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“Beautiful lakeside rooms, bizarre/bad service.”

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Taboo Muskoka Resort
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Gravenhurst
Level Contributor
15 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Beautiful lakeside rooms, bizarre/bad service.”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 19, 2012

The location is beautiful and our room had a gorgeous view of the lake. The service was so indifferent I can't imagine staying there again. It seems to be staffed by kids and they are unwilling to provide much help. For instance, when I asked for a 12:00 checkout they said "can't you be out by 11:30?". When I called the front desk they couldn't give me the restaurant phone number or transfer me - I had to walk over there to get a reservation. The waiter couldn't tell a red wine from a white and had to go and ask the chef for direction. All-in-all it was a beautiful place but every interaction with the service staff left me confused.

  • Stayed August 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ReviewerMike
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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423 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (131)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 13, 2012

This overpriced, run down lakefront resort is a complete joke. Where do I begin....For $400 a night my wife and I got a room facing the lake where the hot water ran out while taking a shower at noon (not exactly peak time), the TV cable was a bush league snowy picture, no HD service, then the cable signal and sound started to pixel out and by day 2 the TV didn't turn on. The room had a mini bar and fridge but no microwave. couldn't even heat up a coffee or a slice of pizza. I called the front desk to complain and basically got a "sucks to be you" attitude from what sounded like a teenager. The balcony was covered in pine needles, cob webs and spider droppings.....ever heard of a broom? The restaurant Elements was supposed to be a big deal, so we tried it. $200 later we both left still hungry, small portions, my steak was like it came from M&M Meats and was cooked in a microwave. A confusing layout to the place, some floors have no elevators, so be prepared to be a pack mule hiking up stairs with your luggage! I went down to the lobby to ask for a coffee. The girl at the front desk didn't even know if they had a coffee machine, she had to go ask, 2 staff members later I was directed to a vending machine in their executive lounge that was like a trip back to 1975 in terms of tired old decore. Everytime someone walks down the hall it sounds like a herd of cattle because of spongy floors. Save your money go elsewhere. This joint should be out of business soon.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank knob1790
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 2, 2012

Having just spent 3 nights at Taboo, and having read some of the recent reviews, I'm not sure if we stayed at the same resort! The staff throughout couldn't have been more courteous or professional. Every request we made was handled graciously. Dinner and breakfast in Elements Restaurant was very good. The menu is innovative and original. Tandoori cauliflower and beet ravioli stuffed with pureed cashews, while different, were excellent. Service was very good and the meals were nicely paced - which I guess some people could take as slow!

Note: We stayed here early in the week and the resort was not busy which may account for some of the other reviews?

The public spaces, lobby, lounge and restaurant are stunning. It is wonderful to find a resort in Ontario that doesn't look like was it furnished with Grandma's hand-me-downs. On this trip we stayed in one of the recently renovated Premier rooms, which are very well done - especially the bathrooms. We had a minor problem with the room but it was dealt with in minutes. On a previous visit we stayed in a signature room which was also well decorated.

A number of previous reviews have raised the issue of children, and this is a tight rope that resorts have to walk. As a couple this has been an issue at a number of resorts we have stayed at. I'm not sure what the policy is at Taboo but we think it is fair to keep young children out of a restaurant such as Elements in the evenings.

Yes the resort is certainly not cheap, but compared to other resorts we have stayed in around the world, reasonable value.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank Dexter_260
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 24, 2012

I won't even get into the full details of our stay, but a word of caution, don't stay here! The food is way below average. The service is a nightmare! Each meal we had took an average of 2 hours to arrive. The servers are very inexperienced and show no respect to guests. Everything is a hassle (and they'll tell you that). Management is a nightmare! Don't bring children- they are looked down at here. Horrible experience!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Sydney R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto
Level Contributor
59 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 23, 2012

We have just returned from 1 night stay at Taboo where we had a 2 bedroom suite. I would summarise my stay with this statement " It's fine if you paid just $80/night per room but anything more than that is not worth it".

On the positive:
1)The property location is beautiful.
2) The Australian staff are absolutely lovely - especially the 2 Australian bell boys.
3) The free kayak, canoe and paddle boat rentals.
4) The beds are comfortable.

Now for the negative:
1) The restaurant ELEMENTS is pathetically OVERPRICED and we had to wait 1 hour 45 minutes to get our food - this in an empty restaurant. I actually wrote on the bill 'VERY DISSAPOINTED" and no one even bothered asking me why.
2) The restaurant BOATHOUSE is ridiculously OVERPRICED and the food takes forever to get and is totally sub-standard.
3) Our room window had practically a carpet of bugs and cow-webs- I called house keeping to clean it 2 times but still nothing was done.
4) The service in the restaurants is absolutely lousy.
5) You can get towels by the pool but if you don't return them or take them to your room - they charge you.
6) The beach is lovely but it is very shallow (like a foot of water only) - so don't think about swimming here.
7) The property is sorely in need for decent management and upkeep. For something that costs this much - it fails miserably.
8) They had a fire drill and it was totally disorganised with no way of evacuating elderly or children. I tried to call the front desk when the alarm started and was transferred to security who said " I don't have time for this".
9) They have no kids menu or child friendly meals anywhere in the hotel - this is really not a place for kids or families.

Room Tip: Check windows of the room before you accept them to make sure you don't have a carpet of bugs on...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank ChaiLady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
44 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 18, 2012

The Taboo resort in Gravenhurst has a spectacular location and a beautiful property but somehow it just can't seem to get the whole idea that it is in the hospitality business working. We were here during the same time in 2011 as well -- and forgot about the little annoyances - so it was like deja vu. The cost is very high and so Taboo has a hard time living up to expectations as it simply will not compare favorably with any similarly priced resort you have visited. The rooms in the hotel are large and comfortable - decorated in a sleek, modern, attractive style. UNFORTUNATELY - while the cosmetic upgrade is nice the wall unit unit airconditoner gives the room a bad 1970s motel vibe. Rooms come equiped with a coffee maker and there is an odd executive lounge where a coffee machine is available (although dim lighting can make it tough until you figure it out). This is about the only amenity that doesnt cost an additional arm and leg. There is always something odd; one morning we had no bath math, another no hair conditioner. HAd to specially request extra coffee packs so you could make more than 1 cup in the morning. The beach has ankle deep water -- there are beautiful places to swim on deeper parts of the lake but these all require a precarious descent down rickety steps. The pools, especially on weekends, are best avoided. There is no place to jog or walk except a busy two lane road with drivers racing to their destinations. Just as well as the flies make any attempt to do anything off the lake difficult -- would be nice if they would create more walking paths through the groomed property. The woods trails are NOT useable in summer due to biting flies. Our attempt to use the "business center" to print boarding passes turned into a Marx Brothers routine. The main restuarant Elements is nice for dinner -- it has the best view of any place around -- but should be avoided for other meals. It can take 45 minutes or more to receive your order. If the breakfast buffet is available give it a try as this is MUCH quicker but be prepared to drop $60 for breakfast. No one seems to understand that you do not go the lake on a beautiful summer day to spend your entire morning eating breakfast. The golf clubhouse is a faster and cheaper alternative. There is no gift shop or convenience store to purchase anything you might need easily. The water front services are OK -- again very expensive. A "resort fee" (as though the room prices are steep enough) covers use of kayaks and canoes -- but forget gettting out befor 9 AM. SO you'll miss the most beautiful time of the mornings. I guess there is simply just no competition for this resort and so they can provide a mixed bag and charge through the roof -- and you have almost no other options. The gorgeous views of the lake ALMOST make up for the resort's shortcomings - but not quite. The errors and misteps pile up. We just tend to make it a running joke. But that approach tends to dissipate when you see the bottom line at checkout. Go - and enjoy the Lake but be prepared to spend a fortune and get very little.

Room Tip: insist on a lake view -- and a top floor. there is no reason to be there unless you can gaze at th...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Heartlander_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
33 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 11, 2012

The hotel is overpriced, understaffed and poorly managed.

Examples:

The pool bar had three staff members working to accomodate 60 guests, two of the staff working their very first shift and during this time the Manager on duty stood arms crossed and watched and not once assisted. Almost twenty minutes to recieve first drink.

Second day at the pool asked for floatation devices for the children, was told "the Manager is not allowing the use of them today."

Asked for pool towels, received three for a family of four - had to fight for more.

The indoor hotel bar adjacent to Lobby, Herb i believe to be his name was overwhelmed and extremely rude, rather than apologize and ask me to wait, his response to my "excuse me" was "can you not see i am busy!"

Dinner reservations i asked the genlemen working the restaurant usher if we could get a table by the window, his response was they are extremely busy tonight and it was impossible - got to the restaurant to dine and only five or six tables dining and plenty of window seats available. The food was overpriced and just average at best.

The food served in all venues is below average, nothing suitable for children - do not order the pizza, asked for mac and cheese recieved a penne pasta cooked in butter sauce (tasteless)

Bottom Line: Select an alternative destination.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Kit N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Taboo Muskoka Resort

Property: Taboo Muskoka Resort
Address: 1209 Muskoka Beach Rd | RR 1, Gravenhurst, Ontario P1P 1R1, Canada
Location: Canada > Ontario > Muskoka District > Gravenhurst
Amenities:
Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Gravenhurst
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Taboo Muskoka Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 100
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Taboo Muskoka Resort is located right on beautiful Lake Muskoka, only 90 minutes north of Toronto. A year-round retreat, Taboo is known for its personalized service, sleek modern accommodations and championship golf. This Muskoka gem is an ideal place to relax and have fun while enjoying dozens of activities ranging from tennis and golf to hiking and biking. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Resort Taboo
Taboo Hotel Gravenhurst
Taboo Resort Gravenhurst
Taboo Muskoka Resort Gravenhurst, Muskoka District

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