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“Exceeded my high expectations” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Lodge on Little St. Simons Island

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The Lodge on Little St. Simons Island
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Exceeded my high expectations”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 27, 2010

Spent a day and night at the lodge. Based on reviews I was expecting a lot - and the lodge delivered! The amenities were great, food was excellent and the staff extremely helpful and knowledgable. Upon arrival we were given a quick overview of the facilities while our bags were brought to our rooms. We rode the complementary bicycles to the beach which was empty except for one family. The afternoon and evening consisted of naturalist guided tours of the island. The guides have an enormous amount of information to share and are pleased to do so.

One of the best features of the lodge is getting to meet the other guests. Most of our fellow guests were birders who were happy to point out unusual species to us non-birders. The communal meals make it very easy to get to know each of the other guests.

Can't recommend it enough - but watch out for the gnats near the tidal creeks.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank daveofga
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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228 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (68)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Tacoma
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 4, 2010

Our family had a fantastic visit to Little St. Simon's. We found the place based on Trip Advisor reviews, and after talking to staff at the Lodge (who were very accommodating, working with our budget) decided to spend three nights. From the minute we stepped left the dock on St. Simon's Island, the trip exceeded our expectations.

The whole vibe of the place is difficult to describe—it is a bit like grown up summer camp (mosquitos, hours and hours of outdoor time, too many fun things to choose from) but so much more. The food is amazing: served family style with healthful options like fresh fruit but indulgences like biscuits and gravy and fresh-baked cookies. Snacks and drinks are available throughout the day. Accommodations were made for my son's food allergies, and I noticed other families had made arrangements for younger, picky eaters. Groups of guests mix first at a pre-dinner casual cocktail hour, then at large tables for meals, allowing for conversation from alligator sitings to our lives off the Island.

Our "rooms" ended up being a whole house to ourselves--thanks to a very generous upgrade. The Lodge is furnished with a mixture of antiques, artwork and family photos (as well as some hunting trophies) that provide a real relaxed clubby feel. Nothing is brand spanking new or chlorox clean--it's not that sort of place--which is what makes it so wonderful.

We especially enjoyed the opportunity to take Naturalist-led outings each morning and afternoon (as well as one special nighttime adventure thanks to a full moon). The staff are incredibly knowledgeable about the Island's habitat with specialties in areas from bird watching to snake "hunting" to the human history of Little St. Simon's. Everyone on the Island was incredibly flexible and accommodating, figuring out how to make sure every guest could pursue their interests whether it was finding a baby alligator or petting an armadillo. For guests that want to explore on their own there are ample bicycles and skiffs and lots of sites: gorgeous, barely-inhabited beaches; bird watching from the porch; or fishing from the dock.

My son 13-year old son enjoyed every minute of screen-free outdoor time—though we only overlapped with other kids towards the end of our stay, the Naturalists found plenty of enticing adventures to keep him busy.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank outandaboutTacoma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cranston, RI
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 22, 2010

A pristine, rustic, yet luxury property where the staff is very attentive, food is superb, the activities so unique that it is a once in a life time experience.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank RISnooks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tennessee
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 15, 2010

Where else can you find a private island with only 30 guests maximum and still hike and walk on the beach without seeing anyone. My wife and I have been four times, which is not even close to the record of some others we have met. Life is simple here. Wake up, take short walk or do nothing, then eat. Take a bike ride, canoe ride, nature hike, then eat lunch. Go to the beach, read a book, pick from list of activities, then wait for happy hour and then eat dinner. Start all over again the next day. Tip - go in late winter, early spring of late fall - less mesquitos.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank jablib
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Georgia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 3, 2009

Amazing vacation - I am still relaxed 2 weeks later! My kids had a great time AND learned about the ecology and history of the island, enough to be excused from school and for my son to be interested in becoming a naturalist one day.

Staff was amazing! They exceeded our needs. One noticed I was sunburned, and brought me fresh cut Aloe. When we did fish print t-shirts with the kids, i asked if they had a stencil of the Lodge logo to add to the shirts. They did not, but because I asked, that naturalist spent the next few hours making one for us to use. When cocktail hour was starting, Naturalist Stacia came to ask if she could show our kids the crab traps (IE- give my wife and I a break).. who does this? Just when I thought they could not WOW me anymore, 2 weeks after my vacation I received a package. They boxed up and mailed to me my pair of beat up tennis shoes, that I must of left on the boat and had not even noticed I was missing. They did this without any call from me asking about the shoes.
WOW.....

This review will be focused on the elements of bringing a family/kids, but first, my only 2 cautions for all considering this destination:
- "Adult Summer Camp" - With all the comfort, great meals and amazing staff, at the heart, this is what you will experience. If the idea of Adult Summer Camp does not excite you, then I do not suggest this destination. The negative reviews on this site seem to be by those that are not 'camp-friendly'.
- The trip was well worth the cost, however I dislike their pricing system (all inclusive, then a set nonnegotiable percentage is added at the end for tip/gratuity). Understand the tip/gratuity amount was more than fair, as the staff is unbelievable. But I would of preferred it being part of the total price, instead of forcing a math formula to figure out cost (with tax). Like I said, price was well worth it, but be sure to figure this addition into your budget to avoid an unpleasant surprise at bill time.

Still interested? well that is the sum of the concerns.. everything else is pure joy.
I went with my adult brother and sister, my wife and my 2 kids (age 4 and 7).
We stayed in the Helen House, and I recommend that location for extended families.. plenty of room for privacy and family gathering. The staff brought in two roll-away beds for the living room for our kids, which was wonderful.

You do not need to pack much, as they provide everything.. bikes (including childrens), beach umbrellas, sand castle shovels, variety of bug spray (everywhere), coolers full of beer and soda, jars of homemade cookies... ahh. They even thought of bringing things we didn't think of. In the middle of the kayak/canoe excursion, when our kids were getting restless, Naturalist Stacia rowed over and produced from somewhere a selection of crayons and activities, giving my son the role of scribe, to write down all the different wildlife we saw... a perfect solution! She did it again at the beach, walking out with a huge net for us to catch small fish, crabs and shells along the shoreline (pic enclosed).

The private beach was the best thing. We rode bikes (2 miles) out to the beach early one morning (staff packed lunches for us), and we were the only ones on the entire shoreline for 8 hours! The interruption only came when the Naturalist showed up with a few other guests for one of the requests we made - to join them on digging up a turtle nest - where my kids were invited to do the digging and shell counting. When we were getting ready to head out, another naturalist asked if we would prefer to ride back on the truck, and they would come get our bikes later... Yes!

We went during Bird week, and event they do twice a year, where they bring in bird experts. This was by chance for us, as we have little interest in birds. However the insightful lectures and sideshows the bird experts gave in the evening, and their participation on the majority of outings, pointing out and identifying the unique birds, made the experience even better. I recommend attending during one of those weeks, even with minimal interest in birds.

The junior Olympic pool was nice. A few little crabs got in, which gave my kids something to catch!

I felt the bar was lacking in a few ingredients (like Sour mix), but it proved another example for the staff to step up. I asked about Mojitos one night, and they juiced about 20 limes to make Mojitos for everyone.

We wer the only ones there with Kids, so let me offer a review on this:
Bring Them! Our kids had a great time, and received a great education and appreciation of the barrier islands. Now our kids are well behaved, and the other guests were gracious around them.. but my wife and I were making sure our kids were not souring the experience for the other guests. So your kids have to be well-mannered, particularly during meal times, when you eat family style with the other guests.

My kids got to make fish print t-shirts, catch and hold tree frogs, learn about crabs and crab traps, dig up a turtle nest, learn how to call an owl, bike ride, canoe, and collect shells. On top of this, they had a special outing with naturalist Roxanne, the junior Naturalist program. She took us to three regions, a saltwater marsh, beach and maritime forest. the kids learned about the unique ecology of each place, and collected items unique from each region. Then in the evening (giving us another break during cocktail hour), she helped them make creatures with the material they collected.
My son got to show that to his class when we got back home (for extra credit).
Again, this is a vacation to share with your children!

Not sure what else to say.. the place is amazing. For me, it was a needed break to embrace the stillness of the area... with only the swaying Spanish moss and the natural wildlife catching your eye (we say bald eagles (great variety of birds) white deer, armadillos, raccoons, crabs, alligators and frogs.

The only thing that topped the undisturbed beauty was the staff. All were amazing, but special praise goes to Stacia who went above and beyond in making our stay wonderful.
She made our trip what it was. thanks!!

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank carpe_diem_GA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 21, 2009

After carefully looking at other TripAdvisor reviews, we couldn't believe Little St. Simons Lodge would live up to expectations. To our surprise, it far exceeded them. This is a very special place--the accommodations are comfortable, clean,low-key luxury with everything you need nearby. Food was superb (too superb--I need to diet after a week of heavenly meals!) served family style. This created an adult camp-like setting, encouraging friendships that, I think, will last a lifetime. But, best of all, were the Naturalists and the tours they led. From kayaking, fishing, bicycling on the beach to birdwatching, helping hatch baby turtles, seeing tiny alligators with their mom, crabbing and eating our catch (beautifully prepared by the Cordon Bleu-trained sous chef)--the Naturalists all were bubbly, enthusiastic, knowledgeable and very eager to make our stay interesting, easy and fun.
We liked the resort so much we extended our stay by 2 days, and have already rebooked a spring trip to see the helmet crabs spawn.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank LAJ2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
276 college st macon,ga
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 4, 2009

Recently, my husband & I spent a week-end on Little St. Simon's Island. Neither of us had ever been there & knew only the informtion given to us by the Internet. What a truely one of a kind magnificent place! Imagine staying on an essentially unchanged island with all the modern amenities. The entire staff was devoted to anticipating & meeting our desires. Adam,Ben,Ryan and especially Abbey went the extra mile to make our experience unforgetable. I can not recommend this experience highly enough - we will return!
.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank syper
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 private beaches and 10,000 acres of undeveloped wilderness for exploration and relaxation. Privately owned since 1908, Little St. Simons Island has retained the charm and unhurried pace of coastal living. Moss draped live oaks and glistening marshes surround gracious 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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