Back from our Muskoka Mini-Break – Our stay at the JW Marriott Rosseau

You don’t always see the beauty in your own backyard…rather than always traveling out of the country, I want my family to experience some of the amazing places we have in Canada. So I booked a mini-break for our family at the JW Marriott in Muskoka. We just got back from our trip – and we couldn’t be happier with our whole experience.

Clockwise: Double Queen bed room, the balcony, bathroom and kitchenette

Our room was GORGEOUS – it had a charming cottage-y feel with all the high-end amenities. The seating area on the balcony was the perfect setting for our first coffees of the day. The spacious bathroom featured both a bathtub and a showerstall, while the kitchenette was a life-saver for making a quick breakfast for the kids.

Indoor and outdoor pools; the JW Marriott viewed from our paddleboat

There were so many activities on-site, we hardly left the resort. Although we spent most of our time exploring the multiple pool areas, we also found time to go paddle-boating on the lake, attend a cooking demonstration at Teca restaurant and take the kids on a scavenger hunt. All of these activities were complimentary and included in the resort fee.

Clockwise: the house LM Montgomery stayed at in Bala, Anne of GG dollhouse, gorgeous Bala scenery, Anne & Diana having a tea party – raspberry cordial anyone?

The only time we left the resort was to explore nearby Bala – the location that inspired LM Montgomery (author of Anne of Green Gables) to write my favorite book of all time: The Blue Castle. Of course we HAD to visit the Anne of Green Gables museum in Bala. My daughter LOVED it – she got to dress up in period costumes (ok.. I got dressed up too!) and we viewed all sorts of Anne memorabilia.

My Trip OOTDs:

It seems like I spent most of the trip in a swimsuit – but here’s what I wore the rest of the time. Old Navy maxi dresses & an American Eagle jacket for the 2-hour drive there and back, an H&M mini-dress and leggings and a Garage lace top and jeans.

Travel must-haves:

These two products were essential on this holiday. Although I adore my Morrocanoil serum, it’s not very travel friendly (even with double ziplocs, it leaks EVERYWHERE!). Between the chlorinated pool water and daily shampoos, I knew I needed something to prevent my highlighted hair from becoming a mass of frizz. The Live Clean Exotic Vitality Leave-in Conditioner Spray contains Monoi Oil, Jojoba Oil and Bamboo Extract to promote hair strength and elasticity. I sprayed it on my hair 3 times a day: before going swimming, after my shower, and at bedtime. It smells SOOO good and kept my hair tangle-free and glossy (check out the last pic in my OOTD photo – my hair’s still shiny, right? Please don’t say I look like a frizzy mess!)

I use my Neutrogena sunscreen every morning, but the formula is not conducive for reapplication over make-up. So I used the Peter Thomas Roth Instant Mineral SPF to top-up on sun protection during the day. This powder has a matte finish and is easy to tap on without worrying about clogging my pores or getting burned.

Hope you enjoyed my post! Do you like going on vacation close to home?

Disclaimer: We paid for our stay at the JW Marriott ourselves – the best room rate we found was with our CAA discount. The Live Clean conditioner was sent to me for review, but as always, my opinions are 100% my own.

P.S. Canadians – don’t forget to enter my $50 Spectro Skincare giveaway! I’m giving away FIVE prizepacks!


  1. Mehreen
    August 22, 2013 / 3:38 am

    Sounds like an amazing little getaway! Sometimes the simple trips are the best !

    • Ella Pretty Blog
      August 23, 2013 / 1:54 am

      Exactly – I loved not having to worry about passports/tickets/travel-sized liquids… Yet we had as much fun if not more than we do on our US trips 🙂

  2. Regan Latronica
    August 23, 2013 / 1:34 am

    Love nearby trips, sounds like a great time. Which Garage jeans are those? Every time I look at their website I only find skinny or jegging styles.

    • Ella Pretty Blog
      August 23, 2013 / 1:56 am

      I know what you mean – they seem to only be featuring jeggings now – I keep checking to see if there are any jeans available because they're my faves! These were mini-flares or something like that from a while back.

  3. Beautygirl24
    August 23, 2013 / 1:58 am

    Beautiful! I think it's important to explore your own country. I know Nate and I really want to take a roadtrip next year and see more of our surrounding states. I love your travel style Ella! You look so chic, yet still Summery and laid-back.

    • Ella Pretty Blog
      August 23, 2013 / 4:43 am

      I know what you mean Noelle – it's funny because people often travel from far away to view places we take for granted. I love being a tourist in my own city/province. Roadtrips are the BEST! Sounds like a fun plan for you two next year 😉

  4. Lindy May
    August 23, 2013 / 4:00 am

    Sounds like such a great time! Would have loved playing dress up with you at the museum.

    • Ella Pretty Blog
      August 23, 2013 / 4:44 am

      You would have LOVED it! There was a Green Gables dollhouse that the owner of the museum furnished – it was ADORABLE! Will have to message you the pics 😉

  5. Lilly
    September 3, 2013 / 3:12 am

    Little getaways like these are my faves! Haha, love the dress up part 🙂

    • Ella Pretty Blog
      September 3, 2013 / 3:58 am

      LOL – there's no shame in my game – anytime there are costumes around, I get dressed up – it was so much fun to dress up like Anne 🙂

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