Charming, unique, friendly A review of Manresa Castle

My husband and I stayed at Manresa Castle three nights in August 2004. We appreciated the comfortable room, friendly service, and unique atmosphere; but we would stay there again for the smoke-free, cozy bar furnished like a Victorian parlor. I'm not a hotel bar person, nor much of a drinker, but we had drinks before and/or after dinner every night and thoroughly enjoyed the tasty, reasonably priced drinks; the atmosphere; and the friendly, professional service.

The room was comfortable, with a good water view and lots of closet space. The shower was cramped, but had fantastic water pressure. The room had a telephone and cable TV, and hairdryer and iron were available at the desk. There was no A/C, no ceiling fan, and no air flow from the window, which had only one small opening. A small portable fan was provided, but it was very noisy. So at night it was either a little too warm or a little too noisy. (We asked at the desk about the smoke reported here in the first review; they said that happens only about three times a summer; we had no problem with smoke while we were there.)

We ate dinner at the restaurant one night. The dining room was pretty. Service was attentive and quiet. The presentation of the food was very nice. We found the food itself to be a little bland but still enjoyed the experience.

Breakfast, however, was a total zero. It was served in the hotel's only ugly room, in the basement with a soft-drink machine. No protein of any kind whatsoever, unless you count milk for your coffee; not even peanut butter or cream cheese. No fruit, no cereal, no oatmeal, no bagels. Just stale bread, muffins, and croissants which tasted as if they had been bought prepackaged from the days-old bin at the grocery store; jelly and some sort of butter product; barely adequate coffee with some dairy product which was not marked to indicate whether it was cream, 2%, skim, or what; and juice. And to add insult to injury, a tip jar. Just pretend breakfast is not included and find yourself a nice restaurant elsewhere. After the first morning, we took ourselves out the next two mornings to a diner at the local airport: drive south on Route 20; when 20 breaks right stay straight on 19; turn right into the airport and eat at the Spruce Goose Cafe, where you can watch tiny airplanes land against a backdrop of the Olympic mountains. French toast was $4 and very tasty; service was friendly. The cafe is about a 10 minute drive, and it opens at 7 for breakfast. Or find somewhere on Water Street in Port Townsend.

The location: You cannot walk anywhere you want to go unless you're willing to walk in the bike lane of the town's major highway, with trucks rushing by you at speed. If you like to take a pretty walk first thing in the morning or after dinner, you should drive down to Water Street (only about 10 minutes) because the local neighborhood, other than the Castle itself, is drab and rather depressing. (But as my husband quipped, if the neighborhood depresses you so much you decide to kill yourself, at least a funeral home is conveniently nearby.)

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Manresa Castle
221 reviews