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Reviews (378)
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Reviewed July 21, 2013

My husband and I came for a two-night getaway. It was delightful in every way. The few negatives we experienced far outweighed the many positives of our weekend.

Location:

Benmiller is a tiny hamlet about 10 km from Goderich. There is nothing there besides a few homes and the inn itself, which is comprised if a number of historic buildings that sprung up in the 1800's at the juncture of Sharpe's Creek and the Maitland River. It makes for a beautiful, peaceful and idyllic setting for a getaway. With Goderich only a few minutes away by car, you have access to shopping, great beaches and the fabulous Lake Huron sunrises.

Rooms:

We stayed in room 71 at the Gledhill house. It was absolutely lovely. Upon entering the room, there is a sitting area with a desk, dresser, a couple of comfy chairs and a small kitchenette with a small fridge and complementary water, tea and coffee a la Keurig. Adjoining the sitting room is a bedroom with an incredibly comfortable king-size feather top bed, a new LG flat screen TV and a lovely bay window area with a walk-out to the balcony. Adjoining the bedroom is the bathroom, complete with bidet.

The room was beautifully appointed with custom draperies and lovely mauve accents. The Aveda spa products in the bathroom and nightly turndown service with freshly baked sugar cookies was a nice touch.

The book in the room "Benmiller Then and Now" was an enjoyable read and I was able to appreciate the place for its history as much as the attention to detail that made this place so wonderful when Joanne and Peter Ivey turned these historic buildings into an inn in the 70's.

Our room was lovely but outside of the room the house is looking tired and in need of updating. The balcony railing is rusting and the paint on the floor is peeling. The halls are in need of paint as well. There are cobwebs and some mustiness and other signs of neglect. These are minor, however, as the charm of the building is undeniable.

Grounds:

Some reviewers have complained about the walk to the dining room. To me, this is part of the of Benmiller Inn experience. The grounds are lovely, if a bit overgrown, and it is an easy, peaceful walk from Gledhill House to the Woolen Mill, which houses the dining room. There are plenty of nooks and crannies around the property to explore, including a lovely trail between the pond and creek that boasted working lights for evening strolls in its heyday, and a beautiful sitting area outside of the River Mill overlooking the expansive Maitland River.

Dining:

Saving the best for last. The dining experience was exquisite!!! Beautiful views overlooking the creek and gardens, comfy high-backed chairs and attentive but unobtrusive service, not to mention absolutely wonderful food. There is attention to detail everywhere, including fresh flowers on every table, fresh baked artisan bread and beautiful presentation of dishes. Our package included two three-course dinners and two breakfasts, and I'm certain I am leaving with a few extra pounds as a souvenir.

Overall:

I truly enjoyed our stay here. Our two-night package was great value for the money. I love the history of the place and the setting. I can see that they are putting money into the place to upgrade as they are able to do so and I understand that this can only happen so fast. I hope that they are able to come close to restoring it to what it must have been in its prime.

  • Stayed: July 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank diandy662
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dawn B, General Manager at Benmiller Inn & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 17, 2013

Thank you for your review and I am so happy that you enjoyed your time here. We are working hard at getting the Inn back to where it once was but you are right, it does take time. We are very committed to improving it and making it better than ever. It is a work in progress and always will be but many changes and updates are planned. The balconies you spoke of are half done now and we just have a few more to go.
We hope to see you again soon and thank you for your feedback.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 20, 2013

The property is in a very picturesque area for sure but we were treated poorly. The person on the desk had an uppity attitude that continued while we dealt with air conditioning that didn't work. I booked the room through Booking.com and so had probably the least expensive room reserved. It was small be nicely furnished even though the woodwork was scared and tired and the bathroom floor was cracked. In spite of the beautiful landscaping everywhere our room overlooked the parking lot and a spot next to the pool house where discarded items had been tossed. It was probably the worst room in the Inn. We were given this in spite of the fact the inn was mostly empty. The front desk dealt with the air conditioner issue by resetting the breaker several times before finally begrudgingly moving us. By this time we were in our pajamas and were told we needed to make the walk up to the main lobby for a new key. This meant getting dressed again and moving everything down the hall. During this exchange she made us think it was somehow our fault the air wasn't working. We had it turned up to high?? I'll never return.

Room Tip: You need to upgrade beyond the least expensive room if you want an acceptable view.
  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank sue48193
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed July 18, 2013

We have been to the Ben Miller Inn twice in the past 24 years, the last time about 10 years ago. We were looking forward to getting back there because we had such fond memories of this quaint and beautiful inn. We stayed there 2 nights in the Gledhill House, where we had stayed twice before (not in the same rooms). Beautiful looking on the outside, both the main inn, Gledhill House and the Mill house but very old and tired looking on the inside.

ROOMS:
The Gledhill House inside was musty, smelling like a cottage that had been closed up for the season. The carpet was worn and dirty. The walls looked like they needed a fresh coat or paint. The room was drab and smelled musty when you walked in. The bedding looked dated and old, and even somewhat discoloured (was white). It wasn't very comfortable either...lumpy. The carpet was old and had several stains. The curtains were musty as well. The coffee machine was caked with lime deposits inside, which made drinking the keurig they provided impossible...the taste was terrible.

FACILITIES:
The Games room (which we only found by accident...no signage) in the Gledhill House was dingy, dirty and musty. The pool table was stained, the billard balls yellowed. It looked like it hadn't been cleaned in years. The pool is huge and was generally unoccupied. It was fairly clean, but the towels provided were small and like steel wood pads! The hot tub look dirty, with paint chipping everywhere. We were afraid to even step into it.

FOOD/STAFF:
The only bright spot in this disappointing trip was the food. It was just as amazing as we remembered. Everything from the appetizers, to dinner to dessert, was impressive, plentiful and very tasty. The breakfast was incredible as well. We had an amazing server (Myron) both nights who was friendly, remembered our drink orders and provided us with incredible service both nights was start to finish.

Overall, the Inn needs a good makeover with some new/clean bedding/linens, fresh/new decor, new carpet, fresh paint and just a general facelift. Its a shame to see how much it has gone down hill. Probably our last trip there.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank time2travel4fun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dawn B, General Manager at Benmiller Inn & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 17, 2013

My apologies that you did not enjoy your time here with us. Regarding your comments on carpet being stained and dirty Gledhill has new carpet all the way through as of last fall and is regularly steam cleaned as well. The Keurigs are also brand new so I will have to look forther into these items. The games room had no signage as it is no longer in use.
I am glad that you did enjoy our dining room and will be sure to pass your kind comments onto your server Myron.
We hope that you will at some point visit us again and we thank you for your feedback.

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Reviewed July 12, 2013

We have visited the Benmiller Inn almost every year for over 25 years! Each visit has been unique. Our most recent visit a few days ago was one of the best! We had a room in the Gledhill building that overlooked the pond, with a small balcony. It was so beautiful. We noticed that the room had some new updates in terms of leather chairs, beautiful pillows and bedding, and a Keurig coffeemaker. We had dinner in the dining room which was excellent! Our server was Dan, and he was very knowledgeable about the menu and so friendly. The breakfast was delicious as always. We love coming back to Benmiller frequently, it is so relaxing and we can always count on a relaxing experience with friendly and helpful staff.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank janeWaterlooOntario
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dawn B, General Manager at Benmiller Inn & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 17, 2013

Thank you for your kind words. Feedback like this tells us we are heading in the right direction and I appreciate you taking the time to share with others how much you enjoy Benmiller. We hope to see you soon.

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Reviewed July 12, 2013

My husband and I decided to get away for the weekend for a much deserved break from the every day hectic world. We had been to Benmiller 8 years ago and my husband made the last minute decision that we should go again....and I am so happy he did. Is the Inn in need of some updating...absolutely. Can we see that the new owner is making and effort.....absolutely. These things take both time and money, but what they may lack in the way of frills they more than make up for in setting, staffing and overall enjoyment.
We stayed in the Gledhill House, second floor - loved waking up in the morning, opening the balcony doors and listening to all those happy birds!
Met a very nice young lady while walking the property who turned out to be the GM - Dawn - very helpful and took the time to discuss the work that has taken place since the storm blew through a couple of years ago.
The garden/patio area off the dining room is beautiful - you forget that there is a road just on the other side of the trees. Sit back, relax, and enjoy a cocktail, maybe dinner, and soft music playing while you listen to the water go by and enjoy the view of floral gardens and mature trees.
Breakfast was included in our stay and was delicious and the brunch on Sunday was very impressive with a good selection of breakfast and hot entrée items along with a selection of salads and naturally sinful desserts.
You are a short drive into Goderich (5-10 min) and definitely worth the drive into this lovely little town. A nice assortment of little shops in the downtown square and take a drive or walk down to the waterfront. Better yet, take a picnic lunch and enjoy. It has to be one of the nicest waterfronts we have seen in a long time....don't miss it.
And not to be forgotten - the staff who made our weekend that much better. Having had dinner both nights at the Inn, one night in the dining room and one night outside - the food was very good. We had the pleasure of being taken care of by Dan and Myron - both were wonderful, friendly and another reason why we would go back to Benmiller.
If you are there on a Saturday night, don't miss the entertainment in the lounge that starts at 7 pm - sit back, have an after dinner cocktail and enjoy the one man show - anyone who can do Elvis, Johnny Cash, Supertramp and Otis Redding over the evening has talent! The bonus is that if you are sitting outside when the entertainment starts - don't worry - they make sure they pipe him through the speaker system so you can still enjoy him.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank nunnys_1_girl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dawn B, General Manager at Benmiller Inn & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 17, 2013

Thank you for your kind words and it was wonderful to speak with you. I have passed on your kind comments to Dan and Myron and we do hope to see you again soon. Fall is a beautiful time here to sit on the balcony and enjoy all of the fall colors!

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