My husband and I were looking forward to visiting the raw west coast (Long Beach area) after many years away from our favorite place. So on a whim we took a ferry to the Island and decided to stay in Ucluelet. I booked the room based on the BC Accomodation Guide. We expected that $150 + tax would garner us a beautiful place, and according to the write-up it had great promise. But, alas, it was not to be.
Arriving at A Harbour House around sunset, we were shown to our room in the walk-out basement of a house, by the owner, Ursela, who was not overexuberant at our arrival.. The harbour view from outside the room was lovely, as sunset was in progress, BUT the minute we entered the room we were greeted with a mildewy smell, even though the room looked clean and bright.
As the evening progressed, several things happened to make our stay unpleasant; I asked for an extra roll of toilet paper, for that just in case moment. There were two 1/2to 1/3 rolls but they looked low. I was met with a chid remark to the effect of "I don't know what you people do with the" at which point I exclaimed surprised 'excuse me' and Ursela stopped, said 'never mind', and promptly fetched me an extra roll, which we did not touch.
That evening, Ursela did try to be hospitable by offering us and three other guests a glass of wine, marshmellows and an evening fire. It was Very Nice to sit by the fire and chat. When just Ursela and I remained, she decided to go to bed so she put out the fire, explaining that there was no fire department available. I wanted to stay a little longer to enjoy the fire, the view and the west coast calm and offered to put out the candles and fire when I went to bed, but she persisted. I understood her point of view, but found it rather harsh.
As I went to bed, I discovered that there was NO WINDOW TO OPEN to the fresh ocean air. Only the patio door opened, but not wanting bears as bed mates, we naturally had to leave the door closed. The bathroom was just okay, a plexiglas piece was screwed to the wall to cover an open alcove leading into the bathroom. There was an old claw foot tub, but the rest of the room was London 'Drug style wood shelves, a fan switch that was very difficult to find and no window for air circulation,
The breakfast room was also WINDOWLESS and tight for the six chairs surrounding an old table. It was a do it yourself affair; two cereal types, fresh fruit (bananas, apples and cherries which unfortunately had mold). Coffee you had to make yourself and warmed up croisants were brought down at around 9am. The room was done very cheaply and felt crowded as it seated six guests with no room even for slim people to scoot around chairs to fix your own breakfast. In the fridge there was milk, and two sets of yokurt, one set was outdated by a full month,
Perhaps, because of all these deficiencies, the note for checkout was just too much; Curt, with Before underlined, adhered to the sink wall - Checkout BEFORE 11am. Unfortunately, another note on the toilet stated Ursela is on a well water system, (not ideal for a B&B), and she requested that water be minimally used for flushing and washing. Needless to say we felt uncomfortable, not wanting to cause her added expense, we did not use her well water other than for minimal personal hygiene. No enjoying that big clawfoot tub.
We left the next morning BEFORE 11am and hustled ourselves to the Information center, were we spent the next hour or so finding another place to stay. At this point I was willing to look at expensive Resorts. But for only $60 dollars more we got to stay in a 4 Star Resort, with a room on the wild ocean front, just meters away from a fabulous sandy beach, with windows that let in air and ocean sound. Thank goodness Pacific Sands Resort saved our Pacific Rim Park stay.
To bad that Ursela closes the B&B in the winter time. Not heating and airing out the house during that damp interval is certainly the cause of the mildewy smell. Her setup is not ideal for a B&B, especially since breakfast is not served or does not take place in a room with a view.
This is what happens when there are more guests than accomodations. I fault BC Accomodations more than Ursela; they should be making certain that their approved accomodations meet required standards for set prices..
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Casual, waterfront B&B on the Ucluelet inlet. All rooms have private entry and private bath, flat-screen TVs, and are decorated with West Coast art. Self-serve continental breakfast included. At low tide "our" beach is frequented by bears while bald eagles circle overhead. Weather permitting, our guests can sit around the fire pit in the evening and share stories about their day's adventures. Pacific Rim National Park is just a 15 min. Drive and Tofino is 35 min. Away. ... more less