Guest Comments

Paul, as we come to the end of our wonderful stay at your "realescape," we wanted to let you know how much we enjoyed our time here. I know that we've talked about our experiences during the past four weeks, but we'd like to formalize our thoughts for you on the eve of our departing:

Why did we choose Gabriola Island in the first place? We did a day trip to Gabriola a couple of years ago while on a winter trip on Vancouver Island. It felt like a laid-back place with amazing beach access areas. The rock formations at each site captivated us and we took many photos, some of which we've had enlarged, framed and now they're displayed in our home. They amaze our guests when we tell them about Gabriola Island. This winter we decided to return to the Island to spend a longer time exploring this amazing place.

How did it go? In our search for a place to stay, we discovered "realescape." It turned out to be a perfect fit with our goal of getting to know Gabriola better. Paul West of "realescape" acquired the property many years ago, but what an amazing choice! It's quaint, quiet, and we enjoyed a quality stay. Physically, the stellar view is probably the feature that we'll long remember about our time here. Paul certainly covered all the bases you could want. Our every need was thoughtfully cared for and we regularly benefitted from his extensive experience with this island. Both my wife and I found that a new level of relaxation was indeed possible at "realescape."

Thank you, Paul, for all your careful attention to detail. This went a long way to make this a memorable vacation. Thank you too, for your friendship. This certainly personalized our experience. We especially loved our kayak lesson in the bay. Our first real lesson in kayaks, and to have it in the ocean made it very special! Thanks again.
Jim and Janice.  Spruce Grove, Alberta  (March/April, 2013)


Gabriola Island is a magical place offering respite and rest from the busy 'grids' of the city....and the “realescape” cottage on Gabriola is the perfect setting to experience it. My husband, Wayne, and I stayed at the cottage for five months, travelling from our home in North Vancouver every other week to stay there. After the initial acclimation period to the quiet and peace, we found ourselves repeatedly enchanted by the natural beauty and serene atmosphere around the cottage. We took daily walks with our dog to 'Indian Point', an open 4 acre waterfront ‘park’ just a few meters down down the road. We saw many deer and other animals, went kayaking, and spent much time on the mostly private beach (we never saw anyone else down there!) that is easily accessible from the cottage. Paul was a generous host and we were fortunate in providing painting in exchange for rent. We were drawn to Gabriola to rejuvenate our energy, connect with each other, and awaken our souls - all of which we experienced in abundance at the cottage.
Jillian & Wayne V.  Gibsons, BC  (5 months, April to August 2012)


We had a wonderful time on Gabriola Island. We were touring the US and Canada for a year and looked after “realescape” while Paul was in Vancouver for a week (Xmas 2011). Paul was very very helpful and made us feel really welcome. It’s a beautiful and relaxing place. The beach is gorgeous and we would love to enjoy it again during summer months. Gabriola Island is the perfect place to re-set your mind and enjoy nature. I absolutely recommend this place for any short holiday or long-term stay, and the host is amazing. Paul helped us way more than we expected. Thanks!
Morice & Martje.  Germany  (December 2011)


We had such an amazing time at “Realescape Cottage” on Gabriola Island. From our first email with Paul, he was helpful in giving us thorough directions to the cottage and advice on what to do on the island. The cottage itself is quaint and perfect with lots of privacy from the main house, and just a pathway away from an almost secluded beach. We had all our meals on our deck while enjoying the quietness around us. It was early September when we were on Gabriola and the perfect time. The crowds had returned home and everywhere we went, it felt like we had the whole island to ourselves. During this trip, we also visited other Gulf islands but our favorite was Gabriola, and the time spent at Paul’s “realescape” cottage. We had a great relaxing trip, and Paul was incredibly hospitable. We are looking forward to visiting again soon.
Lisa & Francois C.   Vancouver BC  (September 2012)


Back in 2001 I discovered Paul’s cottage on Gabriola Island. The spectacular marine life, interesting collection of birds, the scenery, and the guarantee of peaceful quiet tranquility bring me back year after year. This is an absolutely amazing place and the host is wonderful, with incredible knowledge about Gabriola, right from its history to the daily comings and goings on the island.
Gordon C.  Bentley/Tzar/Wainright,  Alberta,  Canada  (2001 - 2013)

Paul’s note: For 12 years Gordon has been close personal friend. In about 2001, 2003 & 2005 Gordon repeatedly rented our cottage for periods of about three months. In Summer 2006 I took a road trip to visit his massive cattle ranch east of Edmonton, and I met his children and parents, and attended their local rodeo. In 2011 Gordon parked his exquisite 40’ motor home in my driveway, and I connected him to all RV services. Yes, Gordon loves the BC West Coast, Gabriola Island, and our “realescape” cottage.


My husband could not have chosen a better place to surprise me with his marriage proposal in August of 2011. Not only was the location perfect, but Paul was able to secretly set the mood that night, setting a fire on the beach, gathering roses and hiding a bottle Champagne for us! The accommodations were private and very comfortable. We are hoping to return soon to watch the sun rise over the ocean once again with the hundreds of purple starfish who greet each day. We would love to join you again! Do you have any openings for 2013?
Chris & Erich I.  Vancouver, BC  (August 2011)