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“Unique experience, great staff!”

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The Lodge on Little St. Simons Island
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Boston
Level 5 Contributor
52 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Unique experience, great staff!”
Reviewed October 16, 2012

So happy I made it to Little St. Simons, it was an unforgettable experience which I hope to repeat. Only stayed two nights but I managed to take a great bike ride to the huge, hard packed sandy beach, a naturalist tour of the island and a kayak tour down an inlet. The accommodations were wonderful in the cedar lodge, a large comfortable room with a shared living room, deck and screened porch. Food was tasty, really enjoyed the duck and daily homemade cookies, kind of rich Southern cuisine with yummy biscuits and gravy but with all the activities, you can work it off.
Staff and management caters to all your needs and will arrange if possible any tour or outing to please you. Initially thought it was pricey but with all the food, activities, and alcoholic beverages included along with the island's beauty it was worth it. I would have ranked it excellent except for the bugs! They do not aerial spray on the Island, just try to control ecologically. However, they do provide plenty of bug spray everywhere.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank mallybos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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239 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (74)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Franklin, North Carolina
Level 5 Contributor
89 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed October 14, 2012

My family really enjoyed our trip to Little Saint Simon's. It was kind of like a summer camp / biology class for adults. We really took advantage of the naturalist tours and explored the island with Ben, Stacia, Laura, and Britt - they were all amazing. We learned about everything from snakes to turtle nests, to endangered birds. Even in October when the mosquitoes are supposedly "better" we were very happy that we pretreated some long sleeve/ long pant clothing outfits with pyrethrins. We brought some picardin spray that also seemed to work better than deet. I would not take small children here just because of the bug factor. For my ten and twelve year old though it was an amazing education. They got fantastic hands on experiences with snakes, turtle nests, sharks, and crabs. They learned all about conservation and island ecology. The naturalists were very patient with all the questions. The beach is a 2 mile bike ride from the lodge so it is a little bit of work to get to but the shells were incredible. We brought home a dozen sand dollars. The chef was a sweetheart that custom made grilled cheese and PB&J's as needed when the adult meals were too refined. We also really liked that gratuity was added up front so that we didn't have to constantly remember to hand out tips.

Room Tip: The Helen House suite was a good option for families although the four people share one bathroom.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Wayahdoc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Port Royal, South Carolina
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed October 7, 2012

Wonderful staff. Great location. Food not as healthy as we would have liked, but what the heck, we were on a vacation! The naturalist staff, especially Laura and Stacia, were outstanding. Guests can wear themselves out taking guided trips around the island, explore by kayak or bicycle, or they can just walk the deserted beach if so desired. We would return in a hearbeat.

Room Tip: Rooms in the Cedar House or River Lodge have the best view.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank BeezBoat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charleston, South Carolina
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed September 26, 2012

Ten thousand acres of lowcountry marsh and 30 guests - what could be finer? 5 couples just visited for 3 nights and found the natural beauty and wildlife superb and the main focus of the experience. The naturalists on staff gave terrific escorted hikes and informative lectures - young, enthusiastic and very smart kids. Options abounded: kayaking, taking a skiff out to the river, fishing, swimming, ocean seining, a 10mile deserted beach, a bird watcher's paradise. Bicycles to roam wherever or you could have one of the naturalists take you deep into the maritime forest in an open truck and escort you back with an escorted hike. Saw fabulous shore birds including two dozen roseate spoonbills that flew up from the water in the best photograph ever!

As to the luxury (which you might assume by the rates): definitely rustic accommodations. There were 2 newer cottages that had 4 bedrooms each with a large central great room which would have been perfect for our group - alas 2 of the bedrooms in each were already taken. So we split up - 2 in a 2-br cabin, 1 in a 3-br cabin (with strangers) and 2 in the main Hunting Lodge. Rooms in the lodge surprisingly the nicest. If we were singles it would have been disappointing to share a common space/living area with total strangers. So as a caution there are only the 2 lodge rooms that are actually private.

Food was institutional but made entertaining by the wonderful chef who would describe the menu before it was served family style. (Again - might want to take your own group) All inclusive, 3 meals a day, wine with dinner and a cocktail hour before. Those with big appetites were disappointed, seconds were not available and if, for example, additional fare was requested it was foraged from the other tables by the waitstaff!

All in all GO - a beautiful place and a rare opportunity to enjoy the bounties of the barrier islands.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank Colleen G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Frederick, Maryland
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed September 25, 2012

This trip was selected by my college roommate and me for our first reunion. Having traveled to exotic locales several times I feel qualified to offer my critique. Due to the reviews I read, awards touted and other recommendations, my expectations were high. This is a summary of my experience over six days.

RAVES: Stacia, the head naturalist (only there two days a week, I am told) who's excitement and enthusiasm for everything natural should be duplicated by the others. The SETTING: perfect for nature enthusiasts and lots of opportunity to experience many aspects of the island. The EQUIPMENT: pickups outfitted for safaris, kayaks, bicycles, fishing rods and bait (extra for a fishing license), and motorized skiffs; REFRESHMENTS: the cocktail hour, as well as the beverages provided at the beach, in the cottages, and in the main lodge. Lovely cookies available afternoon and evening.

I was gratified to see the painted buntings at the feeder off our deck almost daily. The sea turtle nest excavation was a highlight since we were able to cheer four baby loggerhead turtles into the surf and on their way! I also admired the attempts to conserve natural resources and grow organic vegetables.

DISAPPOINTMENTS: Buildings: RUSTIC! Some color would go a long way toward adding cheer, especially at night and on rainy days. Rooms were spacious but drab. On the plus side beds were comfortable. iI found it was dark and quiet at night (flashlights were provided) providing a restful environment. Ceiling fans added comfort. The porches and decks help one get close to nature and enjoy water views.

FOOD: Left much to be desired by this writer, as I am health conscious. Many of the menus were not healthful due to being fried (I requested low fat) and MUCH too SALTY. Salt wasn't just taste but also the health effects that I experienced. My ankles became so swollen that I lost sleep worrying what other effects it might have on my health (high blood pressure?). I did speak with the sous chef about this when she was in charge, and she appeared to adjust the overall amount of salt used. However, my ankles did not recover until three days after my return home. With salt shakers on the table, in my opinion, there is no excuse for over salting the food, even the vegetables.

Value: It seemed to be very pricy, over $600 a day for the two of us while others had much better deals for shorter periods of time. However, I realize that a large staff is needed, some unseen, and accommodations provided for them, as well as ours. We did receive a unique and memorable experience for our money, and it was a great reunion.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
3 Thank Phyl38
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level 6 Contributor
149 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed September 25, 2012

Although reviewed in Forbes magazine, very few Georgians know about this special lodge on a private island. If you are a birder, fisherman, or love secluded beaches, this is a special place for nature and environmentally conscious recreation.

Room Tip: The River and Cedar Lodges have a good set up with four rooms facing a common room. Private and lux...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Lillyatl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Defiance, Ohio
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed September 22, 2012

This place was pretty unique! I don't think there are many places like it. It was very beautiful! Our room was very interesting. It made you feel like you were taking a trip to the past, but still had the amenities of today.

The beach, though two miles away from resort, was very nice. During low tide, you can search for shells and sand dollars. The difference in tides is quite amazing too.

The resort has many activities they offer. Each day they schedule a few different ones, but if you want to do something else, they are very accommodating. If you don't feel like walking or biking somewhere on the island, they will drive you there. They offer nature walks/drives, fishing, and you can even take your own small boat out on your own. We spent most time on the beach.

Our worst experience with this trip was the bugs. Within minutes of arriving to the island, I was bitten by mosquitoes at least 5 times. I know this is something that is out of their control, but just take note about this if you don't like bugs. We also had some issues with bugs in our room, and this included a very large cockroach. We decided not to complain about this, as we figured it was probably inevitable, and very hard to control due to the type of structure we were staying in, as well as all the surrounding nature.

Our best experience with this trip was the food. Each meal is spent family style around big tables with all of the rest of the visitors (no more than 30 some). You can get to know everyone else, though this was a difficult experience for us because we were much younger than most of the others. The food was amazing! If you have any food issues, the staff is very accommodating to make sure you have a extraordinary meal every time.

Oh, and that reminds me. The staff gets an A+. Very awesome! I remember thinking to myself, "southern hospitality at its finest!" Great job guys!

Room Tip: Make sure you are ok with bugs. There are a TON of them.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank choshock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Lodge on Little St. Simons Island

Property: The Lodge on Little St. Simons Island
Address: 1000 Hampton River Club Marina Dr, Post Office Box 21078, Saint Simons Island, GA 31522-5593
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Georgia > Georgia Coast > Golden Isles of Georgia > Saint Simons Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Saint Simons Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Prized for its pristine natural beauty, gracious hospitality and secluded worlds-away appeal, Little St. Simons Island is a private barrier island just off the Georgia coast. One of the crown jewels of Georgia's famed Golden Isles, Little St. Simons Island offers 7 miles of deserted beaches and 10,000 acres of undeveloped wilderness for exploration and relaxation. Privately owned, Little St. Simons Island has retained the charm and unhurried pace of coastal living. Moss draped live oaks and glistening marshes surround cozy accommodations in six charming cottages for no more than 32 overnight guests. The island is a paradise for nature lovers and offers a host of recreational, naturalist-led experiences including birding, boating, canoeing, kayaking, hiking, bicycling, interpretive tours, beachcombing, fishing and swimming. Accessible only by boat, this extraordinary natural sanctuary-among the last of its kind anywhere- welcomes your discovery. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Lodge On Little St. Simons Island Hotel Saint Simons Island

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