Couples Resort near Algonquin Park
My wife and I are considering spending a few days at the Couples Resort in Whitney, at the East entrance to Algonquin Park in late Jan for the X-country skiing.
We stayed at the resort several years ago and the food was not good (stuck in the 50's).
I understand that they have made some changes for the better in the last couple of years.
Has anyone stayed and eaten there since these changes took place and if so;
HOW IS IT?
We try to go there almost every year in September - when we can - since we honeymooned there 8 years ago... Kind of a tradition
It has improved immeasurably since that first visit, food-wise. When we first went, we were sure the pie came from the local grocery store, etc... Now, they've got some excellent dishes (try the key lime pie if they have it).... Certainly, the onsite sommelier is a nice touch and they're wine list has some nice touches (not to be found at the LCBO) at reasonable prices. I've forgotten his name but for one so young, he definitely has a serious amount of knowledge.
The food is sincerely better than it used to be. Is it still what I would expect for the price? Not quite. And certainly, within the scope of what is available in the area, it is certainly superior.
It's worth the visit, if only for the heavenly accomodations! And if the snow isn't bad, they'll deliver to your room, if you prefer to stay in the cozy robe in front of the fire!!! ;) We went last year in the winter (Feb) and they were willing to do deliver...............
When we were there a few years ago, the accommodations were beautiful. The food was not. To their credit, they actually described their food as "not gourmet" in their marketing materials. The only highlight was the wine list, which had a decent selection of low end but drinkable wines sold at their cost price. The management asked us about the food and seemed genuinely interested in our opinion, which was, essentially, that it was bad enough to keep us from coming back. They have recently been advertising an upgraded food service,and I'm sure it genuinely is. While acknowledging that we haven't tried it, I suspect it won't be what I would be expecting for their very high rates. High end kitchen staffing in that area can't possibly be easy, especially in the winter.
We spent a weekend there last year and found it to be a very enjoyable experience. Certainly don't go expecting Scaramouche but it is not your local burger joint. We enjoyed two excellent dinners and I agree with the comment about the sommelier. He's young, probably in his twenties, but very knowledgable. I discovered a couple of very good wines from boutique wineries.
Is the couples resort called Bear Trail? We've stayed there once and found the place to be a bit pricey (although we were still students or had just recently started working). I ordered venison and my spouse had chicken and recall the food to be mediocre at best. The best touch was the indoor hottub IMHO.
You know, for this level of resort, compared to what's in my area (Kawarthas), I find their pricing to be pretty much on par... I find that anything outside of Toronto has difficulty maintaining food standards that meet the accomodation standards. I think it's a question of going there with your "I'm here to relax" hat...................... :)