My first time in British Columbia did not disappoint. I stayed at the newly renovated Oak Bay Beach Hotel just outside Victoria. Despite it's convenient location near the city, the property feels world's apart, which is a major perk for those hoping to get some peace and quiet.
The hotel has quite an interesting history. It was built in 1927 and then destroyed in a fire a few years later in 1930. It was rebuilt exactly as it looked before the incident and became a place to "see and be seen." More recently, the property completed a reconstruction of the entire hotel in 2012. Even though there are more modern amenities, the hotel still feels authentic, with many design elements paying homage to its history.
In terms of the amenities, Oak Bay goes above and beyond the call of duty. There are three outdoor hot, natural mineral pools that overlook the water. Inside is a full-service spa along with a steam room and relaxation area with complimentary coffee, tea and healthy snacks. I decided to have their signature treatment, “By The Sea” massage. It's a detoxifying treatment that incorporates a Swedish massage.
Rooms are spacious and very comfortable, as are the common areas like the lounge and three on-site restaurants. My personal favorite is "Kate's Cafe" that is cozy and offers a selection of fresh muffins, pastries and hearty breakfast wraps. It's also designed to look and feel like how it did in the old days and almost resembles a British pub.