Rosario Resort and Spa, Orcas Island

Offering relaxation and comfort on tranquil Orcas Island, Rosario Resort and Spa is an ideal waterfront haven where you become one with nature amidst the beauty of the San Juan islands. An unforgettable maritime experience in one of the world’s scenically stunning destinations.

The Rosario Marina

The Rosario Marina on Cascade Bay is a superb starting point for any vacation in the San Juan islands. Halfway up the eastern shore of East Sound, the marina offers extensive mooring facilities and a secure anchorage. Its pre-bookable spa, sauna and fitness centre are among its many attractions, as well as easy access to Moran State Park. The marina offers day use facilities on a first come first served basis, which are free for up to four hours during the summer period. For full details call (360)-376-2152 ext 700.

The Moran Museum

The Moran Museum, built 1906-1909 by Robert Moran, is like a trip back in time. The Museum features historic photographs from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, original fixtures and furnishings, mahogany paneling and opulent stain glass lighting. Feast your eyes on unique fireplaces and hearths as well as an extensive display of the ships built by the Moran Brothers Company in Seattle. The mansion’s focal point is the Music Room. Here you’ll find a Steinway grand piano from 1900, a 1913 Aeolian pipe organ, a Belgian stain-glass window and two mezzanine libraries which overlook a magnificent Tiffany chandelier. The Mansion opens to the public for self-guided tours from 9am-9pm daily.

Rosario Resort Activities

For a memorable and cultural experience, accomplished author, musician and historian Christopher Peacock offers visitors a musical and photographic “walk through” of the Moran family and resort history. Featuring original piano compositions, silent movies and accounts of the Resort’s more colorful residents, the free presentation, in the Music Room, is daily (barring Sunday) at 4pm and non-residents are very welcome.

During the summer months, Shearwater Kayaks offer guided sea kayak tours. Leaving daily from the marina, their experienced guides will help you improve your skills or teach you from scratch. Either way, this gives you a great opportunity to view the resident marine life in their tranquil habitat. For full details call (360)-376-4699 or visit www.shearwaterkayaks.com.

How about an unforgettable narrated cruise in search of orca and minky whales. If this ticks all your boxes, try Deer Harbor Charters. With more than 30 years experience, they’ll treat you to an amazing educational voyage through the San Juans’ protected waters and on the way you’ll learn about orcas, bald eagles, seals and porpoises with on-board naturalists. Daily departures March – October are from Rosario Marina. For information and reservations, visit www.deerharborcharters.com or call (360)-376-5989.

Morning Star Charters at Eastsound will certainly enhance any visit to Rosario Resort. The ‘Morning Star’ caters for memorable cruises and even maritime weddings. Owner, Robert Lee has been operating her since 1976 and being an ordained minister, has performed several on-board weddings. For full details, call (360)-376-2099 or go to www.orcascharters.com.

Rosario Spa

No visit to Rosario would be complete without the relaxation of its Spa. Featuring stunning views of Cascade Bay and the San Juan Islands, its facilities include treatment rooms, sauna, whirlpool, exercise and weight rooms and a historic indoor pool. The Spa offers guests a variety of ways to relax and rejuvenate in a truly amazing location. For those keen on a bit more exercise, the Fitness Center with extensive cardio and weight training is hard to beat. Including an indoor dry sauna, a 40 feet long lap pool and two outdoor swimming pools, facility day-use passes are available for non residents.

Rosario Accommodations

Surrounded by the natural tranquility of the San Juans, what better way can there be to escape from the world? Rosario’s Waterfront and Bayside Rooms are found in the Skagit Building, a short walk from the Moran Mansion and Marina. With one king-size or two queen beds, the rooms have sliding-glass doors leading onto a balcony or patio. All rooms have private bathrooms, televisions, free internet, refrigerator and coffeemakers. The Residences, above Cascade Bay, are a perfect retreat for couples or families. They are also ideal for book clubs, business ‘away days’ and spa getaways. They’ll even welcome families with small dogs.

A two-night minimum stay is required and they come complete with en suite bathrooms, living rooms, and full kitchens. The historic Roundhouse is a circular bungalow dating from 1913. Overlooking East Sound and Cascade Bay, this unique suite features a separate living room, a ‘sleigh’ design bed and luxurious shower. Perched right on the shoreline, the Waterfront Suite offers views that are beyond words. It looks out over East Sound and offers dining area, a pull-out sofa bed, king bed and feature fireplace.

Rosario Dining

Dining in the Mansion Restaurant ensures wide choice, sumptuous views and a relaxed atmosphere. Open daily from 8am-12noon for breakfast, and 5pm-10pm for dinner, it offers quality and variety with a menu – changed weekly – ranging from oysters on the half shell to salmon chowder and Cajun seared 16oz Ribeye steak. Call (360)-376-2152 ext. 400 for reservations.

For cocktails beside the fire, the Moran Lounge offers just the right historic setting. In what was the original mansion’s living room, the Lounge opens nightly 5pm-10pm. The Cascade Bay Grill and Store is ideal for food on the go. Serving up pizza, burgers and seafood, it opens for breakfast, lunch and dinner from 7am-9pm Memorial Day weekend through September.

Rosario Weddings

Named “Best Destination Wedding Site” by Seattle Bride Magazine in 2005 and 2007, it is not difficult to understand why. Rosario Resort comes with a romantic waterfront location and a stunning backdrop for that “one of a kind”rosario ceremony. The Resort’s Point Lawn offers a 360-degree “living stage” for both large and small events in a truly serene, outdoor location. A location rightfully listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

For details of the Resort’s services call (360)-376-2222 or visit www.rosarioresort.com.

About the author

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Nigel Boney

I started writing for Northwest.com in 2010, with 37 articles published. I have strong links with the Pacific Northwest. UK based, I also wrote for Mobbly News Written by You - 73 articles mainly under showbiz & entertainment. Recently I published on MusicVita. I have a Diploma in freelance journalism and I'm currently writing on Blasting News US.

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