Two of my girlfriends and I made our way to Lakedale Resort in Friday Harbor a few weeks ago, tempted by their website that touted private cabins, glamping (glamorous camping), and pet friendly packages. We decided to check out just how pet friendly their cabins were by bringing along my friend's sweet tempered chocolate lab for the trip.
After a few hours drive to Anacortes, we were surprised by the hefty prices of the ferries to the San Juan Islands. A frequent rider of the Seattle/Bainbridge ferry, I was expecting similar prices, so the $60 for car + driver cost was a bit stunning - in total it was nearly $90 for the three of us. A trip to the San Juans isn't a penny-pincher type of trip!
The cabin we stayed in was beautiful, with yellow natural wood, full kitchen and a high vaulted ceiling. We enjoyed a stroll to the main lodge's patio overlooking one of the lakes (they stock it with fish, so bring your poles and bait if that's your cup of tea). We chatted with another couple who had been whale watching that day and then had the unique experience of witnessing an eagle feeding by the local sheriff. When you visit, be sure to talk with the staff about what's available to do during your stay.
It was lovely, spending time in the warm cabin (complete with a lightswitch operated fireplace) amid nature. One of the two bedrooms was in the lofted area creating a nice spacious feel. Do plan to cook your own breakfast: while lodge and glamping guests get treated to a complimentary breakfast, cabin dwellers do not.
It's a bit of a trek to Lakedale - if you're looking for just a night away, there are other cabin options closer to Seattle. But if you're looking to create a full getaway experience, complete with fishing, whale watching, kayaking and hiking, consider a multi-day trip to the area. The resort was certainly family friendly and I could imagine renting multiple cabins for a fun family reunion experience.
I asked my friend, Alida Moore, what her feedback was on the dog-friendly element to our stay. Here's what she had to say:
"Lakedale is full of rugged adventure, with just the right touch of canine elegance. Our fine, furred friend Maizie began to wag her tail as we approached the resort. When she saw the trees and meadow, she began to whine, eager to get out of the car and run around.
Once we entered our cabin, she ran straight for the plush, oversized dog bed. There was also a cellophane bag of homemade dog treats on the counter, tied neatly with a raffia bow, more treats than she could eat during our overnight stay, not for lack of trying. We were happy to bring the rest home with us. Her owner also appreciated the provided food and water dish, while Maizie spent the majority of the night snuggled deep into the bed, which was (sadly) much nicer than the bed she has at home. "