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“Sparkling Hill Resort - Beautiful Views, Great Spa and Golf, Food not so good”

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Sparkling Hill Resort
Ranked #2 of 20 Hotels in Vernon
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 6, 2012

I recently visited Sparkling Hill Resort on a work retreat. The views are amazing. The rooms are spacious, clean, comfortable and designed beautifully. The spa is large with many steam rooms and saunas that are complementary with your stay, as are the pools. The golf course (I hear as I do not golf) is challenging, but all the golfers I was with loved it. And it looks stunning.

The only down side, which is a big one, is the food. We were not impressed. We had buffets set up for breakfast and lunch that were ok. The soups were aweful. We had one sit down dinner, my beef sirloin was overcooked and dry - couldn't eat it. We also had a pea soup, not sure what else was in it but it had a floral taste (couldn't eat it, and I was not the only one). The restaurant Gernots, while having an amazing view and lovely decor, the food was not good. I had the steak sandwich with blue cheese, caramelized onions and mushrooms. The blue cheese (which I like and cook with often) was so over powering it was all you could taste. Also the steak was over cooked and sliced like sandwich meat slices – I had asked for it medium rare, more to the rare side. Don't think rare is an option at this resort. Overall I found the food/flavour combinations strange, none of the combinations seemed to compliment each other. The chief offered a cooking class, which I did not attend, but heard from those who did that the veal type stew dish that they made was bland with no flavour. Also the slow cooking method seemed odd for a nice cut of veal?

Everything, but the food was excellent.

Room Tip: Get a lake view room.
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled on business
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1  Thank MiTravel_2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 4, 2012

We had a lakeside view room and what a view. This really made the stay enjoyable, especially as the weather was very good during our time there. The room was large, bed was comfortable, you get a nice bathroom and even a bath by the window to enjoy the view from. You get a large fully opening window as well which you can sit by and look out.

We ate in the Peakfine restaurant both nights, we thought the food quality was excellent, wine selection excellent and the Okanagan grappa is a recommendation to finish off with. Surprised about some of the comments regarding quality and portion size. The food and drink are however pricey. Breakfast is ok, not a bad selection.

It is not perfect, I thought the tiles in the Spa pool area looked a bit grubby compared to the rest of the spa area and the downstairs bar service was a bit poor.

The hotel is on a steep hill, if you go for a walk around the rest of predator bridge do expect a steep climb back up. We did the difficult trail around the resort as well so there is good scope for walks.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank theGEngland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 1, 2012

My girlfriends and I stayed at this resort fee a night away. We had a great time! Overall, the resort is beautiful. There are however some minior improvements that the hotel could make.

When we pulled in, there was no valet in sight and just a few spots to park in. Slightly confusing. Also not in sight, was a bell-person. At a resort of this caliber, both should be standing out front ready to assit newly arriving guests.

The rooms are very modern and have a minimalistic feel to them. We had a mountain view room, which still had a lovely view. The rooms are slightly odd for anyone that is not a couple. The shower is open to the room and the tub is in the room as well. Not really suitable for a girls weekend away, but we managed.

The pool and spa area is quite lovely. We enjoyed the saunas, however we did notice a few of the saunas were not at the temperature they were supposed to be at. I'm perplexed as to why the saunas are closed from 11-4 daily? What about the guests staying for more than one night? One thing that we were excited to try were the experience showers. To bad they were not working!!! Another dissapointment was the fact that the healing water walk was out of order. I feel that for the price we paid for the guestroom, the fact that these features were not working property was unacceptable.

Our trip ended with a 20 minute wait for an elevator, due to the fact that one was broken. In this case, they should have had a bell person on every floor helping guests down with their luggage. For a hotel of this caliber, this would not be the last impression you would want guests to leave with!

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with friends
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3  Thank ThorneloeFamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 1, 2012

Perfect place for couples with an outstanding Spa.

Only thing lacking is the food outlets and a lounge.

Main Restaurant is open for dinner but is a little pricey, it is also where buffet breakfast is served, but items provided limited and service is slow for table service for coffee and tea. Lounge was a disappointment , one or two food items, no real Menu , service slow .

With no food in Lounge it forces you to the Main Dining room for dinner whcih is again very pricey it would be nice if the hotel provided hot food in there lounge for those nights when you do not want to have something lighter and at a lower price point.

Rooms are excellant , spa is great, justs needs some work on food outlets for its guests.

John Alberta

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank JOHNBOYCalgary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 30, 2012

We stayed at Sparkling Hill this summer for 5 nights for a wedding. I should mention that we booked our room at a special "wedding" rate, which made our stay a lot more affordable--though it certainly didn't change the price of the spa or dining rates. I still think the place was worth the amounts they charge, but we certainly won't be staying there on a regular basis.

The most impressive thing about this place is the location; the views of the Okanagan hills to the east and, most particularly, the views of Lake Okanagan to the west, are breathtaking. I've been visiting the Vernon area my entire life and am always struck by the lovely views of Okanagan and Kalamalka Lakes--and yet I was still blown away by the unique views from Sparkling Hill.

A few more notes about the location: the resort is situated somewhat remotely away from Vernon or Kelowna, which means going anywhere offsite is a bit of a trek. However, the drive to Vernon is only about 15 minutes and a beautiful one, and the hotel is also right beside Predator Ridge, which is great if you're travelling with a golfer, or just want to try a different restaurant for a change.

The resort itself is very nicely designed and decorated, providing you enjoy a modern style and a LOT of Swarovski crystals. The foyer, the dining room, bar, swimming pool, the terrace and the "lake view" rooms all have gorgeous views of Lake Okanagan. The hotel rooms themselves are very nice, with comfortable beds and well laid out space to store bags, etc., setup a laptop, curl up in a chair with a book, etc. My one criticism of the decor, and this is purely personal taste, is that the rooms have a few too many crystals in them--I found it verging on tacky, though the place is so nicely decorated otherwise that I still found the place beautiful. Also, the only door within each hotel room is the one to the toilet stall; so otherwise there is no sound/light barrier between the bed/living space and the sinks, shower and tub (there is a privacy wall between the bed and the shower stall). This means that if you're sharing a room with someone else who happens to be asleep when you want to shower, bath, brush your teeth, etc., you're likely to disturb them with noise/light (this also posed a particular problem for my cousin's two children, a tween girl and teenage boy, who shared a room but certainly wanted privacy from one another while changing and showering).

While staying at the resort we enjoyed the saunas and steam rooms, the views from the spa and many delicious meals in the dining room. The complimentary buffet breakfasts were really very good, with a wide variety of foods to choose from. Dinners were wonderful; the menu changed every day, and while it was not extensive, it offered some interesting choices, and the kitchen was happy to accommodate several dietary restrictions (vegetarian/celiac) on several occasions.

All-in-all, Sparkling Hill is a lovely place with good-natured staff and a great feel--I'd recommend it to anyone interested in a luxurious getaway in the Okanagan.

Room Tip: We stayed three nights in a "lake view" and 2 nights in "mountain view"; the lak...
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  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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6  Thank CheesePleese
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 29, 2012

My hubby & I stayed at this resort recently courtesy of a seminar I was invited to. The resort is very impressive aesthetically with Swarovski crystals strategically laid out in the room and in the resort overall. However, it lacks some of the basic necessities that can be found even in the cheapest hotel anywhere else. For one, there is no coffee machine in the room, although coffee is available in the restaurant but only until a certain time and no selection to choose from (no decaf). Why can't I make my own coffee in my room? Why do I have to travel 2 floors down to get my 6:30 am coffee? Also, I appreciate the valet parking, but why can't I park my own vehicle? Why do I have to bother the poor, overworked staff everytime I need to access my vehicle? They call this a resort? It didn't feel like a resort to me. There's still a lot of room for improvements for this resort. Food was not that good, very small portion and nothing spectacular about it.

Room Tip: The Lake View room would be the best room. Ask for it if one is available, although I'm sure mo...
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled on business
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1  Thank Tebebe10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 29, 2012 via mobile

We stayed here for two nights with our dog. Overall, it was luxurious and wonderful. The pet friendly rooms were basically as far from the lobby as possible, which was inconvenient since my husband is handicapped, but that was about my only complaint. The saunas and steam rooms are wonderful and the service throughout the hotel is superb. We liked the isolation from Vernon and especially from busy Kelowna. All in al a great retreat.

  • Stayed: September 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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1  Thank jssplsn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sparkling Hill Resort

Address: 888 Sparkling Pl, Vernon, British Columbia V1H 2K7, Canada
Location: Canada > British Columbia > Okanagan Valley > Vernon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in Vernon
Price Range: $265 - $405 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Sparkling Hill Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 152
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Over 3.5 million crystals infused within this modern oasis – a most remarkable hotel and wellness centre with European-inspired design elegance. Nestled in the mountains near Vernon, BC, and overlooking Lake Okanagan, your personal journey to whole body health and wellness begins at our standout among British Columbia resorts. Wellness Packages at KurSpa Sparkling Hill’s reputation as an internationally-renowned wellness center and health retreat is unparalleled. What better way to spark your journey towards a new you than our Wellness Packages, providing savings on spa and wellness treatments at KurSpa. Learn more about our Weeklong Wellness Packages. Also be sure to explore our fitness classes and meditation workshops to promote well-being in mind, body and spirit. KurSpa: A Holistic Health Spa The heart of our Lake Okanagan resort is KurSpa, our 40,000 square foot European-inspired spa, clinic, and wellness center. It is the largest spa in Canada and shines brightly as a worldwide wellness destination. Relax, renew, and revitalize at KurSpa's seven unique aromatherapy, steam, and sauna rooms. Swim in Kurspa's serenity pool featuring underwater music and a Swarovski crystal night sky. Choose from over 100 transformative spa treatments and therapies to detoxify the body and promote optimum health. Consult with our professional team including our naturopathic physician, psychiatrist, massage providers and kinesiologists and view their renowned clinic services. Enhance your relationships with the help of our SHaRP program, which can range from romantic to work relationships. Schedule yourself a mini silent retreat in our Serenity Room. Or, experience the first European Cryo Cold Chamber (-110°C) in North America, our signature KurSpa treatment. Our Luxurious British Columbia Resort Take in the stunning beauty of the Okanagan Valley from our BC resort’s luxury guest rooms and penthouses, which feature sweeping lake and mountain views and operable floor to ceiling glass window walls that can be opened to instantly transform your room into an outdoor oasis. Swarovski crystals illuminate fireplaces, fixtures and ceilings, lending a luminous and luxurious ambience to every space. Fresh Fine Dining Sparkling Hill Resort is also home to the best fine dining destinations in Vernon, BC. PeakFine, our signature restaurant, serves a menu emphasizing the freshest and finest ingredients the Okanagan Valley has to offer. Known as the "Napa of the North" the region's spectacular wines are on offer at PeakFine and Barrique & Java, our more casual wine, tapas, and coffee bar. Stunning Swarovski crystal chandeliers and accents imbue our dining spaces with glamour and elegance, and those seeking an elegantly rustic setting for private dining or special events will find it in Gernots. Discover Sparkling Hill Recognized as a trendsetter in healthy living and wellness hospitality, our Okanagan Lake resort is a distinctive destination for the modern sophisticated traveler. Whether planning a couple's escape, corporate wellness retreat, or incentive travel, our British Columbia resort delivers an unforgettable blend of relaxation, restoration, and wellness. Please explore our website; we look forward to welcoming you to Sparkling Hill Resort on your personal journey to whole body health and wellness. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sparkling Hill Hotel Vernon

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