Darst Victorian Manor

495 Old Highway 441, , Mount Dora, Florida 32757
#22 of 22 hotels in Mount Dora
Good (3.0 out of 5.0) 2 reviews
  • Show Prices
  • Show Prices
  • Show Prices
  • Show Prices
  • Show Prices

Now Called Heron Cay - Disappointing Visit

Terrible (1.0 of 5.0 stars)
by written on January 25, 2010

My husband and I are motorcycle riders who ride up to Mount Dora Regularly. We had our wedding reception at the Goblin Market (awesome food). Our friends bought us a $400.00 gift certificate for the Heron Cay Bed and Breakfast. We married in August 2008; during that first year we were notified that we’d have to move from the home we were renting due to foreclosure; search for, buy and move into a new home all while I was pregnant. Needless to say there was not much time to book at stay. I spoke with Margie at Heron Cay about the gift certificate. She was hesitant at first to honor it since she had put a one year expiration on it. In the mean time I searched Florida law; (Fla. Stat. §501.95
A gift certificate or credit memo sold or issued for consideration in this state may not have an expiration date, expiration period. The law past is June of 2008) so the expiration date was invalid. Considering it was FOUR hundred dollars of cash that Heron Cay received it would be pretty crappy to not honor it. I spoke/emailed Margie many times about our reservations instead of staying two nights in a smaller room we decided to make it one night in the largest suite available.
We arrived at Heron Cay to a somewhat tentative Margie who seemed like she was hoping we were in the wrong place as we showed up on our motorcycles. To set the record straight; our bike are not loud; we are not grungy and we were dressed well under our motorcycle jackets. We took a seat and waited as she helped some guests that were there before us. We heard her tell them about the B&B and gave them a little tour. When we were up she escorted us up the stairs and casually mentioned on the way up that she messed up our reservation and we were in a different (and much smaller) room. She said that she would give us credit in the difference of the rooms. I was very disappointed because there was a Jacuzzi and walk in shower I was looking forward to using. She showed us our room and where everything was and said to call if we have any questions. We were off for the night and didn’t see anyone from Heron Cay on the way out.
We enjoyed downtown Mount Dora; it is just such an awesome place. So when we woke up (somewhat late) we finally made it downstairs. We were having some coffee and Margie did come out for a second and say there were still some breakfast items left. We said we were meeting friends for breakfast. We were waiting to get a credit back since one night in our room was $255.00 and our certificate was for $400.00. We finally caught her and asked if we were going to get a credit and she looked very shocked and said that they don’t normally give money back. Really, then why did she say she was giving us a credit on the way up the stairs?? She then said that we both had given a little and she was willing to give us 100.00 gift certificate. Really?? Not sure why we would have to “give” anything since our friends GAVE $400.00 for 255.00 worth of services. We went on and told her about the gift card law, she knew nothing about and we told her we felt less than welcome. We ended up turning down the $100 gift certificate because it would mean spending more money at Heron Cay given that rooms start around $250. We feel, similar to others who had the same experience, that she moved us out of our room because she wanted to make more money with someone booking more than one night. The worst part of the whole experience is that you would expect more from a small business person who actually owns the property; we get friendlier and more welcome receptions from the large hotel chain’s front desk. It was the most ridiculous and disappointing stay at any resort I have ever been to; we did not feel welcomed for one moment at Heron Cay. This was my first experience with a B&B and not sure I would try it again. The owners of Heron Cay seem to be selective on who they treat well; maybe those that stay more than one night, don't actually redeem the gift certificates they sell and don't ride motorcycles will get better treatment

Unique Quality: Way over priced for us - We ended up paying $400.00 for one night in an average sized room (see story above).

Michael_D's Profile Photo

A great choice

Best (5.0 of 5.0 stars)
by written on January 6, 2005

Darst Victorian Manor

Clearly the class act of Mount Dora, as well as the state, this three-story gem was built specifically to be a B&B, and that means all the modern conveniences worked into dreams realized by the builders and innkeepers, Jim and Nanci Darst, who used to own Country Connections in Davie, a Victorian treasure trove.

Unique Quality: A modern definition of eclectic Queen Anne-style with corner turret, gabled roofs and generous veranda beautifully situated on a couple acres overlooking the lake.

Among the added attractions are the flowers, the robes, the whirlpool tubs, antique furnishings and crystal chandeliers, gas fireplaces and lake views, full breakfasts and afternoon tea

1 Photo of Darst Victorian Manor

Mount Dora Travel Forum

Need advice about Mount Dora, Florida? Visit the Travel Forum for Mount Dora and ask our Answer Gurus.

Latest Mount Dora hotel reviews

Lakeside Inn
Very Good (3.5 out of 5.0) 3 Reviews
Magnolia Inn Bed and Breakfast
Great (4.0 out of 5.0) 1 Review
 
Explore Deeper into Mount Dora
unique decor
Restaurants
good american fare
Restaurants
Take a walk
Things to Do
Start with information
Things to Do
Window shopping is fun
Things to Do
DORA CANAL & DEAD RIVER TOURS
Things to Do
AWESOME BUFFET
Restaurants
old commerce buildings
Things to Do
Lakeside Inn
Things to Do
Goblin Market
Things to Do
Gilbert Point at Gilbert Park
Things to Do
doodlebug
Things to Do
fountain in Donnelly Park
Things to Do
Donnelly House
Things to Do
Peacefull Sunset Island
Off The Beaten Path
sunset island
Off The Beaten Path
Sunset Island Mt Dora
Off The Beaten Path
boating on the lake
Things to Do
Palm Island Park
Things to Do
taco buffet!!!
Restaurants
Mount Dora Center for the Arts Gallery
Things to Do
Mount Dora Arts Festival
Things to Do
Shopping
Things to Do
Hidden Treasure - Literally
Restaurants
Icehouse Theater
Things to Do
Lake Square Mall
Things to Do
Food festival
Things to Do
Dora Canal
Things to Do
Tour Lake Dora by boat
Things to Do
Renningers Antique Extravaganza.
Things to Do
Alexander Creek
Things to Do
Cant beat the view of Lake Dora
Things to Do
Christmas tradition
Things to Do
Best Library in the county
Things to Do
Trolley
Things to Do
Old Princess Theater
Things to Do
Lake Dora
Things to Do
O'Keefes Irish Pub
Things to Do
John P. Donnelly House
Things to Do
Antiques Galore
Shopping