Four Diamond Shines Bright
By Glenn Cassie
Photos by S. Smith
Contributors to Travelink Publishing
Most people think New York or London when imagining a four diamond, sophisticated resort hotel in an urban centre.
Save yourself the airfare and check into Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort and Spa, nestled on the water in the heart of Victoria, BC. The Delta Victoria shares the same sort of status as other world class destinations and its eight hours closer to the West Coast than London!
We discovered what that preferential designation meant on a short stay in this elegant, well-appointed resort. Our room boasted a spectacular vista, which perfectly framed the harbour and city beyond. The daytime sights here include float-planes en route to Vancouver, Washington state ferries, tugs, recreational craft, kayakers, and every other facet of a working harbour that makes the view so captivating.
We started our day with a hearty breakfast in LURE Seafood Restaurant and Bar which, like most of the hotel's 239 rooms, faces harbourside. Fresh fruits, baked goods, and all the standard hot breakfast fare are served every morning a la carte. After our second cup of coffee, there was no option but to hit the gym. For those inclined to walk or run, Delta Victoria is bordered by several kilometers of seawall that stretch out around the city’s harbour. With Washington’s Olympic mountains in the distance, this is a scenic inner city jog. But for those of us who forgot our running shoes, there was no need to leave the resort.
The hotel’s fitness centre sits at ocean level, off the seawall promenade. A workout, sauna, jacuzzi or swim is a must. Every member of the staff here is a fitness professional to help you navigate the variety of cardio machines and exercise equipment. The ten-meter pool has glass walls and ceiling, creating a private, yet bright and inviting area. It was easy easy to swim thirty laps with the sun pouring in overhead.
Discreetly framed behind the pool is an enormous jacuzzi for a post-swim wind down. A cedar sauna is located inside, just off the dressing rooms. Full, fit, and energized, I walked upstairs to the lobby for an appointment at The Spa.
The Spa at Delta Victoria offers a full-range of massage and esthetic services for women and men. I had the opportunity to experience an invigorating men’s skin rejuvenation treatment. Lisa, one of the many professionals on staff, performed minor miracles, including a face and neck massage with peppermint and sandalwood that sent me into a trance. I had to be rolled off the massage bed and escorted out the door on a dolly! Of course I’m joking about the dolly, but not about Lisa’s expertise. The Spa at Delta Victoria has been voted best place in Victoria for a facial as well as best place in Victoria for a massage. Believe me: This is one luxury you can’t afford to miss.
In the evening twilight we watched the city lights from our suite, most notably the majestic provincial Parliament building, twinkle and glisten, reflecting across the water. For those wanting to linger over the view in their room, the Delta Victoria provides complimentary inroom coffee. Or, for the wine enthusiast, one of the best select wine stores on Vancouver Island is right in the lobby. With an eclectic range of local, regional and international award winning wines, the oenophile will be in paradise.
The Delta Victoria is host to what no five star resort can do without: A five star restaurant, LURE Seafood Restaurant and Bar. A mouthwatering inventory of fine West Coast cuisine is served every evening in its intimate atmosphere. There are no tables here exempt from the harbour view, and certainly no one should hesitate to order at least three courses. We began with a lobster risotto garnished with black truffles and parmesan crisps, as well as a delicate and dreamy asparagus and pear soup. A light grapefruit ice prepared us for our mains which, given the range of menu selection was no easy choice. After much deliberation we selected a grilled Ahi tuna with melt-in-your-mouth Digby scallops on a papaya salsa. This dish was sensational. Pork tenderloin, cooked to perfection, was served with persimmon apple compote and a rhubarb cardamom jus. These flavours were a marriage made in culinary heaven. Deserts were a work of art: A decadent creme brulee to drool over, and a subtle rhubarb-pumpkin filo-wrapped tart, accented with creme fraiche and a drizzle of caramel. Once again, we requested the dolly to wheel us out! Words cannot describe the warm, elegant and unobtrusive service, nor the exquisite detail in food presentation. Whether an intimate night out or a group celebration, LURE Seafood Restaurant and Bar is a must, must, must.
On the morning of our departure, I put on the soft and fluffy terry cloth bathrobe provided for each guest during their stay and sat down to plan doing it all again! The Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe and Spa might be Victoria’s best kept secret. From its spectacular inner-harbour views, courteous and professional staff, the caliber of its kitchen, and its many guest amenities, The Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe and Spa has refined the "pointe" of hospitality to a tee.
If You Go:
Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort & Spa
Phone: 250-360-2999 or 1-800-667-4677
Web site: www.deltahotels.com
Vancouver and other lower mainland travelers: B.C. Ferries accommodates travelers from Tsawwassen or Horseshoe Bay terminals to Swartz Bay. General Information for sailing schedule is 1-888-BCFERRY (223-3779)
For our State-side Neighbors: Either the Victoria Clipper, The Coho ferry from Port Angeles, or the Washington State Ferries will meet your needs
Regulary scheduled airline, float plane and helicopter service are also available from Vancouver and Seattle.
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