“One of the Best Luxury Hotels in New England- service betters the Four Seasons!”
Having heard about the Ocean House we decided to take a one night trip "sans" kids to the Ocean House on Patriots Day (April 17) for one night.
The drive through Watch Hill to the hotel was beautiful past the large 19th century cottages (okay 8 Bed room mansions but "cottages" to those who built them) lining the Atlantic Ocean. We rounded the corner and the Ocean House with its Mid Victorian Cupola, Garrets, Sweeping Porches and Victorian lattice work came into view. Maybe it had something to do with the incredible view over the dunes to the ocean or perhaps the the picture perfect sunny (unseasonable 75 f temperature) weather with a nice sea breeze affected us, but we were immediately captivated by the beautiful setting. The rolling perfect green lawns, the still blooming mid April daffodils and daisies and the warm greeting by the valet who retrieved our luggage and parked our car (and refused my proffered tip with a quick "thank you all services are included").
We were ushered into the lobby- restored two years ago to its appearance in the late 19th century. A long hall way, with high ceilings bordered by fluted columns framed the ocean view at the end of the hall at the restaurant (Seasons: more on that later). We were ushered up to our room by what I think was the assistant manager (the bellman was a few minutes behind- no tips taken or allowed) - who briefed us on the property- how to work the tub, television. He pointed out that all the snacks (mixed nuts, chocolate covered malted milk balls, granola snacks and soft drinks) were included at no charge. About the time he finished his introduction a member of the wait staff delivered complimentary scones baked at the hotel with a lemon curd sauce that my wife declared delicious.
Our room was lovely with views from the side of the hotel overlooking the ocean and the large "cottages" lined up on the bluff stretching the the light house at the point of Watch Hill). The bed linens were (according to my wife) a very exclusive and expensive French brand and the king bed was comfortable with a three inch down filled mattress cover. The bath room was a throw back to the early twentieth century with black and white grouted tile on the floor and white grouted tile to the ceiling. The shower was as good as any hotel we have stayed at for water pressure (and my wife loves a very hot shower and declared it perfect. Double sinks, all the amenities and again what my wife said were very expensive and exclusive French towels.
The porch was incredible with white rockers lining it- think Victorian cottage seaside. April is the shoulder season - so we understand that during the summer season that it is almost impossible to grab a rocker on the "high porch".
We did run into a bit of glitch at lunch, the only glitch in our stay, on the first day (the restaurant closes at 230pm). When we showed up the host/hostess station was not attended...so we stepped through the bar area (it opens up into the beautiful Season restaurant that over looks the ocean and back porch). The hostess, looked harried and over looked tried to shoo us off saying that they were understaffed and she was not sure when they could serve us. My wife smiled and said something like it was a shame that we were staying there and that there was no where close to eat (and there was not with the town being pretty much closed down). After a 15 minute wait we were seated. Not sure if it were her fault- but the restaurant apparently was overwhelmed by visitors drawn by the unseasonable weather- I mention this that it was the only flaw in a flawless performance- that was the equal to or better than my own "Gold Standard" the Four Seasons chain.
On the first level (down stairs or elevator) one level from the lobby or hotel is the lap pool with French doors that are opened to the large patio with incredible views over the dunes to the ocean. The fitness center, although not the largest was stocked with the latest Pre-Cor Elliptical, treadmill and bikes and Pre- Cor resistance training machines and dumbells. Very nice and as good as it gets for a hotel (outside of the Marriott Istanbul Asia whose health club has a tie in with Johns Hopkins Health Clubs).
The dinner at Seasons was flawless- the wait staff helpful, pleasant (young) but unobtrusive. In fact Who ever is heading up the staff training at the Ocean House deserves plaudits because from the bellman, to the wait staff, to the valet, to the front desk staff and spa staff the workers at the Ocean House were about the most professional and knowledgeable I have ever encountered and I stayed in hotels on every continent except Africa!
Anyway dinner at Season was incredible, the venue over looking the Ocean and the "white" nautical look of the dining room added to the experience. The chef uses, as much as possible local ingredients that are selected each day- and the menu derived from the availability of these products. They offered a tasting menu- but we opted out- my wife ended up with the ribeye steak with cheek medallions (braised in wine) which she declared superb. I had cod wrapped in lettuce and braised with a wine sauce. Sound strange but it was good.
The beach is very nice for New England- there is an outdoor stand that serves food to hotel guests.
All in all a great experience and highly recommended!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC