Tag Archives: Octavia’s Bistro

Shake Down Voyage: Summer’s First Night on the Blue Pearl

By Teri Williams

Friday is spent outfitting our sailboat with fresh bedding, rugs, dishes and other items for the new season. I call it a season only due to the lack of time on the boat through fall and winter. No matter rain, sleet or snow, we usually have time each month. This past year we were required to do a vessel survey and the boat was in need of many upgrades and fixes. No problem if your first mate is McGuiver! Just need TIME.

teri williams on the blue pearl

Awaiting guests on the Blue Pearl.

Jay re-wired, re-plumbed and re-worked everything in getting ready for the survey. Our sailboat passed with only a few things put on the to-do list. The survey did more than get us outfitted – it required the boat to have a name. On April 20, as Jay and I were soaking in the hot tub, contemplating life, the boat came up. I am a huge fan of Johnny Depp and the Black Pearl adventures. Hmmm…female pirate…blue hull. Suddenly the name “Blue Pearl” came up and was adopted. This meant a christening was to take place.

A Few Mates


All aboard for the christening!

My plan was to stay on the boat at the dock in Bay Head Marina on Friday night. This gave us a chance to invite a few mates aboard. Beth Baker (Sew Like the Wind) came to admire her work with the installation of my new upholstery – all new pads and covers throughout the boat. Mike Powell (Cruising Concepts) came aboard to review cupboards. Permit Resources and Cruising Concepts have done some horse-trading and the Blue Pearl needed some teak work to accommodate the needs of the galley cook.

You will read my comment “we could be anywhere, and not far from home” many times through out my musings about life on the water. After champagne and discussions about changes to be made on the boat, we headed to Octavia’s Bistro in the Orcas Hotel. Friday night is Pub Night, includes tasty specials, local live music, a fine Makers Mark Manhattan cocktail, and toe tapping Orcas fun! Octavia’s tequila clams are the best in the County.


Ready to walk back to the marina from Octavia’s on a summer eve.

It was a fine early summer evening to walk back to the boat and nestle in for the night. With bags everywhere and plenty of plans for the next day of organizing, we found the coffee pot and propane for the morning and settled down into our new bed. Awwwww the life of a pirate…


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Dining at Orcas Hotel – A Savory Step Back in Time

Posted by Sandi

Orcas Hotel - Orcas Island WA

Greeting you with all her glory

I chose to celebrate my birthday last week with a quiet dinner at the Orcas Hotel, the beautiful turn-of-the-century landmark you see when you arrive at the ferry landing. Although I frequent the Cafe for breakfast during ferry waits, I hadn’t been to the restaurant in several years.

Historic photo of Orcas Hotel, Orcas Island WA

Former owners of Orcas Hotel

I love her grand architecture, history, and tended grounds. Plus  Octavia’s Bistro / bar serves just the right blend of laid-back elegance. On Friday nights in the summer it’s hopping with live music and the menu turns casual. But on this off-season Wednesday night in November, the place is packed with locals just looking for a good meal. (Hint: Wednesday is Prime Rib night and reservations are recommended.)

Salmon dinner at Orcas Hotel, Orcas Island WA

Grilled salmon served with steamed rice, grilled asparagus and basil essence. Yum.

The Prime Rib Special includes Harris Ranch grass-fed all natural beef, tossed salad, baked potato, asparagus and yorkshire pudding. 12-oz cut for $28 or 8-oz for $22. Hmmm… A great deal but prime rib’s not my thing – I ordered the salmon and it was divine.

Dessert at the Orcas Hotel, Orcas Island WA

Who wants boring birthday cake when you can have a warm rasberry tart with vanilla ice cream?

If you really want to treat yourself, reserve one of the 12 boutique rooms to retreat to after dinner. They’re furnished with handmade quilts, antiques, books and island art, and two of the suites have balconies and Jacuzzi tubs for two. Rates range from $89 to $218 depending on time of year and room selected. In the morning meander down to the cafe for your complimentary breakfast in the cafe bakery, or enjoy a full breakfast in Octavia’s. Check for specials; this month they’re offering dinner for two when you stay in one of the jacuzzi suites.

It’s hard to believe this storybook hotel was once condemned and slated to be destroyed to make way for ferry parking. A group of islanders got together to purchase it, and eventually it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places and fully renovated. Like many island stories, this one has a happy ending — just the kind I like! 🙂

Looking to enjoy the simple life on beautiful Orcas Island?
Contact T Williams Realty  – we’ll help you find your way home.

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