My wife and I recently completed a Fri-Sat 2-night stay at the The Sanderling in late March for our 5-year wedding anniversary. Though the weather turned out to be rainy, we were very pleased with our relaxing and quiet weekend. It was off-season and that made prices more reasonable for the South Building 3rd floor room with ocean view than peak season. We paid about $220/night plus taxes and believe we received very good value (namely the sight and sound of the ocean from our room & balcony). The room was spacious and comfortable; my wife commented on some of the higher-quality aspects of the room like wooden blinds, nice bed coverings (not to mention the ocean view which, though somewhat obscured by the sand dunes, was beautiful) and comfortable bed. That said, as other reviewers have suggested, there were some aspects of the room that prevent me from classifying it as top-notch luxury: some not-so-obvious inconsistent paint touch-ups, dead batteries in one of the remote controls, small in-room coffee pot, some unpainted areas on the window sill and some very slight dust/debris build-up near the ventilation duct. These latter aspects of the room quality were not immediately obvious but, instead, only apparent after we spent 2 days there and, due to the weather, relaxing in the room. We did take advantage of the loaner DVD player (no movies) provided by the front desk; they came and set it up and we were able to watch our own movie on the large flat panel TV in the room. We also took advantage of the complimentary scones/cookies and tea each afternoon in the main building by the communal fire place; coffee and tea were also available each morning in the lobby.
We have traveled extensively around the world and stayed in many top notch hotels and resorts (as well as many budget hotels, pensions and hostels). Whether it be Cairo, Rome, Bangkok or, in this case Duck, one has to consider the surrounding theme, local economy, competition, etc. when determining 'value' for one's lodging. All aspects considered including the relaxed "beach spirit" and relatively high cost of labor in the US, we found this hotel to provide good value. Some reviewers have taken exception to calling this establishment a 'resort' and I tend to agree. Though there are pools, jacuzzis, etc., it has more of a hotel feel than a resort feel (I usually associated the latter with sprawling grounds, around-the-clock service, etc.). The Sanderling does have a spa but we did not use any of the services. Likewise, there was a modest-sized gym in the South Building (there may have been others) that we did not try.
Our anniversary dinner at the Left Bank was very good value with a fixed price at approx $70/meal plus wine and gratuity (a larger 7-course meal is available for more $). It was more quality than quantity but we did not leave hungry (we're big eaters). Service was very good; not stuffy but not too casual (it is a beach setting so everything is a bit more relaxed). We dined early and enjoyed the view over the sound (including some scurrying little foxes playing along the bank). The restaurant was uncrowded but started to get busier later in the evening; in peak season seating could be a problem. They recommend reservations as does the more casual Life Saving Restaurant (which we opted not to try as it seemed a bit drab to us -- more interesting places to try in the city of Duck itself). We tried breakfast room service and found the quality and cost to be very reasonable.
Traffic on the single road to/from the hotel from elsewhere on the island was extremely light but we were warned that it can become quite congested (and all persons stressed 'quiet' congested) in the peak season. Beware.
We enjoyed several walks on the peaceful beach (see attached photos). Since it was off-season, we often felt we had the entire coast to ourselves. The sand was somewhat sharper and rougher than some other sands we've experienced elsewhere; I have tough feet and walked barefoot with no problem but my wife appreciated having her sandals. We collected an assortment of shells, saw several washed-up starfish and skate egg cases (black rectangular objects) and even dolphins swimming off-shore. We also took a walk on the nearby Audubon nature trail... nothing to rave about but gave us something to do nearby but off the beach.
We look forward to going back to this hotel -- in the off-season again. We'll bring our young son along next time as the establishment appears kid-friendly (though it does not appear to cater to kids -- they simply don't frown on little people running around).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- At the Sanderling Resort, casually elegant first-class amenities blend seamlessly with the spectacular landscape to foster connection and renewal. Offering magnificent views of both the Atlantic Ocean and the Currituck Sound, our guests have the same unique opportunity to admire both a sunrise and sunset - both over water. The Resort's guestrooms with their oversized bathrooms and generous decks, are a perfect complement to the quality of the natural setting, while our acclaimed spa and pools provide both unparalleled serenity at the tranquility pool, or a boisterous family environment at the Resort pool. The Resort's renowned restaurants offer the finest dining on the Outer Banks, with perfectly prepared and presented fresh coastal cuisine and a choice of venues to match the time of day, the season and your mood. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sanderling Hotel Duck
- Sanderling Resort Duck, NC - Outer Banks
- The Sanderling