a remote).
4. The sink in the bathroom was chipped
5. One of the beds in the room did not have bed sheets and blankets and it took a while to find someone to help me. Once I found someone (at the diner – they do not have permanent service at reception) they provide it quick.
6. The breakfast was good.
7. The view and the place are spectacular.
8. The whole place could use a handy man to have some rotten boards replaced, to paint the outside of the building, to fix the chairs on the lake shore and so on.
For a $440.00 a night (breakfast included) it is not worth it! Adding the fact that kids are not welcomed it will not be on our destination list any time soon!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
kristi j, Owner at Westwind Inn on the Lake, responded to this review, July 17, 2012
This guest is not telling the truth.. to put it politely Perhaps her husband translated incorrectly... as the information she provides is wrong.

You were NOT charged $75 for your 1 year old daugher, she stayed FREE of charge.... you were charged $75 for your mother as the 3rd adult in the room. Rates are for double occupancy. You had 4 people ... 3 adults + one child. No charge for baby.

You could not have dinner at the inn because you arrived late after dinner had finished. We are not a late night diner waiting for outside guests.

No rules against babies in the dining room as you know since all of you including baby who sat on a booster seat dined in the dining room. :You did not have to go to the "city" for food.. there are several nice restaurants in town of Buckhorn 3 km away.

Yes the tv's are old... so?

Yes, I saw a very small chip in the bathroom....from a guest.... and we will replace the sink....

Both beds had sheets and blankets... we were not expecting you.. no reservation, perhaps sofa bed was not made up.

Paint outside of building? It is all natural cedar... it is not painted at all. It has a coat of transparent wood stain.

Front desk staff tell me they did not talk to you ( the wife) at all... so who told you rule of babies are not allowed in dining room. She only spoke with your husband and apparently there was a language problem. He was not told that babies are not allowed.

This family arrived at Westwind Inn without a reservation on Canada Day Long Weekend. Only the gentleman came to the front desk in the lobby and asked if we had a room for 2 and a baby. We did and said rate is $270 for 2 , he was told no charge for baby.

He said he would take it for one night. Registration card was filled out for his signature & payment: Rate = $270 , Number of guests: 2 (no charge for baby).

He then said there was a 3rd person.(mother-in-law.)
He was told there was a charge of $75 per person for each guest over 2 to a room. He agreed. $270 for 2 + $75 for extra adult guest. BABY STAYED FOR FREE..NO CHARGE.

When they arrived at the inn dinner was over, the last tables already served. He was not told at any time that rules do not allow babies in the dining room, but it appears that is what he told his wife. The staff did not speak with his wife at all that night, but they all had breakfast in the dining room next morning including child in booster seat. How can she say our rules do not allow babies.

There were sheets and blankets on both beds, ready for 2 people. Since this room was not reserved perhaps the sofa bed was not made up. We don't know as they did not want staff to come in and make it up.

$440.70 including one night B&B accommodation at a lakefront resort on a prime long weekend for THREE (3) adults + a one year old child also including 3 adult breakfasts, including taxes, including use of resort including taxes is not a high price to pay.
Well behaved children are welcome as it states on our website.

Its quite frustrating as an owner... a tourist operator to have to take time to respond to a negative review such as this.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

156 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
See reviews for
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (40)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Weston, Missouri
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2012

The property is in a very beautiful setting. The rooms are not fancy, but very comfortable. The only issue with the room was the shower - the water temp fluctuated from ice cold to scalding hot. The staff was not very friendly - a couple of examples: they didn't offer beach towels for the pool, hot tub or lake. Told us we were advised to bring them. Well, no, we were not advised of that and who wants to pack towels for a property that touts water activities as a prime draw? The food at the restaurant was so-so, very over priced, and the service was extremely slow. They did not offer cleaning service, and we had to ask for towels. They only brought one. Overall, this is not the experience you would expect for the price you pay.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 2 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
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Owner at Westwind Inn on the Lake, responded to this review, July 13, 2012
Thank you for the compliments. Our staff is very friendly and helpful. They did not offer beach towels because we do not provide beach towels. Part of taking a reservation is informing guest that "we have a beach, hot tub and swimming pool so please bring your own beach towel." It is stated on our website as well under FAQ. We provide 2 bath towels, 2 hand towels and 2 face cloths for in room indoor use only. We have daily maid service and exchange used towels if they are placed into the tub as our notice states. Most guests use their towels more than once and hang them to dry. The "maid" knocked on your door and announced "housekeeping". No response. No "Do Not Disturb" sign. She knocked again and entered the security bar was not on and she again announced "Housekeeping" . Imagine her surprise when you jumped out of bed! You did not want your daily clean done at that time. When leaving to go to the wedding you stopped by front desk and requested "room service". You were told the housekeeping staff had left for the day. However, clean towels were brought to your room.

The sauna & hot tub area have showers, washrooms and bath towels.

You say that food at the restaurant was so-so and very over priced? But how can you generalize fairly when you arrived late on Friday and did not eat dinner then or on Saturday, just one breakfast on Saturday? You say service was slow.... perhaps... several wedding guests came for breakfast without a reservation.

You indicate that the price was high... yet if you canvas the other similar resorts you will find we are very reasonable. It was a prime July weekend.

Other wedding guests were very complimentary and said they had a lovely time.. enjoyed our inn...
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, ON
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 5, 2012

I try to be very fair in my reviews and don't write too many unless I found the experience spectacularly memorable or a complete disaster. I would say neither applied to the Westwind Inn, but I felt the need to review it.

My husband and I were there for three days (two nights) this Canada Day weekend. I had been there once for dinner more than 10 years ago when I stumbled upon the place while visiting the newly-reopened Gallery on the Lake. I thought the grounds were lovely and peaceful and saw couples relaxing in hammocks surrounded by beautiful flowers. My mom rented a cottage in Stoney Lake and I took her to the Westwind Inn for dinner. It was fantastic back then, beautiful view out over the water and the dinner had several courses with an amuse-bouche to cleanse the palate in between. We had a server who explained everything in detail.

This year I was looking for a nice quite place on a lake for my husband and I to get away for the long weekend and I thought we might want to try the Westwind Inn. We paid $350 for each night, $250 for the room plus $100 for the meal plan.

The pros:
I had read the reviews beforehand about the outdated decor and found they were exaggerated. The TV was old, sure, and the furnishings were dated, but I found it clean, comfortable and cozy. We loaded some movies on the tablet and watched those at night instead of the TV. The air conditioning was great. The balcony was nice, though I agree the view of the lake is restricted and I would suggest not paying more for a lake view. The grounds are very nice. There is a pool, two very small beaches, a small putting green (I think I saw one anyway) and what looked like a small badminton net. There was also a hot tub outside and a sauna indoors.

The highlight, for me, was the range of watercraft for patrons to use. There were canoes and kayaks, hydro-bikes (a floating bike, essentially) paddle boats and a rowboat. One of the paddle boats was extremely noisy and needed to be oiled. We used the kayaks both days and we kayaked for quite a distance up and down the lake. I really loved that. The lake is weedy, which I think is pretty common in the Kawarthas, so swimming is a bit of a challenge, but the kayaking was great. They also have a few fire pits and some wood there for a DIY evening bonfire, which I also enjoyed. Also, be sure to check out the Gallery next door. The artwork has improved considerably since I was there 10 years ago and I was truly impressed with the calibre of art there.

The cons
I had very fond memories of the dinner there years ago and have to say that it is not what it used to be. We bought the meal plan, which was $100 a day (so $50 per person a day). That included breakfast and dinner, including tax and tip and I found that was pretty a pretty good deal given what they charge for each of those meals individually. The main course both nights was very well done, lots of delicious sides and the sides were changed both nights. The salad was quite good. On Saturday the cheesecake was fantastic for desert, but on Sunday it was spongy and burned.

The service on Saturday was quite good and one of the chefs even came out to chat, but it was horrendous on Sunday. It took awhile to find a server to seat us. When she did, she immediately asked us if we wanted "soup or salad" without asking us if we wanted drinks, or water or anything. The salads we ordered took forever. We were never offered water or bread to start. I finally flagged down a different server to ask if we could get water and bread. When our salads arrived I asked the server if we could order drinks. She told us they only had Diet Coke and nothing else. I asked to see the wine list, since neither of us drink Diet Coke. She told us we should order the house wine because it was very good. I asked what it was and she could never tell me if it was a Merlot or a Cabernet Sauvignon or a Shriaz, only that it was "Dry." We were going to order a bottle from the wine list, but since we were never offered a wine list, we decided to skip it. The bread was also very dry and not too appetizing.

I would agree with every complaint on here about the breakfast. We ate it both days and it was mediocre to bad. My husband poured syrup on his pancakes and ended up getting a plateful of water instead. (Someone had put water in the syrup I guess.) The French toast looked revolting, I'm glad I didn't order it.

This was a long weekend and it didn't appear that the Inn was too busy, so perhaps finances are an issue, but I would highly suggest that the owners/management not scrimp and save when it comes to meals. All things being equal, a delicious dinner and breakfast can wipe out any other complaints about a resort and, in fact, I purposely booked at the resort because of a meal I had 10 years ago. Food matters a lot and I'm not even a foodie. I think that if they were to spruce up the dinner -- and really revamp the breakfast -- it would go a long way to improving the experience. Perhaps even fold in the meal plan into all room rates so that it automatically comes with meals (as long as the meals are worth the added cost). $50/person for a nice dinner and breakfast is reasonable, taxes and tip included.

Overall, I would say I quite enjoyed my experience at the Westwind Inn. It is not a 5-star luxury resort, but I was not interested in that. It was clean and very quite and peaceful. I enjoyed the amenities and I found the staff to be friendly and helpful. The Inn itself is in good shape and the grounds are lovely. Kayaking on the lake was great. It's a charming little place. I would say it should be looked at best as an alternative to renting a cottage for the weekend. You get to relax and enjoy the outdoors and don't have to cook. I don't think we will be going back unless they add more amenities and improve the menu because it was not worth $350/night with the current offerings and there are many other little resorts to try.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Owner at Westwind Inn on the Lake, responded to this review, July 8, 2012
Thank you for the kind generous review. We appreciate it. Fortunately for us you describe a pleasant happy visit similar to most of our happy guests.

I appologize for your Sunday dinner issues. I am puzzled. We have a lovely wine list with year & description of bottle, we are fully licenced and serve delicious cocktails, we have a good variety of soft drinks including coke, ginger ale, sprite... regular and diet, soda & tonic, and juices, tea, coffee? Perhaps you told your server you wished a "glass" of wine? If so a "glass" of wine is available only as House Wine... and it is Colio Dry Red... not merlot..
In any case this server is no longer employed here.

The same great chef cooked and plated your meals both nights... baked and plated the desserts... the server would have promptly replaced your dessert with another.

You suggest that $50 per person for a NICE dinner and breakfast is reasonable INCLUDING TIP AND TAXES. I suggest that is unrealistic. 15% tip and 13% HST tax makes for a very low cost dinner and breakfast = $36 for both before tax & tip

We constantly compare our rates against other similar resorts, lodges & inns and we are very competitive. Most charge per person per night with dinner and breakfast + service charge of 10% to $15% + HST. We are lower than many... and similar to others ... you might be surprised...
We used to quote that way also in the past but we thought we would try a different approach... room only and add meals if the guest wishes. Your $50 per person was a limited time special available only if booked when reserving.

We are currently discussing going back to the all inclusive package with dinner and breakfast as it is a challenge to staff and purchase food product when we do not know how many guests may decide to dine with us last minute.

Again, thank you for the nice comments.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2012

That was are first vacations for me and my wife in Canada.
We stayed for 2 nights and we had our best time in Canada so far(we live in GTA).

Pros: Very clean room and comfortable, SO MANY OUTDOOR AMENITIES TO ENJOY FOR FREE, beautiful and relaxing scenery, very quiet place with no traffic noise, alternative decor inside the inn, polite and helpful staff, great fishing for pros but for amateurs as well.

Cons: Old noisy a/c in the room(use the fan instead), old and virus infected pc(if you want to stay connected bring a laptop with you, free wi-fi), very few things to do inside the inn in case of bad weather. hard to regulate the water temperature in the shower, in my opinion the owners can do something better with the prices.

Be prepared: Aggressive mosquito gangs after sunset(lol), in 15km drive everything closed after 10:30pm(bars, restaurants).

"At the end of the day" we'll be back to that place FOR SURE!!

p.s. I can fix your pc like new next time for one free nigth LOL!!!

Room Tip: "Higher floors have less A/C unit noise"
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
kristi j, Owner at Westwind Inn on the Lake, responded to this review, June 10, 2013
Thank you for the kind words. Don't forget to come back to Westwind Inn this summer. We look forward to meeting you.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2012

We booked this trip last minute because it was a long weekend and we wanted to get out of the city. It was a steep price to pay per-evening, but there wasn't much else available (in the pet-friendly department) and from the photos of the grounds, we were optimistic that this lakeside destination would satisfy our desire to just sit by a lake and relax.

What we paid:
$250/night + $30/night to bring our dog + tax ... it came to $624. Pricey!

The grounds were really beautiful and mostly well-maintained. There was a nice dock that you could walk out on and swim off of, there was also a floating dock in the water that you could swim to and lay out on. There were two small beach areas to enter the water from and there was a boardwalk that ran along the Inn right by the water, which was really nice to walk along, even at night. There were a few short trails that we took our dog down (the only place she could be off-leash during our stay), but they were poorly maintained and invested with mosquitoes. There were wooden lounge chairs and hammocks in various places on the grounds and we loved these the most... we spent most of our time relaxing on them. There was a sauna indoors that was relatively new and kept a decent heat. The room had a small balcony, which was nice to have, but it was cramped and the view of the water was restricted when you sat down because of the railing. The pool was kept at a good temperature and it was clean, the lounge chairs were also somewhat modern and we enjoyed the bit of time we spent at the pool. The younger woman at the front desk was nice enough and helpful with giving us directions back home to avoid traffic.

NEGATIVES (and why we are not coming back):

*Not pet-friendly*
This place marketed itself as a pet-friendly resort and from the moment we arrived with our dog, we felt as though she was very unwelcome here. She wasn't allowed off-leash, she wasn't allowed on the beach, she wasn't allowed in the lobby, she wasn't allowed near the hot tub, she wasn't allowed to enter the water via the beach, we were asked to bring her to the boat entry dock if we wanted to swim with her but this area was full of rocks and there were weeds everywhere -- not inviting to swim in at all! If we wanted to go swimming at the nice part of the lake (or do anything in a location that she was not allowed, e.g. hot tub), we had to put our dog in her crate in the room... this was not the kind of situation we had hoped for when we planned to vacation with our dog. There were no water bowls anywhere for dogs, so we had our own with us at all times for her. This place needs to be a lot more accommodating for dogs if it's going to promote itself as a 'dog friendly resort' -- it's very far from it.

*Horrible and overpriced food*
So we had to pay a lot per-night to stay at this mediocre resort and not one meal was included in the rate, not even breakfast. Breakfast is $15/person+ tax and tip and dinner is a whopping $45/person + tax and tip. We didn't eat the dinner because it was going to cost us over $100 and I knew that the type of cuisine they were offering (nor the ingredients it was made from) was not to our liking and we couldn't justify the price. We did, however, splurge for breakfast on our last day and it was HORRIBLE. The coffee was unpalatable... bitter and watery and they didn't have a soy option, only little creamers to add to it, fortunately I had my own carton of soy and added it to my coffee. The juice was from concentrate, the fruit was dry and dull, the baked goods were full of preservatives, the french toast(on "white" or "brown" bread) was soggy and flavourless (plus it was hardly even dipped int he batter, parts of it were like dry toast), the eggs were not fluffy and the english muffins were stale and plain white. Who serves "white" or "brown" bread options these days?! A few things that they could have done to make this breakfast better: use fresh ground coffee beans from a local roaster and a decent brewing machine; offer non-dairy options for those who are allergic to dairy; use fresh bread from a local bakery that actually has natural ingredients in it; use fresh squeezed juices; offer fresh baked goods from a local bakery; add some cinnamon and orange zest to your french toast, maybe even a little fruit on top; add fruit to your pancakes; use natural or organic ingredients in your food... my god, anything would have made this breakfast better.... and furthermore, it should have been included with our room rate!! Seniors might be satisfied with this mediocre breakfast (circa 1960 processed food standards), but there are a lot of talented chefs out there and loads of local bakers and farmers --- you should be supporting them and stepping up your cuisine. Breakfast should also really be included in the room rate, especially since none of your units have kitchens or kitchenettes! Your guests deserve more and it's the little thoughtful touches that are going to keep people coming back.

*Luke-warm hot tub*
We went into the hot tub the first night and found ourselves chilled, even while sitting in the tub... they kept it at 97 degrees and it felt luke-warm. This shouldn't be called a "hot" tub. Come on people... little things like spending a little bit more on your heating bill to actually "heat" the hot tub!

*Uncomfortable bed*
The room we stayed in had a "king" bed that was essentially created by putting two twin beds together, thus creating a very uncomfortable crack right down the middle of the bed. We ended up just sleeping on one half of the bed to avoid the crack. Plus the bed was rock hard and the pillows were overly used... they could have invested in better mattresses and newer pillows.

The whole place needed a bit of a reno... the bathrooms were ancient (e.g. a very unsanitary wooden toilet seat!) and very plain (old) fixtures in the bathroom. The television was from the 80's, the kind where you have to pull the nob to turn it on and remotes hadn't yet been designed. The bedding was floral and tacky, same with the couch. I get that they're going for a "rustic" cabin look, but honestly, it hovers the line of old and in need of renovation. The wood walls are a nice touch, but reno the bathrooms, lounges, hallways, get new furniture, bedding, and fixtures, etc.

*NO Wifi signal*
They claim that there is free wifi for guests, but you can only access it from the lobby. Get with the times people.... invest in another (stronger) wireless router and get your signal to reach every room in the building, not necessarily outside, but people should be able to access the internet in their rooms, especially if you advertise it!

We were thinking that since the grounds were so nice, if their "chalet" rooms came with kitchens so that we could cook our own food, we might consider coming back and renting one of those units with friends (to cut costs), but even those don't have kitchens!

So we're not coming back and I'm left with negative reviews to share with those who ask me how our weekend away was. I just hope this review inspires some necessary changes at the WestWind Inn, or at least steers others who are contemplating a weekend getaway there to spend their hard-earned dollars elsewhere.

Room Tip: Lakeview rooms are worth the upgrade, but make sure you get one closer to the water side of the buil...
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Owner at Westwind Inn on the Lake, responded to this review, July 4, 2012
Two unhappy, angry young women. I think anyone reading her review will shake their head... of course there are rules for dogs. The women brought their large black Labrador Retriever to our inn. As she states there was not much choice of accommodation available elsewhere for pet friendly. That is one big dog and we were very busy with lots of guests, but we agreed to take her dog for the normal reasonable fee. The pet friendly room available had 2 single beds and as they wanted to sleep in one bed we explained to them it would be the two singles made up as a large king. It is done regularly... very comfortable, topped with a king mattress pad, king sheets. Good size twin beds... Neither of the women had to sleep in the crack. Also, the expensive hand made quilts are removed from the beds when there is a dog staying for obvious reasons and are replaced with less precious "tacky" bedspread that is washed after a dog visit. (just in case you allowed your dog on the bed)

The rate of $250 per night for 2 nights for two women ... on a prime long weekend for a cosy lakefront room is not high. You had free use of canoes, kayaks, rowboats, pedalboats, waterbikes, sailboat... Bringing a large dog along on vacation does hinder you.

It appears that you are much more suited to renting a family housekeeping cottage resort where you could bring your own food and cook and clean for yourself. Some are pet friendly... but they all have rules. Dogs must be kept on a leash and most don’t allow them on the beach and swimming pool areas. Other guests do not appreciate a wet dog shaking on them or running by and throwing sand in their face... no matter how much they may love dogs.

Suggesting we have dog water bowls everywhere is absolutely ridiculous. We have our own dogs... in fact one is a black lab. Responsible and respectful pet owners provide for their own dogs when travelling away from home. Their entire complaint is ridiculous including their criticism of breakfast. We are a full service resort that provides a delicious 3 course dinner with a spectacular lake view and also a lovely hot breakfast. Perhaps they can get a meal cheaper in town, but not by much. Nothing was stale.. it does not have a chance to be... it was a busy long weekend. Food was fresh and tasty. If they want a kitchen and bring their own food, they must look for different type of accommodation. We are a “Pet Friendly Resort” for a fee... not a Resort for Pets
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa, Canada
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2012

We visited this Inn because I received a Groupon, and thought it would be a good opportunity to check out a new area in Ontario. I generally write very positive reviews (view my contributions list)… but in the spirit of TripAdvisor, I feel that I must be frank and honest with people considering staying at WestWind (as well as with the owners, who clearly review these comments). Let me break it down.

Facilities (outside) -- Grounds are well kept and gardening is very nice. Lots of things for free use (paddle boats, hydro bikes, canoes, kayaks – all with nice life jackets, as well as a pool, Jacuzzi (a little scuzzy), a hammock, volleyball net, and plenty of chairs on the dock. That said, the pool, jaccuzi and recreational items are all quite old. Overall, a nice relaxing atmosphere on a beautiful lake. Very quiet, no traffic noise.

Facilities (inside) -- The room was clean, but very old… not rustic-chic, just plain old. The room had a window air conditioning unit and a fan on the ceiling, but we didn't use the A/C, as the fan was lovely. Bathroom was extremely dated, with a large stain on the counter. Shower water temperature was inconsistent and hard to regulate. Nice balcony off the room with good afternoon sun. The beverage station advertised was ok, but didn’t have any cups or utensils. Generally, the Inn's decor is old -- again, not rustic, just simply dated and in need of a refresh.

Location – close proximity to “downtown” Buckhorn (about 3 minute drive) which has an ice cream shop, a pub or two, a decent Chinese restaurant, a liquor store, a small grocery store, and not much else. No bank in town.

Food/restaurant – no denying that the WestWind restaurant for dinner has a first-class chef. The food was amazing, with very large portions. We were not even offered a wine list, which was surprising. Dining room is very nice, overlooking the water. Breakfasts are expensive for what you get, but the wait staff is friendly.

Modern touches / connectivity – while they advertise that there is WiFi and a computer, that this location is in the middle of nowhere and the WiFi is highly unreliable. As for their “computer”, best not to count on it, as it was virus-ridden and we could barely read our emails, let alone respond to them without the computer crashing. I noticed comments on TripAdvisor about the TVs. Yes, they’re ancient and only have about 8 channels that come through, but it was fine for us. Generally, you’re there to get away, so who wants to sit around watching TV anyway. Still, the computer and WiFi is falsely advertised.

Customer service -- if you read any of my reviews, you’ll see that this is my number 1 priority. At WestWind, the service was mediocre at best. With the exception of 2 servers in the dining room, we never got the feeling that our business was appreciated. Front desk is frequently unattended. When we arrived, we wandered around the lobby and the dining room for a full 20 minutes before calling the number posted at the desk for “emergencies”. The Inn’s owner (Inga) was completely clueless in the client service department. Disorganized, not especially friendly, unappreciative of clients, and not at all helpful. Example: our Groupon included a boat ride, so when we checked in, we signed the form for our desired time slot (they are at 11am every day). The following day, when we stopped in at the front desk, Inga had not even noticed that we signed up 15 hours before (the book is right on the front desk!!), so arrangements had not been made. She then advised us that this time did not work for them, and that “we’ll move you to tomorrow” – without any apology or asking if tomorrow was suitable to us. We had massages booked for the following day (by the way, the masseuse is available by reservation only, but we didn't find him worth the money), and said that it wouldn't work. She replied "ok, then we'll move you to Sunday" - which also didn't work, as we were checking out. Luckily, her husband overheard and jumped in, saying that he could accommodate us. Once again, not an apology for the inconvenience or confusion by Inga; she just walked away. Another note on customer service… when I was checking out, Inga was speaking with a new front desk attendant and barely looked me in the eye. I paid my final bill for our over $100 dinner (not including wine) and she didn’t even say “thank you” or any acknowledgement that we dropped over $700 at their Inn. When I was half-way out the door, the new staff member, standing behind Inga, called “thank you, I hope you enjoyed your stay with us” – and Inga didn’t even look up. (For the record, we are very friendly people and did not complain once while at the Inn; I would even argue that the wait staff took quite a liking to us. Please do not misinterpret my comments about Inga as her having a particular issue with us... as you can see from other former guests who have commented on this page, she clearly is the one with the customer service issues.)

General -- With regard to the owner’s comments below about a reviewer having “no concern for peoples feelings” … give me a break. You are operating a business and people are giving you feedback on how to improve. It’s clear after meeting the owners (the man is great, by the way, but Inga needs some serious client service training) that they prioritize their operational needs over the comfort of their guests; saving money over making valueable improvements; prioritizing their own schedule over the intentions of their guests. Sorry to be harsh, but if WestWind spent more time addressing people’s comments rather than writing defensive replies, perhaps they would have more satisfied guests.

Overall -- this is a really beautiful area and we enjoyed our stay on the whole. Customer service was poor and perplexing, but the general experience was still quite relaxing. If you are able to get a discounted rate, it is worth a visit... clean hotel and good food. Nice grounds and beautiful scenery. Highly recommend taking the boat ride -- the owner grew up in the area and he is full of information about the region, local wildlife, etc. and he's quite pleasant.

Room Tip: Looked like rooms on 2nd floor had a little fridge in the room, while 3rd floor had one large commun...
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, Owner at Westwind Inn on the Lake, responded to this review, July 2, 2012
Calling someone....anyone... clueless is not nice....very unpleasant...

Our inn is family owned and operated and we live on site steps away. We are on call round the clock 24/7 and available at moments notice as a phone & our home phone number is posted at front desk. On Thursday evening I was at home preparing dinner for my husband and 3 young children when we received your phone call saying you were in the lobby waiting to check in. The front desk was unmanned for a very brief time and there was only one check in to arrive. I promptly returned to the inn and checked you in.

You had a coupon for a discounted 3 night stay along with discounts for breakfast and a free boat ride. We offer Boat Cruises at 11:00 a.m. on SATURDAY, SUNDAY, TUESDAY AND THURSDAY, ( for a fee) as is written in bold on the cruise sign up sheet at the front desk
On Friday morning you announced that you wanted to take your free boat ride that morning at 11:00 a.m. I told you the next boat cruise was tomorrow, Saturday at 11:00 a.m.but you declined saying you massages booked. I then suggested Sunday and you refused again. I then offered to delay the cruise on Saturday and take you at 1:00 p.m. and you again refused. We had a full house on Wednesday and Thursday with everyone checking out Friday morning.. We had lots of work to be done before weekend check ins. Hot tub routine maintenance... Friday was not a good day for a cruise for us... that is why it is not scheduled. However, my husband heard your complaints and offered to take you that day (Friday) at 11:00 a.m., on a private boat cruise for 2 on our 18 passenger boat.

You say our rooms and décor is “old”. The inn was built in late 1986... perhaps that is old for your age group.... but our furnishings are referred to antiques.. yes they are old.. but old is not bad.. it can be good.. better than new these days. Many antiques are timeless... traditional... appreciated by those who know antiques.

We are fortunate to be so close to the village of Buckhorn. You say there is not much there. Kind TA Readers do a web search http://www.buckhorncanada.ca/. You may be surprised at all it has to offer. Foodland Grocery, Drug/Pharmacy, Variety, Antique shoppes, Liquor/beer store..Pro Hardware, Bakery, A Collectibles shoppe, the Locks, Library, Park...Realtor. Art Galleries. Also an ATM ..... 2 banks are in Lakefield 15 minutes away.

Breakfasts expensive? I disagree especially when you consider the breathtaking panoramic lake view. At $15 per person we serve juice, fresh fruit, baked goods, eggs, bacon, sausages, home fried potatoes, toast & jam, eggs benedict, french toast, pancakes.... fresh bottomless coffee.... Plus you had a voucher giving you $20 off breakfast EACH DAY! $60 off your 3 night stay.

Wifi is provided free of charge and is received in most locations at the inn. A computer is available for guest use... I don’t understand the reference to viruses. as we checked...no viruses...in any case most guests who must keep in constant touch bring their laptop or blackberry.. or tablet... smart phone...

Front desk is attended most of the time between 8:30 a.m .to 11:00 p.m. At times it is necessary for staff to be elsewhere and not required to stand in an empty lobby...

Swimming Pool? it was early in the season and the pool had not yet been cleaned, serviced and opened. The sign on the gate stated Pool Closed. It was not ready for guest use. I don’t understand your complaint.

Dinner is $45 + tax for a delicious upscale 3 courses. Re wine list? Everyone is asked if they care for a beverage when taking your order.

You say you dropped $700 at our inn? You paid $379 to Groupon for 3 night stay & free boat cruise... + $30 for 6 full hot breakfasts, $90 for dinner... + tax.... That is $379 + $120 = $499 + tax.
The massage therapist is self employed. You paid him directly.

Tripadvisor readers, please read this reviewers profile and her other hotel reviews... Mont Tremblant and Edmonton hotel reviews have the same complaints as ours.... stating their decor was dated, not in a nice rustic way, just plain old-looking, Horrible customer service and breakfast was too expensive at $20.95 per person which is even higher than ours..

In closing, your complaints are the result of your not observing there was no Boat Cruise offered on Friday...
It is not offered everyday as you state. It only goes out when there is interest and that is usually on the weekend when there are more guests....that angered you without just cause and you took it out on me.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, Ontario, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2012

We recently stayed for 3 nights at Westwind Inn and have nothing but positive things to say. From the comfortable quaint rooms to the gourmet cooking- the whole stay was just excellent. The staff was friendly and accommodating as well. There are so many amenities included in the package at no extra charge. We would be more than happy to return again - the Kawartha Lakes region is simply beautiful

London, Ontario

  • Stayed May 2012, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Been to Westwind Inn on the Lake? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Westwind Inn on the Lake

Address: Box 91, Hwy. #36, Buckhorn, Ontario K0L 1J0 , Canada
Location: Canada > Ontario > Buckhorn
Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Ski-In / Ski-Out Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 hotels in Buckhorn
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Westwind is a quaint family owned resort providing nature, tranquility & relaxation. The inn houses 31 cozy log cabin style rooms with fireplace, balcony, antiques & original art-6 with jet tubs for two. Our chalet has 4 larger units with many extra touches. We provide a welcoming atmosphere with complimentary activities for every season, friendly staff, outstanding surroundings & superb dining. Majority of our clientele are repeat or referral, we hope you will become one also! ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Priceline and Booking.com so you can book your Westwind Inn on the Lake reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Westwind Inn On The Lake Hotel Buckhorn
Westwind Hotel Buckhorn
Westwind Resort Buckhorn
Westwind Inn On The Lake Buckhorn, Ontario, Canada

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Westwind Inn on the Lake, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.