The Look Of Love
Vancouver Sun, October 8 2007
Ripe, luscious fruits nestled together in the complimentary fruit bowl, fresh flowers adorning the center lobby table, and custom-designed elegant furnishings are a few of the lovely European touches gracing the intimate lobby and guest rooms of the Magnolia Hotel & Spa. Located in the prime inner harbour neighbourhood of downtown Victoria, British Columbia, this exclusive boutique hotel is a classy find. With 63 guest rooms offering floor to ceiling views of either the city's downtown, or harbour, the hotel and spa were recently celebrated by Conde Nast Magazine readers as one of the "Top Three Hotels in Canada". The results were derived from the largest independent poll of consumers' preferences, The Conde Nast Readers Choice Survey, second in size only to the U.S. Census. And while this is a very impressive honor to have bestowed upon it, Magnolia Hotel & Spa is not one to rest on its laurels: The exemplary service, from front desk to housekeeping (the latter being particularly adept at maintaining spotless public areas as well as guest rooms as noted on a recent visit), and the charming doormen, maintain a constant level of professionalism that is worthy of this recent accolade. And to be in the heart of fabulous Victoria where you can stroll the waterfront at your leisure, taking in shops, galleries and the Royal BC Museum, this property and city will make it on your list of favourite getaways' too' - rest assured.
Pleasure for the Senses
Sanuk translates from Thai to English as “pursuit of happiness” - which in this case applies to every single one of your senses. A restaurant that is at once as pleasing to the eye as It Is to your palate, Executive Chef Patrick Lynch and his amazing team have put together a dining room and menu worth seeking out and spending time with - “I discovered in high school that girls were attracted to men that cooked,” confides Chef Lynch, hence his passion. “My new menu draws on flavours from all of Asia and includes the business lunch”. Asian style service complements the menu- An evening spent here savouring the sights, sounds, smells, and absolutely delicious tastes, certainly complements a stay at Magnolia Hotel & Spa.
The locals of a community usually know instantly if a day spa is good or nol. And while that which makes such a place stand out can be personal preference, the Aveda Spa at Magnolia Hotel makes the mark. It's quiet and intimate, lucked away on the second floor of the hotel The staff is highly adept at meeting the needs of their clientele - in need of a soothing massage, or would a luxurious manicure and pedicure be your fancy? The services are here and they are decidedly wonderful Advance reservations are recommended, so do book your treatments at the same time as your hotel reservation.
Bring the Kids?
Not on this trip ... while children are always welcome, you're more apt to see more grown-up. sophisticated guests - from twenty-somethings to baby boomers, travelling with four legged companions as opposed to kids in tow. That is unless your kids are over twelve and savvy travellers who mind their manners. We recommend finding a sitter this time and revel in the peace and romance for just the two of you.
Off Site Pleasures
One of our favourite spots for seasonal, and the occasional themed noshing (the Titanic promotion was fabulous with brews like the Unsinkable Molly Brown), is just across the inner harbour of Victoria at Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub. Sitting by the large windows, gazing out over the water, the service arid the food are hard to beat, but the beers are quite simply ...outstanding. Celebrating the warmth of the fall season is the return of Vanilla Spiced Pumpkin Porter. This dark, full bodied nectar is accented with plenty of spice and vanilla pods intriguing to note that each batch is made with 20-30 locally grown, roasted pumpkins. “We completely sold out of every drop we produced last year - it's really become a seasonal favourite,” says publican, Paul Hadfield. “It's a delicious dessert beer - it's like having a pumpkin pie in in a glass.” The bakery is mixing up specials too WIth pumpkin spice bread (truly, one can never have enough pumpkin!), and chocolatier Crystal Duck utilizes the varied flavours in the beer to push her limits: creating special spiced chocolates inspired by the traditional tastes of fall Each of these treats is in limited release and best of all... they are only available at Spinnakers. Enjoy!