I am finally getting around to processing and editing my photos from our first of April trip to Saltspring Island.
This week I am going to do a little switch from my photo information to information about the bed and breakfast Darlene and I stayed at on Saltspring Island (of course I include photos). Darlene and I had never stayed at a B&B so we were a little apprehensive. What a great first experience we had at the Blackberry Glen B&B. Our hosts Jason and John put us at ease and made our 4 days on Saltspring very special. Darlene and I would highly recommend the Blackberry Glen to anyone heading to Saltspring. Let me take you on a little tour…
The Blackberry Glen is about 5 minutes from the main village of Ganges on the road to Long Harbour. Long Harbour is where the interisland ferry terminal is located. It is set back off the road so it is very peaceful and quiet (mind you I think most of the island is). Notice the daffodils growing beside the sign. Daffodils grow wild everywhere on the island.
The Blackberry Glen is located on several acres with several scenic ponds. One pond has a houseboat anchored in it, which is to be renovated and offered as a unique bedroom. The grounds are well maintained creating a very peaceful and scenic area to enjoy. John and Jason have ducks and geese that roam the grounds. The native little black tail deer enjoy grazing the open lawns. The guest rooms are on the upper level and the living room and dining area are on the main level. John and Jason use the basement as their private space. When we were there the cabin you see to the right in the photo was under construction. When completed it will be a private studio available for rent. A deck connecting the middle area of the house where the dining room patio doors are and the studio was also under construction. The house when John and Jason bought it just over 2 years ago was not a B&B. They have done an incredible job converting and renovating it.
When you first arrive you are greeted by one of your hosts who give you a tour of the house. The tour starts here in the entry with information about the restaurants and attractions on Saltspring. The binder you see on the table in the photo contains menus for most of the restaurants and island info. There is also a copy of the binder in your room. Additional information such as ferry schedules, winery tours, etc. are also found on the table or on the dresser.
Guests are welcome to enjoy the cozy living room. There is a bottle of local blackberry wine on the table for you to enjoy. I enjoyed mornings before breakfast sitting here looking through the collection of local art and photography books.
Darlene and I did get one sunny afternoon to enjoy the warmth of the sundeck. I am sure during the summer it is a wonderful place to sit and enjoy a cocktail before you head out for dinner at one of the great restaurants in Ganges. We did use the hot tub every evening, enjoying the stars overhead.
Our bedroom was the smallest the B&B has to offer. As you can see it was very cozy. It was perfect for Darlene and I. They call it the Ganges room and it was $99 for the off season and $109 for the high season, ya that’s right $99. Not only a great place to stay, but one that fit our budget also. I had great sleeps in the comfy bed which has a down comforter (I am sure all the fresh air, exercise and local brews helped). The room has its own bath with shower. Every room has its own TV and DVD player. All rooms are WiFi connected. Everyday Darlene and I would return to find our bed had been made up and the room tidied.
Upstairs there is also a small little room that has a huge collection of DVD’s, books and magazines. This room also has all the fixings for coffee and tea whenever you would like a cup. The special treat in this room is the fresh home baked cookies that are set out for the guests to enjoy every afternoon.
Breakfasts were served at 9 a.m. giving us plenty of time for a sleep in or a brisk morning walk. As you can see from the photo on our last day Darlene and I were the only guests and so we had Jason and John serving just us. Boy were we spoiled. Breakfasts were a delight, always starting with fresh fruit moving to the main courses such as scrambled duck eggs, pancakes with orange zest, unlimited coffee and great conversations. Breakfasts were not hurried, but conversations with guests and our hosts allowed everyone to get to know each other. It was also a time to plan the day’s activities as all the guests would share what they had done on the island. Jason and John were an invaluable source of information, supplying local info, knowledge and great maps.
Jason and John besides creating a great house for their B&B and serving wonderful breakfasts also created a very relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere for Darlene and I. They never gave us poor advice about where to eat or what to see or do. It was like having our own personal tour consultants. One afternoon they joined use for wine and and cheese when we came back early in the afternoon armed with a local wine and goat cheese. I felt like I was visiting Jason and John and not just renting a room from them. As I said this was our first experience at a B&B and our first big airplane holiday. I really feel that we were blessed to have been so lucky to find the Blackberry Glen Bed and Breakfast.
http://blackberryglen.com/ If you plan to visit Saltspring give the Blackberry Glen a try you will not be disappointed. Watch for room sales in the off season also.
Next post I’ll talk more about what we did on Saltspring Island.