We’ve been back at home for a full week and I’m still enjoying the relaxation my spirit and body desperately needed and received from our Parksville vacation. We kept very busy with the kids for the first half of our trip, but thanks to the family friendly amenities offered from the Tigh-Na-Mara resort, we spent most of the second half of our trip relaxing and spending time with our kids.
Saving the best for last, Ray and I enjoyed an evening of pampering from the Grotto Spato celebrate our 10 year wedding anniversary on July 17th. Thanks to the babysitting services offered from the Tigh-Na-Mara, we skipped away to enjoy 4 hours of heavenly relaxation at the Grotto Spa and Treetop Tapas & Grill. We were supplied with 2 babysitters that our children were already comfortable with because of getting to know them earlier in the week during activities like “kids club” & “dinner and a movie”. It was just so lovely to leave our bungalow without any kids upset because they were already engaged by Kelly and Leah. As a mom – getting to enjoy my massage and time alone with Ray, knowing our kids were happy, content and well taken care of was wonderful. I was so incredibly relaxed after my massage, I couldn’t even remember I was a mother of 4 <grin>. We had no idea Grotto Spa was one of the top spa facilities in Western Canada when we booked our vacation. It was an absolutely wonderful and magical discovery once we walked through the doors.
We were delighted with the 5 star level of pampering we received at Grotto Spaand like the rest of the Tigh-Na-Mara resort, the customer service was simply amazing. My hour long massage flew by because I was chatting with my Spa angel who was an Island local. It was so good to chat with someone who has lived their whole life on Vancouver Island. The business model of sourcing and supporting everything local is well demonstrated throughout the Tigh-Na-Mara and Spa. The Grotto Spa features an amazing organic seaweed skin line made by an Island local. The Tigh-Na-Mara gift shop is also loaded with local artisans, soaps and bath balms made by a local Sydney company, and candles from Granville Island. Even the art work on display throughout the Spa is locally crafted wood burl art and it’s a special detail that I noticed right away.
Back to our spa escape…. I enjoyed my 60 minute massage, then met Ray in the mineral pool where we spent the next 45 minutes de-toxing in the 2,500 square foot mineral pool, having fun moving between the ‘cool splash cascading waterfall’ and whirlpool in between mineral pool treatments. From there, still in our bath robes, we took the elevator up to the 3rd floor and enjoyed a bottle of wine and endless tapas at the Treetop Tapas & Grill. Our server Richard, was extremely friendly, efficient and knowledgeable about the 20+ different plates of tapas that were brought to our table (our favorites being the cod with shitakee mushroom and the prawn and scallop dish). We managed to work our way through the entire menu…plus some, finished our bottle of wine, toasted our 10 years together, and mused about the old days as we held hands across the table. We couldn’t have asked for a better way to celebrate our anniversary, just the two of us…thank you “Grotto Spa”…we’ll be back.
When we got back to the bungalow, we were greeted with hugs and kisses and heard about the great time our kids had thanks to Leah and Kelly. The kids couldn’t wait to tell us about their evening. They ate pizza, read books, went on a nature walk and had fun at the playground…sounds like they had almost as much fun as we did. What a way to spend our final day in paradise. It couldn’t have gone better.
I also wanted to mention how Eco-minded the resort is. I can’t help but notice this aspect of a company and the Tigh-Na-Mara is leading the way in all regards. I’ve mentioned their local footprint, but they also offer guests recycling amenities, have greened up their off-site events ~ when dishes cannot be used they use earth-friendly tableware, they don’t use paper towels in the Spa or restaurant bathrooms (cloth towels are washed and reused) and green cleaning supplies for each cabin are on-route to the resort. There are also ‘protected’ arbutus trees that bend and reach into the beautiful Island skies ~ the resort is very respectful of even pruning these beautiful protected trees. End-to-end this resort has it all with family, child, and earth friendly services and attention to details that brought on the WOW factor to guests looking for a resort dedicated to keeping their guests happy and returning year after year.
Ray and I would like to thank all the great staff at the Tigh-Na-Mara resort for making our stay an extremely memorable and enjoyable one. We would especially like to thank Kelly, the marketing coordinator for all her special attention and commitment to ensuring that our stay was top notch. Mission accomplished Kelly. We can’t wait to return next year – all 4 kids are already asking when are we going back!