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“Underwhelming..”
Review of Ste. Anne's Spa

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Ste. Anne's Spa
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Grafton
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 8, 2013

This was my first visit to Ste. Anne's Spa, both myself and my friend were thoroughly looking forward to the escape. We decided to book the "Last Minute Getaway" experience offered at St. Anne's which includes (overnight accomodation, afternoon tea, dinner and lunch, yoga and a spa credit). Our orientation & tour was incredibly rushed, it was obvious our guide although friendly had something else pressing to do. Afternoon tea was lovely and the tea selection was fantastic albeit served in a mug (tea really does taste better in a proper teacup). My spa treatment was excellent and I would reccomend the Chakra Balancing treatment as wonderful experience if you're looking to click your reset. The food was good not great. The "daily specials" at lunch were delicious. Unfortunately the service in the dining room was inconsistent; you either had multiple server's or none, we waited 25 mnutes after completing our entres for our server to clear the plates and take dessert orders. Overall the facilities were a bit tired looking, fairly noisey (which surprised me) and disappointing. This was not a 4 star spa experience and our visit left myself and my friend very underwhelmed :(

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled with friends
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7  Thank Melanie B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SpaGuyJim, Owner at Ste. Anne's Spa, responded to this reviewResponded February 10, 2013

Dear Melanie: Thank you for taking time to write a review about your recent overnight stay at Ste. Anne's. I am very sorry to hear that we left you and your friend feeling underwhelmed. On the other hand, I am delighted that you were able to take advantage of one of our last minute "deals", and that you had so many positive elements to your experience.

Overall, I hope that you feel that you received good value for the $370 you paid for all inclusive, 4 Diamond accommodation in a sprawling 156 year old fieldstone castle, (we have been awarded this designation annually by C.A.A. for 20 consecutive years, following unannounced and rigourous annual inspections), a Chakra Balancing Massage with Darlene (I agree, she really does give a great treatment), 4 delicious meals and use of our many indoor and outdoor spa facilities.

I must admit, I would much rather have received your feedback personally, (that is why I provide my cell phone number to every guest upon check-in), and wish I had been given the opportunity to correct the shortcomings in your short stay with us while you were still here. You can rest assured that my staff and I will take your comments to heart and continue to strive to meet the expectations of our guests. Feel free to contact me directly.

Sincerely,

Jim Corcoran, Owner, Ste. Anne's Spa.

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643 - 649 of 1,398 reviews

Reviewed February 3, 2013

My husband and I and our three adult children spent three days, including New Year's Eve here and it was fantastic. I have been to the spa many times since my first visit in 1995, but this was the first time we went as a family. The unique and wonderful thing about Set. Anne's is that they have acquired five farmhouses/cottages on the surrounding properties to accommodate larger groups. We were all tired and stressed from the chaos of the holiday season and staying at the beautiful and quaint "Innkeepers" farmhouse was truly magical! We were even allowed to bring our three dogs with us. So we got to have the privacy and benefit of an intimate family time, but we did not have to grocery shop or cook, but were waited on by the wonderful staff and served very yummy meals. Top this off with fantastic de-stressing spa services like the "Moor Mud Wrap" (my favourite), and the "Botanical Resurfacing Facial", and you've found an oasis of peace and pleasure, the perfect way to launch a new year. I have tried many spas during my travels over the years, Set. Anne's is one of the best values across the board. Just over an hour east of Toronto (and they also have a train package to get there for those who don't want to drive), there is more time for pampering and less time on the road.

Room Tip: I have stayed in many different rooms as I have gone by myself, with a friend, and with several frie...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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Thank bokalil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 27, 2013

I booked this place with 2 other girls for the day. We wanted to have a girls day to relax. Boy did we get a surprise. Its in the middle of no where but when we got there it was WOW. The building has an old charm to it. Very cute. Inside is very clean and inviting. The food is pretty good. We all left so relaxed and wanted more! we will definitely book here again for another girls day out. A bit pricey but if you find those deals that they offer once in a while on line etc its not to bad..A place that everyone should go at least once, but GUARANTEED you will be back!

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank SteepleHill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 23, 2013

Not my first trip but my first romantic trip to the Spa. It continues to provide superlative service and professional services.
The atmosphere was very conducive to sharing a wonderful few days. Our privacy was respected although from the parking lot, the Inn appeared to be busy.
It is the perfect spot to spend more time and get re acquainted.
And, the linens were heaven.
Thank you. We will be back !

Room Tip: Just speak with your Ste. Anne's rep and they can advise you. Make sure you have a fireplace i...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank foodblonde
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 15, 2013

After experiencing a signifigant loss in our family, my sister and I chose a 2 night stay at Ste. Anne's to rejuvinate our minds, bodies and souls. This beautiful historic Inn is perched among rolling hills overlooking Lake Ontario, and is definetly designed with tranquility and relaxation in mind.
The Inn has a long rich history with a family atmosphere that can be felt in every room which adds to the ambiance and contributes to it's uniqueness. We stayed in the quaint "Doll House" just a few steps away from the Main Inn which provided us with cozy private comfort with all of the amenities including fireplace, full kitchen, and a beautiful loft bedroom.
We found the service to be exemplary, staff were attentive and accomodating and spa treatments were performed in a calm quiet atmosophere by knowledgable and skilled therapists. In between culinary delights and treatments we took full advantage of the amenities including, hot tub and steam rooms, all of which contributed to the ultimate spa experience.
Thank you Ste. Anne's!

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Liz W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 15, 2013

I have gone to St. Anne's every year (at least 1X a year) for the last 9 years. I am sad...so sad to say that it has gotten progressively more disappointing.
It is a combination of many things that has made it progressively worse. They are as follows:
1. It's looking old and tired. Not much has changed in the last 8 years.
2. The tea...THE TEA...my favourite part of the day...has changed format and I am not a fan.
3. It just isn't that clean.
4. Service isn't as fantastic as it was. Several years ago - you were a queen when you went there for the day..now....NOT SO MUCH! Occasionally they would be giving out free mini hand massages in the waiting room etc - haven't seen that in years!
5. In the change room they would leave Aveda products out for use....they are gone...:(
6. The gradual replacement of Aveda product with the St. Anne's product (their own label)...don't like this at all. One of the main reasons that I love St. Anne's is for the Aveda product. Their desire to save a buck by cutting corners by using their own labels is quite disappointing.
7. Last minute services. They use to leave a list of possible last minute services you could book the day of...at a reduced rate (not by much). A fun impulsive thing to do - gone :(
Don't get me wrong...it is a great way to spend a day with girlfriends, but it is just so disappointing to see things go from FANTASTIC to just "good".
I will continue to go because the general grounds are fun to go to...you actually feel like you are far away from everything and you do truly relax. I have yet to go to another spa that can truly give you that experience that is close to where I live.
If you are going for lunch: I highly recommend the burger. It is fantastic.
Treatments that I recommend: Scalp treatment, aroma therapy massage (total relaxation).
Wellness classes: Yoga classes are the basics. I found it too slow moving for my liking...and didn't enjoy it much. Historically - I have loved their mediation classes - as it was unique type of class.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with friends
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7  Thank Happytravelin33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SpaGuyJim, Owner at Ste. Anne's Spa, responded to this reviewResponded February 2, 2013

Dear Happytravelin33;
Thank you for taking time to post a review on your stay with us 5 months ago in August of 2012. First of all, I very much appreciate your patronage over the past 9 years. However, I am sorry to hear that you are feeling sad as a result of your experiences becoming progressively more disappointing. This is not my intention.
As far as your points, 1 – 7 are concerned;
1. With respect to your feeling that Ste. Anne's is looking old and tired and that not much has changed in the last 8 years; I disagree. I am surprised to hear you say this, especially given that you have been returning every year for 9 years, and since you told me that you are planning to return in the next 2 months. Although parts of this building date back to 1857, we are constantly adding, enhancing and improving our offering and our facilities.
A few of the things that we have done since 2003; we have expanded and enhanced our hiking trails, and our gardens, we have added snowshoeing in the winter months, we have added our own farm raised beef to the menu (thank you for the compliment about the hamburgers), we have opened a gluten free bakery, we have refinished all of the hardwood floors in the common areas and installed new carpet runners through-out, we have installed new lockers in the women’s locker room, we have added new treatments in addition to the seasonal treatments that we offer, we have added and upgraded treatment rooms, we have added the ability to book online, we have introduced Ste. Anne’s signature teas and a new Ste. Anne’s hair, skin and body care line, all of the guest rooms and common areas have been redecorated several times, we have added our a Healing through Horses Equestrian Program, and as a matter of course, we change our dining room menus on a regular basis.
2. Regarding your concern that the afternoon tea (your favourite part of the day) has changed to a new format that you are not a fan of; during the past 10 years afternoon tea has gone from a fixed plated offering, to a buffet, to a plated multi-choice menu. This last change was made about 2 years ago as a direct result of feedback from our guests, and to eliminate the possibility of cross contamination as a result of the increasing number of food allergies amongst our guests. The response to this most recent change has been overwhelmingly positive. The idea of the plated multi-choice menu was to give our guests the best of both worlds. As a guest for the past 9 years, you will know that you are never left wanting for quality, choice, selection or quantity of food at Ste. Anne’s. I have never been a big fan of buffet service. At Ste. Anne’s Spa, all you have to do is make a selection from the menu and if you are still left wanting, you simply have to ask.
3. Regarding your observation that Ste. Anne's isn't that clean; I strongly disagree. Certainly in the course of a busy day lots of “stuff” from outside can get tracked into the building, but as public buildings go, Ste. Anne’s is very clean. Respectfully, I think that your observation in this regard is an unfair exaggeration and I would hope that you would retract it. The hardworking staff who work tirelessly to clean Ste. Anne’s day in and day out certainly do not deserve this.
4. Regarding your feeling that service isn't as fantastic as it was several years ago and your feeling that you were treated like a queen when you went there for the day, and that now service has declined, and that occasionally guests would be given free mini hand massages in the waiting room etc., and that you feel this practiced has stopped; again, I have to disagree. We consistently rate 9 or better out of 10 on our own guest satisfaction surveys.
For the past 6 years we have been voted best spa in Canada by 2 industry leading, independent spa magazines and their readers, and for 20 years we have achieved the coveted 4 Diamond Award from CAA/AAA. We have also won awards on TripAdvisor for 2012 (#1 Relaxation Spa/Hotel in Canada, Top 25 Hotels in Canada Award Winner, Top 25, Best Service Hotel in Canada), and in 2013.
Complimentary mini treatments are still offered to our guests through-out the day in our Aveda Aftercare Centre, located adjacent to the spa waiting room. Perhaps you missed the sign up sheet on your last visit? I talk to guests personally all the time, and the one thing I hear consistently is that the staff and the service they provide one of our greatest attributes.
5. Regarding your concern that the complimentary products in the change room are gone; you are correct on this point. Unfortunately we had to stop putting out Aveda product testers in the change rooms because they routinely disappeared, dispensers and all. Instead, we now have complimentary product testers in the Aveda Aftercare Centre.
6. Regarding your claim that we have gradually replaced Aveda product with our own product line as a cost cutting measure; Absolutely untrue. Yes, we have introduced our own product line, but how and why would you assume that introducing our own product line was driven by a – in your words – a desire to save a buck by cutting corners? Have you and I discussed my business plan? I don’t believe so.
First of all, Aveda’s original approach to hair, skin and body care was the inspiration for creating our own line, and Aveda continues to be an integral part of our offering at Ste. Anne’s. Guests are offered their choice of product in treatments. Secondly, I can assure you, that cost cutting was not a factor in deciding to develop our own product line from scratch, quite the contrary. After 3 years of development and intense testing, Ste. Anne’s Skin Nourishment was conceived out of a desire to extend the Ste. Anne’s Spa healing experience beyond our guest’s visit. With high quality, unadulterated botanicals, as opposed to synthetics, the Ste. Anne’s Skin Nourishment line is manufactured without the use of petrochemicals, sulfates, PEGs/PPGs, parabens, phthalates, synthetic fragrances or synthetic preservatives. We have also avoided overly processed ingredients. It is just one more enhancement we have made to the Ste. Anne’s experience, and the response has been overwhelmingly positive.
7. Regarding your observation that we no longer post a list of available last minute services; again, this is not true. When we have last minute spa appointments available, they are posted at the front desk. When you were here in August, our busiest month of the year, I suspect that there weren’t any last minute services available.
As far as the wellness classes are concerned, the instructor tries to match the level of the instruction with the participants in the class. We still offer the meditation class.
I must admit Happytravelin33, I find it puzzling as to why you waited until January to post a review for a day spa stay that took place in August. I am also unable to understand why, as a long time visitor to the spa, who intends to return in the future, you wouldn’t bring your concerns to me directly. I have always been accessible to my guests. You must know that I provide my cell phone number to every guest at check-in.
If I may, I have a suggestion for you. Instead of coming for the day, you might want to consider spending a couple of nights at Ste. Anne’s Spa to fully appreciate the restorative benefits of a spa visit, as described by over 700 fellow TripAdvisor reviewers who have rated their experience as excellent or very good. I would venture to say that it might go a long way towards changing the way that you see the world. I would be more than happy to discuss this with you further and work with you to overcome your concerns. I have always, and continue to want Ste. Anne’s to be a great experience for my guests.
Respectfully,
Jim Corcoran, Owner, Ste. Anne’s Spa

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Reviewed January 15, 2013

I spent 3 days and two nights at Ste. Annes and left feeling very tranquil and totally pampered. The staff are very attentive. The estheticians were very knowledgeable and I really enjoyed each of the three treatments I received - especially the swedish massage. The Inn is wonderfully historic, the furnishings and decor suit the relaxed atmosphere that exists. It is well maintained and full of interesting places to visit. I stayed at the Doll's House, a beautfil cottage with a great fireplace and loft. I love the fact that you can bring your own wine to dinner - it was a treat to know we could enjoy our favourites! I am looking forward to returning in the summer - I've been told the gardens are something to see.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank gradygirl_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ste. Anne's Spa

Address: 1009 Massey Rd., Grafton, Ontario K0K 2G0, Canada
Location: Canada > Ontario > Grafton
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Grafton
Price Range: $240 - $421 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Ste. Anne's Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 28
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ste. Anne's Spa, situated in the Haldimand Hills gazes down on over 400 acres of forested rolling hills overlooking Lake Ontario. It is Ontario's largest destination and day spa, offering extensive spa facilities, luxuriously appointed guest rooms, fine dining, and an array of spa treatments. Surrounding the main inn at Ste. Anne's are private guesthouses, truly a unique aspect of the "spa village" experience. Located only 90 minutes east of Toronto. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ste. Anne`s Hotel Grafton
Ste. Anne's Spa Ontario/Grafton

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