NYE in the Pacific Northwest

Tuesday 29 January 2013

Our trips home are always so busy.  We rush around trying to visit as many people as we can all while trying to experience all things Canadian that we've been missing.  At the end of it all, it doesn't really feel like a 'holiday.'  When planning our trip home this past Christmas, we knew we'd spend 1 week with Joe's family, 1 week with my family and then try to fit in some holiday time in our last week.

After 2 weeks of busy Christmas time fun with our families, I figured it would be nice to have some alone time to ring in the new year.  We didn't want to venture too far and I had somewhat selfish reasons for immediately looking at the West coast.  Two of my very best friends live in Vancouver and I figured if we celebrated the arrival of 2013 somewhere relatively close, we'd be able to swing into the city to see them and their families before returning to Norway.  I began researching lodges in Southern British Columbia and Vancouver Island when Joe mentioned Washington state.  Neither of us had been and it's a quick flight away so it was an easy decision.

Willows Lodge is about a 45 minute drive from the Seattle-Tacoma airport and is located in the picturesque wine-town of Woodinville.  Surrounded by greenery and wineries, one couldn't ask for a better escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Our room was literally, perfection.  It was serene, tastefully decorated, and luxurious without feeling stuffy.  We loved the fireplace, our private balcony overlooking green space and that giant bath tub; oh I could have spent days in that bathtub!

We arrived in the late afternoon on New Year's Eve with enough time to settle in and get ready for the evening.  We started at the hotel's Fireside Wine Cellars for a couple of cocktails and enjoyed a really great local band before heading over to the widely acclaimed Barking Frog restaurant for a 5 star, divine meal.  Each of the 5 courses were impeccable and perfectly paired with wine.  (Unfortunately, I felt my age once more when we left dinner at 11 pm and I was more than a little tipsy.  Before dinner cocktails and a table full of wine pairings were too much for this girl!)  It was the perfect way to ring in 2013.

Our first day in 2013 was off to a bit of a rough start thanks to all of those drinks the night before but was easily cured by a delicious breakfast delivered to our room, a walk around the beautiful gardens and then a trip to the in house spa for a couple's massage.  Afterwards, we relaxed in the outdoor sauna before heading next door to the Red Hook Brewery for a tour.

Willows Lodge was perfection from the start to finish and it is all of the little details that truly made this a 5 star experience for us.  The post-reservation survey sent months in advance to help us prepare and plan our stay, the champagne on arrival, the friendly staff, the decadent and delicious food, the gorgeous gardens right down to the thoughtful and extensive mini-bar selection (bath salts, local wine, French press coffee) really shows the lodge has rightfully earned it's many accolades.  If only we could have stayed longer, I would have loved to borrow bikes from the lodge to tour the local wineries and spend a little more time at the spa... and in that bathtub.

We will meet again Willows Lodge; I'm sure of it.

{In case you are wondering because of my raving review, I was not paid nor gifted anything from Willows Lodge - I just LOVED our stay.}


  1. this place looks lovely! glad you had a nice time

  2. oh I love your dress! the lace sleeves are so elegant :)

    whenever Jon and I have a visit, I want to set one day aside for NOT SEEING ANYONE ELSE. we cram so much in - family, friends, errands, whatever - that all I want, really, is some time for the two of us with nothing concrete to do! one day... haha

  3. I am in love with the PNW. Woodinville looks like a great little town.

  4. I'm so glad you enjoyed your trip to Washington! The Willows Lodge looks lovely, I will have to check it out one of these days...

  5. That place looks so nice!! I've never been to the Pacific Northwest...or past Kansas for that matter. Once we get back stateside, we'll remedy that I'm sure. :)

  6. Glad you had a great time in the PNW! I had no idea about that lodge but it would make the most perfect weekend getaway!

  7. You look beautiful in that black lace dress :)

  8. You look fabulous and Willow Lodge looks like a fantastic spa/resort to spend NYE! Lucky girl ;-)


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