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“On a boat yes, but charming!”

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InnChanter Bed & Breakfast
Ranked #5 of 20 Specialty Lodging in Tofino
Seattle
Level 5 Contributor
43 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
“On a boat yes, but charming!”
Reviewed September 22, 2012

So, the downsides first. You are on a boat. There are tiny quarters below. You will hear your neighbors in all of their endeavors. You will hear people overhead. If you don't like the other guests, you are more or less trapped with them. We had one girl get "trashed" the second night we were there, and this was a nuisance.

The other downside: there is only one restroom, no shower, on the boat. This can be problematic with lots of people on the boat.

The other other downside: If you have any orthopaedic issues, find navigating small spaces difficult, clambering up rickety/narrow stairs difficult, you should not come here.

The positives: it is absolutely lovely to be in an inlet, twinkling stars overhead at night, shiny phosphorescent sea creatures sparkling from the ocean below at night; to kayak over to the hotsprings whenever you want, or kayak through channels and into coves, get out and hike around!

The boat itself is very Robert Louis Stevenson-esque; and intentionally. The owner is a great cook-- definitely high carb food! So if you are on a diet (which I was not) then you will have to exercise a high degree of self control!

Would recommend taking a float plane to and from-- beautiful aerial views of the coast, and very fast! Would call this type of trip a romantic adventure-- but you have to be willing to rough it a little.

Room Tip: So-- some of the rooms are canted so that your feet are above your head (it's a boat afterall...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank pc_seattle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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69 reviews from our community

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  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
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English first
Calgary
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed July 29, 2012

I honestly cannot understand why people would have any complaint about this place. Is it musty, rustic, and bare-bones? Absolutely. But honestly, why were you going to one of the most remote places on Earth expecting anything else? In the absolute dead centre of nowhere, this is a wonderful way to spend a few nights, doing as close to nothing as you possibly can. Shaun puts together fabulous meals, is a wonderful host, and goes out of his way to make sure everyone is having a wonderful time.
The InnChanter is one of the greatest hidden gems I have ever stumbled across.

PS. You simply have not done anything with your life until you have kayaked in Hot Springs Cove at midnight in bioluminescent waters. Yes, your bowwake will glow in the dark.

Not an appropriate place to take children, people with limited mobility, or pets.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Roland S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mill Valley, California
Level 3 Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed June 7, 2012

I realize that TripAdvisor is the bread & butter for this place, so a negative review and can be devastating. I considered not writing this, but I think people need to know that the current reviews do not tell the full picture of this bed & breakfast. The location is absolutely amazing, no question, and given that the InnChanter is the only overnight option to the hot springs, you are at their mercy. That said, the prices that they charge vs. the value of what you get is not reasonable. My family of four stayed here recently for $480.

The price included dinner and breakfast. I was looking forward to the "gourmet" meals that I had read so much about. It was legitimately cool to see the fisherman show up at 4:00 with a freshly caught halibut. We were later told by Mark, our host, that it was a good thing he came when he did, because "Plan B was chicken." The halibut was over cooked with crushed wasabi peas served with white rice and a green salad with lettuce that had certainly seen better days. I am admittedly a food snob, but this is hardly the gourmet fare that it had been built up to be. Breakfast was also thrown together with pantry staples that seemed to have been sitting on the shelf a little too long. Mealy apples and bananas were the only fruits offered.

Second, the sleeping, it's a boat. I get it. I was not expecting luxury, but I also wasn't expecting to be woken up by the comings and goings of a random stranger in the middle of the night. While we were there, some guy that was never introduced to us and we were never told would be sleeping with us, came in around midnight and then promptly left again at 6:30am. It's a small, old (creaky) boat. We heard everything. None of us got a particularly good night's sleep, but my husband literally didn't sleep at all. To add insult to injury here, there was an alarm that went off for about 45 minutes at 3:00 in the morning. We were told later it was an alarm from the inverter that the batteries were too low. The kicker is that the reason it went off for 45 minutes without anyone turning it off is because Mark had conveniently left for an evening at the Hot Springs.

Finally, there was the "mandatory" gratuity. Even though we were disappointed with the service, we did not complain, we just packed up our bags and were ready to chalk this one up to "adventure." However, as we were settling up our bill, we saw that Mark had added a mandatory gratuity of $50 to our tab. I was/am speechless. I had to tip this guy? On all levels this place under delivered. With the alarm going off, the strangers coming and going, I simply did not feel safe.

The only saving grace is that perhaps Sean, the owner who was not around during our stay, really does run a tighter ship. I hope that he is a better cook and a better host. One who does not abandon his guests, and one who does not invite casual acquaintances to join him on the ship while he has paying guests.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
18 Thank KaraRoche
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
2 reviews
Reviewed February 26, 2012

If you are looking for a true escape and ready to "get away from it all", this is the place for you! The Innchanter provides a perfect balance between experiencing the sites and sounds of nature, while still having all the comforts of home. I was surprised by the size of the boat, and was amazed to discover that it has a wood burning fireplace! The atmosphere is unique, charming, and impeccably clean. It is obvious that a lot of love and attention has gone into this place. We had unlimited access to the row boat, which we could take anywhere we wanted, but of course, the main attraction is the natural hot springs. Because the boat is anchored so close to the entrance to the hot springs, we could go in the morning or later afternoon, when we could have the entire hot springs to ourselves, which are usually overrun with large groups of tourists! It is truly a magical and once in a lifetime experience to sit in a hot pool among the rocks, watching the waves of the ocean crash just a few meters away!

The true centrepiece of the Innchanter, however, in the innkeeper, Shawn. Not only is he a fantastic cook and a gifted story teller, he is the consummate host, making sure that we were happy, entertained, warm, well fed, and well caffeinated at all times.

We got engaged during our stay at the Innchanter, and Shawn went above and beyond to make sure that the surprise proposal went smoothly - in fact he played an integral (behind the scenes) role in the proposal! Look out for a special board along the boardwalk on the way to the hot springs!

Room Tip: Choose the "Library" as it has the most windows! However, during summer months, you may w...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Clara R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed December 18, 2011

There are only a handful of choices for visiting Hot Springs Cove: Travel by plane or boat to visit for the day and compete with crowds for a small piece of bliss for an hour or so, or be dropped off with a tent, water, food and tp for a camping adventure (and have unlimited access to the springs), or bring your own floating accommodations to anchor in the bay... OR book a boat or plane to drop you off at the Innchanter with your bathing suit and toothbrush.

Sure this is an old boat and non-boaters may find the space confined, but if one has ever spent time aboard a sailboat, you'll find yourself reveling the luxury of space on this ship. Not a cruise ship by any worldly, modern standards, but comfortable, warm and safe enough to call home for a couple nights. We found Sean to be not only a gracious and engaging host, but an excellent cook and raconteur of local history and facts. We never wanted for a good meal, a good book to read or a lively conversation with the crew or other guests.

Most importantly, being anchored a short row away from the dock that begins the 2 kilometer trek to the hot springs allowed us to enjoy the springs on our own time and terms, arriving well before the first boat of "tourists", and soaking in the afternoon and evening when the crowds had departed. Adding to the flexible timing of staying at the springs is the unique experience of enjoying a rising tide of chilly ocean water rolling into the succulent warmth of the hot springs and having the sensuous chill and warmth of mother nature's extreme touches on your body simultaneously.

We didn't see much on the boat ride out due to fog, and being on the open water can be quite a rough ride. We opted to fly back and enjoyed a whale siting from above.

If you're looking for a romantic getaway, this is a hard one to trump: Truly memorable, adventurous, private, remote and exotic enough to make friends envious of your trip.

Room Tip: The library cabin may be the largest aboard.
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank brian928
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sacramento, California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed September 15, 2011

We were so looking forward to this 3 day section of our trip to Vancouver Island. What could be better? An hour boat ride from Tofino, stationed within a row boat's distance of a hike thru the rain forest to natural hot springs. Everything about it turned out to be awesome except the InnChanter, an old boat that should have been sunk years ago and needs to be inspected by the Canadian Department of Health. Me and my husband actually love "funky". This was way off the funk scale. Our teeny room in the hold smelled like some strange mix of transmission fluid and sewage. No surprise since our first instruction was to press this button on and off for TWO MINUTES to flush the toilet. Let me say that 2 minutes of flushing did not make a difference. I'll stop here...surroundings? Awesome! Boat? Bad...

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
11 Thank BellaD465
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rockledge, Florida
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed September 4, 2011

My wife and I stayed here for two nights in August. When we flew in, we were immediately greeted by one of the ship mates, who then brought us in to meet the innkeeper. Both were very friendly and welcoming. We stayed in the "library", which is the only guest room on the main deck. My wife is an avid reader and was "in heaven" when she saw only a bed, a chair and wall-to-wall bookshelves full of books.

The whole ship was quaint and homely, but kept up with nicely. The innkeeper is a really good cook and happily accommodated our food interests. Poor water pressure means no shower. Going to the hot springs early in the morning (before the sun was up) made this acceptable for the two days we were there.

Not much to do here accept read and/or relax on the boat, or head off to the hot springs peninsula or to the hot springs, of course.

We really enjoyed our stay but would not have wished for any more days on the boat.

Room Tip: Try for the library room, or you'll have to be below the main deck with only port holes to look...
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Arryn G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about InnChanter Bed & Breakfast

Property: InnChanter Bed & Breakfast
Address: Tofino, British Columbia V0R 2Z0, Canada
Phone Number:
Location: Canada > British Columbia > Vancouver Island > Clayoquot Sound > Tofino
Amenities:
Free Breakfast
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 20 Specialty Lodging in Tofino
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to the InnChanter, a west coast Bed and Breakfast vacation accommodations in Tofino, BC. Luxury accommodation and gourmet meals. InnChanter is a heritage vessel built in the 1920's and refitted to take you back to the style and class of the era of her creation.Our prices include Dinner and Breakfast. We have 6 kayaks and 2 rowboats available to all of our guests to enjoy. The B&B is docked in Tofino October through April, and in Hot Springs Cove May through September. ... more   less 

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