Many who know me know that I am young at heart, and that this constant desire to never grow up sometimes takes me on journeys of whimsical recollection as I immerse myself in a setting that was important in my youth.  I do this frequently and I can honestly say that Mrs. Toad puts up with quite a bit as I take her by the flipper and bounce around the island showing her these things.  My mom passed away when I was still quite young and as a result I tend to hang onto certain memories as I don’t have the benefit of an entire lifetime spent with her.  In some cases I can’t help but feel the passage of time when I come across stories like this, it almost feels like a systematic disassembly of my memories.

This is our final post in our photoblog series “Anne Hathaway’s Cottage At The Olde Inn” in which we share our last photographs taken at Victoria’s English Inn & Resort.  I expect that a visit to this site will reveal a vastly different landscape in the very near future as plans are underway to develop the property.  And as such we close a very personal chapter in my life.

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada –

Back in the day the facility was part of a large 4.5 acre site, full of luscious gardens carefully maintained to accent the old world feel.  Many different buildings dotted the landscape, playing host to visitors and locals alike looking for a special night away in an almost magical setting.  This complete immersion into a time long ago was complete as soon as you entered the driveway, stripping away the city and all its modern ambiance, leaving you to half expect a group of horseman to make their way around the bend as men in full regalia return home from an active day of adventuring.

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada –

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada –

This is the place we came for all our special occasions; birthday’s, milestones, you name it, these things only happened every once in a while and this made it all the more special.  My mom was originally from Germany so she was really drawn to Tudor style architecture and I’ve always thought one of the reasons she loved it so here was due to how it satisfied a little of her longing for her home all those thousands of miles away.

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada –

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada –

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada

English Inn & Resort, Victoria, BC, Canada –

After a wonderful dinner, we’d always stroll through the gardens stopping to take in the inherent beauty, often with an anecdotal story of how this reminded my mom of her home and how much she loved it here.  It was easy to get lost in the vast gardens, and as a boy I’d often thought there was no end to this land, almost like stepping through the wardrobe into Narnia.  And even with finding the outer boundaries of the property on our visit, this feeling was still there.  Maybe it’s OK to still make-believe, even though my days of riding around in a red Radio Flyer wagon are long behind me.  This all undoubtedly fuels my passion to capture these places, so even when they are all gone we can still visit them in our hearts, minds and imaginations.

Thanks for popping by to visit us here today at The Hollow, we really appreciate it.  As always, we truly love to hear from all our visitors, so please feel free to leave us any thoughts or comments you may have.




  1. avatar Rich McPeek says:

    Wonderful post and beautiful photos my friends! Thanks for sharing with us!

  2. avatar Tom Torkilson says:

    isn’t it the connection to the world around us that makes us attempt to capture an image or a feeling in a little black box. Nicely said and you are blessed to have a person in your life that joins you in you flights of fancy. Namaste!

    • avatar ToadHollowPhoto says:

      Every time we see you here at The Hollow it’s a big highlight for us, Tom!!! Thank you so very much for taking the time to pop by and visit us today, and for leaving these absolutely wonderful comments behind that are so meaningful to us and our visitors. You, sir, are a true scholar and a gentleman, and we thank you!

  3. avatar Edith Levy says:

    This is such a beautiful post Toad and the images are outstanding. I really must visit one day.

    • avatar ToadHollowPhoto says:

      Indeed you must, my dear friend, indeed you must. Thank you so much for taking the time to come see us, we really do appreciate it!

  4. avatar dragonflydreams88 says:

    . . . wonderful documentation of this beautiful area (I’ve never been – pity!!) . . . seems sad to think we will lose this piece of history :^(

    • avatar ToadHollowPhoto says:

      Thank you ever so kindly for visiting and commenting my friend, that really means an awful lot to us!!

  5. avatar Jim Nix says:

    love the architecture here and how you have shot it, nice work Toad!

  6. avatar lensscaper says:

    As always, Toad, you have the knack of enunciating thoughts that so many of us are thinking as we grow that little bit older. It’s a sad fact that it is often only when we are well into middle age that we feel a longing to know more, revisit, and ask questions about events and circumstances from our childhood only to find that the primary witnesses to those occasions – our parents – are departed. Too late then to wish we had listened and asked more when we had the opportunity. The more we use photography to record the present, and write about it, the richer will be the heritage we can present to future generations. All power to your elbow, Toad.

    • avatar ToadHollowPhoto says:

      Really, really wonderful comments here, Andy, you’ve made my whole day. You’ve really said this well, exactly my sentiments on the topic. Thank you for your understanding and for voicing your thoughts here, I am sure everyone will really come away with something for having read them. You sir are a true scholar and a gentleman, and one of the very best friends a Toad could have. Thank you.

  7. Great series of images, as always, Toad. I particularly like the third one – its shows the architectural detail nicely but adds an air of mystery as the path disappears into the background.

    • avatar ToadHollowPhoto says:

      Thanks so much Mark, that really means an awful lot to us here! We really appreciate that!!

  8. avatar Jimi Jones says:

    Outstanding post and images! The Toads are in paradise, experiencing such great places on the island. It is always a pleasure to see what you all have to share. 🙂

    • avatar ToadHollowPhoto says:

      How can we thank you enough, Jimi? Your ongoing friendship and support here means the world to us, many thanks for your kind visit and comments my friend!

  9. To me the colors and building styles show very much that we are in Victoria. About this place I know no more than the name and historical aspects, but your photographs bring out its beauty and make me wonder what I missed out on never having visited there.

  10. avatar ehpem says:

    Hi Toad. I think I visited here once as a child. I guess it was not on my parent’s circuit. I really like that middle portrait oriented shot. It really gives the feel of what they were trying to achieve with this recreation of an old building.

    • avatar ToadHollowPhoto says:

      Thank you so much my friend, we really appreciate all the friendship and support you give us here!