During our time in Osoyoos, the southernmost part of the Okanagan Valley, we had the opportunity to stay at the Spirit Ridge Resort under the Unbound Collection by Hyatt.
I found the resort to be very well-suited for families, and it would make for an enjoyable weekend or even a three- to four-night stay.
The resort sits on a hillside overlooking Osoyoos Lake, Canada’s warmest lake. It is actually part of a larger resort complex, Nk’Mip Resort, which is located on the land of the Osoyoos Indian Band who owns it. The Nk’Mip Resort also includes a campground, RV park, beach, golf course, winery and cultural centre.
World of Hyatt Loyalty Program
To be honest, I never paid much attention to Hyatt properties before the pandemic. I had focused most of my efforts on achieving and maintaining status with Marriott Bonvoy, which meant it was rare I would deviate from the brand.
The pandemic changed that. With no organic way to achieve status given the lack of travel, loyalty programs automatically extended elite status and reduced the normal thresholds needed to maintain and achieve status.
World of Hyatt was no different. At the end of 2020, they launched their Bonus Journeys promotion, in which top-tier Globalist status, normally achieved after staying 60 nights, could be achieved by only staying 15 nights.
World of Hyatt has a reputation for being one of the best loyalty programs, especially in its treatment of top-tier members. When I fulfilled the elite requirements to maintain my husband’s Marriott Titanium status through February 2023 and a cheap mattress run opportunity for Hyatt presented itself, I jumped on the bandwagon.
Initially, I had no plans to stay in Osoyoos. However, when I was booking our Hyatt stay in Vancouver, Spirit Ridge Resort popped up in my search as another Hyatt property in British Columbia. What really intrigued me was that despite costing over $400 per night, it was only a Category 3 hotel, which meant I could redeem my Category 1–4 Free Night Award here (another perk of my mattress run).
We were heading to Kelowna anyway, and it looked like a decent resort, so I booked it.
(I could have redeemed my Free Night Award in Vancouver, but at $427 for the night, Spirit Ridge made for a much better redemption.)
Spirit Ridge Resort Osoyoos – Booking
The booking process was not as simple as I had hoped. My initial search for two nights online showed no availability for any dates in July or August.
I called in to double check and it turned out that during popular travel periods, Spirit Ridge enforces a three to four-night minimum stay policy. This wasn’t posted on their website, so just something to keep in mind if you’re booking for this summer or the next.
During the summer months, nightly rates can be over $400, but outside of that peak travel time, a room can be booked for under $200. I was able to book a one-bedroom condo with two queen beds and a sofa bed for $379 per night for two nights, and then applied my Free Night Award to our third night.
Whereas Marriott makes it quite easy to apply a Free Night Award online, for Hyatt you need to call into the reservations line to use a certificate within a multi-night booking. They have to manually adjust your booking and attach it.
Ricky has covered in-depth how he has scored some pretty nice upgrades with Marriott in the past, especially using the chat feature. Unfortunately, there is no chat function built into Hyatt’s app to use the same tactic.
I was prepared to take my chances at check-in; however, when I happened to call the hotel the night before to inquire about whether pool reservations were necessary, I took the opportunity to inquire about a room upgrade with the agent.
To my surprise, he informed me that he was just about to review reservations for the next day. He normally checks and assigns possible upgrades for elites the night prior to check-in. Since I was on the phone with him already, he was happy to go through my upgrade options with me.
We had booked a One-Bedroom Condo, the lowest room category available. He offered to upgrade us a few categories up to a One-Bedroom Lake View Villa with Two Queen Beds and a sofa bed, which, short of a penthouse, was the best one-bedroom option they had and was booking at the time for $649. I was quite happy with the upgrade and was left with a great first impression already.
Spirit Ridge Resort Osoyoos – Arrival
Driving in, you can see the large resort complex from the dirt road that leads up the hill and past its vineyard. Check-in is in the resort’s main building, which was modern, bright, and open, and also houses the main restaurant.
The staff thanked me for my loyalty as a Globalist member, confirmed my upgrade, gave me my breakfast vouchers, a couple of bottles of water, and wristbands for all guests. Parking was free, with outdoor and indoor lots.
Spirit Ridge Resort Osoyoos – Property Layout
Before I give you a review of my accommodations, let me briefly explain the options. The resort has 226 condos, suites, and villas. All accommodations have a minimum of 55 square metres of space, a balcony with a BBQ, full kitchen, dining area and sitting area.
Even the most basic One-Bedroom Condo can accommodate up to six guests (if booked with two queen beds as opposed to a single king bed). These features make it an ideal resort for families who may otherwise opt to stay in an Airbnb rather than a hotel.
- Condos are one-bedroom suites. They do not have a washer and dryer, whereas suites and villas do.
- Suites refer to their two and three-bedroom suites.
- Villas come in one and two-bedroom options and provide more space than their condo and suite counterparts.
Lake view options exist for all three accommodation types; however, the lake view villas are the closest to Osoyoos Lake and offer the best unobstructed views of the vineyard and lake beyond it.
Lake view villas on the ground floor offer a small outdoor tub on their patio, as do corner suites and condos. Note, this is not a pool, but literally a very small tub that can seat two people. The patio is a bit more spacious on the ground floor as well.
Lake view villas on the second floor are not wheelchair accessible.
Spirit Ridge Resort Osoyoos – One-Bedroom Lake View Villa
We were located in the Shiraz building. I was quite impressed with our One-Bedroom Lake View Villa.
The decor was traditional, but it was clean and spacious. Having an ensuite washer and dryer that came with detergent was very convenient. The kitchen was fully stocked with everything we needed. The dining table was set for four, but you can easily pull an extra chair from the desk to seat a family of five.
There were two bathrooms in the unit, each with a toilet and either a shower or bathtub, which made for shorter wait times to get everyone bathed.
There is a TV in the bedroom and one in the seating area, but they are not smart TVs, so no Netflix, unfortunately. Another shortcoming was a lack of USB charging ports in the room, so make sure to bring your own.
Outside, there was a small patio with BBQ and a small dining set that could seat four. What really blew me away was the view. The vineyards with its rows and rows of vines were just within a few feet of us, and beyond that was Osoyoos Lake, with the sun just peeking over the mountain tops beyond that.
Spirit Ridge Resort Osoyoos – Dining
The resort’s main restaurant, The Bear, The Fish, The Root & The Berry, serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They have patio and indoor seating options.
We had the opportunity to have breakfast and dinner here. It’s a good idea to make reservations (even for breakfast) beforehand if you’re travelling during peak season, as when we were there, they were booked up for the next few days. (If you book through OpenTable, you can even earn earn points for your reservations!)
For Globalists, breakfast is included for two adults and up to two children, and includes a main dish and drink for each person. Although their menu is a bit limited, the food was good. At the Hyatt Regency in Vancouver, they extended the complimentary breakfast to my third child as well, but here, they did not.
The breakfast menu was as follows:
And the kids’ breakfast menu was as follows:
Breakfast vouchers can also be redeemed at Market, a small cafe with an outdoor dining area that serves beverages, snacks, and sandwiches. The cafe is open only from 7am–1:30pm, except on Friday and Saturday nights when it also serves pizza from 2pm–8pm.
If you’re spending most of the day on the resort’s beachfront, then you could check out their second restaurant, Footprints Beach Bar & Grill, which serves more casual Caribbean fare.
Nk’Mip Cellars, located next to the main building, also has their own outdoor patio restaurant that is open from 11:30am–4pm, weather permitting.
If you’re looking for more options, then drive 5–10 minutes into town for a variety of fast food or sit-down restaurants. One particularly family-friendly restaurant is Campo Marina Italian Restaurant. It is quite a busy place and they only take reservations at 5 and 5:30pm; otherwise it’s first come, first served.
Spirit Ridge Resort Osoyoos – Activities & Facilities
Pools. Spirit Ridge has two outdoor pool areas: the family pool that is open to all ages, and an adult-only pool. Both pools are open from 7am–10pm. The family pool is massive and has a waterslide (which unfortunately was not operational due to the pandemic), a sauna, and a hot tub in the area. It can get busy, especially since we were there during the heatwave.
The resort does offer a few cabanas off to the side of the pool if you prefer a bit more privacy. These can be rented for a half day or full day for a small cost. Cabanas come with a few snacks (chips, granola bars, etc.) and a fridge stocked with a few bottles of water and cold wet towels.
The adult-only pool and hot tub are located in front of the main building and overlook the vineyard and the lake. It is quite relaxing to just sit by the poolside and enjoy a good read or just take in the scenery from there.
Gyms. There are two gyms, each located next to the pools. They each have a few cardio machines. The one located by the family pool is open 24 hours.
Solterra Desert Spa. I unfortunately did not have a chance to see this facility during our stay. They are a full service spa, offering facial, nail and body treatments, in addition to salon services and are open 9am-6pm daily.
Sonora Dunes Golf Course. Also located onsite is a 18-hole, par-35, 2523 yard golf course. Rates are available for 9-hole and 18-hole rounds, as are cart and club rentals.
Nk’Mip Cultural Desert Centre. This centre features a small indoor section with interpretive displays, videos and even a few snakes on display, and an outdoor section which includes a 1km nature trail down to a reconstructed village. The trails are fairly well maintained and easy for even toddlers, however, strollers may struggle at some parts of the trail. Those with mobility issues can request for a ride in a golf cart, however it is subject to staff availability.
Nk’Mip Cellars. Located right next to the main building, Nk’Mip Cellars is the first North American indigenous-owned winery. They offer booked experiences throughout the day, starting at $5 per person for just the tasting bar, to $25–45 per person if done with food pairings.
Riding stables. Indian Grove Riding Stables is located just down the main road to the resort and offers trail rides through the Osoyoos desert. The stables did not appear the most well-kept but did get decent reviews online.
Beach. The resort has a small beach on Osoyoos Lake. It is about a 10–15 minute walk to the beach from the resort along a dirt pathway. Alternatively, during the summer, the resort offers a shuttle that runs back and forth from the main building to the beach throughout the day.
To be honest, the beachfront is not very impressive. If there’s one thing the resort could improve on, it would be this.
It is a very small area separated by a wooden fence from a much larger beach used by guests of the campgrounds and RV park. I would much rather use that beach, or head into town for some nicer beaches.
Nonetheless, my kids still enjoyed their time there. The beach is a bit rocky and there are a few scattered lounge chairs along it for guests to use.
Wakepilot, a watersport rental company, is situated right at the beach, which is convenient for boat, kayak, seadoo, and paddleboard rentals. Footprints Beach Bar & Grill is also located right by the beach. It was closed due to the heat wave when we were there, so unfortunately I can’t say much about it.
Spirit Ridge Resort was a pleasant, fun, and relaxing experience for our family, especially when the heatwave hit and we just needed an indoor retreat.
We couldn’t have asked for better accommodations; it was spacious, comfortable, and had all the amenities we needed to make it our home away from home. It makes for a great getaway for a few nights.
Needless to say, I was quite impressed with my treatment as a Hyatt Globalist member at Spirit Ridge. This stay alone has paid off the cost of my Hyatt mattress run, and I’m frankly surprised it is only a World of Hyatt Category 3 property.
With not too many other Hyatt properties in Canada, it makes for a good option to burn a Free Night Award if staying during the summer when rates are high. As border restrictions continue to be lifted, I look forward to building on this experience and testing out my Globalist status internationally in the future.