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“A very different experience and one worth having”

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Star Island Family Retreat and Conference Center
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty Lodging in Rye
Reviewed June 17, 2013

My wife and I just returned from an overnight stay at Star Island. As mentioned by other reviewers the Oceanic is a 19th century hotel and it is not a luxurious place to stay - but the place is amazing. There are many places to quietly reflect and recharge. My wife said it best, as you stay out there the rest of the world just melts away.

I just caution people to understand that this is primarily a retreat, meditation and (self-help) conference center. Meals are hearty but there is no choice. Also, you are paranoid about your possessions there are no locks on most rooms.

This might sound negative but the overall experience is still very special and profound.

Room Tip: Be aware these are very basic lodgings. As other reviews have said this is not a luxury hotel our ro...
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank jposterling
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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18 - 21 of 21 reviews

Reviewed May 28, 2013

The absence of electronics and the presence of the sound of wind and waves are what draw me to this location time and again. Hospitality and Friendliness are secondary only to the natural beauty of being 10 miles out to sea on solid rock. Historic and delightful are the buildings but please bear in mind this is not LUXURY in the modern sense, But luxury in the spiritual sense, it defies description and must be experienced to be understood. Porch sitting relaxing decompressing reading the wind the sun the awesome food and views. Come see for yourself.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank connie01867
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 13, 2012

The Oceanic Hotel on Star is a 19th century hotel that is still run like one. It is lacking in many modern conveniences....bathrooms down the hall, no running water in the rooms, no television, no locks on the doors, limited showers due to limited water supply. Instead, each room has a bowl and pitcher with hot water delivered to the door each morning; television is replaced with real conversations at communal meals or sitting on the massive, rocker-filled porch; children play lawn-games, explore nature through a marine-biology lab and forge life-long friendships.

The Star Island experience keeps a devoted community coming back year after year. Organized in weekly conferences, its not unusual for people to return twenty, thirty or even fifty years in a row. In the past, the Island has been oversubscribed by this loyal community and so visitors have been limited to "day trip" visits to explore the 19th and 17th century heritage (The Isles of Shoals were "found" by John Smith in 1614 and they played a major role in the development of the cod industry.)

Registration at Star is more available now, to join in conferences focused on arts, literature, science, religion or the joys of being a family. It is also possible to come to the Island for a stay of a day or two without joining in a conference.

I went once with my family and have continued to come back each year for thirty years. While it is not a place for everyone (think the opposite of an all-inclusive resort) the natural beauty of being "at sea" plus the unique opportunity to meet people and make friends provides an experience as refreshing as any vacation can be.

Room Tip: There are more modern room options available in the "cottage" or "motel" units.
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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6  Thank i10q
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 28, 2012

This is not a 5 "star" hotel - but it's a 5 star experience that you will not find elsewhere. Six miles off the coast of New Hampshire, the Oceanic Hotel on Star Island is over a hundred years old. Transport yourself to an earlier era - leave the chaos of modern life behind.
Open for the summer, most weeks host a themed conference, but day visitors and "personal retreats" are also welcome when space allows.
My rating on all items is relative to this being a unique and special location. If you visit once, "you will come back."

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
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8  Thank cararro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Star Island Family Retreat and Conference Center

Address: Star Island, Rye, NH 03801
Location: United States > New Hampshire > Rye
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty Lodging in Rye
Number of rooms: 141

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