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“An oasis of calm”

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Inverness - High Park B & B
Ranked #17 of 118 Toronto B&B and Inns
Reviewed December 30, 2012

Clean, comfortable, and very convenient. Walking distance from the Subway and High Park. Off-street parking. Breakfast served at your convenience, and contrary to other reviews below, there is plenty of choice if you don't like the breakfast dish of the day. All I had to do was ask politely and she made a new dish right away. :)

The owner is friendly and professional. We had to make last minute bookings (the day before travel) and although the B&B was officially closed for the season she re-opened just for us.

As far as I can tell this is the only decent place to stay in the west of Toronto.

Room Tip: Big room at the top of the house might be the best, but ask the owner.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank mcsony
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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46 - 52 of 66 reviews

Reviewed December 16, 2012

This was my first stay at a B&B. The hostess, Elizabeth, greeted me, and we got along just fine. First day's breakfast was homemade french toast with sliced banana and strawberry, and coffee served in a press, which was yummy and first-class. Day 2 I was served the best glass of fresh-squeezed OJ I've ever had, and a delightful bowl of organic oatmeal with all kinds of nuts & seeds on top, and yes, a coffee press.

The bed was fine, just not as comfy as my own Tempur-pedic. The room was spotless, with a couple of teddy bears watching over. The 20" (?) TV monitor is on top of the armoire, which made it difficult to hear without turning it up too loud (the place was so quiet).
The residential neighborhood was just what I was looking for: to be walking distance to the Roncesvalles/Dundas West area. I had two wonderful walks around the neighborhood and nearby park. Off street parking was a real bonus!
Fridge available, which I didn't need, and plenty of tea available (self-serve).
I definitely will go back and maybe even bring my wife. A very good value, really, and I look forward to staying there again when I'm in town on business. One thing I would have loved was a desk or someplace to sit & work in my room. If you have a car, and don't need to be right downtown, and/or can walk 10 minutes to the bus/streetcar, this would be a good option for a traveler on his/her own. Nice place, Elizabeth! Thank you. See you again in 2013.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled on business
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1  Thank billycinnh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2012

This was my first stay at this B&B and absolutely won't be my last! The location is perfect! Right between 2 fabulous neighborhoods called Bloor West Village and The Junction. I was able to walk everywhere and if I needed public transportation, the subway was also just a short walk around the corner! Elizabeth (the owner) made the most delicious, and healthy breakfasts I have ever had! Always serving with a smile and incredible information about nutrition and digestion. The home is filled with beautiful artifacts that had such interesting stories to go along with them. Very peaceful, clean and filled with extraordinary guests from around the world! I can hardly wait to return! Thank you Elizabeth for making my stay in Toronto so memorable!!

Room Tip: All the rooms were delightful!
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank tenslady1561
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 12, 2012

I love this place. I stay here everytime I go to Toronto,ON. This place is very peaceful and quiet. It has a rustic setting. Its in a great location. The owner(Elizabeth) is very nice hostess and is well respected. I would recommend this place to all. You go to stay here.

Room Tip: The location of the house is great. minutes from downtown.
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled solo
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Thank Baron B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 10, 2012

We booked Inverness-High Park B&B based on Trip Advisor reviews and our requirement to find lodging in the High Park area. Initial contact with the proprietor occurred several weeks prior to our arrival date; however, the reservation process is so "liberal" that we were not confident we actually had a reservation, nor were we confident of the rate or the type of room we were reserving. Our room preference was accommodated. However, upon arrival, we were met in the front entry hall by a heavy odour suggesting the presence of great amounts of mildew or mould that was being unsuccessfully hidden by a heavily perfumed scent of some description. Our room was also heavily scented, and things just went downhill from there. The bed sheets did not smell fresh. The bed cover had a stale dusty smell. The towels were stiff and wrinkled (possibly dried on a clothes line indoors?). The biggest horror, however, was the used bar of soap complete with pubic hair! A dirty sock and pill bottle under the bed (discovered while recovering some spilt change) and no way to secure our room at night or when we were not there round out the disappointing attributes of this B&B. The breakfasts are minimal and not particularly creative. The dining room is the only common room but it lacks comfy seating for lounging. While the proprietor is pleasant, for the fee charged, one would expect much more. Based on our experience, it is unlikely we will return to Inverness-High Park B&B.

Room Tip: If location is important to you, ask to see the room you have reserved before committing to the rese...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Kalmo1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
moutus, Owner at Inverness - High Park B & B, responded to this reviewResponded October 23, 2012

I was also very disappointed ...to learn of this on-line review of the reviewer's 5 day/4 night stay here.

I feel some explanation ...and comments are warranted on my part.

In regard to the room reserved, there was never any question that the room type requested (queen bed with en suite) was going to be provided....and indeed it was. The only rate ever quoted to the reviewer was $110/night ...and this was re-affirmed at their request via e mail. But still, at time of check out, the reviewer presented me with $400. I don't think I could have been clearer both verbally and in writing. I know the reviewer received the e mail re-confirming $110, because they replied to it.

The reviewer might have considered the reservation process to be liberal...I consider it to be flexible. Twice via e mail correspondence, I had requested that the reviewer let me know in advance or their arrival time.....and that it was flexible at my end. Having even an approximate arrival time allows me to ensure that rooms will be ready upon guest arrival. The reviewer arrived and sadly their room wasn't ready. In my haste to get them in and settled, I take full responsibility for missing the sock...the soap....and for this I apologize.

In regards to the mildew odour....a couple of days prior to the reviewer's arrival, I had washed the filter of the bagless vacuum I use for quick touchups ( all floors are done weekly with the rainbow systems referenced in my web site). When I had used the vacuum shortly before the reviewer's arrival, the exhaust blew out a mildewy odour....and to make matters worse, while they were waiting, I used it in their room too!. Before I vacuumed the hall floor, I had washed it with a green product called "Simple Green"...so they probably were getting that smell as well. The vacuum was retired right after the incident, as there is no way to get rid of the odour once its there. There are NO scents used anywhere in the house. ...there were no attempts to cover up anything. Two days before the reviewer arrived, there had been a woman for a week in the room they were to occupy....and she did use a lot of perfume, so perhaps they were still picking up on that. I just can say unequivocally no scents are used here. The reviewer failed to mention that the mildewy odour they smelled upon their arrival was short lived, as the smell was only temporarily in the air, and not a fixture in the house

The bedding is washed in a green product and NO chemical fabric softeners or the like, are used. Some people interpret the lack of chemical odour as a lack of freshness. The bedding was clean.

Towels are air dried.....some people, myself included, prefer a stiffer, not fluffy towel...so preferences are subjective. Incidentally the towels are washed in the same product as the bedding. I also add oxyclean and / or 3% hydrogen peroxided to ensure cleanliness

Our City of Toronto B&B bi laws do not allow locked bedroom doors....just the way it is.

Regarding breakfasts, the reviewer requested on day one that they wanted only oatmeal every morning. Instead of providing a very plain version of oatmeal, every day they were provided no less that 3 different fresh fruits ( sans bananas for Mr)....and a variety of nuts and seeds as toppings on their oatmeal.....and everything was organic.

Not having served just a simple oatmeal breakfast before, I asked the reviewer at their first breakfast, if the serving size was right for them.....they pleasantly said it was and seemed to enjoy the dish each day. So from my perspective I added creativity to a breakfast that otherwise would not have been very visually appealing and also rather shy on nutrient value. If the reviewer's comment about minimal and not particularly creative was in regard to what the other guests were served each day, I have to defer to the opinions of the guests who actually ate the food.

I admit that the two chairs are not "lounging" chairs, but they are padded seat and back with arms, and of a type that would be comfortable for reading. The chair in the reviewer's room was of the same type...padded seat & back, with arms. Again, the type of chairs that people like can also be subjective.

It appears that it didn't seem so to the reviewers, but I do try very hard to create a good atmosphere...on all levels... for my guests. My real disappointment comes for the fact that I learned of their dissatisfaction on a public website....having been given NO opportunity to explain or even change the situation. The reviewer stayed here for 5 days & 4 nights and didn't' say one word of their dissatisfaction. Had I been made aware of their impressions, which apparently were created VERY early in their stay, I would tried to make them more at home....or would have helped them find another place and not charged them.

Its a shame that miscommunication of this nature may be reviewed at its face value and result in business loss when I truly put my all into providing a pleasant environment and comfort for each and every guest.

Respectfully, Elizabeth


Elizabeth

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Reviewed October 5, 2012

Very much enjoyed staying here! The location is lovely: in an interesting neighborhood close to High Park as well an easy subway ride to downtown. Elizabeth is an interesting and accommodating hostess. While my room was not fancy, it was cosy, comfortable and clean. A private bath might have been nicer but in 4 days, I never had to wait for the shared one, so it was no inconvenience at all. Finally, the breakfasts were truly something to leap out of bed for!

  • Stayed: September 2012
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Thank imaksy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 2, 2012

This is a delightful period house, set in a classy area of Toronto. However, the alarm bells began to ring as soon as we arrived. In spite of reconfirming our booking and arrival time only a few days before, our arrival seemed to surprise the owner.

We had booked this B&B based on the many good reviews we had read. Our daughter’s room was fine but half our double room was taken up by a wooden shed! We were initially excited, thinking that we had a sauna but closer investigation revealed a junk store, containing all sorts of bits and pieces in various states of repair. There was a further surprise for us behind the door of the room: another junk store containing a broken light fitment. Our ‘wardrobe’ turned out to contain a washing machine and tubs of washing powder and… more junk!

The room itself, including the bedclothes, was by no means the cleanest we had ever stayed in. Just to complicate matters, we were awoken at 5am on the first morning by a near neighbour shouting expletives. This was, of course, beyond the owner’s control but did disturb our much-needed sleep.

The famous breakfasts are fine… if you like what’s served up. If you don’t, you go hungry. There is no menu, choice or consultation about what’s on offer, it just arrives – take it or leave it. On our first day, it was French toast. Our daughter didn’t like that, so that was her chance of a breakfast out of the window. She also doesn’t drink tea or coffee but no alternative was offered. On the second day, it was the much-vaunted porridge. I thought that it was delicious but the reaction of other guests at the shared dining table was mixed – and, again, no alternative offered: eat it or go without. It was also very interesting that, at a B&B that advertises itself as being sensitive to allergies (take your shoes off before you go in) and run by a nutritionist, the porridge was served in a nut sauce, with no effort to check on whether guests had a nut allergy.

One final thing to be aware of: the bathroom on the first landing has clear glass in both the windows and no curtains or blinds. Ideal for exhibitionists and voyeurs! The light switch in that room also has no cover and the metal parts are exposed, next to the sink.

As we were only staying for two nights and were spending our days with nearby relatives, we decided to keep calm and carry on. However, if we had been booked in for a longer, we would have had to leave and seek an alternative.

Other guests appear to have had amazing rooms, so perhaps we were just unlucky…

Room Tip: Ask the owner not to give you the room with the junk store. Rooms with an en-suite will avoid havin...
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  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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3  Thank Michael E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
moutus, Owner at Inverness - High Park B & B, responded to this reviewResponded October 6, 2012

.... no stones left unturned by this review.

The" junk" referred to was an iron/ironing board, hairdryer and room fan, all for guest use. There was also an ozone machine used to sanitize guest rooms between stays. There was nothing in disrepair. There is a sauna in the room that is used for bedding storage....not junk storage. There is a washing machine set back into an alcove in the cupboard....The regular part of the cupboard allows for a good 5 feet of wardrobe space.

On the cleanliness issue raised, I can only say that NO OTHER REVIEW has ever questioned cleanliness at this B&B.

Regarding comments on breakfast fare: it is true that usually all guests are served the same breakfast on any given day.....and that different breakfasts are rotated over a four or five day period. If a guest has a preference for one of our breakfasts in particular, I will serve it to them regardless of what is being served on a rotational basis to other guests.

The guests who were at the table the day the porridge/nut dish was served were a Korean family from ottawa and a Russian family who had stayed with me before. The Korean family wrote a review which can be seen on booking .com, specifically mentioning their appreciation for the healthy breakfasts served during their three day stay. The Russian family requested that I serve them the porridge & nut sauce dish as they had enjoyed it during their prior stay. So I'm at a loss as to what reaction of "other guests" the reviewer is referring to.


My website (www.torontoecobed&breakfast.com) clearly requests that dietary preferences/restrictions/allergies be mentioned at time of reserving. If a guest forgets to mention a this at time of booking, (which of course can happen) and it doesn't come to light until they are served what is being served that day, then of course they would be offered an alternative.

I hadn't been advised that the reviewers daughter had any dietary restrictions or dislikes, but upon noticing that she was picking out some of the toppings on her breakfast, I did offer to bring her another of the same dish but with out the topping that she didn't want. She politely told that it wasn't necessary.

I am sorry to hear via a trip advisor review that the reviewer's daughter didn't like the french toast that was served on the first day of their two day stay. At the time, if she had told she didn't like it, it could have been changed. The reviewers daughter it seems didn't enjoy breakfast on either day, and I am genuinely sorry to hear this.

I admit, I hadn't thought of offering alternatives to people if they didn't want tea or coffee. ....since tea/coffee are the normal North American breakfast beverages of choice. The odd time, someone will ask for hot chocolate.....which I have no problem accommodating. However, ALL guests, whether or not they take tea or coffee, are always served fresh fruit juice. The reviewer's daughter, who didn't take tea /coffee, was asked if she would like a juice refill. Again, she politely refused.

Regarding the bathroom window...in 17 years, no one has ever mentioned this problem. But the reviewer may have a point. The windows face 1km of back yards, but given the angle of the bathroom mirrors to the windows...???? This will be rectified.

I 'm left wondering why some of the many negative points, particularly those about the breakfasts, couldn't have been brought to my attention during the reviewer's stay. I try to create an atmosphere in which guests are comfortable in letting me know it they have concerns or special needs during their stay.

The bottom line is If I don't know about it, I have no opportunity to fix it.

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Additional Information about Inverness - High Park B & B

Address: 287 Humberside Ave, Toronto, Ontario M6P 1L4, Canada
Location: Canada > Ontario > Toronto > West End
Hotel Style:
Ranked #17 of 118 B&Bs / Inns in Toronto
Price Range: $63 - $74 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Inverness - High Park B & B 3*
Number of rooms: 3
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