Myself and Phil just spent a weekend at Briars Resort, Jackson’s Point and thoroughly enjoyed it. The resort is only a short one hour drive away from Toronto, and perfect if you are looking for an escape to the country.
The resort has everything you need onsite, from an outdoor pool, an indoor pool and whirlpool (currently closed due to Covid), numerous walking trails on the grounds, a fabulous spa, a golf course, and of course, the lake is right at your doorstep. It was the perfect staycation for us for the long weekend, because we wanted to have options to do some activities but we didn’t want to have to drive here and there.
We have stayed in a few hotels during the pandemic, and have felt safe in them all and this one was no exception. Everyone was masked and practising social distancing. They had the dining room and the lounge area set up for social distancing too, and there was plexi- glass at the reception area.
The Briars is a heritage resort, with history that dates back to 1840. The resort is a great mix of old world charm with modern amenities. I particularly enjoyed exploring all the hidden nooks and crannies within the resort and admiring some of the Victorian era charm in the stone manor and Peacock House.
The resort is opened all year around, in Winter the numerous walking trails turn into cross country skiing routes and snowshoeing trails and the lake is the perfect spot for some ice fishing. In summer, you have access to the private beach if you are an overnight guest, and here you can rent out row boats, kayaks and paddle boards, or take a fun boat tour out on Lake Simcoe. There is also tennis courts for your use if that tickles your fancy!
Phil was eager to play golf as he had looked at the course online and been impressed. He tells me that it didn’t disappoint and it was one of the best courses he has played this year. In his words “the course is well manicured with nice greens and bunkers, the course is challenging but fair and has a good pace of play.” He also mentioned that the food in the bar at the gold club was very good! His rating was a whopping 5 stars out of 5 and his only complaint is he can’t drive there and play any weekend he wants because you have to be a member!
While Phil was golfing, I treated myself to some spa time and had the spa manicure along with a Swedish massage. They were very meticulous when it came to Covid-19 measures; everyone was masked (including me for the entire time I was in the spa), I had to wash my hands upon entry into the spa, but before I washed my hands, they ensured to sanitize the sink in front of me. They called me the day before I went to the spa to do a Covid check and then did another one when I arrived at the spa. I had to fill in a form with my contact information and they sanitized the pen and clipboard before giving it to me. Overall, I felt very safe and comfortable in there. Both my treatments were fab! During my spa manicure I had a paraffin wax treatment on my hands, and it was amazing, my hands were unbelievably soft and moisturized afterwards! The spa definitely gets 5 out of 5 stars from me!
They have a range of accommodation at Briars ranging from inn rooms, to private cottages and lodgings. We were in the Governor Simcoe Suite, which was enormous and had a balcony off it. We loved having the balcony because it meant we could have a nightcap outside before going to bed! The whole vibe of the resort is definitely reminiscent of the Victorian era, so if you are looking for a very modern and crisp resort, this may not be for you.
Drinkwaters Lounge is a great area to relax and enjoy a cocktail, and has a great patio area that you can enjoy if the weather allows. We had a package that included dinner, and our single complaint from our entire stay was that there seemed to be only one dinner menu available. Whether you were eating in the dining room, or in Drinkwaters Lounge, it was the same menu, which was a bit disappointing; especially given it isn’t cheap to stay there. We would have liked the option of a more elevated menu while we were there, however, even though the menu was somewhat casual and limited, the food we were served was great – as was the dessert! I highly recommend the sticky toffee pudding. Breakfast was also very tasty and the service we received from all staff was great.
Overall, Briars Resort gets 4/5 stars from me, and I would definitely return again! You can check out the resort further here.
Until next time 🙂
Disclaimer: Our stay at Briars Resort was discounted, however all opinions expressed in this post are my own.