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“Second Time Back and wished it was in Montreal!!!”
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 April 9, 2013

Definitely the best spa ever-too bad it's all the way near TO (and not Mtl, Qc) because it would fit into our culture only too well: a BYOW spa....yes, you read right! Picture yourself walking around in your robes all day (yes, even for dinner:)), getting massaged, going for treatments, bathing in the grotto, sipping on wine, just plain relaxing.....sigh! The people here just take the best care of you, ever! You will not be disappointed, and definitely worth the trip. Just like an all-inclusive resort!

Room Tip: even the average accommodations are beautiful:)
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank law50
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 April 22, 2013

Thank you for your kind words regarding our staff and your experience - our aim is to continually exceed our guests expectations each and everyday. We look forward to your next visit to Ste. Anne's Spa!

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Reviewed April 2, 2013

Just got back from Ste. Annes and feel totally rejuvenated.I must admit that upon our entrance I was a little taken back by how rustic and unsophisticated the place was. It was a long walk with suitcase in hand to the reception area and in freezing weather I wasnt too impressed. But this is a converted farmhouse that has changed hands a few times. Ill be upfront and say that this is an expensive place, no doubt. We spent almost $1000 for 24 hours. This included dinner the first night, breakfast, Lunch, and Tea the next day as well as two vouchers for spa services for $100 each. The additional amounts were minor purchases in their store but also all the taxes which are are not included in the above. Could I have spent my money on an island somwhere for a few days? Maybe if I got a smoking deal but then I wouldnt have had the experience of staying in a historically rich Inn withall the attention we received. So, all that out of the way, the room we stayed in was the Catherine Lee (no fireplace) but lovely, large room with sitting area in the main building and great views that Im sure would be beautiful in the summer. The bed was very comfortable and the bathroom quite adequate. It was simply charming and I felt right at home. Noting having a television in the room was actually quite nice. It was peaceful which is what my hubby and I wanted. The spa services were fantastic! Truly no complaints here. The outdoor hot tub, plunge pool and exercise pool were very nice and accessible even in the freak snowstorm we had. There were many yoga and meditation classes during the day but we didnt take advantage of that. The food was good. Not over the top but good. We have eaten at many high end restaurants around the world and this is not one of them but it was still nice. Try the lasagna or Sheppards Pie for lunch. Portions were reasonable and lots of gluten free options.
Would I stay here again? Probably not. It is far away from us and frankly there are so many other lovely resorts in Ontario also worth trying out. Would I recommend it? Absolutely if you want peace and quiet and a serene environment then you will definitely enjoy this if you dont mind the spend. My recommendation to the owners would be lower your prices so you dont disappoint the folks who are expecting more for their money.

Room Tip: Ive heard that the rooms with the fireplaces are nicer and roomier however the Catherine Lee suited...
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank CandiBKane
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 April 22, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to review your stay with us - we truly appreciate the constructive feedback as we are always seeking ways to improve. Our ultimate goal is to help our visitors rejuvenate and to relieve stresses from everyday life! We are so pleased that you would recommend Ste. Anne's Spa and delighted that you enjoyed our staff & accommodations! We hope to have you as our guests again in the future!

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Reviewed March 20, 2013

Just returned from this uniquely healing, heavenly Spa.

Funny the spa was actually such a small piece of the amazing time!

Two nights in March. The middle of a grand snow storm...fireplaces roaring, views to die for!
We arrived and were whisked to our rooms after a brief tour and encouraged to change into our robes. I am a bit shy so I had my yoga clothes on with the robe and that was my uniform for the stay. I might add that within hours I had no make up on, hair pulled back in some messy thing that I care not to wonder about and flip flops.

Tea Time - Decadent. The food is fantastic and the tea's delectable.
Dinner - Good...but. I have to be honest I was a bit suprised by this as I had thought the food would be earth shattering...a high expectation...but the food was only very good. Uniquely challenging from the perspective because they use no perservatives no unnatural processing and all things from healthy local but still sometimes a bit dull. I am so sorry because everything else was brilliant!
Breakfast - same as dinner...well presented, a great deal of effort and thought but err...I guess I am used to places that process...tragic for my health.
Lunch - lovely. Food seemed a bit easier to pull off with flavour and flare! The dinning room is a beautiful space and again service is impeccable!

Yoga - what a lovely helpful experience! I enjoyed the peace and felt that I was able to begin a journey in Yoga from this initial experience.

Meditation - Deeply restful guided experience. I took it twice and I a mmissing it already!

I had the Minerva Aqua treatment....hmm...NOT for the modest. But the overhead full body shower washed away most of my initial modesty...
the Botanical Facial - FANTASTIC! My face looks better than ever, it was informative and deeply restful! Thank you!!!

The building is beautiful - our room was a double bed with fireplace in the main building...rain shower head - BRILLIANT! The waiting room is easily my favorite place despite the MASSES.... I enjoyed having coffee on demand, tea and biscotti and apples. The second sitting room was more intimate and lovely with a roaring fire and a great game of Scrabble with my wonderful Mother!!

The space where they offered Yoga and Meditation was a short jaunt outside...I was totally fine with it - kind of a giggle really...but others became upset. It will be great when they get the space back in the main building or develop a more direct route.

Here are my only cautionary notes or recommendations:
1) there was what I assume to be a senior staff who is a woman...on two occasions I experienced her speaking in a degrading manner to two different staff, at full volume. YIKES! Yucky not only for the staff but for us who like to dream we are in never never land but hear this incredibly unpleasant interaction. I do know her name....I don't want to post it publicly but I felt so sorry for the staff and I can only restate again the staff are INCREDIBLE! The exception being this individual.
2) As the commanding priority at this stunning location is Health and Well Being...and it is clear through every moment...my only suggestion is that they put aside a more effective space to include the fitness equipment. I realize that this was likely intended as a relaxing getaway but fitness is very much a part of health and well being and there were waits for the treadmill and the space is clearly not intended for this. Plus the weights are buried in the basement in a room that does not match the incredibly high standard of space.
3) If they could offer herbal tea to the available beverages in the waiting room - imagine this is a suggestion...this place really is so SPECTACULAR...that this is my final and only other recommendation.

Thank you so much St. Anne's Spa!! I arrived rattled, shaken and not stirred...tentative, anxious about this journey and reluctant to imagine three days could restore me....IT DID! Thank you thank you thank you!!

I look forward to a return, I will recommend this fabulous retreat to every person I meet and I am deeply grateful to my wonderful Mother for sharing this blessed experience with me - 5 Stars hands down! Oh speaking of hands - the lotion...JOY!!!

Room Tip: Strongly I encourage you to be careful of choosing a room off property...the property is stunning so...
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Caribheart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 17, 2013

I came to this place with some girlfriends, and it was JUST perfect. The accommodations, service, meals, nothing was below standard. The only thing I didn't quite like was that I could hear people laughing and giggling during the last half of my massage so it was quite distracting. I mentioned it and the treatment specialist said that sound carried quite often down in the area I had my treatment done. To be honest, that wasn't enough to ruin my day of bliss. This is an awesome place and I highly recommend it to anyone I meet. I also had the pleasure of chatting with the owner on a few occasions, and he was a very down-to-earth and nice man. You wont regret your visit to this spa. Not one bit!

Room Tip: The Inkeepers was perfect. The best was the best ever I slept on a cloud :)
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank masibandy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 16, 2013

This is the most difficult review that I have tried to write. Ste. Anne's is, I think, a unique combination of features, some great, some so-so, and it rather defies categorization. Some will love it, and some will leave it.
Overall, I liked it, but am not raving about it.
The Positives: Consistently good staff who are always willing to go out of their way for you, but you do have to ask. Very pleasant atmosphere and facilities for the most part. I loved the shampoo, conditioner, and home made granola - even if it does have butter in it. They do a wonderful job of maintaining a calm atmosphere. No children, which is a blessing. Clearly the people who come here are all intent on relaxation, so are not likely to be a nuisance. Everything was spotless and largely effortless. The photographs on their websites are highly accurate, unlike most places.
The Negatives: Service in the dining room is slowish. Servers do not always respond to comments made. e.g. on one occasion, when I was asked how my lunch was, I said "it's OK", and I really meant that it was only OK, not great by any means, but there was no response at all. On other occasions I was also less than completely enthusiastic, but there was no response unless I made a specific request.
The quality of the robes is not as luxurious as they lead you to believe. I have had nicer ones elsewhere - Jasper Park Lodge comes to mind. Picky point, but don't present it as luxurious if it is not, as it makes you look untrustworthy.
I didn't like the liquid soap, found it quite drying, and I don't want to have to keep putting on hand cream.
While it was not overwhelmingly busy when I was there (as other reviewers have alluded to), it was not high season, so I didn't expect it would be. The construction of the place, being an old stone "castle", is a bit of a rabbit's warren to navigate. Many of the passageways are on the narrow side, and you sometimes have to wait for someone to pass before you continue. I can see where this could be a problem on a really busy day. However, it is part of the charm of this lovely old building, I guess. There really isn't anything they could do to change this, I don't think.
I am having trouble describing the food. As some people have already commented, you can certainly get better food (for the most part) in many restaurants in Toronto. I'm sure that there are other spas which have better food - Kingfisher on Vancouver Island comes to mind from my own experience. However, they have to cater to a wide variety of taste buds, mostly from the Toronto area, and these are not always very sophisticated as one might hope. The people with whom I chatted briefly (not very many of them) all thought the food was better than I did. It may not be the most exciting thing I've eaten, but I think that overall the quality was pretty good. An effort was clearly being made to balance people's needs to indulge themselves (hence a chocolate desert was available at almost every meal) and to eat healthy food, often by using very small portions. People's ideas of what is healthy vary. There are many gluten-free items, which I couldn't care less about. I would have liked some more options using more spices and herbs, stronger flavours, less use of sweeteners. The use of herbs and spices need not be restricted to the fresh ones that are available fresh in summer. The menu, as some others have said, was a bit repetitive. I don't expect the main menu to change every day, but there should be more variety with the Specials, and they should not be repeated in the same week. With the obesity epidemic (of which there were a few examples in attendance), I think they could do more to profile suitable menus for those dealing with this and related issues. Personally, I thought breakfast was the best meal - lots of cold items plus you could choose a hot item.
I am having trouble deciding if there were just too many meals. Small frequent meals are recommended by most authorities, and this is what they provide at Ste Anne's - 4 of them per day, with apples, granola, tea available throughout the day as well. On the downside though, I felt like I was always either going to eat, eating, or just finished eating. Because of the slow service at lunch and dinner, the eating times always took longer than scheduled, and it felt like it took up too much time overall. I felt overscheduled, and that was with a minimum use of "wellness" classes and treatments.
I don't know what they have against TVs and music, but apparently it is an issue for the management. We requested and got a TV/DVD player, but it was cheap, and the screen was so small that it was not much fun to watch it. We had to move several pieces of furniture in order to be able to get close enough to see it. This was disappointing as we had brought along a couple of DVDs that we were looking forward to watchng at the end of the day - something we often don't have time for. Similarly, the living room lacked any kind of music unless you requested something, which we did, but, again, it was a cheap unit with crappy sound - even after we had it replaced. I don't really understand this inattention to detail in a place that clearly regards itself as luxurious.
Will I go again? Not sure. We had a reduced "deal", and I felt we easily got our money's worth. But would I want to pay full price for this, especially in high season? I sort of doubt it. There are lots of options out there in the big world. But this place really does have a very comfortable feel, and that is attractive. If I believed that the attention to detail would include all the things that I expect, and if I thought I was going to be "wowed" by the food, I would be more inclined to consider it. It would be nice to see it in summer, but, still, there is no guarantee of good weather in which to enjoy the outdoors.
Note: for those who thought the decor was dowdy, it's not really. It's not "modern" - if you wanted that, you should have gone elsewhere, as the photos make it clear. This place is full of antiques and Victorian/Edwardian furniture. A few pieces are ready for recovering, but not a big deal.

Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
3  Thank loo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 14, 2013

My review is long overdue but had to write it anyways, 6 of us stayed last summer at st annes. If you can go with a few people the farmhousei is beautiful. The bathrooms were the best I have ever seen. It had so much charm.. What a nice few days I had there. My foot treatment was just ok but I hear most treatments are really really good. Next time I will have a massage done for sure. This was my second visit to St Annes and never really thought of writing a review on it, I normally only write about resorts down south. You can bring you own wine to the table for lunch and dinner.. At lunch time for some reason we had to wait a long time for our meal, think they forgot about us but it was very good.. Minor issue...Will be back again and hopefully for a few days again. Thanks for a wonderful relaxing time St Annes......

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Jeanniechief
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 12, 2013

2nd time at St. Anne's Spa,will be back for sure. As you walk in,you feel the relaxing atmosphere and welcomed by all the staff, the fragrance of suttle insence is everywhere, the grounds are to die for, the rooms are exceptional, and the food....well....gourmet, exquisite and abundant. I would advise walking the woods, even if by yourself you feel safe and in tune with nature. Experience the eucalyptus steam room, it rejuvenates one and detoxifies. I have experienced the yoga and stretch classes and well as massages (recommend) One can lounge around sipping tea, eating cookies, or drinking water which they provide from their springs with cucumber and lemon. A robe is provided for you with slippers, and that's your wardrobe for the stay, including going to dinner--(in a robe?---yup). A must go to relax, detox, and reborn.

Room Tip: Any room is an experience> where do they get their pillows?, beds are confortable.
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank milu269
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: $367 - $368 (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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