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“Winemakers Dinner” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Elmhirst's Resort

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Elmhirst's Resort
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Keene
Certificate of Excellence
Oshawa, Canada
Level Contributor
29 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Winemakers Dinner”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 January 2014

My husband and I spent 2 nights over New Years at the Elmhirst. The dinner and wine pairings was spectacular...the atmosphere warm and welcoming. The accommodation was perfect for us, but the decor is dated and tired, and basic maintenance is clearly needed. We thoroughly enjoyed the fireplace, but were disappointed that we could not fill the jacuzzi tub as there was not enough hot water.
Certainly at the upper edge of average, but will slip if the buildings are not maintained.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Christin S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Greg E, Owner at Elmhirst's Resort, responded to this review, 20 January 2014
Thanks very much for spending New Years Eve with us and for taking the time to share your feedback. The Winemaker's events we host each quarter really give us a chance to put all the special things the Hearthside Room has to offer in one evening and the wine maker's are always a blast to work with. I'm really glad you enjoyed the evening.

We were sorry to hear the accommodation did not meet your price/value expectations more completely. The cottages just recently completed a cycle of renovations and yours was separated from its most recent face lift by about 5 years. Naturally the end of a renovation cycle means the start of a new one and we will keep your feed back in mind as we begin.

Thanks again for the helpful feedback and we hope to see you at future events….
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167 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (30)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Toronto Canada
Level Contributor
95 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 December 2013

We spent a weekend at Elmhirst's Resort and loved it, as usual. It has a lovely combination of one's own cottage, a real wood-burning fireplace, and all right on the lake. Our cottage was tidy & clean. The weather was typical for November, but who cares? We didn't. We took it easy, and then had a delicious dinner in the dining room. Brunch the next morning was sumptuous and elegant. They also have a simpler diner on site, and we've enjoyed a less fancy meal there in times past.
We find this a perfect getaway. We love watching the seasons change and plan on coming back again in a few months.

Room Tip: We had part of a duplex cottage, but you can rent a stand-alone cottage too. All are right by the l...
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  • Stayed November 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank KatyaTorontoCanada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Greg E, Owner at Elmhirst's Resort, responded to this review, 8 December 2013
Hello and thanks very much for taking the time to post such a kind and thoughtful account. A great deal of motivation flows through our team when we get to share messages like this with them. We wish you all the best for a wonderful Holiday Season and prosperous New Year!

Until next time....
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Norfolk
Level Contributor
54 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 November 2013

Spent two really relaxing days in one of their cottages. The cottages are spacious and have cookers, fridge freezers, and microwaves. Tv in the lounge and the bedrooms, Wi-Fi in cottages as well as main building and totally free. Fantastic views over lake and lovely walks in the hills and woodlands on the property. Restaurant serves good and wholesome food with a interesting selection of local Canadian wines from Niagra-on-the-lake area. It would be a place to spend a week just chilling and relaxing in a peaceful atmosphere. The staff were very pleasant and helpful at all times.

Room Tip: All the cottages look out over the lake but some are equipped for larger groups so you would need to...
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank NorfolkRedbaron
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oshawa, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 October 2013

Outdoor pool needed cleaning(maintenance was informed but still dirty by the time we left). Indoor pool area was so hot and humid we could hardly breathe. Wanted to take a shower one morning, no water pressure. Got a call a few minutes later that water would be off for awhile(an earlier call would have been appreciated) The overhead ceiling fans did not move air around or down to cool us off. Went to front desk that noon hour to get a paper and was informed hydro would be off the following morning -- therefore no way to cook a breakfast. That was the last straw. Informed them I was checking out right then. We were looking for a nice relaxing couple of days and were greatly disappointed. Will not recommend this place to anyone.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank John B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Greg E, General Manager at Elmhirst's Resort, responded to this review, 21 November 2013
Hello and thank you for visiting Elmhirst’s Resort. I’m sorry you were presented with so many challenges when you were with us. The lack of information shared with you while you were here we regret most of all.

Most of the issues were results from a cracked pipe in our main underground water line. The interruption in the water supply and power were caused by this. The proximity of the hydro lines to the water supply made it necessary to shut off power supply for the safety of the workers performing the repair. The incident was impossible to foresee and repairs could not be deferred unfortunately. More information and consideration could have been extended to you in these unusual circumstances however.

I am compelled to mention a couple pieces of information about our swimming pools which might explain your perception of these facilities. Both pools receive daily attention from our maintenance team who have specific training and certification in pool operations. As the season wears on however leaves tend to fall from the trees faster than the skimmers can collect them. The water is clean and safe, the leaves innocuous and we can’t bring ourselves to cut down the trees. The air temperature in the indoor pool is kept at 86 degrees f which is the 4 degrees above the minimum water temperature and prevents evaporation of pool water. As a result the humidity in the pool area is approx 45% which prevents rust, mould and mildew setting in. It’s a big energy commitment but the guests enjoy a better pool environment and we are fortunately able to use reclaimed biomass to heat the area which mitigates the financial and environmental toll.

I hope we may be in contact in the future so you might enjoy a more relaxing stay and we can show you we value your patronage and helpful feedback.

Best wishes....
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Ontario
Level Contributor
101 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 October 2013

This is a great chance to enjoy a little cottage "of your own" on a large and beautiful lake in the countryside of Ontario! My Mum and I had cottage #8 which is right beside the main lodge and was very convenient for her to get to and from meals. Most (if not all?) of the cottages are on the water. I could have thrown a ball from the deck to the lake easily, and I'm a terrible shot :) We had a BBQ and a full stove and microwave to use. Lovely views of the sunrise right from the front bedroom and the living/dining area. It would be splendid to enjoy a BBQ on the deck and eat at the picnic table, right there at the water's edge; we were at the lodge in October, however, and my Mum didn't want to cook. We made use of the fire a lot, although the wood was not seasoned; I trust they will fix this by winter. We used a lot of fire starters and newspaper, so that was a bit frustrating, albeit very nice to have a fire in any event. The cottage is not luxury, but it's very comfortable and clean. Mum enjoyed the jacuzzi a lot.
Meals were gourmet! I would give them 4 stars easily I've travelled all over the world, and lived the high life so to speak, and I found the food to be top quality. Very tasty... We were on the meal plan for all 3 days, and one issue though is the menu is not large (although the Sunday brunch was very varied and wonderful!). I might recommend being on the plan for only a day or two, then cooking for yourself, then maybe going back onto the plan if one is staying for several days. Or perhaps cooking breakfasts and lunches, then dinner at the lodge. We found ourselves quite stuffed on the breakfast/dinner meal plan and unable to eat lunch! As other reviewers note, it may be essential to book a table at the dining room if you want to eat there...on the Saturday night the host seemed quite surprised that we had not booked a table, but we were able to get in, so in the busy time of the year, do book ahead! (unsure why we were not told this when we checked in as meal plan customers...it would be disappointing to have to eat in the (nicely decorated ) pub if one were coming for an elegant dining experience.
The wine list is principally or entirely Canadian wines; the house wines are excellent and stood up well to the hearty food I had (venison osso bucco and steak tartare).
During the Ontario growing season, some or much (I am not sure) of the produce is grown at Elmhirst; I believe it is organic. I devoured the fried kale on the wild mushroom pasta with absolute delight! The place also raises its own Angus beef: best sausages I've ever had! Since I had encountered some sad cattle on my hike...I think they were anxious about the strange disappearances of their brethren (they were in the pre-slaughter paddock)...I felt badly and could not eat a steak, but I was silly enough to have some of fab breakfast sausages and as mentioned, the tasty tartare though. I was told that steak can be purchased at the resort and so one can have one's own BBQ; the resort makes its own bread and can provide that and other groceries if booked in the a.m. (double check on that!)
We also enjoyed a couple of treatments at the Spa; the manager is a very friendly, healthy vegan German-Canadian...she is part of the family and very keen to help her clients improve their health and wellbeing. It would be wise to book ahead on weekends...espec in the busy season.
For exercise I walked around a lot trying to find some trails which were actually not open, so that was another small "off" note to the stay. The trail map doesn't show distances and is apparently inaccurate. Glad I did not end up in a bull paddock...I did discover a field of soybeans, I think, and a white-tailed deer. I am a real big walker though...most people would be happy with the short trails just north of the airfield; lovely woods!!! The view of Rice Lake from the road beside the golf course is stunning!, and the climb up that road is quite aerobic. The pools are not large, but they are nice and wonderfully located. The gym is quite small though, relative to say a pro gym.
It was fun to feed apples to the horses and cluck at the happy hens in the coop; children would love both.
Several small planes flew in for the Sunday brunch; there is an airfield and docks for seaplanes...it was fun to see them take off and land; I expect there might be access to aerial sightseeing?
The staff were gracious and helpful throughout. We also enjoyed a wine tasting on the Saturday...focussed on the house wines in the resto, all of which are good.
I would come back and would recommend the place. It's not high falutin' accommodation like some places in Muskoka, but the meals are top knotch and the staff are great.

Room Tip: cottage 8 is beside the lodge so it's very convenient for pools and meals.
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TorontoCarol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mississauga, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 August 2013

It s the second time we ve been at Elmirst. The place is wonderful, peaceful, very well maintained, lots of wild flowers, cottages are spacious, comfortable and clean. Lots of activities within the resort but, biking and running are great challenges for who likes rolling hills. The Elmhirst family are very friendly and really trying their best to make your stay very enjoyable. Their resort is growing beautifully due to the hard work and honest commitment that they are putting in. The restaurant has an amazing view overlooking the lake and food is excellent. The bistro is nice too with great deserts.
I m planning to return very soon with a bunch of girl friends for a girl weekend get away... I haven t try the spa.
Thanks Greg for taking my teenage son for tubbing. i was also looking to talk to H but time was too fast. Next time.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Marelie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Greg E, Owner at Elmhirst's Resort, responded to this review, 10 August 2013
Thank you so much for the kind posting. We are really glad you enjoyed your stay. In particular it gives us a great feeling when guests notice the efforts of the family members on the Elmhirst team. The resort is much more than an occupation to us and it always feels like the most heartfelt complement when guests notice.

Henry Elmhirst remembers your first visit very well and my wife Martina looks forward to looking after you and your friends in the spa.

Enjoy the rest of the summer with your family.....
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, ON
Level Contributor
25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 August 2013

I thoroughly enjoyed this stay. The cabins are family friendly and well stocked with a BBQ, dishwasher and easy access to the dock/lake. I tried my hand at fishing when I went but I didn't catch anything big (though they say Rice Lake is pentiful!).

The resort has meeting spaces, restaurants and pools (indoor and outdoor) which were very nice. I'd love to stay here again.

Only issue is the price... more than I'd expect for a hotel in this area. I can't compare to other places however.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank lespanman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Elmhirst's Resort

Property: Elmhirst's Resort
Address: 1045 Settlers Line, Keene, Otonabee-South Monaghan, Ontario K0L 2G0, Canada
Region: Canada > Ontario > Otonabee-South Monaghan > Keene
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Keene
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Elmhirst's Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lakeside cottage resort open year round. Fully equipped cottages with fireplace, kitchen, TV & DVD, wifi in cottage; BBQ deck & dock. Dining room & Pub on site; indoor & outdoor pools; boat & motor rentals; fishing guides; golf next door; tennis; sightseeing flights; horseback riding; walking & biking trails. Massages & Spa services. Guided ATV & snowmobile safaris; wine tasting & farm visits. Ideal for family vacations, getaways, weddings, groups & corporate meetings. Family owned & operated. Catering to international guests. Pet friendly. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Elmhirst`s Hotel Keene
Elmhirsts Hotel Keene
Elmhirst's Resort Canada/Keene, Ontario

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