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- Reviews: 20
Willows Inn: Relax at the Gourmet Willows Inn
There’s no better way to spend a relaxing and very gourmet visit to Lummi Island than at the nearly 100-year-old Willows Inn. The inn is located on the northwestern side of Lummi, a small island that is only a 10-minute ferry ride from the Bellingham area.
I enjoyed the hospitality of owners Riley Starks and Judy Olsen in mid-July at this most charming family-run establishment. The low-key inn (photo #2) has the Main House with four comfortable and charming rooms -- where I stayed; the Cottage, with a claw-foot tub and kitchenette; and the Guest House, with two bedrooms and baths, and room for 4-5 guests. My Hillside Room (photo #3) had a king bed, tasteful period décor, original artwork on the walls, and a spacious bathroom.
There are fine views of the sea and the other larger San Juan Islands from the main living room and deck. Dining is in the white-linened restaurant or on the deck. I found this restaurant to offer some of the finest world-class cuisine in the area. Fresh produce is grown at the inn’s organic farm, while wild reefnet-caught salmon is the owner’s specialty. There's an unbelievably good Sunday night spot prawns dinner (tip to come on this). The Taproot Pub on the lower level has afternoon casual dining/snacks.
I walked up to the inn’s organic farm on the hill, and strolled on the grey sand-pebble-driftwood beach (photo #4). Bicycles can be rented, or bring your own and your kayak along. By arrangement, the owners will take you to a nearby islet for a private picnic. There is occasional live music, and special cooking workshops are held, mostly in the autumn. The inn has wireless broadband.
I enjoyed the friendly family-like yet sophisticated atmosphere, and met several of the local Lummi residents who dropped by for meals or to chat with the owners. What a pleasure not to be staying in my usual impersonal business-traveler chain hotels. I'd return!
Rates run about $120 to $180 per room, depending on season. This includes a delicious breakfast (photo #5).
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