Inn on Long Lake

Inn on Long LakeFew Nanaimo hotels or motels have a resort atmosphere and most are strewn along busy highways or tucked into downtown. The Inn on Long Lake, 4700 North Island Highway, is a happy exception with scenic Long Lake at its back door. All 62 sizable rooms in this solid three-story building have large balconies or patios facing the lake.

Built in 1992, the Inn on Long Lake was the “Ramada Limited on Long Lake” until June 2005. The common facilities here are good with a whirlpool, sauna, and fitness room in a separate pavilion beside the lake, all freely accessible to guests. In summer canoes and pedal boats are for hire on the Inn's long pier. Three well-equipped meeting rooms seating up to 45 persons are available to groups.

A standard air-conditioned room with two queen-sized beds, desk, cable TV, bath tub, shower, coffeemaker, and fridge goes for around $125 single or double, plus 13 percent tax ($165 from mid-June to September). Add a kitchenette and the price increases $5 or $10. A suite with a king-sized bed, living room, sofas, and a full kitchen costs between $189 and $239 plus tax, depending on the season. A deluxe honeymoon suite with an oversized whirlpool tub instead of a kitchen is priced the same. Senior and BCAA rates are available, and children under 18 can share their parent's room for free.

The continental breakfast buffet is included in the price. The Inn on Long Lake doesn't have a restaurant or bar, but the numerous restaurants in and around the Nanaimo North Town Centre are within walking distance. There's no room service nor minibars in the rooms, so it's a good idea to bring along a few snacks. Many--but not all--of the Inn's standard rooms have a microwave (ask).

The hotel has two elevators which make all of the rooms wheelchair-accessible, and two rooms are specially-equipped for the physically challenged. All but five of the rooms are non-smoking. Local phone calls and parking are free, but expect to pay extra if you're traveling with a pet. I prefer the Inn on Long Lake over the nearby Grand Hotel Nanaimo and can recommend it if you're driving and want something a little upscale.

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