As far as I'm concerned, it's the only place to stay on Orcas Island.
About 10 days ago I googled "places to visit in the NW without a car" and what came up? None other than the majestic San Juan Islands (which I previously thought must be lesser known islands in the Caribbean). 2 days later I was en route via bus, shuttle, and ferry to Orcas.
Walk 10 minutes in one direction and you're in the village of Eastsound. 10 minutes in the other direction and you're at the beach. Don't bother walking anywhere and you've got a sauna, hot tub, pool table, fire pit, and bikes (for rent that are $15 for the day -- $20 cheaper than any of the bike rental shops).
The Golden Tree is tricked. out.
The owners are great, seemingly always smiling, and super helpful with recommendations with things to do on the island. In a twist of small world fate, we happen to have a good mutual friend in common in Portland. It made me feel even more at home. Maybe TOO at home. This place is so comfortable.
I'd actually take away half a star because of two minor issues. The guys told me these things are going to be solved this summer and since I'm a "glass half full" kinda gal, I'll round up to 5 stars anyway. BUT, for accountability reasons I'll document my 2 requests:
1. Hooks in the dorm rooms and dorm bathrooms. Orcas is a DAMP place and once the hostel gets more crowded, there will be wet towels and rain soaked clothing galore.
2. Individual lights in the dorm rooms. At the moment there's only one overhead light. I imagine this might create some grumpy co-habitation situations.
Another reason for that half star roundup: they buy good toilet paper. No butt scratchin' sand paper for miles around!
Also, the kitchen. is. amazing.
I'm sure I've forgotten a few of the wonderful things I have to say about the Golden Tree, but I think I've said enough.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Beautifully renovated farmhouse hostel, centrally located on Orcas Island. Walking distance to town and the beach. We offer clean communal and private rooms all with shared baths, and a fully equipped kitchen. Sit by the campfire, play a game of pool, soak in the hot tub, enjoy the sauna, lounge on the lawn, meet new people, cook food from a local farm. Inexpensive rental bikes available. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Golden Tree Hostel Orcas Island/Eastsound, WA