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“Best place to stay in Bala.”
Review of Bala Bay Inn

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Bala Bay Inn
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in Bala
Oakville, Canada
Level Contributor
15 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“Best place to stay in Bala.”
Reviewed July 12, 2013

My sisters and I spent 2 nights at the Bala Bay Inn last weekend, while in town for a concert.

Yes, the rooms are small, but the air conditioning units blast cold air, so the rooms are not hot. We stayed in room 319 - apparently haunted - but sadly did not see Mr. Sutton, but we hear he was a very nice man.

The hotel is lovely, and so charming, it reminds me of small independent hotels in Europe. A very nice lounge area, lovely winding staircase to get the to the roooms. The staff are so polite and very helpful. When we booked a reservation for dinner before the concert, we were asked if we had any allergies they should be aware of. I don't remember the last time anyone asked me that when making a reservation - at the highest end restaurants.

The on site restaurant is excellent. The food quality, preparation and price is very good. The patio is great with a view of the lake. Nice spot across the road to sit on the dock and this space is for Bala Bay Inn guests only.

The hotel doesn't deserve the bad reviews. Sadly, when concerts are in town that draw a young crowd, this can cause lots of problems. We came to see Matt Good, so an older crowd, and we slept very well.

I will definitely be returning to Bala to go back to the Kee, and will stay at the Bala Bay Inn.

Room Tip: I asked for a room away from the stairs, and we had a room at the end of the hall, which was perfect...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank beachfamily627
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bala-Bay-Inn, Manager at Bala Bay Inn, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Hi beachfamily627

Sorry to hear that Mr Sutton didn't pay you a visit in your haunted room.

We are however really happy to hear that you enjoyed your stay and that the staff went the extra mile for you. We look forward to serving you again.

Operations Manager,
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113 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
146 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
Reviewed July 8, 2013 via mobile

Dined for lunch on the patio with my husband. I had read so much about the Bala Bay Inn over the years and I was excited to finally see the hotel. What a total disappointment from the moment we walked in. The hotel is in shabby shape and in dire need of TLC and a major reno. The patio was the same: worn and outdated patio furniture of very low quality. The washrooms are an embarrassment; totally filthy and so tiny it is uncomfortable to use.

OK, I'm done complaining, now the good. We ordered fish and chips and a flatbread pizza, a 12 ounce beer and a margarita. The food was excellent: fresh ingredients.

Now more bad: service was slow and we were overcharged for our drinks.

Overall, my husband said he'd be back solely because the food was so good. I'll need more convincing....

Just know what to expect....this place isn't the Ritz and rides on the coattails of being one of the few dining options available.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
1 Thank Alicia Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bala-Bay-Inn, Manager at Bala Bay Inn, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
We are delighted you enjoyed the food, it is the reason we have had so many repeat customers over the past several years. Your comments about the lobby surprise us but we recognize that everyone’s tastes are different. The original tin ceiling and mahogany stair case are 103 year-old features of Muskoka’s oldest brick hotel that we would not want to renovate as we feel it might affect the charm of the hotel. Many people have commented that the hotel lobby is the most styli aspect of the hotel. Holly Dyment, one of Canada’s more prominent designers (now retired)chose the furniture and designer wallpaper. The forest pictures are done by a well known Toronto photographer Barbara Stoneham.

I agree, the patio could use some paint touch ups since we painted it in May, but we have had such a busy summer, we won’t be able to do this until the season is over! We do make substantial investments to improve the hotel every year but it is difficult to do this for a business that is only operating 3-4 months per year. Thank you for reviewing us and we look forward to your return for a fabulous meal!

Operations Manager,
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London, Canada
1 review
Reviewed July 5, 2013

My two girlfriends and I stayed at the Bala Bay Inn for one night last week. The room were VERY clean! We ate at the restaurant downstairs-> I had the turkey club with sweet potato fries -> AWESOME and FRESH! The girls @ the front desk and the owner ( Liz) were sooooo accommodating and friendly! THe locations is great, amazing view of the lake. We will be back for another stay soon!!!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Paige J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bala-Bay-Inn, Manager at Bala Bay Inn, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Hi Paige J

Thank you for your feedback. We are really happy to hear that you loved the food and the sweet potato fries. We will also pass along your feed back to the staff. We hope to see you again.

Operations Manager,
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Cobourg, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 21, 2013

There were so many things that made our stay a wonderful experience! started with great friends, meeting new friends, the atmosphere was so welcoming, I loved the old structures of the bala bay inn, right down to the keys to our room. We have been talking about this Inn to all our friends. This is a place you want to stay, either for a concert or relaxing time with the family. if you are in the area plan a visit, The Bala bay inn also has great food! Just dare to try their poutine...Thanks so much for a great weekend! Jack and Kathy Rutherford , Cobourg Ont.

Room Tip: all the rooms are great, we stayed in room 315, very clean. Really would like to know where they got...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank kathy r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bala-Bay-Inn, Manager at Bala Bay Inn, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Hi Kathy R

Thank you for your feedback. We are really glad that you were one of the first to try our new poutine menu!

Our pillows can be purchased from the hotel. We can also meet you in Toronto area if you wish to purchase some. Please email info@balabayinn.com for prices.

Operations Manager
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Peterborough, ON
Level Contributor
24 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed May 19, 2013 via mobile

Enjoyed a good meal here with friends following a spring visit to the Cranberry Marsh. Pub food was relatively standard, but tasty and the dill pickle in the Caesar was a nice touch. The reclining chairs are a novel twist on a warm afternoon. Across the road from waterfront, visible but not overhanging the lake. Worth stopping for a bite.

Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Mappin_and_Movin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bala-Bay-Inn, Manager at Bala Bay Inn, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Hi Mappin_and_movin

Thank you for joining us in May and providing us with some feedback. We also really enjoy our recling chairs. A great way to soak up the rays. We look forward to seeing you again!

Operations Manager
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guelph ontario
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed May 12, 2013

This is a old favorite coming up to the cottage every year for us.the food there could cure a hangover.they have 8 choices of putine ,I have tried two of them and they are fantastic.the staff are attentive,my wife had the shaved slow cooked roast beef sandwitch on a pertzil bun and that was also mouth watering.i would recomend this restaurant two thumbs up.............

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank drvacati0n
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bala-Bay-Inn, Manager at Bala Bay Inn, responded to this review, July 20, 2013
Hi Drvacati0n

Thank you so much for stopping in to join us in May! We do agree that our food is mouth watering. The Shaved Prime Rib Sandwich is one of our favorites as well. We hope to see you again soon!

Operations Manager
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Brampton, Canada
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed November 8, 2012

Im A Paranormal Investigator in The GTA Ontario Canada.
The staff at the Inn was very Helpful and Respectful of what i do.
The rooms are Bright and Clean. the Food is VERY good.
Weather your there for a trip or a Wedding or any other Funtion its a very nice Pleasent Place to be.
I did some research at the Inn, Please check ut there Website for New Stuff on the Paranormal Subject if this is of interest
Bala Bay is the first Brick Hotel built by Mr Sutton in 1910, he Built it with his Wife Rose.
I will post more about the in and my finding in the new year Feb 2013.
If you geta chance check out the website or better yet check out the Inn

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank CodyLittle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bala Bay Inn

Property: Bala Bay Inn
Address: Muskoka Road HW169, Bala, Ontario P0C 1A0, Canada
Location: Canada > Ontario > Muskoka District > Bala
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 3 Hotels in Bala
Number of rooms: 34
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are proud that the Bala Bay Inn is 101 years old and was the first brick hotel in Muskoka, Ontario. During your stay, you can see and feel the colossal history that once took place in the hotel. After several renovations, the current owners of 7 years created a wonderful boutique hotel with 35 rooms located in the heart of Muskoka. With a #1 rated patio by "The Muskokan," you will be sure to be provided with excellent service, cold beer and great food. Bala Bay Inn has also become the perfect destination for affordable, memorable weddings, where you feel like you own the hotel for the weekend. With an exceptional wedding planner, and a great banquet team ready, you are sure to have the wedding of your dreams. We are also a great location for partygoers and concert lovers. Being across the street from the Kee to Bala, we can offer a safe and friendly place to stay after attending your favourite concert. Like us on Facebook for frequent updates and giveaways! We appreciate all the feedback that we have received, and are pleased to tell you that we have made several changes to the hotel and improved all of our departments. We look forward to exceeding your expectations and providing an unforgettable Muskoka experience. FUN. FRESH. FABULOUS. Come join us. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Bala Bay Hotel Bala
Bala Bay Motel
Bala Bay Inn Ontario - Muskoka District

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