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“where I go when I don't know my name anymore”

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Grail Springs Retreat
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Bancroft
Certificate of Excellence
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“where I go when I don't know my name anymore”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 19, 2013

What a beautiful, important place this is. Beautiful because of its setting, its lake, its gardens and woods, its stunning, cozy, bright great room, stunning food prep and presentation and the feeling you come away with after a couple of days there. Important because of what they do, what they teach you about being present, back in your body, soul, slowing down, healing, doing yoga and meditation and just breathing. The winter weekend detox break was a spectacular time for us old friends. Do it!

Room Tip: go high and look over the lake
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jennifer P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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286 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (82)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2013 via mobile

I was a guest at Grail Springs in early October. I decided to spend 10 days there because I needed time to reflect on things such as my career direction and just life in general. I needed an escape from life!!

It was an amazing experience and as a result of my stay at Grail Springs I've accomplished much more in my life in the last two months than I ever would have anticipated. My stay helped kick off some profound changes in my life and I am thankful for it every day.

I arrived at Grail feeling drained and in a state of uncertainty about some life decisions that were on my plate (I was looking at purchasing a business but was conflicted and just not sure). Simply put, I needed to recharge my batteries and find my spirit again....my drive in life.

Literally as I write this email I am on my way to an Ashram in California to do my Yoga Teacher Certification. I will be staying for the month of December and will return in early January 2013 once I have completed the program.

Additionally, I have decided to return to school full time in January to begin studying towards a career as a Holistic Practitioner.

All of these positive changes in my life began with my stay at Grail Springs.

I wanted to thank the staff for everything from the incredibly awesome vegetarian meals, the spa staff and the wonderful guest speakers I had the opportunity to meet during my stay!

The food, staff and atmosphere are the perfect combination for anyone in need of some good R&R.

The whole package helped reignite my passion for life. I've rediscovered myself and believe that anything is possible if you believe in yourself enough to take that great leap of faith.

Once again thank you for a wonderful experience that I will remember for the rest of my life.


Warm regards,


J. Merkley

  • Stayed October 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Janaka2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 26, 2012

I spent 7 days in November attending Grail Spring's Detox Boot Camp. It was a life changing experience. The program is so well thought out, that you come away with so many ways to get back on track to live a more fulfilled life. The speakers were of a very high quality so informative. The fitness, from Zumba to Yoga and Nia were wonderful.
Also kudos to Tomoka, the food was amazing! To Tammy and Dakota for being so welcoming in the dining room for each meal, I felt very much at home. You are great!
The spa staff are great, and added an wonderful component to the experience.
I went on my own, and came home with many wonderful new friends.
I would highly recommend Grail Springs, if you are looking for a kick start to a new way of experiencing life.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Adventurer1950
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2012

I went to Grail Springs Spa for a 7 night retreat. I was fortunate enough to have been able to participate in the Butterfly Retreat hosted by Madeleine. She shared her knowledge and experiences with our group, she confirmed what I had been feeling and made me see other issues more clearly. It was life changing to say the least. Grail Springs is truly a magical place, it was a spa retreat, yoga retreat and spiritual retreat all in one. It is located on a beautiful lake, my room had a fireplace and balcony looking over the water. Not being a vegetarian I was surprised to find that every meal was superb, the staff were caring and loving, the treatments were geared towards detoxing and wellbeing of your body rather than the usual manicure, pedicure. There was horseback riding and walks through the woods and the Great Room was the place to relax. I travelled alone but was never lonely, this is a place to feel comfortable being by yourself or spending time with staff or other guests who are all like minded. Madeleine's vision of offering a place that focuses on mind-body-soul for everybody has been realized. I will definitely return to the Grail Springs Spa and recommend it to all those needing a place to relax, reflect and be nurtured

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Kathy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 27, 2012

Comfortable well appointed rooms with great amenities. Beautifully maintained grounds with sauna, cedar hot tub and amazing labyrinth which invites meditation and reflection. Friendly, kind staff who cannot do enough to help out. Yummy well prepared dairy free, gluten free vegetarian food attractively plated and served with loving care. Wonderful spa treatments by people who actually read the paperwork and adjust the treatment to meet your needs. Each evening we had a workshop with Judith Onley ... a compassionate healing teacher. All topped off with a stunning lake view. I have returned from a 5-night stay from Grail Springs rested, rejuvenated and feeling fantastic! A great experience made greater by the absolutely amazing group of other guests! Thank you Grail Springs for a positive life affirming experience!

Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank xoxo x
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
Level Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 19, 2012

Grail Springs is truly a one-of-a-kind experience! The integration of 'mind/body/spirit' is what makes GS so very special. I have been to great spas, great seminars, and great retreats... but I have never been to one place that offers all three. The location is fantastic, but what really makes The Grail stand out is the people. I met and connected with staff members as well as guests... which made my personal experience extraordinary. I want to make a special mention for the chef Tomoko... anyone can cook great food, but to make 'healthy' food taste so amazing requires a very special skill! I also want to mention John, the Innkeeper at The Grail... he is so warm and welcoming... and his art will stir your soul. I also have to mention Judith... our seminar leader... incredible words of wisdom that literally changed the way I think about life. It was my second visit to GS, and I can't wait to go back!!

Room Tip: Rooms on the third floor are the quietest. I highly recommend a lake view room with a balcony.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Laurie745
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Havelock, Ontario Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 19, 2012

I booked 3 nights and came to the "Spa" on Monday afternoon and left Tuesday afternoon. My room at the Grail Springs was above the kitchen. When I checked in I wanted to take a nap but it was so noisy that it was impossible to do so. When I informed the front desk, the woman said they were all booked up and didn't have another room for me and I should just wait and see how it goes. It just got worse. After dinner which was just ok, I again wanted to rest and relax in my room, and again it was impossible to do so because of all the noise from the kitchen. Finally I got to sleep, but at 7:00 am the noise started all over again. I was so angry, tired and upset. Went to the front desk again and said that I would like to talk to the manager because this was not working for me and I was not getting the peace and quiet that was promised. I was told to wait in the "Great" room so I went there thinking that I might have some quiet time before breakfast. Wrong again. Staff started vacuuming. No manager came. Had some breakfast and drank a drink that they called "Mud" which didn't sit right with my stomach from the get go. Went to a yoga class, but was starting to feel queasy. After Yoga I went to the front desk and asked to see the manager. We had a meeting and I said I wanted to be compensated. She said she would see what she could do. It was then lunch time and I couldn't eat anything because the nausea was increasing. I threw up. Went to the front desk again and cancelled my spa treatment and horse back riding session and wanted to talk to the manager. I needed to lay down and rest but again because of all the noise from the kitchen, there was no way a person could do that in that room. By this time I was really upset, throwing up, angry and feeling horrible. I spoke with the manager and said that I wanted a full refund, all the paper work to show that that had been done and that I wanted to leave within the hour. This was done, and along with the paper work showing the refund, there was a letter that they had asked me to sign outlining that a full refund was done, that they would take my complaints seriously and try and rectify them (according to them, no one else has ever complained about the noise) and also if "I could find it in my heart not to go online and talk about my experience" I signed the letter because I felt that if I didn't that I might not get my refund back. I was also still throwing up and just wanted to get out of there. Since I have gotten home I went on line and have seen many people who have had the same experience with noise, especially with the room above the kitchen. In my opinion, this room should never be rented out. Also another thing that I found to be extremely unpleasant is the fact that you could smell air freshener, spa oils and other "scents" throughout the place. That also made me feel sick to my stomach. This was a horrible experience and it totally ruined my vacation. I left in tears, angry, sick to my stomach, exhausted. I found the manager rude, lacking in any compassion, and trying to make it seem like it was in some way my fault. The owner Madelaine, for all her hype about caring and wellness etc. didn't even show her face. That says a lot to me. The bottom line is that they have had repeated complaints and have done nothing about the noise level in Room #3 and continue to rent it out without letting people know how noisy it is. In my opinion when they said to me that they will address the complaint and I see that they haven't done so with the same situations in the past then it means that this spa is about money and not wellness. I will never go back and would take the positive reviews with a grain of salt.

Room Tip: Do not stay in room #3
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
19 Thank Dania M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grail_SpringsCanada, Guest Relations Manager at Grail Springs Retreat, responded to this review, October 24, 2012
We would like to take this opportunity to reply. Our front desk staff was very sympathetic to every need and requirement of this guest but unfortunately we could not find resolve. We were fully booked and had no options to move the guest to another room. To compound the issue, the guest arrived during our very popular "Boot Camp" event which involves our guests participating in high energy, vigorous programming including early morning wake-ups with hikes before breakfast, Zumba dance and Yoga, integrated with specific spa treatments and our PH balanced menus. This unfortunate clash of expectations has prompted us to implement, within our booking policy, a clearer description of upcoming programming and the benefits, expectations and opportunities they bring.

The guest's reference to drinking mud refers to the ‘Moor Elixir’ from Austria, a pasteurized drink and used in hospitals throughout Europe for health and healing. We have carried this for 11 years and this is the first hint of a complaint against this product. It is highly unlikely that this was the cause of her nausea. In terms of the smells; (“air freshener", spa oils and other scents..") which she claims made her sick, again it is a puzzle to us since we are a wellness spa environment and very cognizant of sensitivities and keep aromas limited and pure. We are perfume-free, only use essential oils, organic cleansers, natural laundry and kitchen detergents from a certified "Green" line of products.

The guest had the full attention of all of our service staff, managers and other guests. She was also very aware of the fact that the founder of Grail Springs, who she ungraciously suggests "did not show her face" during these interactions was due to the fact that she was, at that moment, 20,000 feet in the air on a flight back from Boston after seeing His Holiness the Dalai Lama and was not aware of these events. Guest concerns start and stop with our ever gracious guest services staff and capable managers. Even though the guest did participate in some of the programming and joined the other guests for meals, we were sadly unable to resolve her issues and we agreed that her request to leave two thirds through her stay was in the best interest of all of our other guests who were enjoying their boot camp week. This this, with a full and complete refund, a condition she made in order for her to depart. Grail Springs prescribes to peaceful means, peaceful relations and peaceful environment. ~ Richard Capener, Guest Relations Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grail Springs Retreat

Property: Grail Springs Retreat
Address: 2004 Bay Lake Rd, Bancroft, Ontario K0L 1C0, Canada
Phone Number:
Location: Canada > Ontario > Bancroft
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Bancroft
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Grail Springs Retreat Centre for Wellbeing is Canada's premiere holistic wellness destination where guests enjoy all-inclusive programs with daily yoga, meditation, life classes, spa therapies, special events and evening guest speakers. The 13-room plus 2-Eco-Tabin retreat centre specializes in PH balanced vegetarian diet, detox, juice fasts, outdoor adventure and spiritual experiences designed for healing and rejuvenation. Located on the shore of pristine Chalice Lake near Bancroft, Grail Springs is 2.5 Hours from Toronto and Ottawa, Ontario. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Grail Springs Hotel Bancroft
Grail Springs Resort
Grail Springs Retreat Bancroft, Ontario

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