A few months ago, a few of my girlfriends and myself headed north to Collingwood for my 30th birthday. We had one day and one night to enjoy the Scandinave Spas and just… hang. Finding time to hang out with your partner post-baby is one thing, but finding time to bond with your gal pals is next to impossible. I was ecstatic. When we rolled into Collingwood to drop off our luggage and check-in, we were greeted with a beautiful drive up to a Victorian home that looked both warm and welcoming: this was Willow Trace.
After being greeted by the sweetest dog ever, we were quickly shown to our rooms, both of which featured an additional heater, free WiFi, Netflix and (most importantly) champagne glasses! Klink! The beds were comfortable, the decor was classic and the room crisp, clean and perfect for a girly weekend away.
The Saucy Secret Weapon Behind Willow Trace
While the comfortable lodgings were very much the home-away-from-home we were looking for, it was the breakfast that still has me craving more Willow Trace six months down the road. We were given the breakfast options the night before (see the full menu here) and settled on one order of crepes, one french toast and one omelette. Little did we know that lurking behind the kitchen doors – and the warm croissants welcoming us as we made our way downstairs – was Chef Philip Tarlo, host of Rogers Georgian Bay Cooking with a culinary background guaranteed to work up an appetite.
Chef Philip host of Rogers Georgian Bay Cooking brings over 40 years experience. He began his career training at the Savoy Hotel in London, England and went on to work in many Europeans kitchens before moving to Canada in 1983. Although he was trained in Classical French and European Cuisine, his many years of experience owning and operating restaurants and teaching a Chefs diploma course has added to his international culinary knowledge. – Willow Trace B&B
The selection of fresh fruit was exquisite, and every plate put in front of us looked like something served in a high end restaurant on the Champs-Élysées. It quickly became clear that Willow Trace isn’t just your run of the mill B&B, and as it turns out, when Chef Tarlo and restaurateur Leanne Calvert, aren’t busy whipping up delicious meals for visitors, the B&B turns into the Collingwood Cooking Academy, a place where everyone is invited to join in the experience, and become a chef.
The icing on the hypothetical (yet, what I’m sure would be delicious if served at Willow Trace) cake, were the melt-in-your-mouth chocolate chip cookies given to us as we checked out Sunday morning. Talk about leaving a lasting, and delicious, impression! The three of us were so impressed with our experience that one went back only weeks later with her fiance and signed up for a course on making English Pies. After she too came back raving, we knew we’d hit the jackpot.
Heading to Blue Mountain? Skip paying hundreds to stay on the slopes! Book your stay at Willow Trace, a 10 minute ride to the ski skills and the Scandinave Spa and a mere 5 minutes from the heart of Collingwood. Your taste buds will thank you.