9 October 2017

Ontario Motel Experience

Ontario, Canada
This September, my boyfriend and I went on this great Ontario road trip, we travelled five days and four nights from Toronto to Ganonaque through highway 60 and went back to Toronto through Trenton. This is the reason why we did a lot of sleeping in motels. It was our first experience with motels because I have never seen one in Italy and in Europe either,  if not in those American thriller movies. I have to say they fitted perfectly to the idea we had about them already. They all have a similar ground plan, generally "L" shaped, consisting of road facing single building with connected rooms whose doors faced a parking lot. You arrive, leave your car, get in and sleep, same like in a movie. All of them had a wide window; we always kept the shades drawn in order to avoid people to see our belongings. They were located along the main roads, the highways had plenty of them and while driving through, you can easily identify them. The managing office was attached to the guest’s rooms. The ones at the reception seemed to have a single duty: handing out the key to the customer. They were not inclined to do more.  The motels exposed the board vacancy or no vacancy by the street, so you know if rooms are still available while passing through. We had pre-booked all our nights through Booking.com but I think the motels are a kind of place where at last moment, while driving from one place to another, you can decide to stop and ring to the reception at any time if finding the vacancy board sign. Even if they were similar to each other, in shape and accommodation facilities, each of the one we stayed had its particularity: one had an attached kitchenettes with few things to prepare breakfast by ourselves, and other one offered free breakfast, another one with barbecue and children equipped area and so on. I would better say that mostly they all were to give just accommodation with few or no amenities. Some of them seemed neglected and often dirty, rented without any passion for hospitality.  Here following the list and details of the places where we slept during our road trip.

1.      Dwight Village Motel. It is located along the highway 60, some km away from the east gate of Algonquin Park. It is though convenient for the ones who start the visit at the west gate and finish it at the east gate. We arrived at 8.45 pm and the lady at the reception seemed didn't want to be bothered with our questions about the restaurants and breakfast. She gave a photocopy with a list and went away fast to the first floor where probably she had her own accomodation. This has been my second favorite motel among the ones we stayed: clean and well equipped. It had a wide selection of opportunities for children. Loved the fact there was a fire pit and barbeques for guests to use, although we didn't get a chance too! Tea bags and water boiler came with the price we paid. There are two fast food restaurants close by. Pay attention because they shut down very early so you better hurry before 8 pm if you want to fill your stomach with something. Moose Cafè, the bar next door, frequented by Canadians, is a great place for breakfast. Here we finally saw the originality of Canada.
2.      Barry's Bay Golf Resort Motel was the one where we slept the second night. It had a fantastic location. It wasn't located along the main road but in one of the back streets. The special thing about this place was that it was inside a golf club therefore surrounded by beautiful lakefront scenery with amazing nature and environment. I highly recommend this place, it is really worth to drive out of the Algonquin park and sleep here. We loved this location. The room where we slept was very clean and homey. During the night the sky was full of stars and we could see the milky way. The manager was same like the lady of the first motel. Probably it is a way of running motels. They say what is necessary and nothing more, privacy at most. Same like the first one, Barry's Bay motel offered tea bags and boiler. While sleeping here remember that there are no nearby restaurants. Only Tim Hortens and Mc. Donald's are there in town. They are open the whole night. I would have loved to stay two more days here. They also offer golf corses for their guests.
3.      Imperial Inn 1000 Island Motel was owned by a Chinese family. It is nestled in the heart of the 1000 Islands, close to Ganonaque. Imperial Inn offers comfortable, tiny and clean accommodations close to all major attractions. The building was quite old and needed a renovation. Certainly it should have been a budget solution for what they offer, contrary, it was overpriced, but ok for a night. The best two things about this place are that they had a Chinese restaurant attached with the motel and the breakfast was included even though they offered tea bags and water boiler as well.
4.      Bayside Motel in Trenton run by an Indian family was located close to the Trenton town. The girl at the reception gave us prompt answers to all our questions. After getting the key we immediately left to seek a restaurant because it was almost around 9 pm which means already too late for dinner. We got in to our room only later, after supper. It was out dated and it could have been cleaner. It had an attached kitchenette area where to have a quick breakfast (tea bags, water boiler, bread toaster and microwave) but unfortunately it was dirty, there were crumb of unimaginable things everywhere on floor and even the microwave was dirty so we preferred not using them. There was a bad smell in our room that I couldn’t get to sleep. The window in the kitchenette didn't have a curtain so we woke up really because the sunlight came into our room at dawn.  I don't think I will return back here. It needs a total renovation, I mean "total" because the owner need to upgrade his mentality about the cleaning and the motel itself needs a renovation.
This have been our experience in motels; quite enough to understand how do they work. I hope I have given you the right idea about them.  At least you now know that they all have tea bags and water boiler…

Join the conversation!

  1. Ontario is such a beautiful place to visit. The peaceful and pleasant ambiance of this place is so fulfilling. I will definitely put this on my bucket list to my next travel visit. and those motel looks so interesting, perfect place to stay.


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