Last month Keira and I were guests of the Magnolia Hotel in Victoria, which was my first stay a hotel right in the city’s inner harbour. After driving from Nanaimo along a snowy Malahat Highway we were greeted at the curb with a smile and promptly checked into our room. The lobby was warm with the aroma of hot apple cider as guests lounged in front of the fireplace.
Our room was very large for a boutique hotel with plenty of room for two girls and their luggage, two queen beds, a deep bathtub to accomodate Keira’s evening wind-down soak, bath bombs, Aveda care products, mini-bar with sink and mirror, desk, and sitting area with wine and cheese waiting for us upon arrival. Directly behind the Fairmont Empress, our view of the legislature buildings and the harbour was spectacular as lights twinkled and the snow fell gently on the capital city.
In the morning we had enjoyed facials in the Spa Magnolia downstairs and then we shopped til we dropped.
Everything we needed was within walking distance of the Magnolia — from the Royal BC Museum and Rogers Chocolates to the Bay Centre. Our Victoria trip was packed full of activities as we walked over to the Empress for Afternoon Tea, and did a tea tasting at Silk Road before enjoying a satisfying dinner at Prime Steakhouse on the main floor of the hotel. In true steak-house fashion the cuts of meat were grilled to perfection with ample side dishes to compliment the meal.
I’ve stayed at only three other hotels in Victoria and each have their merits. What I liked about the Magnolia was definitely its location and its very warm atmosphere. Although there was a grand piano in the luxuriously furnished lobby, it lacked pretentiousness and was very welcoming. There is great value to be had at the hotel (with rooms starting at around $160 this season) along with a really nice touch of class and comfort. To top it off, the staff was friendly and accommodating, making for a very relaxing stay.
The Magnolia Hotel is located at 623 Courtney Street in the heart of Victoria. Follow them on Twitter or Facebook for special offers and hotel news. If you’re heading over this winter, Keira has posted a list of regional Christmas activities.