Rested and rejuvenated are a couple words I would use to describe how I am feeling since staying at the The Cottages for a week this August. I first discovered The Cottages when I was planning a visit over Christmas last year. I booked a couple days to have a visit with my mom on Salt Spring Island (SSI) last December and when I arrived and checked in I fell in love! Fast forward to summer 2018 and I have been invited back by their team to enjoy a full week in one of their rustic yet modern cottages on Bullock Lake.
If you have been reading this space for some time now you will know that I was raised on SSI. My family moved to the island when I was 4 years old and I left at 18 right after graduating high school. I spent several years traveling and attending university and felt quite content exploring the world then settling in Calgary, AB. Funny how things work out and after some time I started missing the island more and more, after trying to put my finger on why, I finally realized it was simply because I missed home. Familiar places and faces that are a part of who I am. So now I try and go back as often as possible.
For this visit I hoped Brenna could join but she was unable to so I invited a couple gfs from Vancouver, Karen and Jen. Both were new to visiting the island so I made sure we did it up right, Island Style! Here is a little day in our life:
I love to cook, especially when I get to use fresh, organic, local products sourced from some of the hundreds of farm stands around the island. The kitchens at The Cottages are fully equipped making prepping and entertaining a breeze. You have everything you need in the kitchen; coffee maker, flatware, cutlery, glasses, pots, pans and so on...just bring your favourite ingredients and get creative.
*not pictured - I also bought a crab from the fishery and cooked an epic crab + pasta feast - it was drool worthy, just sayin'*
Morning coffee from Salt Spring Coffee
Well fed and caffeinated we headed into town to check out the Saturday Market which is famous on SSI for it's local vendors, artisans, craftspeople, famers and musicians. Then popped over to the Salt Spring Wild Cider for lunch - mainly a liquid lunch ;)
Omg, these guys are nailing it! From the cider produced onsite to the new menu featuring healthy, local deliciousness we did not want to leave! Note: try their Hopped Apricot and their award winning Dry and Semi-dry ciders - these can all be ordered online as well...worth it..TRUST!
Living the good life
Local Organic Meatballs with farm fresh slaw and Stuffed Dates with Chorizo...nuff said.
Cider + Appies
From here we headed back to The Cottages and back down to the lake with cider in hand and bikinis on bods.
Wild blackberry bushes at The Cottages
For snack time we added in a little more local fare including some SSI goat cheese, SSI Tomato Jelly (try this on grilled cheese - dying) and fresh picked blackberries off the bushes that line the lake at The Cottages.
Salt Spring Wild Cider on the dock at The Cottages
Oh did I mention Bullock Lake is private? So only the guests of the property and few other surrounding landowners can enjoy this perfect little jem.
Basically this is the best place to unwind with friends and family!
After a day of running around we wanted to just take it easy, everything we need is there, lake, private verandas, friendly staff, fun guests, nature, cozy living rooms, king sized beds...speaking of king sized beds...
Truth be told we had been dancing until the wee morning hours the night before at Moby's ocean side pub so this night in particular we stayed in. The units have wifi and some are outfitted with TVs so the unwinding options are endless. I chose comfy pjs, tea and good book.
Relaxation on point
Added in some Salt Spring Island candles to my zen space because I am friggin' obsessed with scented candles. Like it's a real problem. The team at SSI Candle Co. sent me some of their favourites and now I have a few more to add to my collection.
SSI Candle Co.
My top 4 scents I love by season are:
Summer: Full Moon
Plus I brought along my other obsession from the Gut Lab girls in YYC - Glow which I stir into tea or coffee on the daily. Lights out after that.
Adding in my favs: SSI Candle Co. and Gut Lab (from YYC) added to my tea
If you have not been to Salt Spring Island I highly recommend you consider a visit. The sense of community on the island is incredibly welcoming to visitors and you will truly start to understand the draw of the natural beauty of this little island nestled between Vancouver Island and the mainland. And visit at any time of the year, there is no bad time to be on SSI, every season brings new delights and mild temperatures. Below is a little more detail on the what The Cottages have to offer in terms of real estate and rentals. And if you do chose to visit my little hometown, please don't hesitate to reach out to me for a list of recommendations from a 'locals' perspective.
REAL ESTATE + RENTAL INFO:
Real Estate: Prices start at $309,900 for one of these very special Southern Gulf Island retreats. If you have been considering the purchase of a vacation home, there’s no better place than here! From location to turn key access to speculation tax exempt this is a solid investment...I'm considering it!
Nightly Rentals: The Cottages are available to rent year round. Whether you want a summer getaway or a winter retreat, it's all so easy here!
I literally did NOT want to leave. This place has a very special place in my heart now and the people here are starting to feel like old friends.
- To the Team at The Cottages a HUGE thank you for having me! I will be back soon!
Until next time!