We spent this past weekend celebrating Father’s Day at Nita Lake Lodge, nestled on the shores of Nita Lake just outside of Whistler. We came across the hotel during our last stay in Whistler as we walked around the lake, not knowing at the time that it was named on of the Top 25 Hotels in Canada by TripAdvisor. We had an amazing dinner and brunch there and knew right away: we’d be back. This weekend we took our kids, and both grandmas, to stay at Nita Lake Lodge for what turned out to be a magical weekend.
This panorama doesn’t do justice to the view of either the hotel or the lake and mountains surrounding it. And off to the right is my little family, out in a canoe for the first time. #Amazing
Nita Lake Lodge – Overall Impression
Our experience of the area around Nita Lake, an area perfect for fishing or wading or walking/hiking to Whistler or nearby playgrounds, was that it was a hidden gem for families. After staying there, we can say that Nita Lake Lodge is perfect for families, not just because of its location but for all the amenities designed around making it a very family-friendly luxury hotel.
Nita Lake Lodge is a more ‘intimate’ property than others in Whistler, with only 77 rooms, but you would never feel that from the level of service you get back. With 3 dining options and lots of personalized amenities, it has everything you could want for your getaway (indeed, we only spent a couple of hours in Whistler before deciding we wanted to spend our time at the hotel instead!)
We stayed in a two bedroom suite with 4 adults and 2 kids, with our room overlooking the lake. During our stay we also had a chance to tour a one bedroom suite, which mirrors all the features of our own room, minus the second bedroom and bathroom on the loft level. The bedrooms in the hotel all feature huge bathrooms with soaker tubs and rain showers – had we been traveling without the kids, I would have spent a great deal of time in that soaker tub! Instead, we went to the hot tub. Oh darn, right?! ;)
In the two bedroom suite, the top bedroom is fully enclosed with a shutter door and window for privacy. The grandmothers shared the King bed, while we conveniently pulled over the lounge couch and converted it to a toddler bed (that was an unexpected bonus) and used a hotel-supplied crib for Damien. When we travel, we prefer to keep both kids separated in their own rooms, so they don’t wake each other up, but the bottom bedroom in the suite did not have doors (it was open to the living area). Although you could easily share this room with a second family, or use for your own family, that is an item to note if you want privacy. The Nita Suites offer more private bedroom options.
All Nita Lake Lodge rooms feature a kitchenette tucked into a cabinet that closes, which is quite nice for keeping the kitchen “out of sight.” The kitchenette features your basics from a bar fridge (note, it’s not super cold) and sink to a microwave and toaster. Our favourite feature was the french press and locally roasted beans from Forty Ninth Parallel, this was a nice complement to the local features also seen in the hotel dining options.
The beds were incredibly comfortable, and I’m picky about that, but all members of our family found the pillows too high (Update: lower pillows are available on request). I travel with my own, so I was able to enjoy my sleep… you know, when Damien wasn’t waking up.
Damien slept poorly in the hotel, our first “bad” hotel experience from him. The first night was so poor that I gave up and brought him to our bed, which I haven’t done since he was 8 weeks old! We weren’t super impressed with the hotel crib, it was a bit wobbly and perhaps uncomfortable for him, although he’s slept in play cots just fine. We suspected perhaps he had an upset stomach his first night after drinking so much pool water, but he repeated his poor sleep (slightly better) the next night too.
Hotel Pool, Hot Tubs & Spa
The real highlight of the trip was this:
The pool is a more recent addition to Nita Lake Lodge, overlooking the lake. Previously, the hotel only had two hot tubs off of the spa area (though open to hotel guests), but added this new pool and hot tub off the patio areas. The pool is small, but our kids didn’t care. As a “smaller” hotel, I don’t think the size of the pool will ever be an issue. We spent many hours at the pool and both our kids were jumping in and dunking their heads by the time we left – yay!
Also on site is a Spa that offers full-service options at decent prices, frequented by locals for the great RMTs, as well as a full gym and a Yoga studio.
Complimentary Outdoor Activities
The amenities at the hotel are what set your Nita Lake Lodge experience apart from other hotels in the area. We have never felt like a hotel offered so many unique experiences for families. For Spring / Summer visitors, you can enjoy complimentary canoes, kayaks, paddle boards and fishing rods for use on the lake. We took a canoe out on our first morning at Nita Lake, despite the wind, because as Aiden put it “I will be complaining all day, so we should go now.” The boys did great!
Our second day at the hotel, we took out some of the bikes that are also offered complementary to guests. Although we brought Aiden’s bike, the hotel complemented its fleet of new Norco adult bikes with 2 kid-sized bikes, 1 bike with training wheels and even a little bike trailer for 1-2 kids. Damien rode in the trailer while Ianiv pulled him, though he didn’t enjoy it as much as his bike seat at home. My mom and I rode with Aiden for his longest bike ride ever and he did GREAT! It was so great to go on a path with him without worrying about car traffic!
All of these amenities are offered on a first-come-first-served basis from the front desk and the friendly staff are on hand to help set you up.
If your kids love trains, be sure to check out the Rocky Mountaineer as it pulls into the train station (that is a part of the hotel!), or perhaps ditch your car and take the train up instead. With shuttles running into Whistler, you could easily skip taking your car.
Hotel Dining Options
The resort offers 3 dining options from fine dining to casual cafe. Aura offers fine dining sourced from local farms, foraging and fisheries as well as from the roof-top garden. Cure offers casual food that is anything but what you would expect from a lounge (we were very impressed), and Fix is a cozy cafe offering housemade breakfasts, lunches, pastries and a selection of greens from the roof-top garden. You won’t be disappointed no matter which dining option you take and, I would suggest you skip eating in Whistler and dine here instead. We have wasted so much time finding places to eat in all our trips to Whistler – at Nita Lake Lodge, you can be assured a good meal, no matter your price point!
Disclosure: we stayed at the Nita Lake Lodge at a discounted rate. All post content ideas are original and all opinions are my own. The full photo set from our stay at Nita Lake Lodge can be found here.